Will Palin Endorse Newt?
That’s what Scott Conroy, of real clear politics who has been particularly close to Palin aides believes. Let’s run down the list of people Palin could support and reasons she could support them.
Michele Bachmann: People love to point out similarities between Michele Bachmann and Sarah Palin. And there are plenty, both are outspoken, solidly conservative darlings of the tea party movement and they’re both female. Which is about it. Palin endorsed Bachmann for her House seat in 2010 and I suspect that once Bachmann realizes its not worth it for her to continue running for president, Palin will endorse her again for her House seat. My guess is Palin wouldn’t endorse her for her house seat because there are qualities about her that seem similar. Not similar to her in reality, but similar to the caricature the media created of Palin in the 2008 election.
Rick Perry: The biggest advantage Gov. Perry has is that he and Gov. Palin have a strong friendship. Like Conroy, I’m not surprised Palin supported Perry over Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, but also like Conroy, I’d be surprised if she endorsed him for president. She has been very critical of his abuse of executive power and his relationship with Merck, the creator of Gardisil. Still I don’t think it’s wise to count this out potentially.
Herman Cain: Initially, Cain seems like a natural Palin bossism buddy. They’re both outsiders that can electrify a crowd like no other. They both recognize the power of a soundbite and revel in the opportunity to create one to get their message across (Bill Clinton did the same thing in the 1990s) There are two problems for Cain: his lack of government leadership experience, an absolute requirement Palin set out a few months back and his gaps in policy knowledge, which probably come out of never working in government. I don’t know if Palin would be ready to give him her approval.
Newt Gingrich Right now, I would almost be willing to put money on it that Newt will get Palin’s endorsement. She has praised him for being substantive and had said she believes that Newt would clobber President Obama. Further, Newt has gone out of his way to appeal to Palin supporters and seems to have made some major inroads with them. Palin endorsing him would just seal the deal.
For me, it’s not a matter of if, but when. I think she’s pretty much made up her mind, but is trying to time out when her endorsement would have the most impact. Look for it in the days leading up to the Iowa caucuses and maybe even look for Palin to get out there with Newt as he tries to build his base.