|Palin "Just let me touch him." Lieberman: "Oh hell no."|
I see a straight line from the announcement of Sarah Palin as the vice-presidential nominee to what we see today in Donald Trump, the emergence of the Freedom Caucus, the tea party, and the shift in the center of gravity for the Republican Party. Whether that changes, I think, will depend in part on the outcome of this election, but it’s also going to depend on the degree of self-reflection inside the Republican Party. There have been at least a couple of other times that I’ve said confidently that the fever is going to have to break, but it just seems to get worse.
As you all know I, and a lot of other political observers, have already made the argument that without Sarah Palin there would likely never have been a Doanld Trump campaign.
But here is the President, who arguably has far more insight into the inner workings of politics in this country than most of us, essentially pointing out that same connection.
What is more is that earlier in the interview he explains he first noticed the Sarah Palin effect on the Republican party. And it came right after Chicago had lost the bid to host the 2016 Olympics:
On the flight back, we already know that we haven’t got it, and when I land it turns out that there was big cheering by Rush Limbaugh and various Republican factions that America had lost the Olympic bid. It was really strange, but at that point, Limbaugh had been much clearer about wanting to see me fail and had, I think, communicated that very clearly to his listeners. Fox News’ coverage had already started to drift in that direction, and what you realized during the course of the first six, eight, ten months of the administration was that the attitudes, the moods that I think Sarah Palin had captured during the election increasingly were representative of the Republican activist base, its core. It might not have been representative of Republicans across the country, but it meant that John Boehner or Mitch McConnell had to worry about that mood inside their party that felt that, No, we shouldn’t cooperate with Obama, we shouldn’t cooperate with Democrats; that it represents compromise, weakness, and that the broader character of America is at stake, regardless of whatever policy arguments might be made. As a consequence, there were times that I would meet with Mitch McConnell and he would say to me very bluntly, “Look, I’m doing you a favor if I do any deal with you, so it should be entirely on my terms because it hurts me just being seen photographed with you.”
Essentially Sarah Palin made it okay for the most rabid Right Wing to come out of the woodwork and make themselves heard, and to push a partisan agenda that despised compromise and punished any who did not pass their ideological purity tests.
This not only created huge obstacles for President Obama and his administration, but it made Congress almost completely ineffectual as well.
Essentially Washington D.C. ground to a complete halt, and arguably that was in part inspired by one batshit crazy half term governor from the wilds of Wasilla.
I have been making this point for years partially as a defense for why I kept writing about Palin and digging into her secretes, and now the President has essentially vindicated that work by reinforcing just how damaging she was to national politics in this country.
And I continue to make the case that if the media had done its job, and gone after Palin over her faux political creds, her fake pregnancy, and her many scandals since she left office, that we would never have ended up with a Donald Trump as the GOP candidate in 2016.
I have done everything that I could to get these stories out there, but too many mainstream media sources wanted to turn a blind eye, and now they are left slack jawed at the result.
P.S. By the way the rest of the article is very informative and I urge all of you to read it.