May 10th, 2009
01:34 PM ET
5 years ago

I don't think Palin is the future of the GOP, Republican says

Bill Bennett, a Republican, and Donna Brazile, a Democrat, expressed very different views Sunday about who might be good candidates to represent the Republican Party in the public's mind.
Bill Bennett, a Republican, and Donna Brazile, a Democrat, expressed very different views Sunday about who might be good candidates to represent the Republican Party in the public's mind.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Prominent Republican Bill Bennett took issue Sunday with what he called the “media’s focus” on Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.

Asked about the Republican Party’s increasingly public struggle to define itself and identify new leaders after eight years of the George W. Bush administration, Bennett said the press should be less myopic in its coverage of the GOP.

“One of the things the media could do – some of the media – is to move the debate off Sarah Palin and Rush Limbaugh,” Bennett, a CNN Contributor, said on State of the Union. “This is probably not the future of the Republican Party,” added Bennett.

“You don’t think Gov. Palin’s the future of the Republican Party?” queried CNN Chief National Correspondent John King.

“I do not,” said Bennett. “It could talk about a Paul Ryan or a Mike Pence. It could talk about a Bobby Jindal. It could talk even about a John Kyl or a David Petraeus. You know, there’s a lot of talent in this party.”

Democratic strategist Donna Brazile has her own ideas about who the GOP might look to, to help find its way out of the political wilderness.

“They’re having an internal discussion about what kind of a party would it like to be in the 21st century,” Brazile told King.

“I ran into Meghan McCain last night. And I have to tell you, Bill, she’s refreshing, she’s honest and she’s a face that could really help them galvanize young people and independents.”

The young McCain also had kind words for the Democratic strategist and former campaign manager for Al Gore.

Brazile “said she would kick some *ss for me if anyone attacks my weight again,” Meghan McCain tweeted Saturday night while attending the White House Correspondents’ Dinner in Washington. “Who doesn't love her?,” the daughter of Arizona Sen. John McCain rhetorically asked the Twitterverse.


Filed under: Bill Bennett • GOP • Meghan McCain • Popular Posts • Sarah Palin • State of the Union
soundoff (157 Responses)
  1. Donna from Colorado Springs

    Bill Bennett is right, but as long as Palin keeps herself in the media limelight by saying or doing questionable things, the public has to deal with her and we have McCain to thank for that. As for His Highness Rush Limbaugh, He's a joke, and embarrassment to the country, and the only man alive who can blow smoke up his own -! I love sitting back watching the Republicans shoot each other down and make fools of themselves, and every time they open their mouths, we Democrats can pat ourselves on the back and smile. They are their own worst enemies! Until the Republicans can find a way to put Palin and that horrible person Limbaugh in their places, they will continue to push their agendas forward and destroy their own party!

    May 10, 2009 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  2. gandl

    oh this is the best the GOP has and I really hope she is their next girl. She can round out the GOP ticket with Rush as VP.

    May 10, 2009 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  3. Hotti4BHO

    Bennett, Rush will come after you and call you a democrat......

    May 10, 2009 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  4. lovable liberal

    If Bill Bennett thinks the Republican Party has a lot of obvious talents, they're in worse shape than I thought.

    May 10, 2009 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  5. Tim

    David Petreaus?

    The man is the CENTCOM commander, still wearing the uniform, NOT a political figure. It would be a disgrace to the uniform if he were to start going in the tank for the Republican party. Servicemembers are apolitical, remember Bill?

    May 10, 2009 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  6. JN

    Bobby Jindal? Be serious. Just because he's a "person of color" doesn't mean he's automatically a viable candidate to run against an Obama who's a person of merit. Jindal was an embarrassment in his rebuttal to the president's State address. He simply doesn't resonate and his message of "no money for volcano study" while seeking all he can get for earthquake aid was hypocrisy at it's best. But that's the problem with the Republican Party-hypocrisy.

    May 10, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  7. DaveH

    Another RINO spaeks!

    May 10, 2009 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  8. tom

    she like most republicans are the wrong minded past..only centerist republicans have a chance anymore...the far right lunitic fringe are a dying breed

    May 10, 2009 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  9. Jonathan

    CNN, as much as you and the rest of the liberal MSM would love for Palin to be the future, I believe this entire story falls into the, "No Duh!" category.

    May 10, 2009 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  10. J.C.

    I like a David Petraeus/Jundal ticket for GOP, but this is too far ahead. We should give our full attention to President Obama/Biden till 2011.

    May 10, 2009 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  11. Robert in Calgary

    I hate what the Republicans became over the last 30 years and they are correct that Palin is not their future. Sarah Palin is ultimately the most representative example of what they are right now in 2008/2009, which is at their most incompetent, disconnected and damaging.

    May 10, 2009 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  12. Democrat no more

    Well, Mr. Bennet may have a problem with women, but that is the closed minded Republican party of the past.

    Women, let alone women with strong true Conservative values IS the future of the Republican party.

    And he will have to move with the times.

    Back to basic principles, fiscial conservative, limited government-unliked this EVER GROWING BEYOND OVER DEBTED spending we are seeing with 66 thousand more government paid jobs created by the Communist Obama.

    Everyone sees the vision of the very left Democrats and will welcome the true principles of the Republican Party.

    Two women, Meagan McCain and the experienced and popular Governor Palin, creating jobs and limit this over taxing is the future of the Republican party.

    Go get 'em gals!

    May 10, 2009 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  13. Avi Shlomo

    The only problem Mr Bennet is not the media but your party that has been out of steps with time, They have been grooming this illiterate pin head Palin for sometime to be the face of the party? I suppose the intelects of the party lost for the idiocy we see now. Sorry Mr. Bennet you have no future in the GOP. you simply do not fit considering your intellect.

    May 10, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  14. John

    We need to listen to Cheney more because if it wasn't for him (and Bush), the Taliban and al-Qaeda would not have been eradicated in Afghanistan after 9-11. Because of his strict focus on those that attacked us, they no longer exist to threaten Afghanistan, Pakistan, or us. You have to listen to the ones that got it right because they keep getting it right.....

    May 10, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  15. Patrick

    Although I am a Democrat, I am very impressed with Meghan McCain. She could actually not only be the future of the Republican Party, but could also pick up Democrats. She has a great understanding of all people across the spectrum, and I predict she will be a leader in 2010 and 2012. Her father should be very proud of her. .

    Sarah Palin is a huge embarrassment to our country. Don't want to be mean, so will just leave it at that.

    May 10, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  16. mabel floyd

    bill bennett said that limbaugh is not the furture of the gop–wounder how many hours before benett will be back on the media(or at least his spokesman) saying "what i ment to say is how great limbaugh is and how he is always right on-

    May 10, 2009 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  17. abraxis

    No, Bennett is wrong like most things he has engaged in. Keep Palin and Limbaugh as the leaders for the GOP. May be then they can fade into obsolescence.

    May 10, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  18. Etaoin Shrdlu

    I respectfully disagree with serial-gambler/moralizer Bill Bennett. Palin is a perfect representative of the modern Republican party: stunningly arrogant, virulently hateful and aggressively ignorant. For 30 years (including Republican-enabler Clinton), this party has worked ceaselessly towards the destruction of the American middle class. It's past time that it be consigned to its well-deserved place in the dustbin of history.

    May 10, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  19. Margaret

    Who doesn't love Meghan McCain? Republicans don't, that's who. If you think she's so cute and the future of politics, she's all your's.

    May 10, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  20. mike,texas

    Us Dems love Palin,she the gift that keeps on giving.She is a win,win,win.The republicans love her.The media gets great ratings with her.And the democrats will nevert lose to her.All three should chip in and keep her around.And Rush too.

    May 10, 2009 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  21. tennisguypitt

    For theirs and the party's sake, I hope they're right! And I'm a dem!

    May 10, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  22. Becky

    Agreed. Palin doesn't embrace Separation of Church & State. She's quoted as saying God wanted us to go to war in Iraq.

    May 10, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  23. Jeremy C

    Meghan McCain is not a true Republican, just like Arlen Specter was not.

    May 10, 2009 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  24. Tom

    The republican party is going to have to become more libertarian socially. Its sad when only liberals are arguing to keep the government out of marriage and our choices of what we ingest.

    Theyre also going to have to become more economically conservative. Ronnie Raygun spending hundreds of billions of dollars was a unique set of circumstance. You cant just throw money at problems unless that problem is the soviet union. Bush and McCain/Palin failed to curtail spending or offer options other than expensive occupations to deal with foreign issues. No one ever asked about the cost of losing a multi-million dollar piece of equipment to a 47$ US dollar IED. Republicans need to go back to finding ways of CUTTING costs in all sectors theyre responsible for.

    How can they ask us to be fiscally responsible when its impossible for them to do it?

    "I didnt leave the republican party, the republican party left me"
    – PJ O'rourke

    May 10, 2009 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  25. Gary

    Both parties have to stop trying to identify one person (or personality) as their future. These partries should be based on ideals rather than a specific person. Any single person can have a personal failure (a la President Clinton) or can pass away unexpectedly.

    The Republicans need to build a platform with values and idealogy that is inclusive to people of both sexes (and different sexualities) as well as all races and all religions. It strikes me that the values that the Republicans are better at supporting than the Democrats would be very attractive to the majority of Americans if they were presented in a caring diplomatic way rather than a harsh, judgemental way.

    May 10, 2009 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
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