The former Republican vice-presidential nominee and heroine to much of the GOP’s base said in an interview she views the electorate as embattled and fatigued by nonstop partisanship, and she is eager to campaign for Republicans, independents and even Democrats who share her values on limited government, strong defense and "energy independence."
"I will go around the country on behalf of candidates who believe in the right things, regardless of their party label or affiliation," she said over lunch in her downtown office, 40 miles from her now-famous hometown of Wasilla — population 7,000 — where she began her political career.
"People are so tired of the partisan stuff — even my own son is not a Republican," said Mrs. Palin, who stunned the political world earlier this month with her decision to step down as governor July 26 with 18 months left in her term.
Both her son, Track, 20, an enlisted soldier serving in Iraq, and her husband, Todd, are registered as "nonpartisan" in Alaska.
This shouldn’t surprise anybody. She said as much in her resignation speech. She’s pretty much governed that way pre-2008 vice-presidential run. This lends credibility to the view that she’ll lead a conservative movement independent of the GOP establishment.
The governor, 45, said she shared former House Speaker Newt Gingrich’s view that Republicans, now trailing Democrats and independents in registration in many states, should back moderate to conservative Democrats in congressional districts and states where Republicans stand almost no chance of winning.
The object would be to build a majority coalition that reflects what polls suggest is the center-right tilt of the U.S. electorate as a whole.
Josh Painter thinks she’s doing this for two reasons:
1. She’s going after off blue-collar Democrat voters
2. She’s sending a not-so-subtle message to the Republican party establishment. It goes something like this:
"If you continue to favor Vichy Republicans (like Crist) at the expense of conservatives (like Rubio), you will have lost the base. Continue to ignore the grassroots at your own peril. They are already angry with you, and if you do not show them some love, you will have lost them, possibly forever."
I’m looking forward to what may emerge from this. There are some problems with this article, and I think the title is disingenuous, it should say she’ll stump for conservatives. Overall it sends a clear message. What will emerge from the Beltway GOP the first time that she stumps for a Democrat over a Republican will be interesting. They have, by and large, written her off and it looks as though she’s returning the favor.
I believe the gauntlet has been thrown down.