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  • Back Home in Alaska, Palin Finds Cold Comfort

    Scrutiny Has Been Intense Since Election

    By Michael Leahy
    Washington Post Staff Writer

    JUNEAU, Alaska -- A couple of weeks before the Alaska legislature began this year's session, a bipartisan group of state senators on a retreat a few hours from here invited Gov. Sarah Palin to join them. Accompanied by a retinue of advisers, she took a seat at one end of a conference table and listened passively as Gary Stevens, the president of the Alaska Senate, a former college history professor and a low-key Republican with a reputation for congeniality, expressed delight at her presence.

    Would the governor, a smiling Stevens asked, like to share some of her plans and proposals for the coming legislative session?

    Palin looked around the room and paused, according to several senators present. "I feel like you guys are always trying to put me on the spot," she said finally, as the room became silent.

    Gone was the self-assurance that Alaska had come to know in its young Republican governor, well before her life and career were transformed by Sen. John McCain's selection of her as his vice presidential running mate. "She looked ill at ease, more defensive than we've been accustomed to seeing her," said one legislator who was there and spoke on the condition of anonymity because he said he might need to work with Palin.

    A number of factors seem to have contributed to the bumpy homecoming: a residual anger among Democrats for the attack-dog role Palin assumed in the McCain campaign, lingering resentment from Republicans for the part she may have played in McCain's defeat, and a suspicion crossing party lines that the concerns of Alaska, at a time of economic crisis, will now be secondary to her future in national politics.

    Nearly every move that Palin makes or does not make, acknowledges Joe Balash, one of her closest aides, is analyzed through a new political prism, scrutinized for its effect on a possible 2012 presidential candidacy. "There's nothing we can do to stop it," he said. "People wonder why she's doing something or not doing something."

    The result of all this scrutiny and second-guessing, says one Republican ally, is that "the governor has been feeling beaten up."

    The lists of her doings and not doings include a growing leeriness of the media -- she declined requests for an interview for this article -- as she pursues an aggressive strategy on the national political front.

    She has established a political action committee, SarahPAC, designed to fund her national appearances. She sat for a lengthy interview with a conservative documentarian exploring the reasons behind President Obama's election, during which she reiterated her belief that she was unflatteringly exploited by such TV personages as Katie Couric and Tina Fey, and suggested she was mishandled by the McCain campaign.

    She has taken sides in a war for the soul of the newly beleaguered Republican Party in Texas, where that state's senior GOP senator, Kay Bailey Hutchison, plans to challenge Republican Gov. Rick Perry in a primary fight that may serve as an early indicator of social conservatives' strength in the GOP nationally. In a written statement, Palin said Perry "walks the walk of a true conservative. And he sticks by his guns -- and you know how I feel about guns."

    Constantly asked about Palin's future, Balash says that she has no timetable for making up her mind about 2012 and that she hasn't even told him whether she'll run for reelection in 2010.

    While her once sky-high job approval ratings in her home state have dropped a little, Palin is still liked by more than 60 percent of the Alaskan electorate, the sort of number that most politicians can only dream about. Still, the anonymous sniping that portrayed her during the campaign as a flighty and demanding running mate continues to resonate with some legislators. Among both Republicans and Democrats, the view persists that she and those closest to her have overstepped their authority on occasion.

  • #2
    Wow, a hit piece on Governor Palin in the Washington Post.

    Who woulda thunk it?

    Wonder if they have any resources in Washington DC these days, you know, to cover the one or two non-Alaska-related stories happening there lately.

    Comment


    • #3
      Um...thanks, Zero?
      Will rule the World for a snack

      Comment


      • #4
        Palin post.
        "The Dude abides."

        Comment


        • #5
          Boy there's a lot of stories about a woman who is a governor of a far away state who lost the VP slot 3 months ago...and according to Pro the VP slot has nothing of real value anyway.
          "Only narcissists quote themselves."

          -tater

          Comment


          • #6
            The office itself doesn't. The fact that the person holding it could become President does.

            Comment


            • #7
              It's completely obvious to me that the reason she had no ideas for the next Alaska legislative session is that she had fully expected to be in DC and VPOTUS.

              What does it take to appease the publicity seekers in every arena? The wanna be's? When the spotlight is no longer on them, they get an attitude.

              Comment


              • #8
                To me it just underscores that she wasn't "ready for prime-time" and that the voters made the right decision. Sorry if that's harsh. I'm sure she's a nice lady in person and at home. But politics ain't pattycake, and if you feel too beat up by it to be an effective leader, then maybe that's not the job for you.
                -News is Broken

                All mouth and no stones New York'rr chickens out of a simple bet.

                "Mr. Broken is being a bad boy." - Traffic Goddess

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by tater View Post
                  Boy there's a lot of stories about a woman who is a governor of a far away state who lost the VP slot 3 months ago...and according to Pro the VP slot has nothing of real value anyway.
                  So you claim you voted, "pro Republican" not "anti-Obama"?

                  Not because of John McCain, but Sarah Palin? All those great ideas, and beliefs she had?

                  So you see a thread about this person you so admire. This person you feel so drawn to because of her views....

                  ...and you show this admiration for Palin's ideas by wondering why people are even bring her up before telling the world what Pro thinks.

                  Yeah...you are a true conservative! "Stop talking about the people I like! Back to the people I hate!".

                  Sure thing, Tater. You aren't a fake conservative. Nah.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by buckpasser View Post
                    So you claim you voted, "pro Republican" not "anti-Obama"?

                    Not because of John McCain, but Sarah Palin? All those great ideas, and beliefs she had?

                    So you see a thread about this person you so admire. This person you feel so drawn to because of her views....

                    ...and you show this admiration for Palin's ideas by wondering why people are even bring her up before telling the world what Pro thinks.

                    Yeah...you are a true conservative! "Stop talking about the people I like! Back to the people I hate!".

                    Sure thing, Tater. You aren't a fake conservative. Nah.
                    Actually I was playing off of one of Pro's earlier posts in another thread about the Vice President not really meaning anything....but rant on if it makes you feel better.
                    "Only narcissists quote themselves."

                    -tater

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Actually I thought Pro's point is that the position's only purpose is to do tiebreaker votes in the Senate and be the backup QB in case the President goes bye-bye...which he felt could be filled in nicely by the Secretary Of State instead.
                      Will rule the World for a snack

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Kace View Post
                        Actually I thought Pro's point is that the position's only purpose is to do tiebreaker votes in the Senate and be the backup QB in case the President goes bye-bye...which he felt could be filled in nicely by the Secretary Of State instead.
                        Hence the position doesn't really mean anything if you want it absorbed by somebody else.
                        "Only narcissists quote themselves."

                        -tater

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by tater View Post
                          rant on if it makes you feel better.
                          That wasn't a rant. That was a dagger.
                          "Jesus was Black, Ronald Reagan was the Devil, and the government lied about 09/11." -- Huey Freeman

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            No that was a rant...this is a dagger.

                            "Only narcissists quote themselves."

                            -tater

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I think the importance of it resonates with who that next-in-line person is and making sure said individual is competent enough to take over if need be.
                              Will rule the World for a snack

                              Comment

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