July 21st, 2010
11:57 AM ET
8 years ago

Conservative paper targets Palin for endorsement

The New Hampshire Union Leader published a scathing Op-ed on the front page of Wednesday’s newspaper.

The New Hampshire Union Leader published a scathing Op-ed on the front page of Wednesday’s newspaper.

(CNN) - Days after her first foray this election cycle into New Hampshire politics, Sarah Palin is getting a chilly reception from one of the crucial presidential primary state's most conservative and influential newspapers.

In a blistering Op-Ed on the front page of the New Hampshire Union-Leader's Wednesday edition, publisher Joseph McQuaid writes the former Alaska governor and vice presidential nominee knows little about the Granite State and even less about its residents.

"Former Gov. Palin isn't making these endorsements because, as she claims, she has spent time in New Hampshire and thus knows that the people here are a lot like Alaskans. She spent a few hours here on one day during the 2008 Presidential election. That's still more time than she spent getting to know Ayotte, but it takes quite a bit longer to know New Hampshire," McQuaid writes in the editorial.

Palin waded into the New Hampshire political landscape Monday when she backed former state Attorney General Kelly Ayotte's Senate bid. The "Mama Grizzly," as Palin called Ayotte, is the frontrunner in a primary race against three other Republicans. Her endorsement was greeted with enthusiasm from Ayotte, herself a social conservative running in a state where Republicans are generally more concerned with fiscal policies.

The endorsement was Palin's first political move in the state, which will once again hold the first-in-the-nation Republican presidential primary in February 2012. No other potential 2012 presidential candidate has weighed in on the contested primary.

"Kelly is the strongest commonsense conservative who can win in the fall," Palin wrote on her Facebook page. "I knew I liked her when I met her earlier this year, and I know this Granite Grizzly will represent New Hampshire with distinction in Washington."

Palin has already backed midterm candidates in the other key early states of Iowa and South Carolina, but has not visited New Hampshire since 2008. As the No. 2 on Sen. John McCain's presidential ticket, Palin visited the Granite State once in mid-October of that year.

A spokesman for Ayotte said the campaign is happy to have the endorsement - despite Union Leader editorial - but stressed Ayotte has strong grassroots support in the state.

"The paper is correct that the election will be decided by New Hampshire voters, and Kelly is happy to have more grassroots support and New Hampshire support than all the other candidates combined," said Communications Director Jeff Grappone. "The reality is Kelly Ayotte is the choice of New Hampshire Republicans and conservatives."

Grappone also said the campaign would welcome Palin to come campaign in the state on their behalf.

But McQuaid, whose paper has long played a key role in shaping the state's key presidential primary, says New Hampshire voters should pay little heed to Palin.

"Don't fret over what a "Mama Grizzly" from Alaska does," he writes. "Right now, Granite Staters have more to worry about in keeping bears away from bird feeders."

Howie Kurtz, a Washington Post media critic and CNN contributor, said the Union-Leader editorial is emblematic of the state's independent streak.

"The publisher's column is significant because it plays the home-state card–that is, who is this outsider from Alaska to tell our Republicans how to vote?–in a state that prides itself on its independence," he said.

The paper endorsed the McCain-Palin ticket in 2008, though made no mention of Palin in that editorial.

Filed under: 2010 • New Hampshire • Popular Posts • Sarah Palin
soundoff (180 Responses)
  1. Marge

    Because the media still treats Palin as the second coming of Wonder Woman she will continue to strut and fret upon the stage. She thinks she is "somebody". She doesn't realize the republican corporate MSM made her. If she had been older and her attachments were drooping they wouldn't have given her a second glance.

    Seems not only do republicans think that the monied and corporate Americans are the ones to suck up to, you have to have a little bit of youth and be pleasant looking. After all look at Phewlenty who proclaims his wife is "hot". Who in Hades cares.

    July 21, 2010 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  2. paul

    run palin run, you're my dream candidate.

    July 21, 2010 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  3. Republicans is smart in the head area

    Gotta love New Hampshire. They take their role as "politics tasters" very seriously and act accordingly. I salute their independent minds.

    July 21, 2010 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  4. CR

    Sarah Palin is the perfect mascot for the modern Republican Party. Self-promoting, out of the mainstream, and painfully uninformed. She is the total package.

    July 21, 2010 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  5. Dave

    Why anyone would listen to this lady and base anything on her endorsements is beyond me.

    July 21, 2010 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  6. WailingPalin

    Leave Sarah alone! She is like a fairy princess, spreading her fairy dust and anointing the candidate with her bestest wishes. I think you should all just go refudiate yourselves for being so mean.

    July 21, 2010 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  7. Wil in the VA.

    The QUITTER from TWITTER strikes again, how ever there seems to be trouble in paradise. Could this be the begining of the end stay tune we can only hope so. The mama grizzle will just move on to another state that can add to her pac.

    July 21, 2010 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  8. Bill in Austin

    Wow, someone finally recognizes the "Governor that Quit" from Alaska for what she is–a "grandstander" with little to offer in the way of policy, issues, and more importantly, FACTS.

    July 21, 2010 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  9. PalmReader

    "The publisher's column is significant because it plays the home-state card–that is, who is this outsider from Alaska to tell our Republicans how to vote?–in a state that prides itself on its independence," he said.

    The bigger question is who is this outsider from Alaska to tell ANYONE how to vote? Palin, with the help of MSM, has spent two years sticking her nose into what she knows nothing of.

    Kudo's to New Hampshire for calling her out. It's been long overdue.

    July 21, 2010 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  10. Independent One

    Palin, Fox News, Tea Party.....We are sooooooo tired of you and your discourse of divisiveness... Remember that the same God you claim to know, will return the seeds you sow

    July 21, 2010 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  11. hwy911

    Enough with the "mama grizzly" crapola, Palin. America has had it with you and your lame endorsement of any and all female politicans on the far right. In fact, most Americans have had it up to HERE with YOU. Go home, raise your children in ways that won't result in them committing juvenile crimes (like your older son) or getting pregnant in high school (like your elder daughter). Put those good ole family values to work up there in Alaska. Then maybe someone MIGHT take you seriously.

    July 21, 2010 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  12. Leonid Brezhnev

    Palin is a mindless tawt.

    July 21, 2010 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  13. Eric

    Ok, besides the rhetoric, was there an actual argument against something Palin said in the paper?

    Again, all I could see based on this article, was "Palin supports someone, and she's an outsider, so don't listen."

    Which raises the question, who died and made the paper god in deciding who's endorsements are of importance?

    July 21, 2010 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  14. Eric

    Yeah, um, exactly how conservative can a publication be, when it comes from freaking New Hampshire? (ie "Vermont lite").

    Look, I love y'all, your state is stunning in the autumn and I do love the defiant, independent spirit that surges through the blood of New Hampshire folks. It is truly something of awe. But let us be honest here... NH is hardly a bastion of conservatism.

    July 21, 2010 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  15. jve

    What is Palin's relevance? She got selected as a vp candidate which at best was a gimmick and did not finish her term and now all of a sudden she's "endorsing" candidates? Seems pretty shallow and if the GOP rides this wave.......

    July 21, 2010 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  16. scott

    At last, a Conservative publication with some common sense and integrity. This comes from a Democrat.
    Now all the GOP has to do is purge the Racists and Religous loons out and it can go back to being like Goldwater.

    July 21, 2010 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  17. Bubba

    OK, we're halfway now. Time for you to quit, Sarah.

    July 21, 2010 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  18. GI Joe

    Don't they know the female genius in the tea bagger community will be president (of her grade school PTA) in 2012?

    July 21, 2010 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  19. SkiDoc

    Fair criticism, but don't hold your breath all you Palin-hating libs. Just watch what will happen now – Ayotte will run the table thanks to Sarah

    You betcha!!

    July 21, 2010 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  20. Bill

    "Conservative paper?" You people have no shame. Have you ever referred to the NYT, Washpost, etc. as "liberal papers?"

    Or to CNN as a "liberal website?"


    July 21, 2010 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  21. Bob

    can't stop reading about her. Just like a paper cut, these reports don't kill, but they sure do annoy. That aside, she remains very tap worthy.

    July 21, 2010 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  22. dick delson

    Sarah Palin just might be the dumbest politician yet. She is John McCain's lasting legacy. A bimbo if there ever was one.

    July 21, 2010 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  23. A. Goodwin

    As a NH Citizen, I found Palin's comments yesterday out of line! She know's nothing about Kelly Ayotte, and if she did, she would find that Kelly – as Attorney General – IGNORED what amounts to one of our state's LARGEST ponzi schemes on history for our state. Ayotte COULD have stopped this scheme...and did not. And when things heated up for her on this issue – she quit being Attorney General to run for Senate. Wonderful. What I think will happen – Bill Binnie will win the endorsement for the Republicans...but in the end, Hodes will keep his seat. But hey, what do I know (seeing I'm born, raised in NH and cannot see Russia from my back door).

    July 21, 2010 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  24. CBR

    Interesting that a conservative paper is writing about this now. Ms. Palin has been doing this for two years. Is this a candidate they are not supporting?

    Ms. Palin is over-zealous in her drive to support politicians of her own ilk. This is no different than what others, including Mitt Romney, do every day to galn support for their own campaigns. You can't accuse one person without talking about others.

    I can not support what she is doing and I do not support what other politicians do when they back candidates who are not in their home states.Let the people in those states decide.

    July 21, 2010 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  25. johnrj08

    Palin is making all of her endorsements as if she's an expert on politics in states in which she has spent virtually no time. And it is highly doubtful that she has read up on these candidates and vetted them the way John McCain should have vetted her in his presidential bid.

    Palin is one of the most ignorant, self-absorbed and divisive politicians in the history of this nation.

    July 21, 2010 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
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