Palin calls on Romney to work harder for the conservative vote
February 11th, 2012
03:06 PM ET
2 years ago

Palin calls on Romney to work harder for the conservative vote

Washington (CNN) - Sarah Palin issued a warning to Mitt Romney Saturday, calling on the former Massachusetts governor to do a better job explaining his record to conservatives or risk dampening voter turnout in November if he wins the Republican presidential nomination.

In an interview with CNN and The New York Times before her speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, Palin said she was confused by Romney’s declaration here on Friday that he was a “severely conservative Republican.”

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“I wasn’t quite sure what the word 'severely' meant,” Palin said.

She said Romney and his two main rivals - Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich - should be given time to explain the flaws in their record until the Republican National Convention in August, when she said the nomination fight could ultimately be decided.

But Romney may have the hardest sale to make, she said, asking him to explain his “shifts in ideology” since he left the Massachusetts governorship.

“You have to have the tea party patriots enthused and energized in order to win this nomination, and more importantly in order to defeat Barack Obama,” Palin argued.

If conservatives are “dismissed and they are marginalized” by the Republican establishment, “they are going to be much less enthused and much less willing to put it all on the line for the GOP candidate in the general election.”

“We can’t afford to have low voter turnout in the general election, and that is all the more reason for Romney to really start connecting more with conservatives,” she said.

Though she has spoken warmly about both Gingrich and Santorum, she said she was still making up her mind about which candidate to support.

Her Fox News contract does not prohibit her from weighing in on the presidential race, she said.

Palin said she would not encourage any of the candidates to drop out of the race, saying it’s “not yet” time for Gingrich to step aside and allow Santorum to rally the conservative vote.

She also welcomed the possibility of a brokered convention in Tampa.

“I don’t think that it would be a negative for the party, a brokered convention,” she said. “And people who start screaming that a brokered convention is the worst thing for the GOP, they have an agenda. They have their own personal or political reasons for their own candidate, who they would like to see protected away from a brokered convention. That’s part of the competition, that’s part of the process. And it may happen.”


Filed under: 2012 • CPAC 2012 • Mitt Romney • Sarah Palin
soundoff (603 Responses)
  1. rosehips

    I'm confused. I'm reading Joe McGuiniss's book "The Rogue" and I can't understand how the people of Alaska actually elected Sarah as their governor, how John McCain actually picked her to be his VP, and how she continues to make the news. I recognize her charisma but I really thought her conservative base was smarter than they must be. You have to be under some sort of spell or lacking in the brains dept to actually think she'd make a good administrator. She proved herself unqualified in Alaska. Why do people admire her?

    February 12, 2012 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  2. Ed

    So let me get this straight. If Romney gets the nomination (almost a certainty) and yet somehow falls short of convincing the most dogmatic conservatives of his ideological purity (highly likely), that group might not bother to vote at all in November, thereby helping to ensure another four years of Barack Obama, whom they despise above all else. Pure stupidity. There has been a disturbing anti-intellectual movement in the Republican party for a long time, and it is best personified by Sarah Palin, who is probably too dumb to understand all the "big" words in this post.

    February 12, 2012 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  3. peacedog

    the circus continues, with a new cast of clowns.

    February 12, 2012 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  4. Lou from NH

    Said it before – will say it again:

    Sarah, don't go away mad...just go away!

    February 12, 2012 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  5. Whiplash

    The difference between a conservative and a liberal is:

    If a Conservative doesn't like the candidate running in their party they just don't vote!

    A liberal is like a trained monkey who just pushes the button because they are trained not to think on their own!

    February 12, 2012 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  6. Eli

    The Kim Kardashian of politics sticks her face in front of the camera again and opens her big yap. Like Kardashian, an attractive person who has accomplished virtually nothing has become famous for being famous. American reality TV.

    February 12, 2012 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  7. FedUp

    He shouldn't have to "WORK" for the vote. If he is a conservative, they will vote for him. If he is the liberal he has always seemed to be, then they may have to settle, but hopefully not.

    February 12, 2012 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  8. lean6

    Just think of how many fans Mittens could gain if he would just tell Palin what he really thinks about her. Republicans would never do that though. So here it is, Palin harms Romney by showing that he's just as gutless as the rest for allowing her to crowd his stage.

    February 12, 2012 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  9. Dr Selina

    Can someone please explain why these Republicans have such a hard time properly referring to Barack Obama as President Obama?? I sure remember Candidate Obama at least respecting the office of President enough to refer to George W Bush as President Bush. It makes you think...Who are they appealing to when they leave out the "President" part??

    February 12, 2012 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  10. Dan

    She should warn him not to pick a stupid running mate. She is the reason that Obama is president.

    February 12, 2012 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  11. marknati

    Sarah is so wrong there is only enought room in the race for one conserative at this piont in the race period!! And we all know that with all Newt Gingrich"s baggage even if he bet Rommey which I dought there is no way he beats Obama. On the other hand with Santorum can beat Rommey and as for Obama Ricks plan on manufacting will sell well with independents and may even get a good numbers of Dems that are not happy with Obama's trade deals that will take more jobs out of the country. So Newt do the right thing drop out now!!!

    February 12, 2012 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  12. DC

    Has "Conservative" become a synonym for ignorant? Must be if conservatives are listening to Sarah Palin. Lets hope the Republican party comes to its senses and once again becomes a party of moderates with sound fiscal policies, instead of ideological fanatics focused on social issues while our economy struggles to repair the damage their trickle down economic policies wrought when they were last in power..

    February 12, 2012 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  13. Michael Golden

    If I was Mitt I'd listen to what Palin has to say.
    But l'm not Mitt, praise be.:-)

    February 12, 2012 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  14. Stillarose

    Why should anyone take the advice of someone that does not know how to win, on how to win?

    February 12, 2012 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  15. RD44

    Sarah is a good speaker, but its obvious her bias is for Newt. She had no problem with McCain's conservative creds.

    She has no credibility on this subject. Because economic populism isn't a conservative value, its just more mindless

    pandering about fairness. Go Mitt your the winner.

    February 12, 2012 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  16. stevensb

    Palin should spend her time looking skyward for that house that's falling ..... than mouthing off to the other repugs.

    February 12, 2012 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  17. HJA

    She wants Mitt to explain???? Sarah's own actions prove she's in it for the money. She could care less about anything else.

    February 12, 2012 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  18. gee

    she quit as governor of alaska, failed run as mccain's running mate. has no idea about american history, made millions from books and a crappy reality show, who would listen to her advice?
    go away! now! just go away!

    February 12, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  19. Robert

    It is amazing how many of the posters on this board are clearly not going to vote Republican in November. The screeds against Republicans, Ms Palin, each of the candidates, etc., show a clear bias, among posters, toward the Blue side of things. Sort of a waste of energy, isn't it? I'm more liable to vote Republican in November and am watching all of this with serious interest, not just snarky sarcasm. I haven't chosen a favorite, and there are those among the runners that I'd probably vote for Obama against – that said, I think it's serious business, not entertainment.

    February 12, 2012 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  20. Sam

    Who the hell died and made her an expert in politics? Just when I thought things were dying down and Sarah wasn't being heard from it starts all over again! Can you disappear Sarah, say for the next 80 years?

    February 12, 2012 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  21. Thain

    When ya don't know much about anything ya shouldn't be confused about what someone else uses for words. At least he can speak in complete sentences and not in ya deer in da headlights look.

    February 12, 2012 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  22. Thomas

    COMMENTS (537 comments)

    This is a record ..

    Palin sure enlightened the American people in regards to her Diva-ness and Intelligence. .

    February 12, 2012 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  23. Jim Rousch

    Romney is damned either way.

    He'll lose the Tea Party vote if he moves to the center and he'll lose the independents if he listens to Sarah Palin.

    What a dilemma, huh?

    LOL!

    February 12, 2012 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  24. timothy

    Palin is a quiter. The only credibility she has was given to her by Fox News when they hired her. She is a nobody. Repbulicans need to focus their efforts and energy if they have a prayer in the General election.

    February 12, 2012 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  25. timothy

    One of the many things she does not understand is that to win the General Election Mitt will have to be more of a Centrist and less of a Conservative. Far Right ideas and far Left ideas will not win an election.
    Obama knows this. His policies have been down the middle.

    February 12, 2012 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
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