On Feb. 18, the American Conservative Union announced that popular former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin will be a featured speaker at the annual CPAC conference in Washington D.C. in mid-March, according to the organization’s website.
The CPAC conference would be an ideal media platform for former Gov. Sarah Palin to electrify the conservative movement and turn the political establishment of both parties upside-down by announcing her candidacy for the U.S. Senate in 2014 in her home state of Alaska.
Palin entering the U.S. Senate race would create a lasting imprint on the political landscape of the two-party system in America, essentially allowing the citizens of the U.S. and voters of Alaska to make the clearest and boldest statement in years about the direction they want to see the country heading in. The reason for this can be distilled down to three fundamentals of the U.S. political system: fundraising, campaign organization, and the compelling nature of the candidate.
A Palin announcement – and the explosion of media coverage inevitably accompanying it - would generate an immediate gusher of campaign donations from all over the U.S. that would essentially fund the former Alaska governor’s senate campaign to levels rivaling those of large states like California and Florida. While her Democratic Party opponent, incumbent Sen. Mark Begich, has less than $1 million in funds currently on hand for the 2014 race, a Sarah Palin candidacy could likely raise anywhere from 50 to 100 times that amount within a matter of weeks.
The campaign organization of a Palin candidacy would truly be unique in U.S. political history. Sarah Palin would receive substantial endorsements from select members of the GOP establishment in Washington D.C. and governors across the nation, yet retain the overwhelming support of grass-roots conservatives, Tea Party activists, and even many Blue Dog Democrats who admire the maverick former governor. Instead of relying on the same failed formula as so many establishment Republicans who lost their 2012 senate races, the Palin campaign could turn the election into a referendum on the “old boy networks” that nominally control both political parties in Washington D.C.
As for the compelling nature of the candidate herself, there is no question Sarah Pain is one of the few public figures in America with the larger-than-life persona, charisma, communication skills, and sheer ability to connect with voters that can overwhelm an election. The enormous regard with which Palin is held throughout the heartland of America would generate a rallying cry to propel her to victory as a United States senator.
If the question is less about Sarah Palin’s ability to win the Alaska Senate campaign and more about why she would want to become a U.S. senator, then the reasons for her candidacy become even more powerful. Three key principles should be compelling enough for Sarah Palin to become a senator: removing an incumbent who only won by outright deceit in 2008, giving Alaskans a senator who reflects their true ideology, and providing an ongoing national presence as the face of the conservative movement to defy the Washington establishment.
Defeating the Illegitimate Senator
Current incumbent Sen. Mark Begich won the 2008 U.S. Senate race in Alaska by less than 4,000 votes over the late-Sen. Ted Stevens because of prosecutorial misconduct by Department of Justice attorneys that wrongfully convicted the legendary political titan only one week before the election.
The Department of Justice accountability report later cited the conduct of the federal prosecutors as, “acting in reckless disregard” for legal obligations by not allowing defense attorneys for Sen. Stevens to review evidence that proved his innocence. Unfortunately for Stevens, who died in a tragic August 2010 plane crash in Alaska, the dismissed fraudulent conviction came after Election Day in 2008, thus handing the seat to Begich by the narrowest of margins.
Begich not only won the race by a razor-thin margin, but did so under a complete lie and outright deceit perpetrated on voters who were misled that their senator was a convicted felon. Adding to the twisted tale of Begich in the U.S. Senate is the death of Ted Stevens, who very likely would have not been on the airplane that crashed if he had won reelection in 2008.
Sen. Charles Grassley of Iowa described the Stevens conviction that brought Begich to the senate by saying:
“Prosecutors have an obligation to get the process right, not just to try to win cases. This was a high profile case that impacted the outcome of an election.”
By any objective measure, Begich only obtained the Alaska senate seat under a cloud of deception.
The dominant ideology of Alaskans clashes with Obama and Begich
In the 2012 election, President Barack Obama lost Alaska to Mitt Romney by 14 points, 54.8 to 40.8 percent. With Sarah Palin on the ticket in 2008, she and Sen. John McCain beat President Barack Obama in Alaska by 21.5 points, 59.4 to 37.9 percent, according to Real Clear Politics.
Combine these results with the fact that Democrat candidate Scott McAdams only received 23.5 percent of the vote in the 2010 U.S. Senate race against GOP candidate - and Tea Party favorite - Joe Miller and the write-in candidacy of incumbent establishment Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski, and it is crystal clear that the liberal-progressive policies of the national Democratic party and President Barack Obama are disfavored by roughly two-thirds of the state’s voters.
Begich will be forced to defend himself from President Barack Obama’s agenda that is overwhelmingly unpopular in Alaska.
Sarah Palin’s presence in the U.S. Senate would empower her to stand up to the Obama administration and its policies for the good of the people of Alaska, giving voice to their principled beliefs and ideals.
For Palin, the issues of Obama’s gun control proposals, climate change initiatives, refusal to approve the Keystone XL pipeline, the exploding growth in federal spending, and the potential for major disruptions in health care during ObamaCare implementation will all be salient issues to crush Begich with during the 2014 campaign. More importantly, Palin would become the de-facto leader of the opposition upon being sworn-in as a U.S. senator in January 2015.
Palin strikes fear in the Washington D.C. establishment
For the entrenched interests and good ol’ boys in the establishment of both political parties in Washington D.C., the reality of U.S. Senator Sarah Palin would turn their collective worlds upside-down.
Aside from the obvious fact that Sarah Palin could use the U.S. Senate as a megaphone to rally the nation behind movement conservatives and against the Republican establishment, she would drive the hyper-partisan left-wing Democrats across the nation into complete madness and disbelief.
Sarah Palin towers above most of the 2016 GOP aspirants as a compelling public figure – even her fellow Tea Party-backed candidates she helped elect in 2010 and 2012 – and as a U.S. senator would immediately be ideally positioned to have a major impact on the presidential race. Palin’s endorsement during the 2016 GOP presidential primaries would be considered the golden ticket to the nomination.
Then again, there is also that tantalizing possibility that a Senator Sarah Palin would use the U.S. Senate as a launching pad for the White House in 2016.
Steven Holmes is the Los Angeles Political Buzz Examiner.