May 4th, 2009
09:11 PM ET
6 years ago

Palin joins GOP rebranding effort, Limbaugh says leaders fear her

Palin is taking part in a new organization to rebrand the GOP
Palin is taking part in a new organization to rebrand the GOP

(CNN) – A few hours after Rush Limbaugh told listeners GOP leaders launching a Republican re-branding effort hated and feared Sarah Palin, House Minority Whip Eric Cantor announced that the Alaska governor had finally accepted an invitation to join the group.

On a conference call last week for the National Council for a New America, former Republican presidential candidate John McCain said he thought his running mate would probably be part of the effort as well - but there had been no immediate confirmation by her office.

The two groups of key Palin aides - those in the governor's office in Alaska, and at her Virginia-based political action committee SarahPAC - have often given very different messages on her participation in various efforts: Congressional leaders and conservative activists have both announced Palin's planned attendance at major events this year after receiving assurances from one set of advisors, only to learn later from other aides that she hadn't yet made a decision.

The governor's decision to join the NCNA's panel of experts was confirmed Monday by spokeswoman Meg Stapleton.

At the group's kickoff event - a town hall-style gathering at an Arlington, Virginia restaurant - Cantor, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney urged the party to re-frame their message. Bush, in particular, expressed admiration for President Obama's political skill, and told the crowd not to get mired in "nostalgia" for past GOP dominance.

He mentioned no names, but Limbaugh interpreted that remark as a knock on Palin and President Ronald Reagan.

"Something else you have to understand is these people hate Palin too," the conservative radio host said Monday. "They despise Sarah Palin, they fear Sarah Palin, they don't like her either. She's, according to them she's embarrassing. McCain said, 'I was there with Ronald Reagan'.... No Reagan voter ever believed McCain was a Reaganite.

"And I think... a lot of this is aimed at Sarah Palin. When you strip all the talk - It's 'the Reagan era is over, stop all this nostalgia and stuff.' Clearly, in last year's campaign, the most prominent, articulate voice for standard, run-of-the-mill, good old-fashioned American conservatism was Sarah Palin. Now, everybody on this [NCNA] Speak to America tour has presidential perspirations [sic]. Mitt Romney there, he wants to be president again. Jeb may someday. Eric Cantor, some of the others, McCain - I don't think he does, but you never know. So this is an early campaign event, 2012 presidential campaign, primary campaign, with everybody there but Sarah Palin."

Limbaugh has not yet responded to the NCNA announcement. Palin joins Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, McCain, Bush and Romney on the NCNA's national panel of experts.


Filed under: Extra • Sarah Palin
soundoff (135 Responses)
  1. Sleepless in Colorado

    Yes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Sarah Palin putting her brand on the Republican Party is great! I'm guessing they're going to make Bobby Jinday aka Mr. Rodgers as the spokesperson. Rush Limbaugh will be the Czar of cheese. This is exactly what we need. Happy trails Republican Party! I never knew ye...

    May 4, 2009 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  2. Dude in Colorado

    OMG... Just...

    OMG!

    Does it not occur to the GOP that Gov. Palin is one of the top reasons they NEED to"re-brand"?!

    May 4, 2009 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  3. JonDie

    Anyone who is sane fears the hate-mongering ayatollah of the ignorant, Sarah Palin. We can't take the country forward...by trying to drag Americans kicking and screaming back into the Dark Ages.

    May 4, 2009 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  4. R

    Would somebody PLEASE just MAKE HER GO AWAY!!!! This is getting to be some really tired crap to say the least.

    May 4, 2009 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  5. Moderate Democrat

    As the old saying goes: "There goes the neighborhood".

    I wonder if she joined in hopes of getting kidnapping legalized? I think they need to put out an amber alert on that lady. She won't let a baby be with it's father. She lacks any and all moral fiber. Oh well, she fits right in with this group on second thought.

    May 4, 2009 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  6. Buddy Gilmour

    This is the best soap-opera going. Are John and Sarah going to kiss and make up? And what will Rush do if Sarah leaves him for John? And what is Karl cooking up, he's been awfully quiet...

    May 4, 2009 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  7. Wayne

    They don't just need rebranding, they need to reformulate the product.

    May 4, 2009 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  8. Katie

    Limbaugh needs to shut his trap. He says outlandish things so people will listen to him – it's like watching a car wreck. No one credible takes him seriously.

    May 4, 2009 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  9. Axel

    The fact that Rush Limbaugh is even allowed to participate in this so called "effort", shows just how lame the GOP has become. He would do his party (and the world) so much more good if he would just shut up and go away.

    May 4, 2009 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  10. Erin

    How is this rebranding the Republican party when those doing the rebranding represent the same ideals (and in some cases are the very individuals) that America rejected last fall??? This is the GOP's problem: they understand that they need a new brand, but they fail to recognize what is wrong, or even that there is anything wrong, with the current brand.

    May 4, 2009 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  11. Kim in Arizona, FOR NOW

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA, rush has that foot in mouth disease too huh? Well, honestly adding her to ANY sort of rebranding is a mistake, she is the problem, no new people will come to the DARK side with that puddle deep moron trying to sale it. She ONLY energized the base, and clearly there are not enough of them...I am all for her being part of this group though, anything with name on it seals the deal for a LONG Democratic run!

    May 4, 2009 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  12. Osama bin Laden & Lush Limprick share the same vision for America - FAILURE!!!

    "few hours after Rush Limbaugh told listeners GOP leaders launching a Republican re-branding effort hated and feared Sarah Palin, House Minority Whip Eric Cantor announced that the Alaska governor had finally accepted an invitation to join the group."

    Dance, Cantor, dance, HAHAHAHAHAHA!

    You neo-cons that claim Lush is not the party "head" are too funny.

    May 4, 2009 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  13. gl, Pittsburgh

    I love this. Sara Palin is a sure win for President Obama. Keep up the good work Republicans. Sara Palin views are not for the woman of the 21 century. YES, my pray have been answer if Sara Palin is the front runner she is the most righty out of them all and she is very racist toward minority. THIS IS GREAT NEWS FOR PRESIDENT OBAMA.

    May 4, 2009 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  14. michaelam

    Seems like the same G(no)P to me........How is this rebranding? The characters are the same, the "ideas" are the same, Rush is still blubbering away more of the same........and now, they add Palin to the mix. What is so different? This is an insult to my intelligence!

    May 4, 2009 07:18 pm at 7:18 pm |
  15. gl, Pittsburgh

    if Mccain and Palin couldn't be President Obama the first time around they should will not be him the second.

    May 4, 2009 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  16. Michigan

    I don't think "fear" is the word!!!

    May 4, 2009 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  17. Kenyan Wonder Kid

    Rush is amazingly spot on – once again.

    May 4, 2009 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  18. Only 21% of Americans trust republicans to lead them into the 21st century!

    "Palin joins Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, McCain, Bush and Romney on the NCNA's national panel of experts"

    A fitting epitaph on the tombstone of the party of Greedy Old People, and I will drink a toast of prune juice to celebrate!

    May 4, 2009 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  19. Dave C - NJ

    They just lost all credibility asking her to join...she's the type they want to get AWAY from, not embrace.

    May 4, 2009 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  20. Barbie

    According to Limbaugh, Sarah Palin was the "most articulate voice for good old fashioned American Conservatism". If Limbaugh thinks Palin is articulate, that says more about him than about her! Seriously, as a former Republican, I want to see two viable political parties. This means getting fresh ideas from NEW leaders that can relate to American people of 2009, not the days of Reagan! While watching Sunday news programs, many of these Republican "leaders" could talk only about wanting to go back to the way things were 20 or 30 years ago! Please Republicans – get with the current times – and stop trying to revert to the past!!

    May 4, 2009 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  21. Nick Abraham

    Oh my. Sarah Palin on a panel of experts. What is an expert, again?

    May 4, 2009 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  22. Cynthia - Arkansas

    Who exactly do they think they are trying to appeal to? It's the same old hacks, same old message. GET REAL! Nobody wants the stuff their selling. Do people remember how racist and scarry Palin rallies where? The secret service had to tell them to knock it off. Do they really think that will attract anyone worth having. This bunch will only marginalize an already shrinking minority. The die hards will not go to the middle, that 's not an option. Gays will never be accepted by the Republican party, people of different races are not accepted, middle class people are only tolerated because they can be manipulated with "social issues". If they act otherwise, they are surely good actors.

    God help us all!

    May 4, 2009 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  23. Linda

    What? Who are the "new" republicans trying to reach? All this "new" stuff sounds like a gimmick that will become very laughable.

    May 4, 2009 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  24. andreaf

    "Palin joins Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, McCain, Bush and Romney on the NCNA's national panel of experts."

    Panel of experts at what, exactly?

    May 4, 2009 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  25. mzbond

    If the republican party was serious about re-branding, they would not invite Sara Palin of Bobby Jindal. So much for their lies, again, and again. These two are out-of-touch. Palin especially is an out and out liar.

    May 4, 2009 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
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