I don't get political punditry

Palin's Move Shocks G.O.P. and Leaves Future Unclear:

Many Republican strategists have argued that it would be difficult for someone to run for governor in 2010 and turn around immediately, while running a state, and run for president in 2012. Gov. Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota announced last month that he would not seek re-election when his term expired in 2010, as he considers a race for president.

George W. Bush was reelected in Texas in 1998 and ran for president in 2000. Is that so exceptional? Or are there other variables at play? And if so, why is this variable so important? (I've seen this assertion elsewhere) I'm not steeped in political history, but I note that F.D.R. won the governor's mansion of New York in 1930, before running for president in 1932.

It seems in regard to Sarah Palin no one really knows what's going on right now. So all the speculation and analysis reminds me of someone who didn't do background reading for their final in class bluebook test and is producing a stream of total crap in the hopes that the professor will deign to pass them.

More like this

You don't get political punditry? I think you do. After all, you said this: "...producing a stream of total crap..."

However, I think I can clear up a couple of things for you.

First of all, The shocking news in Palin's announcement yesterday was not that she isn't seeking reelection. It's that she is resigning now. There is no reason for her do that if this is just about running for president in 2012. She could finish her term and still have 2 years to campaign, just as Pawlenty is doing.

Secondly, if she is interested in advancing her political career, she isn't helping herself by bailing out of a job she's only held for a year and a half. One of the main criticisms of her in last year's campaign was that she didn't have the experience to be vice-president. Now her resume will feature a stint as mayor of Wasilla and half a term as governor. The only thing that prepares her for is a show on Fox News (which is what I am predicting).

Sarah Palin's the perfect example of this idea. She won the governorship in 2006, but when she ran as VP in 2008, she was widely derided for lack of experience. It's unlikely that she would have done any better as Presidential candidate.

Punditry's a lot of crap, but it's hard to look at Presidental races and escape the conclusion that executive experience matters. Bush's six years as governor up till 2000 was the big selling point of his campaign. Bill Clinton won 5 terms as governor. Spending a good deal of time as governor, and racking up some achievements, has historically been one of the best ways to get the Presidency.

None of this is a foolproof rule that a Republican won't grab a governorship, and then the Presidency, especially if they have a prior national image like FDR did. But the odds seem against it.

The difference is that the professor presumably knows the answer. Most consumers of punditry don't know jack.

Whatever she does seems to be the devilishly clever correct thing for her to do, according to her supporters.

I see this quandry as yet another episode of the national story as being told by the industry that brings you toothpaste, hemoroid creme, Airborne (invented by a kindergarten teacher1), and, well, too much to name but none of it as ubiquitous, nor as profitable without advertising. It's not the job of "the news" to give us an objective view, but to "cover" whatever seems to be attracting our interests and then frame it in such a way as to keep our interests (whomever their audience is percieved as being), and then sell this interest to the ad agency that represents deBeers, or Viagra, or ..I was gonna say "General Electric" since they are such an influential component, but of course they also own a significant voice in our "freedom of the press".
Whether the Palin side-show grows legs and can walk in that amusing way which seems to have hypontized the types who are always looking for a religously inspired populist reformer...well, if that movement takes off, all bets are off.