Sarah Palin – a fading star

Sarah Palin is still very much in the news, but her star seems to be fading, judging from the latest Washington Post-ABC News poll this week.

58 per cent of the polled Republicans are favorable towards Palin, compared with 88 percent immediately after the 2008 elections and 70 percent half a year ago.  Palin’s negative numbers have at the same time increased and are now record high, or 37 percent.

That negative figure is significantly higher than for any other potential Republican presidential candidates. Still, she has 2.7 million “likes” on Facebook, earns big money as a Fox News commentator and hundreds of thousands of dollars in his speeches around the country. Since she stepped down as Alaska’s governor, she has become rich.

Palin is a political phenomenon, no doubt about it. But people either love her or hate her, and she has become more polarizing than any other leading Republican.  Will she run for president? No one knows.  On InTrade, the prediction market, only six per cent think she will run.

If she does run, Palin will join a long list of possible republican presidential candidates. And although the campaign has not yet even started, already, Carl Cannon wrote recently on RealClearPolitics, “the nascent 2012 campaign trail is littered with gaffes, slips of the tongue and lapses in historical and geographical knowledge.” He cites among many examples mistakes by Palin about Ronald Reagan, Congresswoman Michele Bachmann’s assertion that the American Revolution began in New Hampshire, and Mike Huckabee’s claim that Obama spent his youth in Kenya. These gaffes and mistakes are not trivial, wrote Cannon.

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