December 1st, 2008
08:10 AM ET
2 years ago

Palin back on the campaign trail

Palin becomes the latest 2012 prospect to hit the trail in Georgia.
Palin becomes the latest 2012 prospect to hit the trail in Georgia.

(CNN) – Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin takes on the closer role today, teaming up with incumbent Sen. Saxby Chambliss at four campaign events in Georgia on the last full day of campaigning before tomorrow's Senate runoff election in the state.

The former Republican vice presidential candidate joined Chambliss at a pair of fundraisers last night. She adds her name to the list of big-name surrogates who have made campaign cameos in the year’s final remaining Senate contest.

Sen. John McCain returned to the trail to campaign with Chambliss just nine days after losing the presidential election to Obama. So have some of his Republican primary rivals, like former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani — all likely 2012 candidates for the GOP presidential nomination, along with Palin.

Palin came out on top in a recent Gallup poll that asked Republican voters who they are most interested in seeing run for the GOP nomination in 2012. Sixty-seven percent of Republican and Republican- leaning voters said they would like to see her make a bid for the next GOP presidential nomination. Romney and Huckabee followed, at 62 and 61 percent.

Martin is also getting some major league help. Both former President Bill Clinton and former Vice President Al Gore have separately teamed up with Martin. President-elect Barack Obama isn't making a trip to Georgia but he did lend his voice to a 60 second radio ad that's been running for over a week. And many Obama campaign workers in Georgia from the general election are now assisting Martin's campaign.

Today, Martin teams up with Georgia Congressman John Lewis and other prominent Georgia Democrats before ending the day at a rally at the State Capitol in Atlanta with rapper Ludacris.

Do these big name surrogates make a difference? "Generally they can help boost turnout, because of all the media attention. Turnout in a runoff election is often very low compared to a presidential election and each side needs to get as many of their voters to the polls as possible," says CNN Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider.

Democrats have so far picked up seven Senate seats in this year's election, with the Republican seats in Georgia and Minnesota still undecided. In Minnesota, freshman GOP Senator Norm Coleman topped his Democratic challenger, Al Franken, by just 215 votes, triggering an automatic recount which will extend well into December.

If the Democrats take both remaining contests, they'll reach their pre-election goal of controlling 60 Senate seats, a filibuster-proof majority.


Filed under: Georgia • Jim Martin • Sarah Palin • Saxby Chambliss
soundoff (280 Responses)
  1. Doris,Memphis,TN

    Sarah needs to stick to making mouse chili and call it a day!

    December 1, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  2. Rolling in the Aisles, VA

    Keep up the good work Sarah. At the rate you're going, the Democrats will pick up another 10 seats in the Senate and 25 more in the House in 2010.
    You, on the other hand, will not even repeat as governor in Alaska, much less reaching a national office. EVER.

    December 1, 2008 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  3. jethro

    Please... make... her... go... away!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    December 1, 2008 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  4. eunice c

    sarah palin will not and i mean will not get my vote if she decides to run for pres in 2012 she donot know anything about politics oh and by the way the guy will not be marrying her daughter - the state of alaska with support the baby - THE LOWER 48 will not support that baby

    December 1, 2008 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  5. Alaskan for Obama and Begich

    Prior to September 2008 Sarah seemed like a 2-term governor of Alaska. Now she appears not to be interested in her governor responsibilities. Alaskans have learned lots of negative "things" about Palin during her campaign for McCain. I think Palin has ruined her political career in Alaska. She will never be President of the United States.

    December 1, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
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