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Palin’s prospects in 2012? Depends on daughter’s wedding plans

July 15, 2010

It seems that speculation about  Sarah Palin‘s presidential prospects began just as folks outside of Alaska were first introduced to her as John McCain’s running mate during the 2008 election.

Sarah Palin speaks at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans in April. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

Of course, that speculation has shifted into overdrive since that failed campaign, and her continued maneuverings that now include her role as a contributor on FoxNews and the formation of a political action committee, SarahPAC.

As columnist Kathleen Parker noted well in a column this week, Palin has become a masterful messenger, although what message she’s carrying isn’t very clear. As Parker wrote in her column, and is readily apparent in her new video from SarahPAC seen below, it’s hard to discern a message beyond the idea that Moms are great, and won’t be pushed around anymore.

Check out the video –

As Parker put it,

No, the genius isn’t the message, but the messenger. Palin has positioned herself as the spokesperson for the Good Woman (i.e., conservatives) and thus has inoculated herself and her message from criticism. To criticize Palin now is to impugn womankind. Worse, it is anti-mom. …

Palin’s long-term plans are anybody’s guess. Anyone who thinks she won’t run for president because she’s making too much money on the celebrity circuit is missing a big point. You make money as a presidential candidate, too. If you win, you’re president. If you lose, you’re rich.

And don’t tell her she can’t. If you do, she’s just gonna get feistier and cuter. Next thing you know, she’ll be a dadgum lioness givin’ heck to those media hyenas, just the way they can’t stand it.

Of course, with this full-scale speculation game, every move is analyzed for potential impact, including the revelation this week that Palin’s daughter is back together with her ex, Levi Johnston, with whom she has a young child, and they again plan to wed.

The daughter, Bristol, was thrust into the spotlight during Palin’s vice presidential run when news came that she and Johnston were expecting a baby. The couple later split, with Johnston airing some gripes he had with the Palin clan, but apparently the relationship wasn’t doomed for good.

Some are now saying that this news, announced in US Weekly, bodes well for Palin’s chances in 2012, while others say it’s damaging, or won’t have any impact. How this story plays with voters is anybody’s guess, but it’s somewhat depressing that it should factor into the discussion at all.

But then again, why shouldn’t it, when there’s little else to go on when judging whether Palin would be an effective leader and representative of the people. The discussion about Palin’s ability to lead seems to have always been more about style than substance.

Without a clear view of where she would take this country or changes she would make, why shouldn’t inconsequential factors like her daughter’s future wedding plans be analyzed when assessing her presidential ambitions?



One Comment
  1. Birgit Jones permalink
    July 15, 2010 2:52 pm

    It’s funny how two people can look at the same video and come away with such a different impression. With a rock star for a president who ran on ‘hope’ and ‘change’ (now that’s a really definitive game plan) it’s difficult to understand how reducing government and putting our lives into our own hands as the forefathers envisioned would be a hard concept to grasp. I guess it depends on if you’re looking through government-issued glasses or grass-roots ones.

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