04/03/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Will Palin's Campaign For McCain Save His Political Career, Or Endanger Her Own?

When John McCain picked Sarah Palin to be his running mate, he did the not-yet-launched Tea Party movement a hefty favor by elevating to national prominence a woman who could lead this disparate band of grassroots conservative activists and give a powerful voice to their protests and passions. ("Death panels!") And how do the Tea Partiers pay back McCain? By trying to send him to the old folk's home.

Tea Party types have rushed to support the campaign of former Rep. J.D. Hayworth, who is challenging McCain in Arizona's Republican senatorial primary. Hayworth, who years ago left the House to become a radio talk show host in Phoenix, only moved into the race last week, but some preliminary polls put him in practically a dead heat with the four-term senator.

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