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AFL-CIO’s Trumka, Sarah Palin and Rush Limbaugh

–correction below–

It’s incredibly humorous to see people on all political sides finally waking up to what I’ve been writing for over a year. Well, almost everyone, as you’ll see in a minute. That the most powerful person in politics today is Sarah Palin. It’s a reality that started building this time last year when Obama and the Democrats fell asleep on health care, allowing Sarah’s “death panel” charge to hijack their message. Giving Palin credit sticks in people’s throats, but it cannot be denied if you’re being honest, which is particularly hard on the Left where many look down their noses at her people power, which she’s used to maximum advantage in 2010.

Now Palin, in responding to an attack by AFL-CIO’s Richard Trumka, unleashes one of the best opening paragraphs any conservative has ever uttered on unionism:

Two years ago almost to the day, I was thrilled to meet with union members at the Alaska AFL-CIO Convention in Anchorage to sign important job-creation legislation related to the Alaska Gasline Inducement Act. As a former card-carrying IBEW sister married to a proud former IBEW and later USW member, it was a great moment for all of us. Our Alaska union brothers and sisters helped build our state! Many of them risked their lives to complete our infrastructure, including the Trans-Alaska Pipeline that stretches over treacherous mountain ranges from the North Slope oil fields to Valdez. By signing that job-creation bill surrounded by union members, I was paying tribute to them and acknowledging that they would be valued partners in the construction of Alaska’s long awaited natural gas pipeline. I was honored that day to receive a standing ovation from them for signing a bill that provided a Project Labor Agreement to bring good jobs to these good men and women. [...]

On a side note, Sarah Palin’s got a similar credible opening line on abortion, which she’s used to similar affect when engaging her “mama grizzlies.”

It’s a political foundation that is tantamount to testimony in religious speak. It’s the sticky stuff of emotional relating and connecting, even if it only reaches the conservative choir. Remember, that’s the only audience Palin needs at this point, with the harsh reality that she has no wider appeal something her fans simply refuse to face. Palin’s case being forwarded now by the likes of Rush Limbaugh, whose only candidate of choice has been Ronald Reagan. But he’s totally smitten with Sarah. From Rush’s show yesterday:

… I have lost my temper a couple of times with people in my own home, because I’m listening to people complain about Democrats, complain about Obama, complain about liberals — that they fully understand Obama is the worst thing that could happen to America in terms of our economy, traditions and so forth — and then Palin’s name comes up and they say, “Well! (snort) We can’t have her! She’s not smart enough, she’s not bright enough.”

I look at them and say, “Compared to WHO? Compared to Joe Biden? Compared to Harry Reid? Who’s she dumber than? Would you rather have Obama?”

“Well, no, but I want somebody that can win.”
“Well, tell me who it is. You tell me who packs arenas more than Palin does right now.” At the time we’re having these discussions it’s last summer and after the Convention and so forth and after the election. “Who’s creating more excitement among Republicans, in an electoral sense, than Palin is?”

“Well, she still embarrasses me.”

“Well, who the hell are you? What do you know about ‘the Indian subcontinent’?”

“Well, I just don’t think she’s…”

“How do you even know what she knows or doesn’t know? You’re falling full prey to what media critics and the Democrats are saying about her. Why do you want to be so easily swayed? Why…?” I asked these people, and on a couple of occasions, I was really shouting. “Why do you want to echo the very people that on every other day of the week you rip: People like the media, people like Democrats, people you know you can’t trust? You know they lie. [...]

This simply doesn’t happen every day and after getting beat election cycle after election cycle, Rush going all out for Sarah is something worth noting. When looking at the rest of the Republican field so far, it’s not like the choices abound. Huckabee’s got a Willie Horton problem; Mitt’s got a Romneycare problem; Newt’s got a Newt problem; Haley Barbour’s got a southern white guy problem; the rest of the Republican white guy’s having an excitement problem.

Meanwhile, AFL-CIO’s Trumka made an embarrassing mistake for such a veteran, which simply set Sarah up. It’s a continuing theme when it comes to Democrats swinging and missing at Palin:

To me, it just doesn’t seem OK to go where she’s going. … It sits wrong with me. … The Mama Grizzlies, Sarah Palin says, just sense when something’s not right. … I wonder if those Mama Grizzlies can sense something’s just not right with her.

Quite frankly, America works because lots of people contribute lots of ideas – that’s good – even when some of them are just plain wrong. But people need to come to the table in good faith. That’s not Sarah Palin. She’ll go down in history like McCarthy. Palinism will become an ugly word.

Who is this woman, anyway? What happened to her?

Marginalizing and going hard negative against Sarah Palin is a good plan, but only if you first give her the credit she deserves, which Democrats simply won’t do. It’s their Achilles’ heel. Laziness from the Left lets Palin escape every time.

David Corn proved that recently as well on MSNBC refusing to give Sarah her due on Tuesday’s wins she earned. It’s the wrong move in taking her on. Ignoring her power, like Trumka, doesn’t marginalize her or call her out on her extremism, it simply lets her off the hook. Instead, Democrats should laud her as being the head of the Tea Party movement, which she is, and attach her to the views of Sharon Angle, Rand Paul and Joe Miller, all of whom have extreme rhetoric that could be used seriously to attack the right on important grounds, which goes well beyond the “nutcase, crazy people case.” Instead, Trumka and Corn and others on the Left use cheap shots that glance off of Palin’s Teflon coating built up because of glancing Democratic blows that miss the mark.

There is no denying that it’s been a great 2010 for the “quitter” and all it will take for Sarah Palin to run in 2012 is someone drafting her. It’s not exactly Goldwater, because he truly didn’t want to run. You can bet in her dreams at night Sarah’s bunking at 1600, whether she admits it or not, which is why a Draft Sarah could be a winner.

Rush is already making her case with the right, who aren’t looking at viability questions or who can win over Independents. Hard core conservatives want an ideologue, which they think they’ve found in Sarah. Drafting Sarah is not as far fetched as it once seemed. Whether it succeeds or not is a completely separate issue, because Sarah and her fans don’t think long-term. Riding the current political mood is how she ended up in the right-wing driver’s seat today. By gambling on a hunch she had about 2010 that her moment was now, wherever it leads better than where she started.

What’s not being calculated in all this is that Sarah Palin is the only candidate that would rev up the Democratic base to get Obama’s back. Because it’s a cinch they won’t be there just for him.

Correction: Trumka is obviously AFL-CIO. Apologies, brain took a holiday on that one. It’s been corrected in essay above. See this tweet, which says it all.

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