Purveyor of Truth
Just when you thought Sarah Palin couldn't out do her prior ramblings she steps up, tees off, and has just about everyone wondering just what the hell her purpose was. If the GOP has any sense the leadership will figure out how to shut her up. Should Palin decide to mount a campaign one can imagine it will be very difficult for her to find serious donors that would be willing and foolish enough to throw good money after bad supporting a dim light candidate.
DES MOINES — As a chance to evaluate possible 2016 Republican presidential candidates, the Freedom Summit here in Des Moines was a solid success. Several potential candidates — Scott Walker, Ted Cruz, Chris Christie, and a few others — left the 10-hour political marathon with their prospects undeniably enhanced.
All that was good news for Republicans. But at the same time, more than a few GOP loyalists came away shaking their heads at the performance of a party star, former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, whose long, rambling, and at times barely coherent speech left some wondering what role she should play in Republican politics as the 2016 race begins in earnest.
Palin made news when she arrived in Iowa saying she is seriously considering a run for president. In an interview with ABC the day before coming to Iowa, Palin answered "of course" when asked if she is interested in running in 2016. Then, when she arrived at a Des Moines hotel late Friday evening, she told the Washington Post, "Who wouldn't be interested?" Asked to clarify, Palin told the paper, "You can absolutely say that I am seriously interested."
The news, given big play on the Drudge Report, heightened the anticipation of Palin's speech to the Freedom Summit. After all, there were still memories in the crowd of her rousing speech at the 2008 Republican convention. But when Palin took the stage, it was clear this would be no inspiring effort.
First, Palin embarked on an extended stream-of-consciousness complaint about media coverage of her decision to run in a half-marathon race in Storm Lake, Iowa in 2011. She then moved on to grumbling about coverage of a recent photo of her with a supporter who had made a sign saying "Fuc_ you Michael Moore" in reaction to the left-wing moviemaker's criticism of the film "American Sniper." Then it was on to Palin's objections about the social media ruckus over a picture of her six-year-old son Trig standing on the family's Labrador Retriever.
It was all quite petty, and yet the complaining took half of Palin's allotted time. She then proceeded to blow through her time limit with a free-association ramble on Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, the energy industry, her daughter Bristol, Margaret Thatcher, middle-class economics — "the man can only ride ya when your back is bent" — women in politics, and much more. It would be hard to say that Palin's 35-minute talk had a theme, but she did hint that she is interested in running, although there are no indications she has taken any actual steps in that direction.
"Long and disjointed," said one social conservative activist when asked for reaction. "A weird speech," said another conservative activist. "Terrible. Didn't make any sense."
"There was a certain coarseness to her that wasn't there before," said yet another social conservative who noted that some in the crowd were uncomfortable with Palin declarations like, "Screw the left in Hollywood!" (It's not that they like the left in Hollywood — just the opposite — but the crudeness of Palin's expressions turned them off.)
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