Sarah Palin for president? It's possible, she says.
Sarah Palin says if nobody else is up to the job, she could run for president. But her political clout is on the line in Alaska with the flagging US Senate campaign of tea party favorite Joe Miller.
“I think, still, it is too early for anybody to get out there declaring what their intentions are. For me, Mary, it’s going to entail a discussion with my family, a real close look at the lay of the land, and to consider whether there are those with that common sense, conservative, pro-Constitution passion – whether there are any candidates out there who can do the job.”
But then she added, “If there’s nobody else to do it, then of course I would believe that we should do this.” (It was unclear whether she was using the collective “we,” the editorial “we,” or the royal “we.”)
One who has reacted to the notion of a “Palin for President” campaign is veteran Republican political operative and megafundraiser for this year’s midterm elections is Karl Rove – her fellow Fox News analyst.
Mr. Rove told the British newspaper The Daily Telegraph that Palin lacked the "gravitas" to be president in 2012, presumably referring to her main activities – giving well-paid speeches to the party faithful, tweeting 140-character policy pronouncements without elaboration, and having her own reality show titled “Sarah Palin’s Alaska.”
“Appearing on your own reality show on the Discovery Channel, I am not certain how that fits in the American calculus of ‘that helps me see you in the Oval Office,’ ” Rove told the Telegraph. (For the record, the show is actually on TLC, which is owned by the Discovery Channel.)
But these days, it’s uncertain whether “gravitas” – at least as defined by the political establishment – is what voters are looking for. If it’s traditional “gravitas” (of the left or the right), then many tea partyers are having none of it.
Under court order this week, Mr. Miller had to admit that he “lied about what I was doing” (as he wrote in a 2008 e-mail) in inappropriately using government computers when he worked as a part-time lawyer in the Fairbanks North Star Borough.
Miller beat incumbent Sen. Lisa Murkowski in the Republican primary, and until recently he had been neck-and-neck with Senator Murkowski as Democrat Scott McAdams was relegated to third place behind the two front-runners. But a new poll of 500 likely voters paid for by a labor union and released Thursday has Miller lagging behind at 23 percent with 29 percent for Mr. McAdams and 34 percent for "write in candidate" – presumably Murkowski.
There’s never been any love lost between Palin and Murkowski, so Alaska’s US Senate race is a bit of grudge match between the two.
At a rally Thursday night in Anchorage, Palin will be trying to generate support for the tea party favorite. Later, there’ll be time to think about 2012.