Posted by: Schuyler R. Thorpe | June 13, 2011

Sarah Palin More Reality TV Star Than Serious GOP Candidate

(Sorry, but if Palin thinks that she can fool everyone into NOT believing she isn’t running for President…? She’s more dumber than a brick; especially since she got that Paul Revere reference TOTALLY wrong the other day!

I keep telling people: “Having a strong education will make us stronger as a country”–but nobody listens. But if being *dumb* is a sign of intelligence these days, I’m definitely on the wrong planet.)

Sarah Palin More Reality TV Star Than Serious Political Contender

On May 29, Sarah Palin kicked off her “One Nation” bus tour of the Eastern seaboard, hoping to “energize America” with a series of stops at our country’s historical landmarks. Though many of the stops look suspiciously stump-worthy, Palin adamantly denies that the tour is a campaign kickoff. And to further frustrate the caravan of journalists trailing in her wake, Palin isn’t releasing an itinerary. 

So far, the stops include an assortment of national monuments in Washington, D.C., where she famously arrived on a Harley, followed by visits to Gettysburg, Philadelphia, Mt. Vernon, Fort McHenry, Liberty and Ellis Islands, and several sites in Boston. Claiming that her timing with Mitt Romney’s presidential announcement was mere coincidence, per CBS News, Palin also visited New Hampshire for a conservative clambake. Coincidence or not, she congratulated Romney out of one side of her mouth while taking a swipe at his stance on health care with the other. 

The bus tour caps off some six months of will-she or won’t-she antics. At a February event on Long Island, Palin insisted that “nobody’s more qualified” than “a woman, a mom” and a former vice presidential candidate, according to The Week. In March, Palin announced that she would not attend a May GOP debate in favor of a veterans fundraiser. Ten days later, she embarked on a trip to Israel and India in an alleged attempt to hone her foreign policy credentials. Her political action committee, SarahPAC, launched a major website overhaul in April, and Palin’s May purchase of an 8,000 square-ft. home in Arizona caused commentators to speculate that the home is a potential campaign headquarters. 

News of a Palin biopic also surfaced in May, along with the announcement of her this-is-not-a-campaign bus tour. The tour is being underwritten by SarahPAC, but, as with a specific itinerary, information about the cost of the trip and who’s paying what is conspicuously absent, reports Newser. 

Adding to the yes or no confusion, Fox News has provided extensive coverage of the tour. Fox commentators openly discussed Palin’s 2012 chances while studio officials simultaneously denied Palin’s candidacy. Unlike Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum, whose contracts with Fox were canceled when running looked likely, Palin’s relationship with Fox continues to be bus-pal cozy. Fellow Fox employee Greta Van Susteren joined Palin for exclusive access to the first few days of the tour. 

Despite the carefully mixed messages, Palin’s bus tour is a publicity ploy aimed at filling the coffers of her PAC and driving revenue for her biopic. What tips it for this writer is the hog. Candidates on the presidential trail take great care to look, well, presidential. In addition to discussing platforms and issues, the point of a campaign is to convince the voting public that the candidate possesses the charisma, the seriousness and the demeanor appropriate to a world leader. Campaigns give us a glimpse of how candidates might conduct themselves in sensitive foreign policy summits. Can anyone really imagine Palin arriving for a meeting with Vladimir Putin or British Prime Minister David Cameron on the back of a Harley?

Riding into town on a Harley is something you do when you’re gunning for a spot on David Letterman or “Good Morning America.” It is not something you do when you want to look presidential. Palin is not a politician or even a political contender. So it is high time the media started treating her like what she is — a reality television star who has more in common with Snooki, Kate Gosselin or fellow ding-dong-ditcher Donald Trump than she does with Mitt Romney or Tim Pawlenty.


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