Running Local

This Train of Thought Makes All Stops

If You Don’t Like The Game…

Posted by Bob Kohm on July 7, 2009

Sarah Palin is giving an extraordinarily entertaining series of interviews this morning with the major network morning shows plus the news nets. Appearing in chest waders (but with her hair perfectly coiffed and in full makeup…) Simple Sarah is busy attacking not only the media but the individual correspondents who are interviewing her. Speaking to Andrea Mitchell, Palin came close to screaming at her, saying that she just wasn’t listening and didn’t understand. The somewhat creaky and very proper Ms. Mitchell, wife of Alan Greenspan, was also clad in chest waders. Classic TV.

What has become obvious is that while Simple Sarah does not see this as the end of her political career. While wallowing in a storm of claims that “opposition researchers” are wasting her time, the State’s resources, and making it impossible for her to govern, Simple Sarah is also telling all who ask her the key question– are you still considering a run for President in 2012?– are getting the classic candidate’s answer (in this case with a twist): “I can’t know what the next fish run is going to be like, much less what’s going to happen in 2012”. She says she’s tired of “this insane game of politics”… and then refuses to end speculation that she’s still a candidate for the Presidency. If you really don’t like the game, Sarah, don’t play it.

The CW is that Simple Sarah has dynamited her hopes, torpedoed her chances, burnt her bridges. Nearly every “name” GOP leader seems to be echoing that sentiment– she’s toast. There’s something interesting happening here, though– as the orgy of obituary rolls along, Sarah Palin seems to be cementing the one thing she has going for her, politically– her “ultimate outsider” status. It’s clear that the party bosses (such as exist in the GOP) aren’t fans and in fact wish she’d be eaten by a grizzly on one of her fishing trips; given her penchant for hunting there’s some speculation that Haley Barbour may dispatch Dick Cheney to her igloo for a bird shooting excursion. Think about this from the perspective of a campaign strategist seeking to make a buck (well, several million bucks) from Sarah Palin over the next three years, though. The Republican Party’s popularity is below the levels it nearly drowned under after Watergate, so being the sworn enemy of the “establishment” that put it there is a boon. Simple Sarah is a pretty girl who plays to that point even in denying that she does– it’s almost pathological– and the big bad boys are picking on her, triggering that most American of sentiments: standing up to the bully. She’s  busy trying to make quitting on her state a matter of “politics as usual”– it’s opposition researchers hectoring her out the door and she’s just trying to be fiscally and politically responsible and saving Alaska’s taxpayers from the expense of answering never-ending FOIA requests and suffering through a year of a lame-duck (lame-caribou?) governorship when so many important things are happening in the country. Take that all two years down the road and it starts to sound sensible; her former constituents (and the GOP base) will have gotten over the sense of being quit on, she’ll seem to have stood up to not only the Party bosses but the political process in and of itself, she’ll appeal to the idea that she doesn’t want to be a career politician. Her veracity will be perversely increased by stage managing her “exit” from politics, only to be brought back by her dad-gum gee willikers desire to do good by her countrymen and step into the race at great personal sacrifice to do nothing more than help her fellow Americans escape from the (wait for it) tax and spend Obama Admin. If she steps in late– think a few weeks before New Hampshire, skipping the organization-intensive Iowa Caucus but still influencing it– she might hope to create a media maelstrom that would drown out the obvious questions and enrage the Party establishment, thus bolstering her outsider image. She saw how Obama rode the wave of momentum he generated with his early showings and how it drowned (in GOP minds) negative coverage of his run and she wants some of her own. More importantly, as of two weeks ago Palin was handicapped by Mike Huckabee’s 2012 ambitions as they draw from the same base. if she can simply dance her way in and steal the spotlight she can neutralize the Huckster if things break right.

Anyone else sensing that maybe Palin really, really, really does like “the game”?

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3 Responses to “If You Don’t Like The Game…”

  1. Jason said

    Palin thirsts for media attention and she is leaving public office to profit from it. I think she’s not squashing 2012 rumors because she fears her fans will peel off if her future is to only become another talking head for Murdoch.

  2. Bob Kohm said

    I don’t know, Jason. What you say makes sense and I have no doubt that Simple Sarah could stumble into a good strategy unwittingly, but this all seems very choreographed to me. I think she’s making a play.

  3. Jason said

    Who is making the playcalling here? Brian Billick? This is a horrible job of offensive playcallling.

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