Sarah Palin Endorses Donald Trump As The Former VP Nominee Wades Her Way Back Into Politics
The Donald's campaign officials confirmed Tuesday that Sarah Palin will endorse Donald Trump, in what is either the silliest endorsement he's received so far or the silliest endorsement she's ever given. Perhaps a bit of both. The former vice presidential nominee said she's proud to endorse him for president, and as The New York Times pointed out, her backing might give him a little more credibility with voters who aren't so sure about giving their support to a New York businessman.
Palin, who started her career in politics in my hometown's city council (yep), rose to national prominence after being chosen as the VP pick for John McCain's presidential run in 2008. She swiftly resigned as governor of Alaska a year later and then mostly dropped off the political sphere, save for her commentary that she provided on Fox News until the summer of 2015. But she undoubtedly saw an opportunity here with the mogul's campaign — and maybe felt connected because of their matching reality TV experiences — and she jumped on board the Trump Train less than two weeks before the Iowa caucuses. Trump said in a statement:
I am greatly honored to receive Sarah's endorsement. She is a friend, and a high-quality person whom I have great respect for. I am proud to have her support.
While it might seem silly, one reality TV star backing another, Palin actually does have some political clout. She endorsed Ted Cruz for the Texas Senate race in 2012, citing his "conservative principles" and "passionate defense of our Constitution." When he won, she called it a victory for the Tea Party. And Cruz clearly wanted her endorsement this time around, too. A spokesman for the Cruz campaign said on CNN:
I think it would be a blow to Sarah Palin, because Sarah Palin has been a champion of the conservative cause and if she was going to endorse Donald Trump, sadly she would be endorsing someone who's held progressive views all their life on the sanctity of life, on marriage, on partial-birth abortion, he supported [the] TARP bailout — it goes on and on and on.
But it makes sense why Palin might support Trump. Neither are what you'd consider traditional by any means, they're outspoken about their beliefs, and they have a tendency to "go rogue." And while this endorsement might seem like a big deal to get past Trump's big city New York values reputation, it could also mean squat. In 2014, 55 percent of Alaska voters viewed Palin negatively, so if the rest of the U.S. is anything like her home state, maybe her support will turn people away from Trump instead.