Thursday, October 7, 2010

Palin: What my endorsement means

During a visit to Florida yesterday, reporters caught up with Sarah Palin, who was leaving the Newsmax Media headquarters.

Palin mentioned a few candidates she'd endorsed in Florida, and then launched into what's been a recurring theme for her: claiming that candidates she backs will face unusually harsh scrutiny, because Palin herself has faced it.

"Double-edged sword, though, anytime I attach my name to somebody's campaign, because then it seems like they're under a little bit more scrutiny and criticism, sometimes, so more power to them for being bold enough to accept an endorsement."

It's an artful way to make sure her narrative is advanced, even while her chosen candidate is trying to advance his or hers.

Her clearest articulation came during an appearance on Greta Van Susteren's show last month.

PALIN: It is a double-edged sword [lending her name to candidates], and I know that it is, and when I talk to candidates about receiving an endorsement from me I have to warn them "Ya know, it ain't always pretty. You're gonna be under a lot more scrutiny -- it seems like -- your ideas, your character, your record, your intentions, if my name's attached."

I'm thankful for those who are bold enough to say "Well, give me an endorsement anyway; then let me speak for myself, and let my ideas stand on their own", and in a lot of cases, they let me back out and get out of the way once they've gotten a little bit of that propulsion.

GRETA: I'm sort of curious, because the ones I've seen publicly have been quite receptive -- whether it's Christine O'Donnell in Delaware, Nikki Haley in South Carolina, or any of the others you've endorsed.

Have some asked you not to endorse them?

PALIN: No, that's not the case. The candidates themselves and the campaigns are always good.

It's usually the lamestream media, though, that just piles on them, though, and that's why I kind of give them that warning, that heads-up before I say "yay" to endorsing them is to get ready for the onslaught of media scrutiny and some unfair treatment by the media, and in that way, Greta, I give them an open door to back out of the idea of me attaching my name to their campaign.