As the crowd chanted, “Run, Sarah run!” at the Tea Party Convention two weeks ago, I could practically see the eyes of the nation do one huge roll. But I was thrilled.
Don’t get me wrong. I can’t stand Sarah Palin, her political views (or lack thereof), what she claims she stands for or the people she pretends to represent. The reason I’d love a Palin campaign in 2012 is that it could possibly win the primary nomination but would be a near certain loss in the general election.
A few early victories could lead to a Palin candidacy. Early caucuses, which tend to attract more partisans, would give Palin a needed boost. In the Republican winner-take-all system, early wins can lead to substantial leads that give candidates huge momentum through the primaries.
Given that moderates and independents reject Palin, I can only hope that she wins the GOP nomination. Perhaps above nothing else, a Palin candidacy would all but ensure that Obama is a two-term president.
Though Palin as a nominee might make Democrats everywhere question the sanity of their Republican colleagues, my guess is that most of us would be quite happy with such a weak candidate.
Politics aside though, Palin as a nominee would be a disaster for democracy and our country in general. All things considered, democracy is about choice and options. Sarah Palin, by her rejection of intelligence and reason, as well as her refusal to show a record of stability, consistency or competence, has ruled herself out as a serious candidate.
Her performance as McCain’s running mate, while utterly abysmal, is not completely surprising given her sudden change from small state governor to vice presidential candidate. None of us, including McCain, knew who she really was, so the fact that she “went rogue” isn’t so much of a change as a revelation of her true character.
Her betrayal of intellectual conservatives and intellectualism in general was frightening. Using lies and rhetoric to appeal to Joe Clueless, she summed up her fiscally responsible credentials with the hypocritical “bridge to nowhere.” Though she liked to say that she said “Thanks but no thanks” on that project, everyone should recall that she was among the project’s biggest supporters before she was on the national stage.
Even more concerning is her sudden abandonment of her post as Alaska’s governor. Her excuses were both vague and lame, and the only one clear enough to even respond to was utterly nonsensical. The claim that leaving was the right thing to do to avoid being a lame duck is irresponsible.
Every politician’s term comes to an end, yet she is the only one to leave so suddenly and without good cause. Palin could at least have been honest: if she wanted to go promote her trashy book, she should have said so. Liberated from the cumbersome and restrictive role of Governor of Alaska, Palin now enjoys her gig as the Teabaggers’ poster girl. In this role, she advocates for the rejection of cooperation with Iran but also advocates that we declare war on it.
The bottom line is that Sarah Palin can’t be trusted. For conservatives, she offers no sense of purpose and is completely unreliable. She might go rogue at any second. For liberals, she presents no option of bipartisanship, cooperation or compromise. For the country, she offers the rejection of intelligence, reason, and international cooperation.
So run, Sarah, run! “Palin-Steele 2012. Because two wrongs make a Right.”