Contrary to her own claims in Newsweek that she can win in 2012, here are 5 reasons Sarah Palin can’t win a national election.
Here is what Sarah Palin said during an interview in the new issue of Newsweek:
“I believe that I can win a national election…The people of America are desperate for positive change, and deserving of positive change, to get us off of this wrong track. I’m not so egotistical as to believe that it has to be me, or it can only be me, to turn things around, but I do believe that I can win.”
It’s time for a little reality check, so here are 5 reasons why Sarah Palin can’t win a national election.
5). Paul Revere – Sarah Palin has made a lot of gaffes. Many of them have involved US history, but none were so glaring as her now infamous retelling of the story of Paul Revere’s midnight ride. The gaffe matters for two reasons. It reaffirmed America’s perception of Sarah Palin as intellectual lightweight who will never be up to the task of the presidency, and just as importantly, when Palin refused to admit her mistake and doubled down on being wrong, she evoked memories of George W. Bush and his inability to admit a mistake in any circumstances. If her goal was to remind everyone of one of the worst presidents in history….mission accomplished.
4). Tina Fey - Yes, you read that right. Nothing can shape the public perception of a political figure as much as satire. Tina Fey’s Sarah Palin impression reinforced everything that Palin demonstrated in the Couric and Gibson interviews. Fey has portrayed Palin as the ultimate ditzy political lightweight who is happy to get by on a wink and a jiggle. (The reality is that Palin isn’t stupid. She like many in the modern Republican Party has zero intellectual curiosity, and would rather substitute her religious beliefs for knowledge).
Politicians never shake the pop culture perceptions of themselves. George H.W. Bush will always be a wimp, Dan Quayle an idiot, Gerald Ford a clumsy buffoon, George W. Bush a good time loving frat boy president, Al Gore is forever the dull, know it all nerd, and Bill Clinton the perennial tail chaser. One these caricatures become accepted in our popular culture, they never go away. Tina Fey’s Sarah Palin is what many Americans see and hear when the real Sarah Palin is on television.
Before anyone blames Tina Fey too much, remember it was Sarah Palin who provided her material.
3). Blood Libel – In the wake of the Gabby Giffords shooting, America got its first look at the real Sarah Palin when she responded to the tragedy by releasing a video full of nothing but self-absorbed martyrdom. Palin criticized Obama. Palin whined about the media, and even worse she used the phrase blood libel which is a loaded term usually used to falsely accuse Jews of murdering children for their religious blood rituals. The image of Palin the hockey mom was shattered from this moment forward, and no amount of reality TV can erase the ugliness that was the Blood Libel video.
2). Palin’s Bad Poll Numbers – There is a myth that at one time Sarah Palin enjoyed a sustained burst of national popularity, which her defenders claim that she only needs to recapture in order to be a serious national candidate. After the disasters that were the Katie Couric and Charlie Gibson interviews in 2008, 55%-59% of voters said that Palin was not qualified to be president. Palin’s personal popularity has declined even more since the campaign. The most recent NBC News/Wall Street Journal found Sarah Palin’s approval rating to be 24%. Palin even has an upside down approval rating in her home state of Alaska.
Sarah Palin is not unfamiliar with a 60% or higher disapproval rating. She is least popular non-scandal ridden politician in the country. Her numbers are consistently bad. They sunk during the 2008 campaign and never resurfaced. In potential head to head match ups with Obama she consistently loses by 20 or more points. There is no polling data to support Palin’s claim that she could win.
Sarah Palin may be right. She could win a national election, just not in the United States.
1). Duh, Quitting – Nothing damaged Sarah Palin more than when she stepped to the microphone at a surprise press conference on July 3, 2009 and promptly abandoned her oath to the people of Alaska. For the last two years, Palin has been trying with no success to undo the political damage that her quitting did to her reputation.
She carries the stigma of quitting where ever she goes. When she posts on Facebook, she is a quitter. If she hasn’t tweeted in a while, she is a Twitter quitter. After the news came out that she put her bus tour on hiatus, she was once again labeled a quitter. In the eyes of many in the Republican Party, Palin is erratic, undependable, and can’t be trusted. The question that Americans ask themselves is if she quit on Alaska why wouldn’t she quit on us? Palin can release all the books, movies, and TV shows as she wants be she will never be able to live down quitting.
Before the press gets buzzing with the will she or won’t she run talk, it is important to keep in mind that no matter what Palin believes, she can’t win. Palin has to keep the mystery alive for the sake of her viability as a marketable brand, but even if she runs and becomes the Republican nominee, Sarah Palin can’t beat Barack Obama in a national election.