In response to Sarah Palin’s campaign speech in IA, DNC Communications Director Mo Elleithee issued the following statement: “Thank you!”
THE REVIEWS of Sarah Palin’s speech at the Iowa Freedom Summit were unanimous. Incomprehensible gibberish is how I’d describe her message. Did her teleprompter break? If so, it’s called karma. But to show you how weirdly out of touch this Republican forum is, Sarah Palin also left to a standing ovation. However, Governor Scott Walker, who finally found his way to fire, proved Palin is nothing but noise.
But hey, Sarah, Taylor Swift wants her song back! Leaving the stage to “Shake it Off” was foreshadowing to the torched reviews Palin’s pity party expected, but also deserved.
Byron York didn’t flinch, blasting Palin.
First, Palin embarked on an extended stream-of-consciousness complaint about media coverage of her decision to run in a half-marathon race in Storm Lake, Iowa in 2011.
She then moved on to grumbling about coverage of a recent photo of her with a supporter who had made a sign saying “Fuc_ you Michael Moore” in reaction to the left-wing moviemaker’s criticism of the film “American Sniper.” Then it was on to Palin’s objections about the social media ruckus over a picture of her six-year-old son Trig standing on the family’s Labrador Retriever.
It was all quite petty, and yet the complaining took half of Palin’s allotted time.
She then proceeded to blow through her time limit with a free-association ramble on Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, the energy industry, her daughter Bristol, Margaret Thatcher, middle-class economics — “the man can only ride ya when your back is bent” — women in politics, and much more. It would be hard to say that Palin’s 35-minute talk had a theme, but she did hint that she is interested in running, although there are no indications she has taken any actual steps in that direction.
'Weird,' said one conservative activist of Palin speech. 'Terrible. Didn't make any sense.' http://t.co/pe1bDkz2Cw
— Byron York (@ByronYork) January 25, 2015
Sarah Palin’s normally appreciative fans didn’t appreciate her crudeness, calling it an “interminable ramble” that was “really painful” to watch.
“There was a certain coarseness to her that wasn’t there before,” said yet another social conservative who noted that some in the crowd were uncomfortable with Palin declarations like, “Screw the left in Hollywood!” (It’s not that they like the left in Hollywood — just the opposite — but the crudeness of Palin’s expressions turned them off.)
“I know she is popular, but it is hard to take her seriously given that performance,” said Sam Clovis, the conservative Iowa college professor, radio commentator, and sometime political candidate. “Palin was a sad story Saturday. With every speech she gives, she gets worse and worse. If one were playing a political cliche drinking game, no one would have been sober after the first 15 minutes of an interminable ramble. It was really painful.”
Reportedly the teleprompter broke, which is karmic irony given how many times Sarah Palin has railed against President Obama using a teleprompter.
The thing about speeches, especially at big events, you want to have notes just in cast, but if you have a message that is important you can summon up a good deal of it yourself.
Sarah Palin still represents one portion of the Republican Party, the grievance contingency who’s mad about everything and only has negative things to say that don’t tie to any constructive ideas about what Republicans intend to do.
That’s just one reason Governor Scott Walker helped himself over the weekend. The introduction he received was spectacular if you’re a conservative. A hero’s story about beating unions, cutting the budget, beating back a recall. Walker struggled at the beginning, but found his pacing and purpose in a speech that finally illustrated what he can offer right-wing conservatives.
Sarah Palin sounded like a vindictive whiner.
Carly Fiorina easily eclipsed Sarah Palin, but then so did Donald Trump who ended his speech talking about infrastructure. …and in case you’re wondering, Governor Chris Christie showed up, too, even if Senator Rand Paul, Jeb Bush and Mitt Whats-His-Name stayed away.
Mark Halperin had two words for Palin on Twitter.
.#GameChange That is all
— Mark Halperin (@MarkHalperin) January 24, 2015
Packing in a crowd has little to do with taking the speaker seriously, even in Iowa.
The experience leaves Iowa Republicans with a lot to think about. Yes, Palin is still a draw. Yes, conservatives still empathize with her over the beating she took from the media in 2008. But if there is indeed nothing behind her “seriously interested” talk — and it appears there is not — should she be included in events leading up to the 2016 caucuses? A lot of GOP activists may come to agree with one of those well-connected Iowa Republicans quoted above, who remarked, “The sooner these forums in Iowa focus on those actually running, the better.” – Byron York