web analytics
Your Independent Alternative!

Sarah Palin Resigns

Tom PattonSo, Sarah Palin will resign as Governor of Alaska at the end of July. To be honest, it wasn’t that big a surprise to me, since I haven’t thought a lot about Governor Palin since November … other than when she appeared in the media because her daughter decided not to get married after all, and then the dustup with David Letterman last month. For whatever reason, Governor Palin became something of a non-story.

Now, please don’t misunderstand. I admire Governor Palin for what she has been able to accomplish. Younger than me, with a large family, she rose to the executive branch of Alaska’s government, and then was selected to be John McCain’s running mate. Whether she was the best choice is somewhat moot … they lost, in case you missed that little piece of news. She was chosen, and that’s a significant accomplishment. But the circumstances of her resignation 18 months before the end of her term seems odd.

palin1Lame-duck governors actually can get a lot accomplished. It just depends on what they choose to pursue. A governor, or any politician for that matter, who is not faced with the prospect of re-election has a lot more latitude to compromise, if you don’t think that’s a dirty word. Of course, that depends a lot on what his or her future ambitions might be. And perhaps that’s part of the impetus for Palin to resign at this time. There may be a lot of need to compromise coming down the pike, and if she has ambitions for a run at the White House in 2012, which I think is a long shot, she may have decided that it’s politically more expedient to pull out now rather than to be forced into compromises and risk being called a RINO should she seek the Presidency.

For the record, I hate that term. We’ll talk about that another day.

crist-rubioBut think about it. Governor Crist will work now to shore up his conservative credentials as he runs for U.S. Senate. He’s been criticized for supporting President Obama on the federal stimulus, though Jacksonville is reaping some of the benefits of that money right now through some major road construction projects. We’ll need to watch how much Governor Crist swings back to the right for the Senate race, with Speaker Rubio also seeking the seat.

Mayor Peyton, on the other hand, is free to propose a property tax increase because, and I believe he believes this, it’s in the best interest of the city. I’ll have an opportunity to ask him about that on Wednesday on the Jacksonville Observer Radio Show, and I’m looking forward to that. But city council members who wish to seek the Mayor’s office or run for re-election might be reluctant to support that hike.

sanfordStill, absent a major scandal, it’s very unusual for a sitting governor to resign the job because they feel like they can accomplish more outside of government. South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford HAS a pretty major scandal on his hands, and he’s chosen not to resign, so far. Normally, people who have attained that kind of power and influence tend to try to hang on to it by whatever means necessary. Governor Palin has proven herself to be her own woman, but I would not be surprised if there is something else going on that we don’t yet know about. It is an unorthodox way to kick off a Presidential campaign, jumping off at mid term, if that is in fact her intention. But I think we learned that Sarah Palin just coming out and being Sarah Palin may be problematic for a Presidential run. As McCain’s running mate, she showed flashes of brilliance, but seemed, from my vantage, as not being quite ready for the national stage. She still has more executive experience than President Obama, but again, that’s moot at this point. President Obama is as accomplished a campaigner as President Clinton was, and in a head-to-head contest, particularly if Obama has been even the least bit successful, he’ll be a formidable opponent for whomever the Republicans choose to challenge him.

No matter what, we’re going to just have to wait to see what Governor Palin has in mind following this resignation. Staying on as governor would have been the obvious way to stay in the spotlight and build a record on which to run for the White House. 18 months of governor may not be enough. But Sarah Palin proved to us early on that she’s unconventional, and unpredictable. In that, this move is certainly true to form.

4 Responses »

  1. My take is that this is a pretty clear sign Palin won't run for President in 2012... she's tired, and rightfully so, of the beating that she and her family have taken in the media.

    She won't deny interest in running in 2012 for a while though. If she keeps her name in the mix, it will boost speaking fees, book sales, etc...

    If she's really thinking of running for President, it's probably in 2016 or 2020. She's still quite young and can easily think in terms of decades of political relevance, if that's what she wants.

    For now, Palin will be free to take a few months off and relax with her family.

    There are still a great many options available to her, particularly if her Lt. Governor is elected to a full term next year. Palin and Parnell are very closely tied together. Palin campaigned heavily for Parnell last year when he challenged Don Young in the GOP Primary. The primary was days before Palin was tapped to run for VP --- Young beat Parnell by about 300 votes.

    But Don Young is well into his 70's now and keeps running for re-election. If, God forbid, Young were to die in office in the next few years... Parnell could send Palin to Washington as the state's lone Congressional Representative.

    Palin may raise money and build an extensive national network to support a campaign for U.S. Senate as well. Democrat Mark Begich was only elected because Ted Stevens was convicted on felony corruption charges shortly before the election. That's a seat she could easily take back for the GOP in 2014... perhaps with an eye on a 2016 or 2020 bid for the White House.

    I think Governor Palin probably a very bright future ahead of her, and I find it hard to blame her too much for wanting to shield herself and particularly her family from the media. By 2020, Piper Palin will be 18 years old... and the other daughters will be well into their 20's. That would probably make her political life (as a candidate or office-holder) a whole lot easier.

  2. I've always heard that press coverage whether bad or good is good, and she is getting plenty of both. To imagine that she will drop out of the limelight is hard to imagine. In fact, it is impossible to imagine.

    Look for the 25 city tour and all of the politico and late night show tours.

    A friend mentioned that the only reason she is doing this is that she will be Indicted by the Feds in the next month or two. I hope this is not true.

    Who do we have to run against the Obama machine in the next election ?

  3. I think Sarah Palin's hopes of higher office are over. "I'm quitting because I'm a lame duck governor" doesn't really cut it. She can't finish her one (1) term as Governor? She didn't discuss what the press conference was about with her family before hand, the speech wasn't written, it really doesn't bode well.

    Her issues with the press are just that -- HER issues, not the presses. The reports that I've seen out of Wasilla are that she bullies her way through. That's what she's learned works, and it may very well have worked for her in Alaska. But it doesn't go well in the rest of the US.

    She already allegedly has $600,000 in legal debt, which seems to be regarding the ethics complaint she filed against herself. An act that was so bizarre, I still don't understand it to this day.

    I think at this point, she is going to fade away. Maybe after her kids are raised, she'll have gained some media savvy, a little more wisdom, and a little less of the "I'm going to do it my way and to hell with everybody else", truly an attitude that she did NOT need to express running as VP, she'll run for something that will put her in the national limelight again. I wouldn't put money on it, either way.

    It also depends on how the possible federal indictment that I hear is coming will be handled (and her history doesn't show it will be handled well).

    @Paul: If she is the best the Republicans can throw at Obama in 2012, I am truly scared for the Republican party.

    As it is, I have a son and daughter-in-law living in Wasilla now. I visited there this spring, snow still around, beautiful mountains everywhere you looked. Not bad for a Northerner, although my wife (also a former Northerner) who's lived here for 18 years was freezing. I expect I'll still be hearing about Sarah Palin from time to time.

  4. Kindly, the notion of Palin for President is insane. She has a daughter with an illegitimate child is shameful. Her daughter's behaviors are lacking in moral conduct, which is rebellious to moral ethics, thus a disfunctional family, and worse, Palin and her daughter both appear to see nothing wrong at all with their behaviors. Most of us have had live with that same shame. Most don't make the kind of money she does to be able to support them all. She has no shame, and she will find out just how wrong it is for her daughter to have done this to her. I could care less who is morally corrupt to stand up for her. Immoral is wrong. Children having children is wrong, wrong for the child's life, wrong for the grand parents life, wrong for the baby's life. Is dumping their responsibilities on their parents, robbing their parents of their life, robbing the baby all 18 years by having irresponsible, by sick role models as parents. Children that have children throw their life away, their parents life away, and the parents will spend their life trying to give the grandchild a chance at life. That should NEVER be published as acceptable behavior, by any government leader, I consider it contributing to the delinquency of a minor. If they want their unmarried children barefoot and pregnant, hide it, keep it away from the good role models laying their lives down to raise good children. Dont' make it public like it is ok, because there is nothing ok about it.