What’s Next For Palin – A View From Alaska

Alex Gimarc writes a weekly newsletter called Interesting Items. His newsletter covers national and Alaskian politics. His newsletter gave me the first gimplse of Sarah Palin when she ran for governor. I was awaiting his opinion on the Palin resignation, which arrived in my mailbox this afternoon. I’ll share it with you below:

Governor Sarah Palin announced Friday that she was going to be resigning as Governor of Alaska as of July 26. Replacing her will be Lt.Gov. Sean Parnell. Replacing him will be current Alaska National Guard Commander and Commissioner of Veterans Affairs Lt. Gen. Craig Campbell. Both Parnell and Campbell are superb individuals.

The punditocracy went into instant overdrive with the announcement, with most of the leftists laughing their backsides off. Most of the GOP insiders immediately blasted the decision, with some referring to it a quitting (using the very worst connotation of the term). Like most recent Palin speeches, this one was a bit disjointed and jumped around. The reasons given for her stepping down were the toll that multiple ethics complaints took on her family, her pocketbook, and her ability to govern.

Multiple ethics complaints became the chosen weapon against Palin by her opponents, with 13 of 15 being dismissed out of hand. Let this be a lesson to all prospective conservatives that run on a platform of ethics like Palin did. The left loves complex and wonderful ethics rules, legislation and laws, as they allow them to use their Alinsky tactics to hold conservatives up to a standard of behavior that is impossible to match. Up here, they took the newly minted ethics legislation that was triggered by the now bogus prosecution and conviction of a number of Republican state legislators and used it as a weapon to take down Governor Palin. Up here, 3 of the 5 primary local talk show hosts who have consistently blasted Palin are glad to see her go. Callers have been pretty evenly split.

Now that she has gone on, what is she up to? Before I go there, I do want to remind the reader that Palin absolutely terrifies and infuriates those on the left. I believe she terrifies them because she is completely unpredictable and is not afraid of them. She thinks outside the box and is not afraid to take chances. She infuriates them because she is not part of the Washington – NYC, Harvard, Yale, Columbia axis. She didn’t go to all the right schools. She didn’t have all the right friends. She bounced around five different universities before finally finishing one. In other words, they despise her as much on class grounds as they do on ideological grounds.

What do I think she will do next? I have no idea. I really don’t. What would I like her to do? That is a better discussion.

I think she needs to take a page out of Nixon’s book and use her time out of office to educate herself, discipline herself, and get in front of the anti-Washington wave building out here in the rest of the country. In 1966, fresh from remaking himself, Nixon made the rounds of congressional campaigns, helping win a bunch of them. He took those green stamps and that congressional support as a foundation for his successful presidential run in 1968. What if Palin hits the campaign trail in 2010 and successfully helps elect enough conservatives to overturn democrat control of the House of Representatives (likely) or the Senate (unlikely)? She will be seen as the most powerful political figure on the right during the runup to 2012 where I expect her to slug it out with Mike Huckabee for the nomination. Huckabee does have some problems among movement conservatives who will not soon forget his apparent campaign coordination with the McCain campaign during the latter stage of the Republican primaries in 2008 when he successfully split conservative voters to the extent that Mitt Romney was denied any meaningful primary victories.

The other thing that Palin needs to do from now until then is to read everything she can get her hand on about the basics of small government, federalism, Chicago School / Friedman economics, and Reagan – Thatcher – Bush 43 foreign policy. She also needs to get a thicker skin and not respond to the personal attacks in the same way she has. Governor Palin out of office may be able to do as much or more damage to the left as she would have been able to do while in office. These are going to be a very interesting few years.