Opinion Brief

Sarah Palin: 'Getting serious' about 2012?

The Alaskan star has hired veteran political operative Michael Glassner as her chief of staff. Is this proof she's gearing up for a presidential bid?

Sarah Palin didn't attend the weekend's Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) — unofficially, the kick-off event of the 2012 Republican presidential race. But Palin made news anyway, hiring Republican veteran Michael Glassner to run her political action committee, SarahPAC. Glassner's résumé includes managing Sen. Bob Dole's 1996 presidential campaign. Is this hire proof, as Politics Daily puts it, that Palin is "getting serious" about a White House run?

This is a clear signal — but a bad choice: The Glassner hire is great news for people who want Palin to throw her hat in the ring, says Doug Powers in The Powers That Be. It sure looks like she's running. But there's bad news here too: Glassner's track record is terrible. John McCain's failed VP operations and Bob Dole's presidential flop? "I'm a 'karma' guy," and Palin ought to "start fresh and leave the past in the past."
"Good news/bad news for 'Palin for President' fans"

Let's not jump the gun: Hiring Glassner doesn't necessarily mean Palin is running, says Jeff Zeleny in The New York Times. In fact, many signs point to just the opposite: Palin skipped CPAC, has turned down invitations to key early voting states Iowa and New Hampshire, and seems content giving paid speeches. Besides, SarahPAC's "shoestring staff" really does need a professional touch — maybe that's all Glassner's hire means.
"Palin adds Glassner as top political adviser"

Palin's just toying with us: Palin's "plans are so cryptic and her method of operation is so unconventional" that we just can't read much into this hire, says Rutgers political scientist Ross Baker, as quoted in the AP. "She's keeping people off-balance," which "she probably finds quite enjoyable." Indeed, "a relative newcomer in the party has been able to keep all of the pros guessing."
"Palin hires chief of staff for PAC"

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