October 29th, 2008
07:57 AM ET
13 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. Gill

    Hey Sarah Palin, here is an exhortation for you:

    CHRISTIANS SHOULD KEEP FROM SLANDERING.

    October 29, 2008 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  2. paulie_nj

    Hey CNN, why don't you post the new story about Obama toasting a Jew hater at a dinner back in 2003. LA Times has the video tape but will not release it because they are in bed with Obama.

    October 29, 2008 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  3. Borat

    She is going to be the Mouthpeice of the hateful right to bring down ROMNEY there will be a Civil War in the GOP in 2012 I can't wait !

    October 29, 2008 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  4. Karen for Obama

    CNN, please release my comment from Moderation:

    I'm listening to Palin right now; don't know who she is addressing but I think it's some type of business group for alternative energy. Does anyone find it curious that when she's speaking to business and the like, she does NOT speak with that "Minnesota/Dakotas" type accent she fairly drips with when she's speaking at her rallies. Curious!

    October 29, 2008 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  5. Bill,ca

    Palin is a washup and should be finnished in american politics.

    If she runs again in the future, she will fail just like McCain.

    GO OUT AND VOTE FOLKS AND CHECK YOUR VOTE FOR CORRECTNIS.

    Don't reward republicans for their last for years of failed politics.

    Obama / Biden 08

    October 29, 2008 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  6. vote! OBAMA-BIDEN NOV.4th

    palin needs to just "ROLL" on back to alaska.

    October 29, 2008 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  7. Dave

    I predict that after the election,'old school' Conservatives will either wrest control of the Republican Party, from the Religious Right, or leave and form a new 'center right' Party. This is essentially what happened, in Israel, with formation of Kadima out of the Likud Party.

    Governor Pailin is out of the mainstream and will quickly discover that she has spent all her 'political capital'. Given all her issues, I would be surprised if she were ever fully embraced as a national figure again. My guess is that her career as a national politician was brief and over...

    October 29, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  8. Terry, Dallas Texas

    Will you people give the whole Obama is not an American and Obama is a muslim thing a rest? That is so 4 months ago. If he was or was not anything it would have come out by now. He has a valid birth certificate and there are records of him being born in Hawaii. You are grasping at straws because the thought of losing the white house is more than you can bear.

    October 29, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  9. Neal

    If Palin is the future of the Republican party, the GOP is done.
    She is a polarizing figure from the far right, not a moderate who can lead the nation. Bush extreme for a while.
    Besides, the woman is grossly incompetent, what McCain was thinking is a mystery.

    October 29, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  10. Steve

    While it is likely true that Governor Palin has appeal among the Republican base, the suggestion that she is a viable presidential candidate in 4 years demonstrates why the republican party is very likely to lose this election. There does not appear to be any understanding of reality, evident by the opinions of republicans in this article, that the majority of American voters see her as not qualified, either by experience, intellect or temperment for president – 4 years on the national stage will not change this fact. As long as the republican leaders keep living in their own fantasy world they will never regain credibility as a political party.

    October 29, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  11. Ideal Leader of Today's Republicans

    She's the ideal leader of today's Republicans. Not the Republicans of the past, who faught slavery and stood for the highest values, but today's version.

    She's:

    Stirred up racism
    Made claims she probably knows are false to people who don't know any better
    Put an innocent person's life in danger (people have been trying to kill Barack Obama)
    Abused the power of her office in Alasksa
    Claims to be pro-life but hunts animals for fun (not for food, clothing or other necessity)
    Claims to be pro-life but speaks casually, eben glibly about war
    Claims to have family values but thinks it more important to run for VP when she has a small special-needs child, another young child, and a pregnant teenage daughter who will need lots of support

    Lest anyone accuse me of being sexist – I'm a man who has turned down advancement opportunites because they would compromise the need to spend quality time with my family (I have a baby about the same age as Sarah Palin's)

    Sounds to me like the standard bearer for today's Republicans

    October 29, 2008 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  12. DM 45 yr old black male retired US Navy

    Gov Sarah Palin,

    The Govenor of Alaska needs to remember that she is the US Leader in sharing the wealth. Alaskan shares the wealth as the Gov Palin forced the Oil Companies to pay out to each Alaskan $12,000.00 a year. She needs to review her own memo's..

    Why is it hard to see she flip flop so often...

    October 29, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  13. Becky

    Hey Sarah...Its Alaska calling and they want their governor back...After all, they are paying you to do your job....Then you can worry about being the Democrats best fund raiser.

    October 29, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  14. republicans hate america

    If this is the face of the future republican party be prepared for more disappointing elections.

    October 29, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  15. Carrie Goodeagle Hayden, Idaho

    She is not qualified to be dog catcher

    October 29, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  16. Irish club

    Palin was the wrong choice by McCain and he knows it NOW. That tells you the type of judgement he has and what about the fight, fight ,fight comment he made–he is nothing but a war mongrel–I think he has a terrible temper that will hurt the US if he is elected President and Palin-well she has no brains for parking cars at the White House–other countries must be laughing at us everytimr she opens her mouth!

    October 29, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  17. Jarrett

    Palin could benefit from experience in the House or Senate. It's clear from this election cycle that she has spent little time thinking about the major domestic and foreign policy issues that face our country. Uttering the term "executive experience" in response to any challenge to her qualifications offers little comfort to voters. She'd be better served if she could demonstrate a command of the issues rather than regurgitated talking points. Sure, "executive experience" means she has had decision making responsibility, but how do we know she's capable of making good decisions at the national level?

    October 29, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  18. Confused by the lack of judgement by so many

    One last thing....when the he!! did "educated" become a synonym for "elitist"? I've seen so many instances where people have confused "education" for "elitism" that it's absurd, or they automatically see someone with extensive education as being an elitist.

    I saw someone elses comment similar to this, though a little more aggressive with their choice of words, and I completely agree with them. Educating yourself is the most valuable thing a person can do.

    October 29, 2008 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  19. steve

    History will repeat itself like the Carter-Regan election.
    The McCain campain will not believe the election results
    that they will see on tv the night of Nov 4th.

    October 29, 2008 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  20. Seriously?

    I'm really starting to wonder if the reason Palin doesn't release her medical records is because she has had an abortion. Now, usually she doesn't care about being a total hypocrite, but even in her dimwit brain she must know that that would be the end of her from the far right.

    October 29, 2008 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  21. Scott

    I'm a white professional male in my 40s living in the Midwest. I'm a Republican, but of the fiscal conservative, socially more liberal vein. I did not (early absentee ballot) vote for McCain, for 2 main reasons. First, I think Bush's policies have set America back at least a decade, and second, Sarah Palin scares me in any capacity that has influence over the future direction of America. I might have looked past the first part, but the second cannot be ignored.

    The Republican party had better spend the next few years pulling its head out of its *ss and decide whose support it wants. The neocons and other right wingers have nowhere else to turn, but those of us who are moderates, independents, and socially liberal Republicans to have options...moderate Democratic candidates who understand our desires to be fiscally responsible. If the Republican party cannot hold us, they will see we are just as damaging to the right wingers as the Southern Democrats were to liberals during Reagan's time.

    October 29, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  22. John

    hahahaha... you all make me laugh. I am from Illinois. wait till you see what he is going to do to this country. Just like us here, down the tubes. educate yourselves. quite following the leader and reading just headlines. Vote smart. Look at what he is going to do. Obama voted to take out the teachers retirement fund and give it to our governor here in illinois. SPent all the money and now it is broke, But the union tells the teachers to support him so they do. Follow the leader. be told what to do,
    Oh I forgot, he will give them more money to more unaccountable. Where is all the money going to come from for all the spending he plans on doing. Ever thought of that. Get out your wallets. Turn down the heat, put the car in the garage. and start buying bread and water, because your money is going to the low income, so they can buy more beer, cigs, and drugs. Go ahead, vote for, him. You will be sorry, just as they are here in Illinois for voting for our governor. Dont be sorry later, Do the right thing now.

    October 29, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  23. Confused by the lack of judgement by so many

    One last thing….when the he!! did "educated" become a synonym for "elitist"? I've seen so many instances where people have confused "education" for "elitism" that it's absurd, or they automatically see someone with extensive education as being an elitist.

    I saw another person's comment similar to this, though a little more aggressive with their choice of words, and I completely agree with them. Educating yourself is the most valuable thing a person can do.

    October 29, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  24. Scary Palin

    There is no delicate way to put this. Palin is just plain cra-cra! This nutzo should not a part of anything public in the country and needs to return to being a mother and a wife, maybe even get a new hobby or second career back in Whacklaska.

    October 29, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  25. gl, Pittsburgh

    Palin is a direct threat to our national security. Anyone voting for her
    would be aiding and abetting the destruction of our country.

    Amen on your comment!

    October 29, 2008 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
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