October 29th, 2008
07:57 AM ET
14 years ago

Palin's future causes GOP rift

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/POLITICS/10/29/palin.gop/art.palin.jpg caption=" Gov. Sarah Palin speaks at Shippensburg University in Shippensburg, Pennsylvania, on Tuesday."]
(CNN) - Election Day is still days away, but Republicans are already caught up in a heated debate about Sarah Palin's future role in the party should the GOP ticket fail to win the White House.

In one corner are some conservatives who believe the Alaska governor has been a detriment to John McCain's presidential bid and threatens to lead the party astray for the foreseeable future.

Another faction says Palin's core-conservative beliefs, demonstrated political acumen, and compelling frontier biography position her to reshape the face of a party now viewed by many voters as out of touch.

It's a debate,somewhat ugly at times, that is beginning to play out in public view as Republicans brace themselves for the possibility of losing the White House and a significant number of seats in Congress come Election Day. And that may leave the party in shambles with drastically reduced influence in Washington.

Should that happen, political observers say, the party will face its biggest identity crisis in more than a generation, and Palin may well be caught squarely in the middle of it.

"A civil war that is simmering will break out into the open if McCain loses, and the party will have to decide what they want to be in the post-Reagan world," said Gloria Borger, a senior political analyst for CNN.

Full story

Filed under: John McCain • Sarah Palin
soundoff (232 Responses)
  1. Brainless

    You know, it doesn't take much thought to see through the shinanigans of McCain's and Palin's attacks on Obama. They come out with one lie right over the other banking on the hope that the voters will believe what comes out of their mouths. When I research a candidate, I don't just listen to their words or look at an article written about them. I look at their core values and goals in life. Anyone that cannot see Obama is for the people and McCain is for politics, himself, the reupublican party and of course, BIG Business is subject to being taken advantage of by one of the biggest scams. I've got some stocks I'd like to sell you in McCain's and Palin's promises and lies...

    October 29, 2008 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  2. Don

    McCain decided some time back that he could not win unless he pandered to the right wing extreme. If you want to preside over the U. S. Senate, first you need to know where the restrooms are located. Howard Simmons has designed some of the most nasty attack ads for McCain I have seen in my 36 years in politics and that will be repudiated Nov. 4

    October 29, 2008 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  3. TH



    October 29, 2008 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  4. Robert the Man

    I say if she doesn't make it, she contacts Hugh Hefner, for the highesty selling Playboy Issue ever!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    October 29, 2008 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  5. Bitter in Texas

    GREAT!!!!!!! I'm hopefull that she does become the leader of the Rethuglicans and that she moves the party farther to the Right...that should keep them in the minority for a while so us Democrates can get the mess in Washington cleaned up. Vote! Vote Early, if you can.

    October 29, 2008 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  6. alex

    Palin may have a future in the GOP. But nobody else will ever vote for her so she will never win in 2012. People are not gonna forget this year and especially not the interviews, SNL and hello the Ethics investigation! She is done!!!!

    October 29, 2008 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  7. LS, Austin, Texas

    If for some unfortunate reason McCain and Palin are elected into office – We are doomed, this whole country is doomed.

    For one, we will be looked at across the globe as the most dumbest country in the world, because of McCain's unstable mentality and Palin's, well . . everything about her is wrong.

    Secondly, the decisions of the not-so-bright will have jeopardized any positive future insight for our children.

    But one thing is for sure, if McCain and Palin are elected, and they are in their process of destroying this country, I believe there should be enough families, who have supported these two idiots, who will go in and/or send their children off to fight McCain's future wars, because my kids will never put their lives on the line for you – you being the idiots who support McCain. Yeah, fight, fight, fight – that's exactly what you people will be doing, fighting McCain's deadly wars.

    October 29, 2008 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  8. facts are facts

    The Republican Party has to re-invent itself as America needs two political parties with different ideas so the public can choose the direction they feel will be best for them.

    Palin, the religious right and most of their beliefs and policies are self serving and not of interest to the general public. The GOP people who have abandoned ship and are supporting Obama are the face this party needs to keep it from disolving.

    October 29, 2008 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  9. vic nashville,Tn

    Mc Cain’s bad time
    His own party doesn’t like him because he is too good

    He was a media darling now no

    He may lose or he may win what ever happen he is a American hero

    October 29, 2008 09:33 am at 9:33 am |


    October 29, 2008 09:33 am at 9:33 am |
  11. james in s.c.

    palin's future role is to stay up in alaska and hide in a igloo. she needs to stay away from the lower 48 states, we don't need another extreme right wing anywhere near the white house!!

    October 29, 2008 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  12. Sissy

    I think Obama needs to thank her in his acceptance speech. She is the reasons a lot of repubs have turned their back on their on party. She has helped the Dems in this election. John McCain would probably have had a chance if he had picked Mitt Romney.

    To Obama: You have my vote!

    October 29, 2008 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  13. Mark

    Only a party bereft of ideas, talent and conscience - would contemplate Palin redux in 2012. That party would be the GOP.

    The leaders of the party, having shown that they will tolerate any tactic, no matter how morally reprehensible, in order to win, come up particularly short in the area of conscience. Yes, they will pander to the thoughtless and easily led in 2012, delivering up Palin as the icon of faux egalitarianism. And who knows? She may even win.

    By that date, of course, she will have learned the meaning of the "Bush Doctrine" and will happily return to it. Ms. Palin, aka Bush III, will joyfully mangle both the English language and American foreign policy as her Republican predecessor has done.

    Let us hope that the leaders of the GOP come to their senses.

    October 29, 2008 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  14. Dave

    I never thought I would say this, but I'd rather have Bush for four more years than have Sarah Palin anywhere near the white house.

    October 29, 2008 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  15. Charlie

    I will be voting for Obama because he is simply the best candidate in this election. I am a conservative and registered republican. I am concerned now that I can no longer identify with the republican party because I am not and never will be a right-wing extreemist.

    October 29, 2008 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  16. Chris

    Sarah Palin is appealing only to the ulra conservatives. Her personal values are way to conservative for the majority of Americans, Republican or Democrat.

    October 29, 2008 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  17. BBB

    If SHE is the future of the Republican party, I will be changing my registration to Democrat for the first time in over 40 years. I have been a staunch Republican my entire life, but the likes of her scare the daylights out of me and I will NEVER vote for a ticket with her or any one like her on it!

    October 29, 2008 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  18. Pohocat

    I'm not so sure Sarah Palin has the "Republican core" firmly behind her. My 91-year old mother has voted Republican since she was able to. She was a Republican precinct chair, President of the local Republican women, and campaign volunteer for years and years. This year she voted for Barack Obama - not so much because she liked him, but because she "could not vote for that woman" to be VP. Sarah has a real image problem with her rambling and overly folksy language issues. It may be charming to some, but it is an irritant to many. Sure, it's coachable. But she now has baggage. I've met Sarah, and she's a nice person. But she isn't an intellectual, and that's hard to overcome on the big nattional political stage.

    October 29, 2008 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  19. Patrick, St. Louis

    Does she appeal to the base? Certainly. That's 45 percent right there. Does she appeal to ANYONE else, including the independents, needed to get to 51%? Not even close. The Repubs have an identity crisis on their hands, and Sarah Palin stands for the ideals of their past, not their future.

    October 29, 2008 09:39 am at 9:39 am |

    Future..................Future What. By then the Dems will send in Chelsea Clinton to do the squashing. CAT FIGHT!!!!!

    October 29, 2008 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  21. GW

    Would be great to see Hillary just "Jack-Up" this political light weight in a debate! LOL!
    Hillary would just eat her up alive!!
    send her packing back to Alaska with her "Moose" boots !! LOL!

    October 29, 2008 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  22. John Anthony, MN

    The Republicans must come to realize that Sarah Palin is palatable only to the hardcore minority right wing, in the same way that Al Sharpton is palatable only to the hardcore left wing for the Democrats. The overwhelming majority of moderate and independent voters wouldn't elect either of them dogcatcher, and the proof will come on election day. Sarah Palin should be retired.

    October 29, 2008 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  23. X & Y

    This is a joke, RIGHT?!!! (Sorry, excuse the pun.) Sarah Palin has a future but not in the real world. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank John McCain for his "service" to the country. By introducing Sarah to us all, he has ensured the election of the first black man to the highest office in the land. Praise be to Jesus! Amen. As for Joe the Plumber, I hope he just disappears down the drain like the Republican hate machine he so foolishly hopes to "represent". Good riddance.

    October 29, 2008 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  24. Stupid is as stupid does

    Can we say JUDGEMENT MCCAIN, JUDGEMENT. You reap what you sow.

    October 29, 2008 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  25. Obama's Done

    What's really amazing is that here we are with the country in tatters after 8 years of an affable idiot as president who actually DID go to Harvard and Yale even if it was with "gentleman C"s. So the Republican solution is to get someone even dumber and replace "affable" with shrill.

    They should have another look at that Couric interview. Palin's ONLY virtue, I don't happen to find her attractive, is that she is able to simply state the 180 degree opposite of the truth with a total poker face. Couric asked her plenty of relevant questions and it wasn't because of the McCain campaign that she couldn't answer them.

    If the idiots of this country feel they need to send one of their own to Washington, then I guess they have their candidate, but do they really think she would attract anyone else? People sometimes forget that Dan Quayle tried to run for President in 1996 too.

    The Republicans seem to have found their Mondale. Let them run with her.

    October 29, 2008 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
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