The Great Debate UK
from The Great Debate:
Matthew E. Berger covered Palin’s vice presidential campaign as an embedded reporter for NBC News and National Journal. He is the author of a book on Palin’s campaign and political future, scheduled for release in the fall by Wiley. The article originally appeared on Politico.com. The views expressed are his own.
Standard Washington political rules state that any presidential aspirants must finish out their term, write a book, travel to Iowa and New Hampshire, and start talking policy. Any deviation from the norm suggests political suicide, and many analysts have spent the past few days writing Sarah Palin’s political obituary.
But Palin never learned the rules, and she certainly doesn’t play by them. Palin has her own set of rules, which minimizes the expertise of political veterans and relies almost entirely on her gut. As times got tough during her vice presidential campaign, Palin began to ignore the advice of those around her and started doing the things she relied on to win in Alaska, specifically directly attacking her critics and speaking more to local media. Whether her small-town politics translated well to the national stage didn’t seem to register with her.
And under her personal guidelines, Friday’s announcement makes sense. The timing and her unscripted words — full of metaphors of basketball and fishing — made clear the decision had been reached without full consultation or preparation with political advisers. Palin had decided on a path, consulted few outside her family and moved forward.