Let's look at the Palin clothes issue a different way

As internal Pubbie realpolitiks.

She does a few rogueish, rat-getting-ready-to-jump-ship type moves.

McCain aides tell her, “Uh, lady, you don’t want to be doing like that.”

She goes, “What YOU gonna do about it?”

Eyerolls. “The second this campaign is over, we’re going to leak every damaging story we’ve gotten while dealing with you, princess, and trust us, we’ve got quite a lot of talking to do. Behave yourself. Simmer down, and do what we tell you.”

She goes, “We’ll see, you betcha. Just you try some of that stuff. I’ll have you fired and killed and then I’ll getcha fired again.”

So she keeps doing the rogue moves, and they spend these next few weeks dishing her. I don’t doubt they’re still sitting on stuff about her that will singe your eyebrows. Every campaign does, but few have a motivation to share it with the public.

Read purely like this, I think she’s made a serious error, in that she had a certain fraction of the Pubbie base in her camp, but she needs other Pubbies --moderates, McCain allies, neocons-- to get any traction on a further national political career. If she’s simply pissed off the people whose support she needs, can she have much of a viable political future?

I don’t know that she’ll ever have a national career again, but I could see her making her way to one of the Southern red states once she loses Alaska (whenever that happens.)

If you’ve got a base who worships you, you’ve got a political career so long as they’re centralized enough to form majorities.

It’s just such a narrow base to build on, is all. She’s making crude rookie mistakes, seems to me, which only makes sense because she’s never played with the big boys before, but what works in Alaska might not play in national politics.

I just listened to her account of her “concession” speech, which McCain’s folks didn’t let her speak a syllable of. The interesting claim was that OF COURSE McCain knew she was working on her own speech, it was her staffers, from the MCCain campaign, who were working on it with her all week long–how could they possibly not know she was writing a speech? (TWO speeches, actually, one she would say if they won, and one if they lost.)

My read is that they told her that losing VP candidates don’t get to make a speech, it’s McCain’s night, win or lose, and she was all “Let’s write one anyway, let’s have it in case we decide to do something new,” and they humored her rather than continue to give marching orders, knowing they would control the microphone on November 4th. But they were PISSED that she was deciding how best to use her time in the closing days of the campaign.

The more I hear about this, from her, the easier it is to read into her account the things that rightly pissed the McCain folks off about her, and why they’re trying so hard to derail her political future.

McCain is old and done. The younger ambitious repubs are the ones cutting her off at the knees. If she got traction she would just take them down again. Her narrow and rabid base can not carry an election. They need what she does not have . They will do her in and love it.

Sarah Palin will remain one of the leaders of the Republican party going forward. The question isn’t so much what kind of juice she’ll have but what kind of juice Republicans will have in general.

I think you’re getting close to something with your OP, but again you phrased it in the most demeaning way possible. You’re probably close to the truth but I doubt it was that out in the open. I bet some staffer wanted to handle her, thought that they should have total control over Palin’s image. She didn’t like what was being done with her image, went a little rogue, said and did what she wanted, and then that staffer got miffed that he was diminished in power within the campaign. Petty jealousy reigned.

I’d love to see this story twist and turn a little more to show that the staffer making the allegations had something to do with the purchases, and then just spun to the ‘rogue’ narrative in a CYA moment as the campaign began to melt down.


We haven’t heard the last of Sarah Palin, not by a longshot.

I find this to be entirely credible also. Somehow I don’t think she had the time to do all the shopping it is claimed that she did.

Politics is theater, and if you think that Federal campaigns don’t have the same sorts of roles as a Hollywood blockbuster movie, then you’re mistaken.

It seems to me like some aide screwed up royally in terms of due dilligence and saw a chance to dump it all on Sarah Palin.

Dudn’t really matter who bought the clothes, does it? She wore them and, to date, she’s the one keeping them. The Pope could have used his MasterCard to buy them for her, but she’s the one in deep doo-doo if she doesn’t cough them up, pronto. Like a week ago.

It actually does matter who did it. It is not a candidate’s job to reign in the spending of a stylist. Just like the star actor in a film isn’t looking at the prices of the costumes she wears in a film. You hire people to be on top of these things. That’s why people known as ‘aides’ exist in the first place. That is the job they are hired to do, to allow the candidate to focus on their role. Specialization of labor is one of the hallmarks of civilization. If a Candidate had to worry about fiscal malfeasance as it regards every action the aides take then they would be paralyzed and couldn’t do anything at all. To me if anything this is a testament to how shoddily run the McCain campaign was. Hillary’s campaign was shoddy in much the same way, and that’s why she ended up owing money all over the country. That’s the fault of the candidate in that the candidate didn’t do a very good job of assembling their organization. It speaks to poor executive experience. Now, in that process Sarah Palin likely had little to no hand in it. She likely did not hire the stylist, did not pick the stores she was brought to shop at, just like she probably had no hand in the pick of lighting designer or sound engineer.

Why does this require a separate thread?

The Senate is a possibility. She’s not qualified, of course, but she’s not qualified to be Governor either. She could still probably get the votes if she wanted to replace Ted Stevens. I actually think her trying to get that seat as a platform for her 2012 delusion is a very likely scenario. I think she wants the camera time, and she won’t get that in Alaska.

I can see her getting put on morning shows as a (scripted) attack dog against Obama, and trying to get up a head of steam for a run in 2012, but I also think she’ll have trouble expanding her support beyond the narrow base she’s already got (plus the more she yaks on camera, the more gaffes she’s going to make). I don’t see her being able to rise above partisan hack status, and there are a few other Republicans who want into the White House, and they’re not just going to roll over and let her have the nomination (especially since she’d almost certainly get waxed in the General). I think she’ll find that the money and party support isn’t really there for her when things gear up for '12.

I have a strong feeling that the next GOP nominee will be Jindal.

Repeat what I’ve said before: I’m no fan of Sarah Palin. But I think this frenzy over the clothes is a trifle over the top. It’s been only a week since the election. I think the woman has had a lot to do and, if I was her, getting home after all this time, sorting the kids out, getting caught up with the schools and the business of governor, etc., the clothes might not be a priority with her. Should they be? I guess most people here think they should be.

I would say if the clothes are not properly accounted for by December 4, 2008, then some questions should be asked.

I am another who thinks she has no future except maybe as a talking head on FOXnews. She blazed a pretty bright path, but she burned out pretty quick.

So do I, but I don’t buy a word of the ‘Sarah Palin is stupid’ narrative. She should go for Ted Stevens seat. Even if Jindal gets the nomination, she’ll likely come in a close second.

I would love love love love LOVE to read a transcript of that speech she never gave. I would love to know how that might have changed the tone that McCain set with his speech.

It doesn’t, really. I requested that it be merged with the Pit Thread in progress, but maybe this public request will be acted on more quickly.

Coming soon to a leak near you.

Word is, Jindal made sure McCain did NOT pick him, because he was smart enough to see that McCain was a loser, and that the VP nominee would receive a big chunk of the blame.

For now, Jindal’s best move (and Palin’s, for that matter) is to get back to the state house, try to do a good job, and establish a record worth being proud of.

More than anything, people were looking for COMPETENCE in the 2008 election. That will still be the case in 2012. George W. Bush didn’t lose his supporters through his ideology, he lost it through inept handling of things lik Hurricane Katrina. Even people who WANTED to like him couldn’t endure hearing “Brownie, yer doin’ a heckuva job.”

To have any hope of winning in 2012 (or, more likely, 2016), the next GOP nominee has to be someone who knows his ass from his elbow. Preferably someone who can point to a record of administrative competence, and the ability to manage a crisis.

We’ll see if Jindal is such a guy. Certainly, he lives in a state that will give him plenty of practice in handling crises. And IF he can create an honest, efficient state government in Louisiana, anyplace else will be a piece of cake.

Here is why many Democrats should be hoping for Palin stick around and become a GOP leader. In particular the numbers for the independents. Yes, many of the GOP like her. And a roughly equal number of Democrats hate her. She is divisive, we know that. But what do those fabled independents, you know, those who actually swing elections even though their numbers are not huge, think of her? Thumbs down by a solid majority. She’s great for the Democrats! Someone who can power through a GOP primary on the strength of the theofascist base but who has no possibility of moving to the middle in the general - who leaves the middle wide open for moderate and moderately liberal Democrats. God please show her a crack in the door!

Unfortunately I doubt it will be so. Alaska with oil prices down will be in for tough times and it is hard to shine as a governor in those circumstances. She may be able to go as the sacrificial candidate against a sitting President in 2012 but by 2016 she’ll be a has been doing Fox commentaries.

If Obama has a generally successful first term, the first-string Republican contenders might very well wave and say “After you” – let somebody else be the sacrifical lamb. That would have the additional benefit of stamping the scarlet letter “L” on her forehead in case she tries again in 2016.

Even Joe Scarborough is afraid that her you-betcha schtick might get old. Her interview with Blitzer yesterday was a disaster. Her phrases are imparsible for meaning. She makes sense only to people who think like she does, and PRR is right that they are few. She’s clearly a case of give-enough-rope. I think the governors in Florida are already sick of her.

I predict that Palin will fizzle out as a national figure. Her reputation with moderates is far too damaged for her to be serious contender. Primary voters may be more extreme but they also want someone who they think can win which is why candidates like Kerry and McCain managed to win.

A more interesting issue is whether Jindal will run in 2012. Does he really want to run against a sitting President? Unless Obama is doing very poorly in late 2010 I think Jindal will wait till 2016. In the unlikely event that the GOP candidate beats Obama he will likely serve in the Cabinet which would be a great platform for a run in 2020 when he would still be under 50.

My guess is that 2012 will be a Huckabee-Romney face-off with the former winning. The money wing will figure that this is the best year to give the evangelicals their prize so that in 2016 when it really matters they can get their candidate through.

I do not see anyone uniting the party. Huckabee and Palin have a narrow base and can not win a national election. They repel as many as they attract.