I'm not one who will automatically dismiss someone just because they don't hang out as deep in the Sarah Palin tank as I do. I listen to what others on my side say about her. I know there is not total agreement as to her credentials just yet. But, when I see intellectually honest and non-PDS infected debate, I can respect that.
A Palin skeptic just put out a piece that leads me to believe that there is still hope for good folks who may not be ready to take that Palin plunge just yet. Dave Gaultier is the kind of guy I would put into the "good conservative" but not yet ready to drink the Palin kool aid column. Here are the money lines of what he wrote (emphasis added):
Palin voices her strong support for Israel and for the U.S. taking a leadership role in the world while making sure that she is on record agreeing with the Pauls that empire building has to be a thing of the past. That makes her foreign policy quite distinct from both the realist Bush 41 and the idealist Bush 43 and is a lot more like Reaganism than NeoConservatism.The less courageous who fear "the polarization and media smear factor" are missing the fact that the left and the media establishment fear Sarah Palin more than we fear what they can do to her. She is their biggest threat and therefore that already makes her our most dangerous weapon.
All of that said, there still remains the question of whether Sarah Palin would be a viable general election candidate given her tumultuous national political career thus far. I don't think that question has a clear answer. I do think that a fully operational Palin campaign would unite all elements of the Republican Party given what I've seen of her ideology thus far.
Time will tell whether Palin continues to emerge as a sort of First Principles classical liberal, as well as if her high negatives are set in stone, sort of like a Dan Quayle, or whether she's more like Hillary, who went from being the shrill ex-wife of every man in America to the hero of Reagan Democrats during the 2008 campaign season. In politics, anything can happen, and if Hillary can go from being a bra-burning, '60s feminist to a working class heroine, maybe Sarah Palin can make the same kind of transition in the minds of those who currently view her as suspect: white-collar, educated independents who despise Obamanomics. And while Palin has allowed folks with their own agendas to define her for far too long, as she begins to voice her true views on the issues, she seems to be in line with the majority of Americans who are returning to a small government philosophy in response to the economic and international malaise that has been aided and abetted by big government. If Palin does choose to run, she will do so in a manner that has thus far not been expected by the political or media establishment on either side of the aisle, and has the potential to make the entrenched interests on both sides quake as she presents the nation with what establishmentarians fear the most: an electable champion of freedom.
Greta Van Susteren explains this with precision when says this of a DSCC email she received:
As I looked at the money solicitation and pic of Gov Palin, I thought 'they must be afraid of her.' You don't see a picture of Gov Romney or Gov Jindal....but rather Gov Sarah Palin. The covert message is, 'if you don't give, she could win.' If they feared someone else, that other person's picture would be there. The Dems are using her to raise money.This reminds me of something Rush Limbaugh has always said: the opposition will tell us who to nominate because they will tell us who they fear the most. The left and the media establishment are not just at war with Sarah Palin, they are at war with all conservatives (Sarah Palin is the voodoo doll that represents this and that's why they stick so many pins in). Palin herself has always said the attacks on her are really attacks on the message. Doug Brady of Conservatives4Palin makes a similar point to the one Galtier so eloquently made in his piece when he writes Attacks on Governor Palin are Attacks on Conservatives.
The Left is well aware of the fact that Governor Palin is the one individual with the platform, gravitas, and determination to effectively criticize Obama's policies. While the other so-called leaders of the opposition cower in the shadows, terrified of criticizing The One for fear of alienating the mainstream media, Sarah Palin is working tenaciously on a daily basis to lead the fight against Obama's determination to take us down the same fiscal path as Greece or, perhaps even more dire, California.There's the courage issue again. It raises the question if we can't stomach the media torrent on her now, how would be able to stomach the media vitriol that would quickly move from her to whoever else would take her place as the biggest threat if she was not chosen to be the nominee in 2012? I say screw it and have a set now when it counts and stand up for Sarah Palin and our philosophy.
Yes, putting up with the attacks on Sarah Palin requires courage and require us to be able to stand up and not let the media win by destroying her or by making us believe she's damaged. It's almost as if we should elect Sarah Palin president just to stick it to the mainstream media and give them the Palin presidency they have stooped so low to prevent just as payback for their lies and smears. Anything less would be a victory for them.
I have been known to be quick to unsheathe the rhetorical sword and to be a little too happy on the rhetorical trigger when it comes to those who diss Palin. After watching Palin get beat on by the lamestream media the way she has, one can't help but to feel like an abused animal ready to show teeth and pounce at the slightest provocation. She is us and she is willing to fight for us. This explains why Palnistas are willing to fight to the death for Sarah Palin. Sarah Palin is willing to fight to the death for our conservative values. What if all conservatives were like that?
I know there are conservatives out there who will support candidates other than Palin for the 2012 presidential nomination. We don't have political parties and primaries in this country so a small group of people can get together in a back room and select our candidate for us. We're also not robots. The competition that the primaries will bring will be Palin's and all the other candidates' opportunity to prove to us who should lead us into the ultimate battle for that shining city on a hill.
We have a strong bench this time around - much stronger than the bench we had in 2008. If Palin can beat this bench in the 2012 primaries, many more will be able to trust fully in her ability to be president. It's going to require her army to fight hard and for her to run a good campaign.
If Sarah Palin has to build a tent big enough to get the votes needed to win the nomination, This blogger sure as heck better be able to build a tent at least big enough to get this blog a few back links and a mention or two on Twitter where I storm in on the ever coveted 2000 followers mark (almost enough to drown out the sound of crickets on my Twitter page). This blogger will continue to pay attention to the conservative voices that are out there even if they are not yet convinced of Palin's viablity. I know they are fair and intellectually honest because they are conservatives. They may still question her, but they don't trash her. She has not evolved to the point in their minds where they can get behind her yet. But she can still get there.
If you want to know what we're going to have to endure, I can tell you about the sweaty palm moments of Troopergate, the VP debate, the resignation and all the lies that have been printed about her in the media as "breaking news." Taking the country back is going to be nail biting, edge of your seat kind of stuff whether you like it or not. We can't be out on the ledge every time the MSM says something bad about Sarah or any other conservative for that matter. Trust me on this. Faith, a few bottles of Jim Beam, a heart full of political courage and a mind full of political armor says we can handle the ride if Sarah Palin is given the chance to lead us to victory in 2012.