November 5, the day after Barack Obama has been elected president of the United States, Sarah Palin will commence her own campaign for president in 2012. She will do this because once you've seen The Great White Way, Wasilla will never be the same; once you've starred on Broadway community theater is no longer an option.
The governor will return home to Alaska, but her rise to stardom on the national stage will consume her -- and dominate her ever -- waking moment. Count on it.
But to run for president Palin will have to resign as governor and move to the "lower 48." She simply cannot mount a credible campaign while frozen in the darkness of an Alaskan winter; you cannot remain politically relevant four time zones removed from Washington.
By signing with the Washington Speakers Bureau, Palin will overnight become the most sought after speaker on the American lecture circuit. She will stand to make more money than she ever dreamed possible -- even during a long winter's night in Wasilla. By making that decision she will insure her family's future, which is what any reasonable person would do if given the same choice -- take the money and leave the Northern Lights behind.
Palin, under the guidance of her lecture agency, as a nationally acclaimed public figure, will embark on a two-year get to know America tour. During that time she will average one or two speeches a week and earn upwards of $20 million (that may be a conservative estimate, as both Bill Clinton and Al Gore became extremely wealthy giving speeches).
Before the speaking tour begins Palin will move her family to Mid-America, perhaps Overland Park or Olathe, Kansas, lovely suburban communities within 45-minutes of Kansas City's International Airport, putting her within three-hours of either coast. With Sarah on the lecture circuit, husband Todd will become a stay-at-home dad, he seems good at that.
As Palin travels across America she can accomplish two things: 1) get caught up on all the important books she never had a chance to read, like Michael Gordon and Lou Trainor's Cobra II, Bob Woodward quartet on George W's presidency, Jane Meyer's Dark Side, Scott McClellan's What Happened, Arianna Huffington's Right Is Wrong: How the Lunatic Fringe Hijacked America, Shredded the Constitution, and Made Us All Less Safe, and perhaps a volume or two of Gibbons' Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire; 2) she can organize small cells of political supporters everywhere she speaks, insuring that while on the road to riches she will have created true believers and devoted followers from sea-to-shining sea..
During Palin's extensive travels she might discover it's a good idea to balance one's reading of the Wall Street Journal with that of The New York Times. She probably won't like much of what she reads in The Times, beyond Bill Kristol's columns and occasionally those by David Brooks, but it will prove an important learning experience; so the next time she's asked by Katie Couric about her reading habits, she won't appear uniformed.
While speaking around the country, with lots of downtime on airplanes, Palin's newspaper and book reading can prove an invaluable tutorial, so when she announces for president in the spring of 2011, she will appear fully engaged. It may prove the two most important years of her life.
At that point she will be the Republican Party's only credible candidate (forget Louisiana's Bobby Jindal, he's no match for our Sarah). Palin will be John McCain's legacy to the GOP; she will be a reminder that Senator McCain always put America first (Barack Obama shall be forever grateful for McCain's sacrifice).
Implausible, Sarah Palin as the GOP's last, best hope? Hardly.
Ever since Ronald Reagan the right wing has been looking for a candidate whose conservative values mirror theirs. They thought George W. Bush was that person, but he turned out to be the most profligate spender ever in the history of the presidency, the man who oversaw the greatest wealth transference from government to private capital since 1776. Besides, unlike Palin, Bush 43 was to the manor born, a true Yale/Harvard blue blood. Palin's story, coming as she does from modest means, more closely parallels Reagan's - Main Street and small town American mythology come to life.
Palin's political conservatism embraces fundamentalist Christian beliefs. Her Assembly of God background resonates widely among the most uncompromising of true believers, individuals who hold the Bible's authority to be absolute and failure to accept it as Sola Scriptura, will doom you to eternal damnation; the same believers consider abortionist killers and homosexuals as deviant. Sarah Palin believes in the same Bible they do; she can be trusted to uphold their values.
No one knows how many hard-core fundamentalist they are in America, but whatever that number, their hearts belong to Sarah - and she will start her run for president in 2011 with an army of Christin soldiers ready for Armageddon.
Is she my candidate? Puleeeez, but I wouldn't mind being her agent.