Sarah Palin, former Alaska Governor, Tea Party inspiration and FOX News contributor leads our CHQ Republican presidential straw poll, as she has for the past several weeks.
No doubt some will attribute Palin’s lead to her active community of online supporters – and there is no doubt that Governor Palin’s online network gives her an advantage in any net-based vote.
But that, in our opinion, is not why the feisty Alaskan continues to lead in our poll.
Plenty of the other potential Republican presidential candidates have active online communities.
What many of the other candidates lack – even some of the candidates with otherwise impeccable conservative credentials – is Palin’s “tell it like it is” authenticity.
And in our opinion, it is that authenticity that keeps Governor Palin in the lead.
Who else is going to say, “We are so screwed” when Obama announced his new national security team?
And then back it up with facts detailing why Obama’s choices of Susan Rice for national security advisor and Samantha Power for U.N. ambassador were dangerous for America.
Who else among the potential Republican presidential nominees is going to go to the Faith and Freedom Conference to take-on the faithless and freedom eroding Republican establishment by saying, "Don't you dare marginalize us (conservatives)?"
Few of the others would choose to.
And who else would call-out the White House press corps for their ridiculously self-absorbed correspondent’s dinner by tweeting, “The rest of America is out there working our asses off while these DC assclowns throw themselves a #nerdprom.”
No one, that’s who.
Palin is popular with the grassroots in some measure because she defies the pseudo-intellectual conventions of inside-the-Beltway political conversation – or what most people outside-the-Beltway call double talk or B.S.
But attributing her lead in the CHQ straw poll or popularity at the grassroots strictly to her sometimes colorful speeches is much too shallow an analysis to explain Palin’s enduring popularity.
Establishment Republican Party leaders and their sometime abettors in the establishment media would like to forget that the Tea Party rebellion of 2009 and 2010 was presaged by the outpouring of grassroots support for Sarah Palin in the 2008 presidential campaign.
The Tea Party rebellion was as much a rebellion against the entrenched GOP leadership as it was a rebellion against Barack Obama and his liberal agenda.
Tea Partiers and grassroots conservatives frustrated by the slow pace of change in the establishment GOP or its tendency to equate change with lurching to the left see in Palin one who articulates our own frustration with big government Republicanism and the abandonment of the Republican Party’s support for traditional marriage and other elements of the traditional values agenda. And we vote for Sarah Palin because she’s one of us.
CHQ editor George Rasley served as lead advance representative for Governor Sarah Palin during the 2008 presidential campaign.
Click here to cast your vote in the CHQ presidential straw poll.