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Sarah Palin, Fake Annie Oakley

Among the basic items of protocol blithely ignored by Palin as she set off into the wilderness in a Rambo-style headband was her failure to take practice shots, or check the sights of the rifle, which duly turned out to be off-kilter. She failed to carry her own weapon, relying on her elderly father and his companion, Steve, to lug it around. When a beast eventually wandered into range, Ms Palin left Chuck Snr to load the rifle, and discharge spent bullet casings. – Hunter becomes the hunted as Palin critics say she can’t shoot

“Does it kick?”

Seriously?

Is she kidding with this crap? If Sarah was a Democrat she’d be flayed for this fakery. I can’t imagine asking that question, except the very first time you fired a rifle, which for me happened when I was a kid.

Palin’s latest embarrassment comes as TIME’s cover story on Sarah Palin lands, where she gives little doubt she’s moving closer to a presidential run.

But Palin thinks Obama is vulnerable, and she implies that she is the one to take him on. “In battleground states, he’s polling at 40% or below,” she notes. “The country is rejecting his agenda … My vision of America is diametrically opposed to his. He sees America as the problem. I see America as the solution.” Asked what she makes of Obama’s presidency thus far, Palin quipped, “Two words: Jimmy Carter.” Asked who can beat him, she needed seven more: “Someone who can draw a sharp contrast.”

As she does, her people need to rein in her needless penchant for setting herself up as an easy target, on video no less, as she did in last week’s episode of “Sarah Palin’s Alaska.”

It seems not even her fans are willing to put up with Palin’s preening.

“What a joke,” wrote one viewer on Palin’s Facebook page. “I was a fan before the show. No one who is a true hunter lets others carry their rifle or can’t load their own shells. Sarah, you are a phony.”

Daily Caller has the video, with the back & forth at the top for those of you who don’t want to watch her targeting, wildly missing, then killing a Caribou.

“What kind of a question is that?” wrote a fan called Brad Schegel on Palin’s Facebook wall. “Doesn’t matter if it kicks or not, you shoot it the same. That was a girly question, momma griz.”

So, Sarah becomes yet another in a long line of right-wing politicians who think it’s important to show she can shoot, when she doesn’t know her ass from her elbow about hunting rifles or the time honored code of real hunters (which I am not, but my gun expert hubby helped prove Whittington was shot close to his heart, which we now know is true) who respect the hunting of animals enough to make sure they know what they’re doing. If it takes you five shots to hone in on your prey let alone take it down, either your site is off or you obviously a terrible shot or more likely, you shouldn’t be seen with a loaded gun outside the firing range, because you’ve not had enough practice with the rifle to be targeting squat.

Whatever authenticity she proclaimed as a hunter and rugged westerner went up in smoke as she walked along side her father, who carried her rifle for her, and after firing her fifth shot, since the first four missed.

I won’t even get into the fact that she couldn’t catch one salmon in another “Sarah Palin’s Alaska” episode, in a scene that had the fish lined up for the hook.

UPDATE: PPP has the latest Republican ’12 poll numbers. Their conclusion is exactly the same as Joe Scarborough.

Across the 7 individual states where we’ve done 2012 polls so far- Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Montana, and Virginia- Palin averages receiving 77% of the Republican vote against Barack Obama. That puts her slightly behind Gingrich at 80% and well behind Romney and Huckabee at 84%. Palin does the worst of the Republicans among Republicans in Montana, Missouri, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Minnesota. Only North Carolina where she does better than Romney and Virginia where she does better than Gingrich and Romney serve as exceptions to the rule.

Republicans may hate Barack Obama but there look to be a pretty meaningful percentage of them who don’t hate him enough to vote to put Sarah Palin in the White House. When you combine that with her complete lack of appeal to Democrats and independents she looks virtually unelectable for 2012.

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