Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Sarah Palin's Never Going to Run for President

A summation of what I've been thinking, by Lindsay Beyerstein on Big Think

Please note that my opinion is not even universal in my own house. The Trophy Wife (widely known to be a much better human being than I am) is scared to death of a Palin presidency, because she feels, with some justification, that there are just that many stupid Americans.
Will Sarah Palin run for president? Could she win? Garance Franke-Ruta argues that Palin's best strategy would be to remake herself as a leader within the Republican Party. She notes that female candidates in other democracies have used own-party leadership to break through the glass ceiling and attain executive power.

Franke-Ruta acknowledges that being a party leader in a parliamentary system is very different from being a Republican Party official, or a mover and shaker within the party. For one thing, you can become Prime Minister without campaigning for the job, which is one way to circumvent the ingrained sexism of the electorate. But let's set that issue aside for now.

If party leadership is Palin's most viable path to the White House, we can all breathe easily. It's too late for Sarah Palin to remake herself as the natural leader of the Republican Party. She's not even the undisputed head of the conservative wing of the GOP. If the GOP picks its nominee based on leadership within the party, Gov. Haley Barbour of Mississippi will blow Palin out of the water.

In order to lead a political party, as opposed to a cult of personality, you have seem like you give a damn about an institution larger than yourself.

Palin has made it clear at every step of her career that she's out for number one. That's a great script for reality TV, but it's not a path to the presidency of the United States. Palin went rogue on McCain's ticket and burned her remaining bridges in her memoir. She quit being governor of Alaska to flog her book on the lecture circuit.

I doubt Palin will ever run for office again. She clearly prefers being a celebrity without portfolio. She has to keep flirting with the possibility of running, because she knows her brand will go stale when her followers give up hope that she will hold national office. Her facebook updates are only compelling if you read them as promissory notes backed by some imagined political future.

4 comments:

Steven said...

I'm with your wife...well, not literally, but I do believe that there are that many stupid Americans. And Sarah Quittypants is not going to ride quietly off into the sunset. One of her attributes is the the fact that she is evil.

Mysterious Man from the shadows said...

I disagree. The first and hardest part of leading a party is to form the cult of personality. After that, they'll believe anything you want them to.

It was a cult of personality that sustained George W. Bush's candidacy. Indeed, I've come to believe that the modern media requires any candidate to lead a cult of personality, not merely a party.

Nance said...

There's that speech Beck and Palin have on 9/11 in Anchorage. I have two concerns. 1)That the Kochs and Murdoch have been setting the tea party up to meet criteria as a real political party in the country (capital letters if not capitol intellects) with Beck as committee chair and Palin as First Candidate. I suppose it's also possible that the Libertarians could tap her; they might be ready for a fresh front man if there's a promise of a Cabinet position for Rand and a 2016 spot for him on the ballot.

2)This is really more of a deeply cherished wish than a concern: that Beck and Palin will announce their new ministry on 9/11. Richard Land did note coyly that Beck was reminding him of Billy Graham in DC (I'm sure Franklin was pleased to hear that). There's no end of the bucks those two could make as a church. Maybe they could arrange it, as Billy did, that no Administration could ignore them for the next forty years without risking political damnation. Wouldn't you just love to see them try?

BB-Idaho said...

Dunno, "Ya kin see Russia frum hear" is akin to
"Grate job, Brownie"..
Those presidential type
sentences seem to have great appeal to the electorate...