October 8th, 2008
04:19 PM ET
6 years ago

Palin represents ‘fatal cancer’ to GOP, conservative says

(CNN) – Conservative New York Times columnist David Brooks, who has expressed doubts about Sarah Palin’s readiness to serve as vice president, said this week the Alaska governor “represents a fatal cancer to the Republican Party.”

Brooks praised Palin’s debate performance and called her a natural political talent, but told a New York audience Monday that “experience matters”: “Do I think she’s ready to be president or vice president? No, she’s not even close to that,” he said.

“…Reagan had an immense faith in the power of ideas,” he also said, in remarks first reported by the Huffington Post. “But there has been a counter, more populist tradition, which is not only to scorn liberal ideas, but to scorn ideas entirely. And I'm afraid that Sarah Palin has those prejudices. I think President Bush has those prejudices."

Other prominent conservatives, including George Will and David Frum, have publicly questioned Palin's readiness to be vice president. Prominent conservative columnist Kathleen Parker, an early supporter, said late last month that recent interviews have shown the Alaska governor is "out of her league" and should leave the GOP presidential ticket for the good of the party.

Brooks himself has also written skeptically about Palin. "Sarah Palin has many virtues," he wrote in a recent column. "If you wanted someone to destroy a corrupt establishment, she'd be your woman. But the constructive act of governance is another matter. She has not been engaged in national issues, does not have a repertoire of historic patterns and, like President Bush, she seems to compensate for her lack of experience with brashness and excessive decisiveness."


Filed under: Sarah Palin
soundoff (144 Responses)
  1. tennyson

    FOR SURE SHE IS NOWHERE NEAR THAT POSITION , IT WILL BE A MISTAKE TO PUT PALLIN IN THAT GLOVES, SHE CANT BE V.P,ALL HER FACTS ARE BASELESS.

    October 8, 2008 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  2. Daniel

    She may not have any ideas, but she sure can whip up an angry, racist, murderous mob. That should count for something, no matter what those egghead elitists in cocktail parties say!

    October 8, 2008 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  3. Danielle

    Governor Palin IS out of her league. Her interviews present her as a clueless script reader; without severe preparation or a script she has no idea what to say and I bet she has no idea what's going on in America outside of Alaska or how to deal with it.

    October 8, 2008 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  4. Gerry in Va. for Obama.

    Well John McCain wanted her and it doesn't seem there is much he can do about it now. So, let his repug friends carry on about her as much as they see necessary to let him know they don't like her, it's o.k. with me cause I don't like her either.

    October 8, 2008 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  5. Clarice Harris

    I agree Sarah is not READY.....

    October 8, 2008 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  6. Mack

    Since when in America is their a test to be President or Vice president. Read the Constitution sometime and you will see that Palin meets all the requirements..The problem with this country is that we have but a test on everything..and as a democrat I am angry that my party has turned into the republican party of 8 years ago. They learned their lesson and this election are even worse. Everyone accuses McCain of being negative, look at what the Obama camp has done and real factual evidence that Obama has ran a more negative campaign than McCain.

    October 8, 2008 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  7. Theogracias

    Well I guess McCain's health care credit will fix that right up. You betcha!

    October 8, 2008 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  8. RIF

    He's correct. She won't even show up on the news shows the day after a debate to defend her candidate. I truly believe some of McCain's surrogates and advisors like Nicole Wallace and Nancy Pfotenhaur (sp?) are better equipped for the job.

    October 8, 2008 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  9. Brian

    Snap.

    October 8, 2008 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  10. Juanito, Seattle

    The President of the USA is arguably the most powerful position in world. No man that has ever run for the office has ever had any experience in that position, except those who were elected to serve a 2nd term. Those like recent Presidents Clinton and Bush, both probably had the worst 2nd terms in recent memory. Clinton was impeached. Bush had to deal with an attack on America. I would trust the judgment of Sen. McCain in the "unknown" or "unforeseen" events that any president would face. Obama in a like position absolutely frightens me.

    October 8, 2008 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  11. CMG

    I couldn't agree more.

    October 8, 2008 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  12. Average American

    I want to understand why someone would want an "average, everyday American" to be president or vice president. I don't want someone that's "like you and me" in that office. I'm not smart enough to have that job so why would i want someone like me to have it. Can someone answer this for me?

    I want an elitist to be president. The reason is that an elitist is, well, elite. Or at least an elitist thinks they are elite which is better than thinking you're just like everyone else when you have the most important job in the world. Those who founded this great nation and wrote our constitution all had one very important thing in common. They were all elitists.

    October 8, 2008 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  13. Dallas, TX

    As a voted, I do not believe this is true, Mr. Brooks.

    Sarah Palin has my vote based on the fact that she is a Washington outsider. We need fresh people in Washington.

    It is clear that the OLD establishment cannot do the job. They are more worried about getting themselves payraises and lobbying through earmarks instead of the American people!

    That goes to both, Dems and Repubs.

    Sarah Palin '08!!!!

    October 8, 2008 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  14. gpenn FL

    You know it's bad when Palin get's called out by her own party. McCain must be wishing he could take it back.

    October 8, 2008 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  15. Sharpen your pitchfork, light your torch... and meet me at the Capitol

    "Conservative" David Brooks? Yeah, sort of like "Conservative" Joe Lieberman or "Conservative" John McCain.

    Call me when a REAL conservative bags on her, and maybe I'll believe you.

    October 8, 2008 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  16. IowaChad

    Funny he doesn't write this in his NY Times op-eds.

    Bill Maher talked about this on his show. On one hand, you have people of low intellect who vote against their own interests because they want to have a beer with a candidate. On the other hand you have the conservative intellectuals. The conservative intellectuals know better. They know Palin is not qualified. Yet they lie and rave about her because they know the dumb people don't know better.

    October 8, 2008 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  17. Amy in Minneapolis

    Palin is more like a flat joke of a person!!

    October 8, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  18. DH

    I notice no one has commented on this. It is so sad it is unbelievable. She is not just a fatal cancer to the GOP, she is fatal for our country. Is it so important to have a Republican administration that we would elect a woman that could end the world as we know it? Come on folks. John messed up. It was a cute move and now she is allowing her audiences to shout racial and terrorist rantings and not even say ANYTHING about it. Can we say Hitler here? If you disagree with her, eventually she will come after you, and if she is the POTUS, there is not squat you can do about. I'm leaving the bus John. You lost my vote. I'll vote for ABYT. (Anyone But You Two)

    October 8, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  19. Kelby from Houston, TX

    Sara Palin does not represent a fatal cancer on the GOP...that title rests squareley upon the religious right who have mutated the GOP into the anti-intellectual party it is now. They made a deal with the devil when they thought they were talking to God. This move created a us against them attitude in that party. And it's bad enoug they already have this thou shalt not speak ill of a fellow republican rule...(that is so stupid)

    October 8, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  20. P

    How mean is it for Palin to attack Biden when he is going to his mother-in-laws funreal, does she have any since of respect for others in the world?

    Would any of you attack someone when they are suffering a lost in the family? Be Honest you would not!

    October 8, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  21. Cathy Agu

    This is the truth and the GOP should rescue its self and make this woman disappear. Listen to Kathleen Parker.

    October 8, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  22. Concerned

    It's one thing to ignite a party but it's another thing to continue to spew hatred amongst a group and therefore insighting the ugly side in people especially if you hear hatred being yelled out at these rallies. This is very dangerous for anyone!

    October 8, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  23. Becky CA

    He also said this about Obama as an intellect:

    Obama has the great intellect. I was interviewing Obama a couple years ago, and I'm getting nowhere with the interview, it's late in the night, he's on the phone, walking off the Senate floor, he's cranky. Out of the blue I say, 'Ever read a guy named Reinhold Niebuhr?' And he says, 'Yeah.' So i say, 'What did Niebuhr mean to you?' For the next 20 minutes, he gave me a perfect description of Reinhold Niebuhr's thought, which is a very subtle thought process based on the idea that you have to use power while it corrupts you. And I was dazzled, I felt the tingle up my knee as Chris Matthews would say.

    And the other thing that does separate Obama from just a pure intellectual: he has tremendous powers of social perception. And this is why he's a politician, not an academic. A couple of years ago, I was writing columns attacking the Republican congress for spending too much money. And I throw in a few sentences attacking the Democrats to make myself feel better. And one morning I get an email from Obama saying, 'David, if you wanna attack us, fine, but you're only throwing in those sentences to make yourself feel better.' And it was a perfect description of what was going through my mind. And everybody who knows Obama all have these stories to tell about his capacity for social perception.

    October 8, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  24. NEVER OBAMA

    You fool. She's doing what she's suppose to be doing.....attacking the other side.
    You are one of those disgusting little men that doesn't have a clue to what this woman could accomplish.
    She will make a great VP and when John McCain leaves office she would make a Great President.
    This woman is smart.....very smart and she has a pure heart. She would not fail.
    I pity you.

    October 8, 2008 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  25. jason, tx

    Yup. She's an idiot.

    October 8, 2008 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
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