California lawyer Peter Singleton is working hard for Sarah Palin in Iowa, but it's all being done on his own dime and not in any official capacity. This is the kind of individual initiative we've seen again and again among Palin supporters. There are some in Iowa who interpret Singleton's dedication as a sign that she will run in 2012, and others who who are convinced of just the opposite. The Wall Street Journal's Neil King Jr. has written a profile of Singleton, from which we drew these excerpts:
"When it comes to Palin in Iowa, it's pretty much Peter Singleton," said Iowa Tea Party Director Ryan Rhodes. "The guy is everywhere."Singleton's mission seems to be to convince Iowans that Gov. Palin will get into the race, win the Iowa caucuses and capture the Republican nomination for president. He argues, as does his fellow Palin supporters, that the GOP's 2008 vice presidential candidate is the better suited than her potential GOP rivals to make Barack Obama a one-term president in 2012.
Crisscrossing the state in a series of rented cars, the 56-year-old Mr. Singleton has spent the better part of five months visiting obscure county GOP chairmen, befriending tea-party activists, buttonholing lawmakers in the lobby of the state Capitol, and amassing a database of potential Palin supporters. His base camp is the Days Inn in West Des Moines, where he washes his shirts in the sink.
Deepening the mystery: Mr. Singleton swears he has never met Ms. Palin and has no contact with her team. "I'm just a dedicated activist working on my own," he said.
Ms. Palin's aides concur, insisting that she hasn't met with Mr. Singleton and that he is in no way coordinating with her political-action committee.
The tall, sleepy-eyed Silicon Valley lawyer and former Oracle salesman seems to have found his calling in Iowa's political byways. Until last year, he had never worked on a political campaign.
A Northern California native, he spent a decade as a small-time investor after leaving Oracle in the mid-1990s. He then got a law degree and clerked for a Nevada Supreme Court justice, at age 52.
He first traveled to Iowa in August with a map of the state, and one contact at a tea-party group. "I drove around to the big counties and went into the election offices to shake hands and meet people," he said.
Update: Organize for Palin, a grassroots effort not affiliated with any PAC, candidate or campaign, confirms that Peter Singleton is the O4P Iowa state coordinator. You can contact him at email@example.com.