Friday, July 8, 2011

Sarah Palin's Not So Secret Weapon In Iowa



Craig Bergman, a state tea party stalwart who has worked in politics for 20 years, including stints on the Alan Keyes and Ron Paul presidential campaigns, said that Palin is well positioned to make some serious noise. "Her grass-roots support is times 10 what Ron Paul's is," Bergman said. "The Ron Paul people are very intense but narrowly focused, whereas Palin attracts lawyers, doctors, soccer moms, business people, young people, all across the gamut. They're not as rabidly intense, but there are many, many more of them."

Bergman predicted that Palin would be the front-runner in Iowa "the minute she declares," which he expects her to do, in part to preserve her political brand that he says will die out if she instead sticks to the cable-TV and paid-speech circuit and lets down the devoted supporters who are counting on her candidacy.

"People are looking for someone who is a leader -- someone who will take the fight on the issues to Obama," Bergman said before dismissing the idea that Palin would suffer from being perceived as unelectable. "A lawn chair could beat Barack Obama with 10 percent unemployment and $4 a gallon gas. That means Jon Huntsman could do it; that means probably anybody but Mitt Romney, because RomneyCare is so demotivating."

By Gary P Jackson

Every day we hear the media and establishment Republicans whine about Sarah Palin and how they think she won't run for the presidency. Trying to create a false narrative notwithstanding, they base this on the fact they think things must be done a certain way or else. Well, we all know the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over, and expecting different results.

We have, so far, one of the weakest fields of candidates ever assembled for a presidential primary. None of these people are of presidential timber.

A significant number of them should be running for the democrat presidential nomination, based on their leftist ideology. {Romney and Huntsman lead that parade]

Obama is weak, and can definitely be beaten, but that's the problem.

Almost any candidate that isn't a drooling idiot, or has views that are too extreme [like gays are barbarians who must be cured] can give Obama a good race. This is a problem because we may very well end up with a liberal like Romney as our nominee, and even if we win, we lose.

If Obama is a bullet train to disaster, Romney ... as well as most of the field ... is AMTRAK going in the same direction. In other words, guys like Romney will simply continue on it the same direction Obama, has us going, but at a slower pace.

Look, we go after Obama because he is down right evil. Communists always are. But the fact is, politicians on both sides of the aisle have been slowly moving us toward disaster for years. Too much spending, too much regulation, too many out of control government agencies, like the EPA. It's not just the fault of the democrats, the establishment Republicans have been willing, enthusiastic partners.

It's for this reason 2012 represents a once in a lifetime opportunity to actually change course, and restore America. To stop corruption, end wasteful spending, balance the budget, become energy independent, and create millions of jobs.

To do this, we cannot "settle" for whoever the media and our "betters" in the GOP tell us to choose. We need a dynamic leader with proven ability to do what must be done. Someone above reproach, with an unimpeachable character, and an unwavering belief in the greatness of the American people, and our ability to overcome anything, with the right leadership.

That someone is Sarah Palin. Though the GOP's "thought leaders" have pronounced that Sarah Palin is not running, everything she is doing says the exact opposite.

As you know, in February Sarah hired Michael Glassner as her Chief-of-Staff. Glassner is a heavy hitter. His specialty is logistics and he managed Bob Dole’s presidential campaign. He also managed Sarah's vice presidential run.

In May, Sarah hired Peter Schweizer a fellow at the Hoover Institution, as her new foreign policy adviser. Schweizer is the author of many books on Reagan, Bush and penned a book on the financial crisis. He literally wrote the book on how Reagan won the cold war.

Now with all of her speaking engagements, extensive travel, and other activities, one might justify hiring one of the best in the business as Chief-of-Staff, but what hockey mom from Wasilla needs a foreign policy adviser, especially one of Schweizer's caliber?

The One Nation Tour, the new movie, combined with strategic hirings all point to a presidential run.

So do the efforts on her behalf in the state of Iowa. Scott Conroy has written a great piece on the extensive network set up in Iowa by Organize4Palin members Pete Singleton and Michelle McCormick.

PELLA, Iowa -- Last December, Michelle McCormick penned a letter to Sarah Palin, addressed it to her political action committee, and dropped it in the mail.

An unassuming 28-year-old north Texan who works in the oil and gas industry, McCormick had experienced a family crisis similar to the one that had befallen Palin's family when the former Alaska governor's daughter Bristol became pregnant in 2008. McCormick wanted to let Palin know that how the vice presidential candidate handled the situation while in the national spotlight helped guide McCormick through her own family difficulties.

McCormick didn't harbor much hope that she would get a response, but about three weeks later she received a personal reply from Palin.

Six months later, McCormick now spends every weekend (and an increasing number of weekdays) in the nation's first voting state of Iowa attending GOP Central Committee meetings, collecting names of activists in counties across the state, and doing other volunteer organizing in advance of a Palin presidential campaign that she considers inevitable.

"If she was willing to take the time to respond to somebody who is a nobody in Texas, that just shows me what kind of heart she has," McCormick told RCP. "She's a very high-profile individual, and she's got a lot of people making demands on her, and I thought this is someone I really want to help get into the White House."

McCormick is one of the more devoted members of a dedicated nationwide group called Organize4Palin, in which an all-volunteer effort is setting the groundwork for a Palin presidential launch that its members believe is only a matter of time.

Although Organize4Palin purports to have active chapters in over 30 states, the backbone of its operation is in Iowa, where Palin would likely have to win the caucuses in order to remain a viable candidate, if she were to enter the race.

"It's not cheap, but I try to budget and don't go on extra shopping trips, and I don't have cable," said McCormick, who has been staying in inexpensive hotels and supporters' homes during her travels across Iowa since March. "We do have a pretty big caffeine budget."

McCormick said that she is "100 percent" sure Palin will run for president, and is considering moving to Iowa full time while she awaits an announcement. If she does move to the Hawkeye State, McCormick would be following in the footsteps of Peter Singleton, a 58-year-old California lawyer who has been leading the charge in Iowa, where he has made his home for the past eight months.

When Singleton first visited the state in August 2010 -- with a vague notion of planting seeds for Palin ahead of the caucuses that were still a year-and-a-half away -- he was so unfamiliar with the political environment here that he had to Google "election AND Iowa" before plotting his initial moves ahead of the midterms that November. Almost a year later, Singleton is no longer a political novice.

"I've probably met with 1,000 people in this state in one-on-one meetings or a couple people at a time," he said. "The one-on-one meetings and the two- and three-people meetings are the heart and soul of what we're doing, and believe me, the other guys don't do that. They take a radically different approach."

Singleton has become such a fixture in Iowa politics that he is often confused for a SarahPAC staffer when conducting his work. While professing certitude that Palin will seek the presidency, Singleton is equally emphatic that he has had no direct involvement with the potential candidate.

Asked about a phone conversation he was overheard having with Palin aide Rebecca Mansour a few hours before the pro-Palin documentary, "The Undefeated," premiered here last Tuesday, Singleton paused for several seconds before offering a nothing-to-see-here explanation.

"Rebecca and I are friends," he said, explaining that they met years ago on the website Conservatives4Palin.com. "She was probably asking me what the crowd was like and how things were going."

At the cookout that followed the premiere of the film, it was clear that it was Singleton -- and not any paid Palin staffer -- who was running the show as he dealt with logistics and worked to introduce attendees to one another.

With just a short time to prepare the event, Singleton showed off the reach of his Iowa rolodex as he took the lead in cultivating an invitation list that resulted in nearly 1,000 Iowans attending the barbeque outside the Pella Opera House. The crowd included local residents and rank-and-file Palin supporters, who mingled with a few prominent state Republicans, including 2010 GOP gubernatorial candidate Bob Vander Plaats and Secretary of State Matt Schultz.

Schultz told RCP that he received his invitation only the day before the event from Richard Rogers, who identified himself as the Organize4Palin regional director for Polk and Story counties.

"When I've been around the state at different events, I've seen different volunteers for Organize4Palin where they've set up booths and have tried to get people interested," Schultz said. "I thought the event was very well organized. I was impressed with how Governor Palin stayed around and met with a lot of people and didn't just come and leave. . . . I enjoyed the movie and my impression of her increased as a result."

This is a fairly long and detailed article, read it all here.


Peter Singleton, Sarah Palin's man in Iowa. Photo: Wall Street Journal

Pete Singleton was interviewed by the UK Telegraph's Tony Harnden at the world premier of The Undefeated in Pella, Iowa:

Sarah Palin will run for the White House in 2012 and conduct an "unorthodox, grassroots campaign the likes of which you’ve never seen", according to the man who has spent the past eight months organising for her in Iowa.

Speaking to me after the premiere of the film "The Undefeated" in Pella, Iowa, Peter Singleton, a California lawyer who has been assiduously courting Republicans across the state where the first contest of the 2012 election will be held, said it was "unthinkable" she would remain on the sidelines.

"She’s the right person at this time," he said. "If you look back at Churchill’s time, in 1938 Churchill was unelectable, in 1940 he was indispensable.

"I can’t see her sitting this one out," he said. "The stakes are too high. It goes back to 1940. Can you see Churchill sitting it out? It’s unthinkable. Can you see George Washington in 1776 sitting it out? Unthinkable. He wanted to be back on his farm but they said we need you to be president of the republic."

Mr Singleton, 56, tall and urbane, is a man of considerable mystery. He represents the national Organize4Palin group and has been ubiquitous in Republicans circles building up a network for the former Alaska governor, whose presidential intentions have kept Americans guessing for months.

[ .... ]

It was Mr Singleton who telephoned Beth Hill, director of the Pella Opera House, last Thursday to ask her whether "The Undefeated", a full-throated defence of Mrs Palin and her career, could be shown there. He then visited to look at the auditorium and put Stephen Bannon, the film’s director on the phone to speak to her.

"Peter came here and he found our town reflected Sarah Palin’s small town, conservative values," she said. Mr Singleton was also instrumental in distributing the 332 tickets for the film as well as inviting 1,000 Iowans, including many key Republican leaders in the state, for a barbecue afterwards.

When I asked about his involvement, Mr Singleton said that he was an old friend of Mr Bannon and he had been just one of "a bunch of people" who had helped set up the screening.

[ .... ]

After the film, Mrs Palin and her husband Todd were mobbed by hundreds of supporters amid shouts of "your record is golden, when’s the sequel" and "we need you in the White House, Sarah".

Asked about the movie as she signed autographs and posed for picture, she said that there was "vindication in it" but "beyond the vindication of my record personally and my team’s record it is a wonderful story about American values".

It went some way, she added, to presenting the reality of her time as Alaska governor and her life. "There are so many false narratives out there about Todd about our kids, about my record, about my team that has worked so hard together that there is never going to be a way to absolutely set the record straight."

Mr Singleton also spoke about narratives that were incorrect. "The narratives are: she’s not running; she’s about to endorse another candidate; it’s too late for her to get in; she’s going to run as a celebrity candidate; she’s got no support here; support is attenuated; she’s yesterday’s news," he said. "All that is comically inaccurate."

Mrs Palin, he said, would work to connect with Iowans. "Her support is latent. When she runs, whether she wins or loses will be dependent in part on how well she campaigns.

"It’s not like all she has to do is announce and then do a couple of rallies. It doesn’t work and way and it shouldn’t . She will need to work diligently and campaign. Her people are going to have to campaign in every town and every county. That’s what we’re doing."

For her part, Mrs Palin told RealClearPolitics that she would commit "110 percent" to the Iowa caucus process if she does run for president.

Mr Singleton predicted Mrs Palin "will have hundreds of thousands of volunteers, 10 times more than any other candidate and I think that’s why she’ll win".

Read more here.

Organize4Palin is strong all across the nation, and getting stronger. O4P has set up chapters in over 30 states and is looking to have a 50 state ground game by the time the primary season starts. Karen Allen, the driving force behind Organize4Palin, works tirelessly to support Sarah Palin, and has helped create a grass roots effort the likes of which we've never witnessed before.

Thanks to Karen's efforts, along with ever single member of O4P, Sarah Palin will have a ready made ground game the second she announces her candidacy. A ground game made up of patriots who want to see America restored to her greatness, and the corrupt Ruling Class dismantled, disgraced, and destroyed.

A ground game that will be victorious. 

You can become a part of Organize4Palin and make history by clicking on the lead photo, or clicking here.




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