I haven’t written about Sarah Palin for a couple of months, because her political relevance pretty much evaporated when she failed to complete the job Alaska voters elected her to do. She and her entourage seem not to have clued in yet, however.
Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell repeatedly and personally asked former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin for help this summer in his campaign for Virginia governor, a Palin spokeswoman said.
But by late August, Palin learned that the McDonnell campaign no longer wanted her assistance, Palin adviser Meg Stapleton said in an interview tonight.
Earlier this week, McDonnell reacted with a bit of sarcasm when asked whether Palin would be campaigning with him. “There was a time earlier on when she was governor when I thought she would come here,” he said. “But I think she seems to be busy with books and other things like that. We’ve still got about 20 different events scheduled down the road and she’s not one of them.”
But Stapleton says Palin is not too busy to come. She says that her boss offered to help McDonnell numerous times both in conversations with him and his campaign and through the Republican Governors Association.
“The Governor, SarahPAC, and I have all communicated to the candidate, the campaign and to the RGA the Governor’s continued willingness to assist in any way possible – even as recently as two weeks ago,” Stapleton said.
Memo to Stapleton: Your boss doesn’t seem like an authority on who’s fit to serve as governor anymore. If Palin had not resigned for no apparent reason in the middle of her first term, she might have found a spot on McDonnell’s schedule, along with various other Republican governors and former governors.
Assuming Terry Branstad is the Republican nominee for Iowa governor next year, he won’t want Palin coming anywhere near his campaign.
I wonder whether Bob Vander Plaats would seek out Palin’s support during the primary, though. She might still be popular with social conservatives, and he’ll need that faction to stay with him in order to have any chance of a respectable second-place showing. But for all I know, Palin’s stature took a hit this summer even with the hard-core Republican base.
By the same token, Palin may not be enough of a maverick to campaign for an underdog in a GOP primary. If she stumps for an alternative to Branstad and he wins the primary with 80 percent of the vote, that becomes further evidence of her political irrelevance.