Monday, April 11, 2011

Elite’s Way Off on Palin Electability: Part 3B – The People

Poll Insider has been running a series on Palin's "electability" and they have come to the same conclusion I have. Of all the current potential candidates on the GOP side, Governor Palin is probably the MOST electable. Here they break down another real advantage that many in the media must not recognize.  ~ teledude
 Poll Insider 
(Note: This is the final part of the series. the rest can be found here)

First, who can be The $750 Million Candidate? Any chance to beat Obama rests heavily on the ability to raise money. John McCain was out-raised and outspent an incredible 2-1 by Barack Obama in 2008. While Obama was running $1 million dollar, prime-time campaign ads on network television just days before the election, McCain was boxed into a corner, penniless, watching from the sidelines.

And the ability to raise funds is heavily dependent on the ability to get the conservative base on your side. McCain did not have that and saw his first real infusion of conservative cash only after he selected Palin as his VP nominee. If the Republican candidate is not conservative, conservatives will not give, and at least certainly not in the numbers they would to a conservative candidate. Just as liberals are the most politically active segment of the Democratic Party, so too are conservatives in the GOP. Moderates and “independents” are typically less involved, are last minute deciders, and often apathetic until voting time. Attempting to ride this as your political base is a mistake often made by “smart” establishment elites. They simply do not give money. And again, the Republican candidate will need a lot of it.

Sarah Palin is clearly the best fundraiser. For two years she has been the hottest ticket at multiple fundraisers across the country on any given subject. I think there is little question that her supporters would be quick to give. Mike Huckabee proved woefully poor at raising cash in 2008, and much of his support comes from a much more politically inactive conservative base. Mitt Romney raised over $100 million in his primary loss in 2008, which is good, but would have a major problem getting donor cash from the Tea Party base. Again, the GOP candidate needs to have the ability to raise $750 Million. And even then they will still be at a disadvantage. And unless someone like a Donald Trump is willing to self-finance, who else could compete?

Second, who can Pack a Stadium? The establishment Republicans say we need a boring thud (like Mitch Daniels/Tim Pawlenty!) to counter Obama’s base enthusiasm. Wait, they want a candidate that no one can get excited about? Being able to bring a crowd to see you is paramount. With Obama in 2008, it became an event to see him. Friends brought friends and their friends brought more friends. If you can’t get someone excited about seeing you, how can you get them excited about voting for you?

Sarah Palin has proven, time and again, that she is the biggest draw in the GOP field. In 2008, it became so embarrassing for McCain that he had to begin holding rallies at the same location as Palin because he was barely filling classrooms and she was having venues changed to accommodate bigger crowds. Enthusiasm goes a long way, and is there any other candidate that could pack the house in a way that Palin could?

Arguably, Palin is the Godmother of GOP crowds and, in my opinion, the Tea Party. Until Sarah Palin, the GOP did not gather. They did not show up in large numbers. They did not fill venues. They did not protest. Sarah Palin in 2008 almost single-handedly proved that conservatives could, like their Democrat counterparts, show up in large numbers in support of a candidate (or in opposition to one). For the first time, the silent majority was loud. (And 2009 and 2010 continued that trend first in opposition to Obamacare, then in support of tea Party candidates). Who else can do that?

Finally, who is Most Compelling? The GOP nominee has to be compelling in every way. In debate, are they straightforward and honest? In speeches, are they able to get a point across without putting me to sleep? In campaign commercials, are they able to provide an inspiring vision for America? These are questions that will all be answered in the coming months.

All three of these qualities/abilities are heavily dependent on the conservatism of the candidate. Remember, conservatives are the ones who either donate or do not. They are the ones who attend rallies. (When was the last great moderate rally?) The American people are overwhelmingly conservative, and the GOP base is reliant on the conservative vote. But you need more than conservatism to win. And only one candidate has it all.

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