In its reporting on Gov. Palin's Tea Party appearance in Wisconsin, the media has focused on the feisty aspects of her speech, and indeed it was a stemwinder. But few have commented upon that part of her speech where she reached out to rank and file union members, as the editors of Investor's Business Daily did at IBD Editorials today:
Sarah Palin hit it out of the park in a speech this past weekend in Wisconsin. She dazzled because, of all things, she reached out to her opponents. When was the last time we saw that coming out of the White House?As the editors noted, the union's ill-mannered "rent-a-thugs" tried to drown out Gov. Palin's words, but they failed. That's because, the editors conclude, her speech "ultimately wasn't for Wisconsin. It was for YouTube and the nation watching it."
Amazingly, Palin's words offered common ground between Tea Party taxpayers and public employee union members, who've until now been at odds with Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's attempt to balance the state budget.
"What I have to say today I say it to our good patriotic brothers and sisters who are in unions ... a pension is a promise that must be kept. Now, your Governor Scott Walker understands this. He understands that states must be solvent in order to keep their promise. And that's what he's trying to do. He's not trying to hurt union members. Hey, folks, he's trying to save your jobs and your pensions!"
In short, she came to save, not to cut, and in the finest example of bipartisan bridge-building since President Reagan made allies of blue-collar workers, she reached out to the very people whose hirelings tried to drown her speech out with obscenities.
Palin paid no attention to the thugs and kept her eye on the common ground. She put her finger on the two things that matter most to workers across the country — saving their jobs and their pensions — and decisively linked it with the reduction in the size of government sought by the Tea Party taxpayers.
As philosopher Eric Hoffer once noted: The elegant way to solve a problem is to take one and use it to solve the other.
Palin didn't rest there, though. She put her finger on the real problem: union bosses, who, like AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, brag about their daily contact with the White House as if to say they have President Obama in their back pocket.
And what a coincidence: That's where this sorry spectacle of rank partisanship is emanating from.