Sarah Palin resigns as Governor of Alaska
Sarah Palin made a surprise announcement Friday that she will resign as governor of Alaska in a few weeks, saying she will try to "affect positive change" from outside government.Since the news initially broke a couple hours ago it is spreading like wildfire, and with it, pithy reactions. One commenter on the New York Times' site quipped:
The former Republican vice presidential candidate hastily called a news conference Friday morning at her home in suburban Wasilla, giving such short notice that only a few reporters actually made it to the announcement.
Affecting change outside of government? Gee, you mean like being a Community Organizer?Good one.
Of course, pundits are going to speculate that Palin is resigning because she wants to run for President in 2012, but that doesn't make any sense. The best jumping off point for the presidency is a governorship. Look at recent American political history - Barack Obama is the first president since JFK to have been elected out of Congress. Why would Palin give that up?
MSNBC is reporting that "inside sources" have told them that Palin and her family want to be out of politics for good, and that is a far more plausible explanation for this decision. Palin no longer enjoys the popular support she once had in her home state, and her chances of winning reelection in 2010 were already starting to look dicey. Perhaps she's just tired of being laughed at and made fun of... although she asked for it with her nastiness at the Republican National Convention and on the campaign trail towards President Obama and Vice President Biden.
Here's a partial transcript of Palin's remarks at her press conferences. Palin spoke sharply, clearly drawing breath as she finished key sentences.
And so... as I thought about this announcement that I wouldn't run for re-election, and what that means for Alaska, I thought about how, well, how much fun some Governors have as lame ducks. They maybe travel around their state, travel to other states, maybe take their overseas international trade missions. So many politicians do that. And, then I thought, that's what wrong.Yadda, yadda, yadda.
Many just accept that lame duck status. And they hit the road, they draw a paycheck... they kinda milk it... And I'm not gonna to put Alaskans through that. I promised efficiencies and effectiveness. That's not how I'm wired, I'm not wired to operate under the same old politics as usual. I promised that four years ago, and I meant it. It... That's not what is best for Alaska at this time.
I am determined to take the right path for Alaska, even though it is unconventional and it's not so comfortable. With this announcement that I'm not seeking reelection, I've determined it's best to transfer the authority of governor to Lieutenant Governor Parnell. And... I am willing to do this, so that this administration, with its positive agenda and its accomplishments, and its successful road to an incredible future for Alaska... so that it can continue without interruption. And with great administrative and legislative success.
My choice is to take a stand and affect change, and not just hit our head against the wall, and watch valuable state time and money... millions of your dollars go down the drain in this new political environment. Rather, we know we can affect positive change outside government at this moment in time on another scale and actually make a difference for our priorities, and... so we will.
For Alaskans. And for Americans.
Let me go back quickly to a comfortable analogy for me, and that's sports. Basketball. And... And I use it because you are naive if you don't see a full court press from the national level, picking away right now.
A good point guard, here's what she does: She drives through a full court press, protecting the ball, keeping her head up, because she needs to keep her eye on the basket. And... she knows exactly when to pass the ball, so that the team can win. And that is what I'm doing. Keeping our eye on the ball.
That represents sound priorities, remember, they include energy independence, and smaller government, and national security and freedom... and I know when it's time to pass the ball for victory.
The Democratic National Committee has already slammed Palin for announcing she's going to take her ball and go home. Here's spokesman Brad Woodhouse:
Either Sarah Palin is leaving the people of Alaska high and dry to pursue her long shot national political ambitions or she simply can't handle the job now that her popularity has dimmed and oil revenues are down.Palin may very well go down in history as a half term governor and a quitter who, like most bullies, seemed to relish tossing fireballs at her political opposition but couldn't take the heat when fireballs were promptly lobbed back.
Either way, her decision to abandon her post and the people of Alaska who elected her continues a pattern of bizarre behavior that more than anything else may explain the decision she made today.
We couldn't imagine a more deserving fate for Sarah Palin than being consigned to the dustbin of American political history with all of the other divisive and hollow politicians who had their fifteen minutes of fame and then faded away for good.