I can't fathom why this is not on a reality television show right now: Sarah Palin sat down with Donald Trump in New York City on Tuesday night for just over a half hour at the former Alaska governor continued her roadtrip up the Eastern seaboard. Palin's office reached out to meet with Trump, not the other way around, Michael Cohen, special counsel at the Trump organization told ABC News. The two met in his 30,000-square-foot apartment in Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue and later ate dinner together. At Palin's request they dined at Famous Famiglia Pizzeria near Times Square. "She wanted pizza,"
-- Michael Kazin unloads on Mitch Daniels. -- The strange fall of Sarah Palin -- The new Civilization game on Facebook sounds awful
Remember the halcyon days when Sarah Palin was parroting the talking points of the neocon foreign policy advisors airlifted into the McCain campaign and remaining with her thereafter? It was an article of faith among conservatives, and especially neoconservatives, that Palin was a brilliant and thoughtful leader. Any notion to the contrary was the creation of a liberal media plot and fanned by the flames of coastal snobbery.
During the 2008 election cycle, Mitt Romney was often accused of treating politics more like a consumer-focused business than an exercise in leadership. “My view is, we ought to double Guantanamo,” he said, radiating the sense that if primary voters wanted something, anything, he’d be willing to sell it. His strategists obsessed about creating and selling “Brand Romney.” To many, these efforts made him look like a crass twit, a market researcher’s caricature of the perfect Republican candidate, even as he came in second-place for the GOP nomination.
The right-wing libertarian billionaires Charles and David Koch have been the subject of enormous controversy recently. Liberals have fiercely attacked them, and conservative and libertarians have defended them with equal passion. Now we have Matthew Continetti of the Weekly Standard joining in with an 8,000 word cover story. Continetti is the author of “The Persecution Of Sarah Palin,” and in this piece he reprises his role as ghost author for a popular conservative victim-hero.
This week, Tim Pawlenty formally launched an exploratory committee to run for president. His path to the GOP’s 2012 nomination is reasonably clear: He will try to become everybody’s second choice in a field full of deeply flawed candidates, and there’s a fairly convincing case that he’ll succeed. Strikingly, though, this case for T-Paw in 2012 is essentially the same as the case that was made for Pawlenty as John McCain’s running-mate in 2008.
As the 2012 Republican presidential field finally takes shape over the next few months, one thing is fairly certain: An intensely ideological female politician closely identified with the Christian Right and with the Tea Party movement, someone liberals love to hate, will define the race. But surprisingly, it’s increasingly likely that person will be Michele Bachmann rather than Sarah Palin.
On Monday night, the 2012 Republican primary kicked off in earnest. The occasion was an Iowa forum sponsored by Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition, which is eager to ensure that the Christian Right (and Ralph Reed, who is launching his own comeback) maintains a prominent—indeed, an absolutely overweening—place in the decision-making process of the GOP. This “cattle call” was held in a brightly colored suburban megachurch in Waukee, Iowa, known locally for having a rockin’ pastor and praise band.
It’s never easy to extricate yourself from a fling that got way too serious. But that’s exactly what many conservatives are trying to do after a few heady years of Sarah Palin infatuation. In the wake of Palin’s deeply unserious reality TV show and her embarrassing “blood libel” video, the bloom’s worn off the rose, rather definitively. In fact, those incidents may have provided just the convenient excuses the GOP establishment was looking for. Now, with the 2012 election looming, Palin’s former backers are fleeing left and right.