Saturday, March 5, 2011

Sarah Palin On Entitlements

It's not really a secret that I am not a fan of the former Governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin. I do, however, appreciate her significant presence on the national scene of politics and immense influence on conservative policy. She has a voice and it should be heard. I found this to be an interesting interview, as once again she was confronted by O'Reilly and actually had to describe her thoughts on specific policies and go beyond her simple platitudes (especially on the question the of the effects of Medicaid cuts on the poor and whether a safety net was needed). She did seem to get irritated as O'Reilly pushed for specifics and I wasn't really pleased with her over reliance on Paul Ryan's (R-WI) Roadmap To Success. She didn't convince me that she had really spent time thinking about her own policy prescriptions in reference to reforming entitlements. And yes, I realize that it's rare to find an original policy idea these days, but it just seemed like she was leaning on the Ryan plan because she didn't have much else to offer substantively to the conversation.

Maybe I'm being too hard on her. She did have a good grasp of figures and numbers in the interview. I think Sarah Palin could be a player in our upcoming nomination fight. Realistically, all she has to do is seem prepared, projecting great understanding of the issues and offering thoughtful, creative policy fixes for the fiscal challenges we face as a nation. Can she pull it off? I'm not sure. But since expectations are so low for her, there is definitely an opening.

Ultimately,  I don't know if she's running for President, but I do think she will continue to play important role in our political discourse as the 2012 election approaches.

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