Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Ben Shapiro: Can Sarah Win?

"She knows her base, and she knows her principles."
Ben Shapiro in a op-ed examines the question of whether Sarah Palin can win. Here are the money excerpts:
Palin’s not one for subtlety – that’s her drawback, and that’s her charm.

The question is whether in this election, Americans will be put off by Palin’s winking more than they’re attracted to her clarity. Palin’s strength is her glibness – she’s able to boil down issues to their bare essence. She knows how she’s seen, and she embraces it. She’s purely authentic – when she says she wants Gretchen Wilson’s “Redneck Woman” as her cellphone ringtone, she’s telling the truth. In this way, she’s the polar opposite of President Obama, who loves to obscure issues in a cloud of rhetoric and faux complexity, and who is purely inauthentic. He runs from the fact that he is an ivory tower elitist, alienating Americans with his upturned chin and “into-the-future stare.”

For all the criticisms of her supposedly rough political abilities, she’s navigated the Republican field far more ably than seasoned politicians like Gingrich and Romney. She hasn’t declared, and she’s already running second. She didn’t shoot herself in the foot by embracing liberal politics, and she allowed Donald Trump to play stalking horse on the birth certificate and school records issues. She has never thrown a fellow Republican under the bus (she has praised Romney, Herman Cain, Gingrich, and virtually everyone else who has declared), and she has never promoted a non-conservative candidate for higher office.

She knows her base, and she knows her principles. She smacked Obama on Israel last week with brevity and simplicity: “Anyone who studies history, studies the Old Testament, studies geography understands that Israel now is surrounded by enemies at all times. It should be now that America takes a stand in defending our friends in Israel …. More than ever, we should be standing strong with Israel and saying, ‘No, you don’t have to divide Jerusalem, you don’t have to divide your capital city.” Then she went even further: “I’m going to call him our temporary leader because my goal is to make sure that President Obama is not reelected in 2012.”

It’s that kind of absolute willingness to go after Obama that endears Palin to Republicans. And with Obama’s unpopularity on the rise, the economy in a double-dip, and our foreign policy in shambles, more and more Americans want truth spoken to power. That’s why, counterintuitive though it may seem, Palin may be perfectly positioned for 2012.

- JP

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