April 9th, 2010
03:01 PM ET
12 years ago

Palin drills down in policy in high-profile speech

ALT TEXT Sarah Palin delivered a speech Friday at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference. (PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images)

New Orleans (CNN) - Her speeches are typically loaded with partisan zingers and Obama-bashing, but for the first time since the 2008 presidential campaign, Sarah Palin delivered a speech that focused as much on policy ideas as it did on political combat.

To be sure, her much-anticipated remarks Friday to the Southern Republican Leadership Conference were laced with a heavy dose of Republican cheerleading that drew cheers from the audience of party activists who had earlier stampeded into the speech venue to snag prime seating for her appearance.

"There is no shame in being the 'Party if No' if the other side is proposing an idea that violates our values, violates our conscience, violates the Constitution," she said, deviating from former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who urged the SRLC crowd on Thursday to pivot to being the "Party of Yes."

But without shying away from heated partisan rhetoric, Palin spent the latter half of her talk expounding on differences between Democratic and Republican energy policies, a comfortable topic for the former Alaska governor and onetime chair of the state's Oil and Gas Conservation Commission.

She called President Obama's decision to expand offshore drilling "smoke and mirrors" - cover for a slate of more liberal energy policies that he and Democrats in Congress plan to enact.

She faulted the Obama administration for not opening up more areas to oil and gas drilling, particularly in her home state of Alaska. It's time to "stop ignoring" the National Petroluem Reserve Alaska and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, she said, even if a caribou has to "take one for the team."

"It's 'Drill, Baby, Drill,' not 'Stall, Baby, Stall,'" she said.

On foreign policy, Palin launched a volley of attacks against the White House that echoed some of the missives she has posted on her Facebook page over the last year. The Obama administration, she claimed, "alienates our friends."

"They treated Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai poorly and acted surprised when he reacted in kind," she said. "And they escalated a minor zoning decision into a major breach with Israel, our closest ally in the Middle East."

And acknowledging Thursday's headlines, Palin couldn't resist a mocking jab at President Obama after he charged in an ABC News interview that she is "not much of an expert" on nuclear weapons.

"And President Obama, with all that vast nuclear expertise he acquired as a community organizer, a part-time senator, and a candidate for president, has accomplished nothing to date with Iran or North Korea," she said.

soundoff (218 Responses)
  1. emmett brown

    Why are all the GOPer's meeting so negitive, I hope all Americans are really listening. If the GOP was in power not one would be safe but the Rich and the hate groups...Give me some solution, easy to throw stones in glass houses....

    April 9, 2010 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  2. Joe in PA

    OKAY, Someone has to respond to Steve.....

    Sarah Palin did say that she could see Russia, fool....Tina Fey was quoting her in her routine. And, her routine was not really a routine, it was almost word for word what your idiot Caribou Barbie doll said. NOBODY with any level of smarts lends any credibility to Sarah Palin!
    Seriously dude! Seriously!

    April 9, 2010 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  3. Chris

    Her answer to Diplomacy would be to Nuke everyone ... and then how American it is, along with how good the radiation would be for the environment. I can almost see the swastika on her arm now... I need to laugh after all this garbage, roll out the Palin / Bachman 012' presidential campaign Hummer lol...

    April 9, 2010 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  4. Health Care

    Health care...hello? Anybody out there? Health care just got passed. Isn't that important? Or is it all old news since it got passed? That's...that's...that's like not thinking about Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.

    April 9, 2010 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  5. geecee

    Palin – shut your shreiking, screechy, whiney mouth. The words coming out of it are ridiculous. All you know how to do is incite violence in stupid, gullible people who follow you like a flock of sheep. What do you know about nuclear weapons or any other international issue? What do you want Obama to do? Nuke Iran? There are lots of people in that Country who are against their own government and eventually they will overthrow that Ahmadinejad. The same thing going on in North Korea. The people are starving and Kim Jong Il is on his way out. What do you want Obama to do? Nuke them, too? You are a stupid, narrow-minded, idiot. A dimwit, airhead and dope. Everything you say is so incoherent, you cannot even string two sentences together that make any sense. Go away you complete loser!!

    April 9, 2010 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  6. Lynda/Minnesota

    Hey, Boston, had a good laugh over your post - thanks for the giggles. Unfortunately for you, you are a day late and a dollar short. Looking back and never forward seems to be a major fault of republicans.

    The only questionable candidate I see is Palin. Pretty sure she isn't the republican you all seem to think she is. Leans a bit too much towards sedition for my taste.

    April 9, 2010 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  7. Sniffit

    "Learn more about what the Tea Party movement is really all about. "All" are welcome."

    Irony 1,498,324: Teatards 0

    Hint: You put "all" in quotes after ranting about how much it upsets you that you're called racists for holding up signs showing Obama in "white face" or impersonated by a stuffed monkey doll.

    April 9, 2010 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  8. Bostonian-TheWoodlands,TX

    If Palin is elected president, her office should be in Van Nuys, CA.

    That seems to be the perfect location, as her substance certainly isn't what gets the male base of her party excited. They see her, but I'm sure they don't hear much.

    April 9, 2010 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  9. sickoftea

    Oh look, she brought her teleprompter with her again.

    April 9, 2010 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  10. Patrick

    People ... people ... don't let Sarah fool you into thinking that the note on her hand is a self deprecating comedic prop.
    Just imagine for a minute the President making a joke about his days smoking pot, with a blunt in his hand at the podium during a Democratic Party convention.
    She REALLY needs the notes for her speech and any later Q&A on stage or along the hallway.

    April 9, 2010 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  11. steve mcqueen

    why doesn t sh move to israel that she can be with bebe

    April 9, 2010 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  12. stevetall

    What an r-tard! Education is definately not a part of what interests people in Sarah Palin. If she had 40 more pounds on her, the Republicans wouldn't look at her twice!

    April 9, 2010 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  13. ib

    Watching Palin drive the far left people and Obama into crazy fits: priceless.

    April 9, 2010 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  14. COL

    KCinLV... from WHOM are you going to take the country back? Me? I voted proudly for Obama. I also work hard at my job, pay my taxes, believe in God, donate what I can, apologize when I've screwed up...don't you DARE insinuate that because I believe in liberal principals that I am somehow less worthy than you and yours to be a part of this country's decision-making and future. I'm here. My feet are on the ground. So are millions of other liberal thinkers, and every time you say something like "take our country back," you insult and alienate us.

    The curious thing about being a liberal is that while we may not understand it, we accept the fact that you have a belief system that is different, and we acknowledge that *you have the right* to think differently, and the option to make your own choices. Your way of thinking does not allow us the same. DO NOT waste time with this ridiculous and divisive "Take back our country" rhetoric or make the mistake of dismissing liberalism as a pox. Figure out how to make it work, because we are not going anywhere.

    April 9, 2010 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  15. Anonymous

    Please please go away... from an AMERICAN

    April 9, 2010 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  16. Coloradan

    Yes, Sarah, we know that one of your handlers got to you and said that writing the notes on your hand at the tea party meeting looked very amateurish. We know they told you that to rehabiliate that blunder you need to make light of it now or people will continue to perceive you as a lightweight. What if we just say we get and we can move on?

    April 9, 2010 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  17. wyn

    Palin is a joke, And it si a shame so many so called smart people are laughing with her instead of at her.

    April 9, 2010 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  18. Greg, San Francisco, CA

    She's a tool and so are her supporters. Is she going to claim that SHE has any experience in negotiating nuclear treaties? She's an expert on quitting and inciting violence and nothing more.

    April 9, 2010 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |

    It's really hard to know what to say about half gov Palin. I think it's more troubling that so many republicans believe her lies and misrepresentations. How so many people would rather just take her lies as truth when with just a little effort on their part they could do some research and find out the truth. Are these people that lazy? It seems like her mission is to dumb down the country to her level and unfortunately, she seems to be doing just that to the republican party. Do we really need to stoop to the lowest common denominator?

    April 9, 2010 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  20. Evon

    Please please go away... from a white American female

    April 9, 2010 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  21. Monica, Texas

    Is it just me? I can never understand what point she is trying to make...most of her speeches are a string of applause lines with no substance and that voice is so annoying.

    April 9, 2010 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  22. Doraine Gordon

    Why are some people so long winded when they comment on these stories? Can you not get your point across using a few sentences? Or are you auditioning for a job as a speechwriter? Better learn to spell if you are.

    April 9, 2010 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  23. Dano

    To anyone who thinks Silly Sarah is qualified to be POTUS, just remember all the damage that the last folksy, dumb as a rock person who was president did to our country. It will take years to clean up the mess left by the last administration.

    April 9, 2010 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  24. Expat American

    The nation and the world have always been awake…..because…the nation and world are sleepless...awaiting the...PALIN DOCTRINE!

    April 9, 2010 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  25. wyn

    She is a JOKE!!!

    April 9, 2010 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
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