A little over 300 guests were treated to the premiere of Steve Bannon and Victory Film Group’s new documentary, The Undefeated, last night at the Pella Opera House in Pella, IA with former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin and her husband Todd in attendance. Afterwards approximately 1000 people were treated to a BBQ dinner at the Molengracht.
Before the movie started those in attendance sang the Battle Hymn of the Republic and This Is My Country accompanied by the original 1928 pipe organ. Darrel Dobernecker, the mayor of Pella, then greeted the guests and welcomed the Palin’s calling her “a breath of fresh air.” The movie itself ran two hours long, and started with a montage of insults that came from Hollywood, liberal pundits and even in the mainstream media.
I was struck by my emotional reaction to the opening scene. I was angry. I was angry at how Governor Palin and her family was treated. I was angry about how many in the Republican establishment remained silent while she was savaged. I’m not talking about pointing out policy differences or criticizing her record, but rather the personal attacks that she experienced day in and day out after she picked as Senator John McCain’s running mate.
It drove a narrative which in turn distorted her record. That is what this movie is trying to correct. Most of the movie is about her time as Mayor of Wasilla, how she helped to bolster the infrastructure and in doing so, helped to create an environment where small businesses could develop jobs. She did this while cutting taxes.
It showed her as a reformer, unafraid of standing up to Big Oil, and corruption within her own party. She resigned as a oil and gas commissioner out of principle in order to stand up to ethics violations which then Governor Frank Murkowski turned a blind eye to. When she ran for Governor, she not only beat an incumbent Governor in the primary, she then went on to beat former Alaska Governor Tony Knowles.
The movie did a great job pointing out her legislative accomplishments. Her three noteworthy accomplishments were a much needed ethnics reform bill, ACES which restructured how oil companies were taxed – a tax on the net, not the gross and it gave oil companies incentives for development making the state an active partner (the Alaska Constitution states that the natural resources belong to the people of Alaska). AGIA was passed in a bipartisan fashion and opened up the bidding process in order to build a pipeline that
Many people don’t know this record of accomplishment and reform. Many people don’t realize from when she was inaugurated into office until the time she was tapped as the Vice Presidential nominee she was the most popular governor in the United States having an approval rating over 80%. Most people know the Sarah Palin post-VP nomination, not her record of accomplishment.
She was a capable and popular Governor, but one who was vilified and was subject to all sorts of frivolous ethics complaints which eventually led to her resignation. Her resignation, like her service, was marked with her desire to serve the people of Alaska and do what was in their best interests.
One interview, in particular, caught my attention. Conservative media mogul Andrew Brietbart asked where were the conservative men? Why didn’t anybody stand up for her? He said that we had leaders within the party who were “eunuchs.” It is a well deserved rebuke for conservative men who kept their mouths clothed when she was being personally attacked.
The film had a $1 million budget, but you couldn’t tell. It was well done, and worth the watch. This movie alone won’t necessarily turn the current narrative around, but it is a good start. The crowd in Pella responded with a standing ovation and I personally didn’t talk to a single person who disliked the movie.
Bonus: After the movie Governor Palin addressed the crowd. I got most of her speech on video. You can watch below:
One person observed that in her speech she says, "we" and "us." "It’s not about me." Contrast that to President Obama who says "I" and "me" throughout his speech.
Update: I was interviewed by WHO TV by Dave Price. You can watch it below.
I was also interviewed by Radio Iowa.
Update 3: Linked at Ace of Spades HQ. Also quoted by Shushannah Walshe at The Daily Beast… I don’t exactly remember saying “People will be surprised if she doesn’t run” though. There are a lot of people who would be surprised if she does. I’ll give her the benefit of the doubt maybe I did say something like that, but my intent wasn’t to imply that her running was a slam dunk. I don’t know that.
Update 4: Linked at Motivation Truth