RSS
The conservative establishment vs. Sarah Palin
A host of right-wing thinkers lash out at the Alaskan star, and she has reportedly angered Fox News boss Roger Ailes. Could this be the beginning of the end for Palin?
 
Conservatives are railing against the former governor, insisting a Sarah Palin candidacy would be a bad move for the GOP.
Conservatives are railing against the former governor, insisting a Sarah Palin candidacy would be a bad move for the GOP.
Getty

It's been a bad day for Sarah Palin. A "murderer's row" of prominent conservatives from George Will to Charles Krauthammer are quoted by Politico saying a Palin presidential candidacy would be disastrous. Meanwhile, it's emerging that Palin reportedly aroused the ire of Fox News chairman Roger Ailes. According to New York's Gabriel Sherman, the network chief clashed with Palin over her response to January's Gabrielle Giffords shooting. Although Ailes apparently advised Palin to "lie low" after the assassination attempt, Palin instead delivered her hotly criticized "blood libel" speech. Will conservative-establishment backlash derail the headstrong former governor — or just cement her popularity with her grassroots supporters?

Palin's 2012 chances are nearing zero: Palin is fast becoming the Jerry Falwell of the modern Republican Party, says Paul Waldman at The American Prospect. In other words, she's the type of "factional leader" whom conservatives seek to woo at first, but from whom they flee as soon as they need to attract mainstream voters. She won't vanish, but I think it's safe to say "the era of the potential Sarah Palin presidency [is] officially over."
"The fall of Sarah Palin"

Since when does Palin need the GOP establishment? Krauthammer and Will argue that Palin's brand of anti-intellectual populism is damaging the conservative movement, says Joshua Green at The Atlantic. But a conservative base that "thinks that the president was born in darkest Africa" clearly does not prize intellect. And since when has "disapproval from establishment Republicans" stopped Palin? If anything, it will "goad her into entering the race."
"The right-wing war against Sarah Palin"

But a fight with Fox could be truly damaging: Palin's "constant warring" with the GOP establishment delights her "adoring audience," says Andy Barr at Politico. But biting the hand that feeds her at Fox News could backfire. "Fox fuels the Palin political machine," and a disagreement with its chairman could threaten the very "source of her political and media power."
"Analysis: Sarah's static with Fox"

No, Ailes needs Palin more than she needs him: New York's story is just "typical tabloid" fodder, says Kelsey at Conservatives4Palin. And even if it were true, "there's no way Ailes would toss Palin out the door" just because she ignored his advice. She's too valuable. "If she doesn't run, you can pretty much bet Ailes will give his front teeth to keep her." Besides, if he wanted to fire her, wouldn't she be out already?
"Palin vs. Ailes"

 

THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER

Subscribe to the Week