When I first heard the news that Sarah Palin was resigning her Governorship, my initial reaction was “well I guess this means that she doesn’t want to be President.” The equation was simple, my biggest knock on Palin is inexperience (coincidentally that has always been my biggest knock on Obama, Marxism notwithstanding), therefore giving up her post where she is accumulating relevant experience seems oddly counterproductive. Abandoning her elected office to write a book and embark on a speakers tour does not make her more qualified for the most challenging job on the planet. Furthermore, her resignation speech was awful, suggesting that she was quitting to escape “politics as usual”. Does that imply that finishing the term that you were elected to serve counts as “politics as usual?” If so, I support politics as usual.
When I was first introduced to Sarah Palin at the 2008 Republican convention, my initial opinion was positive. My affinity for attractive female politicians notwithstanding, I strongly supported McCain naming a woman as the VP candidate. After Hilary was throttled by Obama, there was an opportunity to appeal to the women who had supported Clinton and were disappointed that a woman would not be running for President. Initially, I was impressed by Palin’s speech at the convention, and I saw a charismatic lady who had the potential to be a political superstar.
As the campaign progressed, my opinion of Palin as a potential VP soured. When she bombed the Katie Couric interview, whether you feel Katie set her up or not, afterwards she was no longer a viable candidate. Then to compound the fracture, the Tina Fey impersonation on Saturday Night Live was so unbelievably precise that it defined the candidate. Because the caricature was that of a bimbo, whether or not Palin would ever be good at the job of President or Vice President; it is irrelevant because her probability of victory in a National campaign has been significantly decimated by biased media coverage and comedic satire.
Where I really lost all confidence in her ability to do the job of Vice President was in the VP debates with Joe Biden. Joey was spouting off this constant stream of senile nonsense, making proclamations that were factually incorrect, and screwing up foreign policy events and situations. Despite how many people watched those debates, Joe Biden got a pass because Palin didn’t know Joe was fucking up. She could not jump with a “Joe, you are wrong” anywhere and instead stuck to her memorized talking points. Then that whole winking thing was just the nail in the coffin. Do I think that Palin is smart enough to be President, no. But I can say with 90% confidence that Sarah Palin is more intelligent than Joe Biden, whom I believe to be functionally retarded.
Now that Palin is no longer governor of Alaska, I suppose that her true intentions will start to unfold over time. If she is convinced that she can run for President, and that quitting her elected post is the best way to accomplish that objective; I would tell her that she is wrong and while she might have a future in politics, she will never be elected on a national ticket. Of course, opinions on this matter are divided on the right. For example, two very conservative female pundits, Laura Ingraham and Ann Coulter had very different opinions on Palin’s resignation. Coulter is convinced that it is a brilliant move, but as a disclaimer note that Ann really has drank the Palin Kool-Aid and remains convinced that Palin is a viable Presidential candidate. She is like those Japanese soldiers marooned on distant islands after WWII who didn’t know the war was over and believed that Japan would eventually win. I think Coulter has been losing her mind over this past year, just like Glenn Beck. Ingraham on the other hand advised Palin to fire the advisor that advised this action. Karl Rove seemed confused by the decision and warned that Palin was taking a considerable risk.
If she wanted a bright future in politics, she should have at least finished her first term as Governor. Quitting in the middle of the term cannot be spun to me under the guise of “making a difference”. That may get Ann Coulter’s panties wet, but I am not so easily ensnared.