Pointing the Way

Many “Palinistas” and many conservatives in general are wondering what former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin will say when she delivers the keynote address on Saturday, the final day of the CPAC conference in Washington DC.  There’s no way of knowing in advance but as with any such appearance by Governor Palin, I expect she’ll offer further insight into the 2012 election cycle, and almost certainly will “rally the troops.”  I think most are waiting to see what she’ll say, and whether they’re establishment wing of the GOP, or grass-roots conservative activists, you can bet that they will want to know her thoughts on virtually anything about which she’s willing to speak.  As with any event at which she speaks, there will be people coming in from all over the country to hear her, and a little birdy at CPAC has already told me there is a bit of a buzz in expectation.

What Governor Palin offers that draws such crowds (to the chagrin and despair of the GOP establishment and the leftist media respectively,) is her plainspoken approach to identifying the problems our nation faces, and the facts that are inescapable about our current plight.  She is not merely a doomsayer, however, as she offers concise solution sets for addressing our problems, generally to an audience of grass-roots folk who are anxious to see the implementation of the sorts of reforms she advocates.  One could scarcely imagine a presentation in which she would not offer ideas about the way forward, but not only for conservatives, but also for the whole body of the American people.

Since her announcement of October 5th on Mark Levin’s show that she was not going to be seeking the Republican nomination “at this time,” many held onto hopes that she would later enter the race.  In the intervening period, she has made frequent appearances on FoxNews as a contributor, including during primary and caucus coverage in the early states.  In recent weeks, she has taken the position that she would like to see the primary process continue, because she believed that there was still a good deal of vetting left to do.  As part of that strategy, she said if she were a South Carolina voter, she would vote for Newt Gingrich, and this seemed to have some effect as Tea Party folk turned out for Gingrich in overwhelming numbers despite the scorched-earth campaign of Mitt Romney in a state where the supposed Tea Party-favored governor had endorsed and was stumping with Romney.

To many in the GOP establishment, Palin is a thorn in their sides.  They realize that her populist streak actually makes of her a threat to the status quo they enjoy.  What she will say on Saturday, whatever its content, is sure to have an effect on the election cycle of 2012, if only because so many conservatives seem to key on her for direction.  Among grass-roots activists, she is able to fire them up and she brings an enthusiasm to such events born of her optimism about America.  When she speaks of America and Americans, it seems always to be informed by her own love of both, and her devotion to the country her own children will inherit.

I know there will be Americans who will view the CPAC keynote with an abiding interest in what Governor Palin will say, and in the way she will say it.  She has a flair for turning phrases that will permeate the blogosphere, and that will rebound for weeks or months through social media, in a sort of long-lasting echo carried by those who admire her commitment to the country’s future.  Some “Palinistas” are having viewing parties, frequently virtual, but all in the spirit of hearing her message and carrying it forward.  As an observer of social media, it is always amazing to see how many people become thoroughly energized and invigorated in the political sphere in the wake of one of her major speeches.

Saturday will be a fascinating day if only to watch the growing buzz around Governor Palin’s speech, but conservatives will be most interested in the content of her address.  She is scheduled to speak at 4:30 Eastern, or 1:30 Pacific.  CPAC is scheduled to be televised on C-SPAN, and the live stream on CPAC.org should be active.  Whatever she offers Saturday, it will likely cause a stir simply because the conservative movement simply cannot get enough of Palin’s common sense applications of conservative ideas.

Note: If you’re a Tammy Bruce subscriber, she’s posted that the TAMChat will be open during the speech. These sorts of virtual viewing parties are springing up all over the Internet.

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