Categorized | Commentary/Editorial

Could Romney’s Woman Problem Get Even Worse?

In the past few weeks we’ve seen the media scrambling to promote a cat fight between Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann.

As the UK’s Telegraph recently wrote:

The first shots have been fired in what could become an ugly battle between Sarah Palin and her potential rival Michele Bachmann for the Republican presidential nomination.


A Republican consultant who declined to be named because he is aligned with a rival camp, said: "The claws are out. It’s the cat fight everyone has been waiting for – Queen Sarah being taken on by the Palin mini-me."

This is all obviously designed to blunt Palin’s power and momentum. But could over-the-top tabloid coverage of two popular GOP women actually backfire and diminish establishment favorite Mitt Romney, instead of giving him the predicted edge?

Certainly a made-for-TV "girl brawl" between two outspoken Tea Party stars has at least the potential to overshadow Romney’s White House run, just as "Hillary vs. Barack" quickly eclipsed every other Democrat candidacy in 2008. In a cat fight scenario, Romney could suddenly become the mouse in the room — small, insignificant, and barely noticeable. It’s not like he can just suddenly grow ovaries (though we wouldn’t put it past him to try.)

If it plays out this way, Romney’s 2012 estrogen deficit would prove to be just the latest challenge for a man with well-documented "woman problems."

As The Atlantic’s Nicole Allan put it last year, Mitt Romney "does not know how to look good while competing with a woman."

How will he look competing against two women? Hmmm … I’m going to go out on a limb and predict it won’t be pretty if Romney’s past is any indicator.

Despite his high-profile endorsements of several women last year, let’s recall that Romney and the Massachussetts GOP establishment awkwardly forced out a popular female radio host who was running for Ted Kennedy’s seat in 1994, preventing her from even appearing on the Republican primary ballot so as to clear the way for Mitt. Next up was the first female Massachussets governor (Republican Jane Swift) in 2002, who once again, was driven off the primary ballot by Mitt and the state establishment GOP, as Mitt needed that office to pad his presidential resume. None of this went over particularly well with women, as you can imagine.

Romney again faced charges of chauvinism after participating in a male-candidate-only fundraiser in Arizona last fall, ditching the two female Congressional candidates, during a midterm election that was hailed as the "Year of the GOP Woman."

Compounding the misogyny index, his aides continue to make anonymous sexist comments about Gov. Palin, instead of challenging her on her record. 

But in what has to be considered the most bizarre outbreak of Romney’s Woman Derangement Syndrome yet, he pretended to get groped during a photo-op with New Hampshire waitresses last month. Apparently, it was some warped attempt to "connect" with women voters. Fake sexual harrassment? How weird is that?

Yes, Romney may have a grand money-raising operation, and the best GOP consultants money can buy. But will he be able to break through the potentially historic candidacies of Palin and Bachmann and their attending media frenzies — without looking completely boorish in the process?

It’s doubtful he will have the political muscle to force both Palin and Bachmann out, since so many of us are so fed up with the GOP machine: We’re not going let them pre-select our candidate.

And contrary to the conventional "wisdom" of the GOP machine, Palin and Bachmann are not interchangeable. As Michele herself strangely and proudly stated the other day … "I’m no Sarah Palin clone." That’s right, Michele, you’re not. You have no executive experience, have never won a statewide office, have never run on a national ticket, nor balanced a $14 billion budget three times. Thanks for pointing it out. Oh, and you’ve never stared down Big Oil, signed the largest vetoes in your state’s history, nor had a conservative film maker ante up $1 million of his own money to document your political career.

While we’re at it, I’m pretty sure Governor Palin would never run for a seat in Congress, just to turn around and start campaigning for the presidency on the taxpayer dime six months later. She’s not wired that way. Moreover, unlike Bachmann who rejects the label, Governor Palin is a proud feminist, laying claim to the women’s movement begun by Republican stalwarts Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton.

The truth is though they’re both attractive conservative women, there are big distinctions between Palin and Bachmann. They appeal to overlapping but not identical constituencies.

Contrary to popular thinking, Palin’s support transcends the social conservative evangelical base: she does have a big evangelical following, but she has also attracted conservative gays, minorities, libertarians, veterans, business owners, Catholics, Mormons and independent Democrats. (Remember all those Democrats for McCain in ’08 who were really Democrats for Palin?) Recall that Palin had an 88% approval rating governing Alaska, the least religious state in America where nearly two-thirds of the voters are unaffiliated with either party. In contrast, Bachmann was elected in a predominantly Republican district, and because she hasn’t won a statewide office, she has never proven her ability to attract right-leaning independents.

For Romney fans or anyone to suggest that Palin and Bachmann completely cancel each other out is ludicrous, especially given the die-hard nature of Palin’s support. Let’s not forget Palin’s potential base is much bigger than Bachmann’s. Sixty million voters already cast ballots for Palin once. How hard would it be to get 15 million or so to do it again to win a primary? The bigger question is whether Romney will be able to convince more than four million GOP primary voters (his 2008 total) to suddenly support the man who couldn’t beat McCain and who ultimately inspired Obamacare.

Ideally, and forgive me for saying this, but two opportunists like Bachmann and Romney might cancel each other out, leaving the rest of the votes for the true reformer in the race, Governor Palin. Let’s recall that Mitt has been called the GOP’s version of John Kerry. And, Bachmann, with her legislative-only resume, and gift for self-promotion, has been compared to Barack Obama. Sounds like those two will be fighting over the same electoral pie, if you ask me!

What cracks me up is that Bachmann is being propped up as the Palin alternative. From Fox, to CNN to MSNBC, so many commentators are suggesting that Bachmann is the “better version” of Palin. It begs the question … Why is no one contrasting Bachmann to Romney, the guy who is actually in the race, you know, the guy at the top of the leader board? Could it be that Palin is seen as the de facto front runner, the pink elephant in the room? Will this race be all about who is the "real Palin"? I relish that thought … because, obviously, there is only one REAL PALIN.

Deliciously, Romney may find himself fighting a two-front war for relevancy with Bachmann on the far-right, and Palin in the center-right: Two confident Tea Partiers, with committed constituencies, eating his (and Obama’s) lunch, every day, for the next nine months. While Bachmann is swatting him gently over abortion flip flops, Palin will be ferociously assaulting his fiscal positions on cap and tax and healthcare mandates. After positioning himself as the Reagan Republican in the last cycle, will he now morph into Rockefeller Romney in a year when the party is primed to lurch rightward? Or will he just resort to outright sexist attacks on the "two crazy women." That should go over really well with the electorate that sent a record 27 GOP women to Congress and governorships last year.

You may totally disagree with my gender-heavy assessment. That’s OK, I’m a former lefty and I don’t understand GOP politics all that well. In fact, I don’t really care to understand GOP politics all that well.

But from where I’m sitting … the faux frontrunner still has a woman problem.

And not even a fake pinch-in-the-butt can turn that around.

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  • freeperjim

    Nice column, Nicole and you make cogent points on Mittster’s tactics moving forward.

    If picking nits, I would describe Sarah as more right/libertarian than Minnie-Me as the latter travels in RINO-land from time to time.

    Regardless, MM has/will initially siphon some support from Sarah until it becomes apparent MM has no chance. Eventually MM’s remaning supporters will gravitate back to the Tea Party leader. Sarah Palin.

  • SonOfOriginalTed

    Very good piece, Nicole.  This is the best I’ve seen touching on some of the very positive benefits of Bachmann in the mix (as it relates to the election of Palin). 

  • Guest

    Nicole, you fail to understand that it is Bachmann who really wants a cat fight because it elevates her to Sarah’s level.  That’s why her campaign manager and others have been attacking Sarah. 
    As I said on another thread, Sarah knows the game and is treating MB as the gnat she is.  

    As to Romney; I don’t think he’ll have a woman problem, I think he’ll have a Palin problem.

    • crunchingk

      Nice nice read !! Mb is a very very dense person!!

      • ADRoberts

        Well, it’s like this.  Politicians check to see which way the wind blows.  Statesman decide what is right for the nation and stand by it. 

        Even if you don’t like a particular opinion, there is no question that Sarah Palin is looking out after the BEST interests of the nation.

    • HuntingMoose

      Palin clearly is not falling for this but we should be able to discuss on what is happening out there.

      Nicole just states the fact on what the LSM is doing and obviously MB is doing as well. I do not blame MB for trying to, what would you do if you would be in her position?

      But her last statement was clearly indicating that there will be no cat fight and the focus is Obama.

      • Guest

        And you believe MB?  Come on.  The only way she has any chance is to have the LSM and GOP elite try to elevate her to Sarah’s level.  Otherwise she is just a member of congress with no accomplishments.

        If I was in MB’s position, I would not be running for President when i knew I could not win and the only thing I might accomplish is helping to elect a RINO.

        MB is in this for herself. Period.  She is not principled.

        • Reckoner_3

          Exactly, she can’t see 2012 is so crucial…too self-interested to realize this.

        • HuntingMoose

          I do not have a clear picture on what is going on so I will not pretend as if I know what the game plan is.

          I completely agree with your statement that MB is not electable. Just LOL about those pundits talking how great MB is and out of the same mouth they spitted all the nonsense that Palin with a resume zillion times more impressive is not.

          So the resume-name-making purpose for MB with her chanceless candidacy is most plausable. MB is not stupid, she must know she the LSM is salivating, waiting with extra long and sharp knifes.

          So some possibilities:

          (1) she is so blinded by her ambition that she no longer can see the reality. That in it self is a major disqualification for me to ever vote for her.

          (2) she runs put herself on the map for future distribution of chairs and for 2020.

          (3) she runs as a decoy and gives cover for Palin

          I don’t think (1) is the case. (3) is not a possibility I want to send to the land of fables yet. So most likely it’s (2). Don’t know how far she will go with it but I do know it will give Palin some cover and distraction which will help Palin.

  • Guest

    One more thing Nicole.  You seem to insinuate that MB’s base is as big and committed as Sarah’s and will be as much of a force to be reckoned with.

    You say that Bachmann is no Palin but you constantly try to link them in importance and because of their gender.   Aren’t you doing what you claim the LSM is trying to do?  I am confused.

    Why not compare Bachmann to McCotter, Paul or Newt and compare Sarah to Romney or T-Paw. These would be more logical and not gender driven.

    • ADRoberts

      Even the Romney or T-Paw comparison is not valid.  On a scale of 1 to 10.  Romney is a 3 conservative.  T-Paw might be a 5.   Palin is at least a 9. 

      There is no comparison.

      • Guest

        They have all been governors.

        • ADRoberts

          That is a very SMALL point.  Compare their governorships.  Romney – socialism and vote buying with socialism.  T-Paw – I only have what I hear.  No one seems to talk about how conservative and great he was.  They say that he talks conservative but performs middle. 
          Sarah Palin, however, WAS PRODUCTIVE and conservative.  Corruption fought and won.  Oil companies fought and won.  Private ownership of dairy farm.  Budget reduced and balanced. 

          Can Romney and T-Paw claim to have reduced their budget.  Do they talk about reducing the size of government.  Maybe they have.  But I haven’t heard ANYTHING like that. 

          They TALK.  That is all they do.  Let us hear them brag about what they did at actually have done. 

  • crunchingk

    Do not elevate this worm !!fisherman Romney is laughing while his media minions laughra "kiss me mitt "ingram would love to see the catfight so her Washington hero can win the nom!!we should attack mb ,not a job for sarah!! She must attack the ultimate Washington insider who gave us obamacare !!!

    • HuntingMoose

      man, you are obsessed with mb.

      do your homework, look at the facts, get some confidence that mb is no match for palin and let her be.

      look at what is at stake. it ain’t who will be winning but reducing the speed of this train to disaster, stopping it and turning it in the direction of prosperity again.

      Anyone who is more a Sarah Palin than Sarah Palin gets my vote. MB is not realy on my radarscreen for that.

      to quote Rush: "I will vote for Elmert Fudd over Obama"

      • crunchingk

        Mb needs to be sent packing!!she is not doing her congressional job !so she needs to lose it!!

        • John Norton

          You have a point crunch we really need MB to go back to being the attack dog in congress against the libs which she hasnt ben doing lately I suspect shes using this campaign to boost her image and nothing else…

          • MaMcGriz

            I’m pretty sure that dog won’t hunt…if it ever did.


        • Pete Petretich

          As I recall, MB did not win by a large margin last time. Also, Representatives ALWAYS have to be re-elected EVERY TWO YEARS.

          That keeps them pretty busy.

      • John Norton

        I agree Hunting Moose SP is in a whole seperate class than MB…

      • ADRoberts

        Unfortunately, some of the ‘experts’ say that even if the right things are done to correct Obamaism, it won’t stop the depression and collapse of the dollar that is coming.  It is too late.  We need Palin to have a hope of turning the ship.  But the chances are that if our nation is still around in 2016, the voters will only look at their present economics and vote her out.  We are a nation of selfish, self-centered cowards who would never look at the long term or be willing to give up their lives for the country.  The patriots of the 18th century are pretty much gone. 

        We have left just narcissistic power hunger tyrants/ 

    • John Norton

      I have one up on you crunch, MB must put her makeup on with a puddy knife wouldnt you agree…?

      • crunchingk

        LOL!!those fake eyelashes too!

      • 3seven77

        Why does a discussion of female politicians always have to come back to their looks? Can you give me one good reason? 

        • ADRoberts

          They say that most men look at a woman and think immediately about sex with her.  I look at them to admire their ladylike attitude and poise.  What do you expec when men distill the individual woman down to sex?  Until such time as there is genuine change of heart and mind to bring about RESPECT for the person, men will think about looks and sex.

          Another way of saying it is that these men are more like animals than they are like God. Why would I say it that way?  Because our physical being is an animal, while our soul is spirit in the image of God.  The question is ALWAYS, " Do you want to be a great animal, or be like God?"

          • famouswolf

            Very true.

            I always look at two things first…a womans eyes and her hands. There are secondary considerations, of course…tattoos, piercings and such are red flags. Then come the usual male considerations (that will only stop for me when I am dead). All my life this has proven accurate, hands and eyes. My wife tells me I am different from most men.

            Now look at Sarahs eyes and hands… Todd is a very, very lucky guy, especially since the two of them look and act like best friends and soul mates.

            *grin* So am I.

    • vikings444


  • BricesCrossroads

    Regardless of the MSM hype about Bachmann, she will only be a significant factor if Sarah Palin repeats Ronald Reagan’s mistakes in Iowa in 1976 and 1980.  Reagan, or I should say his campaign guru John Sears,  took Iowa for granted both times and lost narrowly both times.  The second loss in 1980 is most instructive , because his narrow loss, 32-30, to Bush was occasioned as well by conservative Congressman Phil Crane’s  7% showing, votes that would have gone to Reagan had Crane not been in the mix.

    Palin has already said that, if she runs, she will be 110% committed to the Iowa caucus process.  Translation: She is not going to repeat the mistakes of the Reagan campaign in 1976 and 1980.  She will conduct a full bore campaign against both Romney and Bachmann.  While many of her issue positions mirror Bachmann’s, there are distinctions, including Bachmann’s appetite for federal cash for her family businesses and some shady deals like the Vennes Pardon matter, in which she took $27,400 in campaign cash from a convicted felon, who was not even a constituent, and while she was pocketing the money, she lobbied hard to get him a pardon.(Coincidentally, he was involved in a fresh crime, a  $3.65 billion ponzi scheme for which he is under indictment.)  That is a huge difference. 

    Can anyone imagine Sarah Palin, as Governor of Alaska, accepting $30,000 from a felon from Michigan and at the same time lobbying to have him pardoned?  Not a chance.  She fought this kind of thing in AK from the CIty Council to the Mayor’s Office to the Oil and Gas Commission to the Governor’s mansion. This, the integrity issue,  is a deeper, more profound distinction between Palin and Bachmann than are any of the issue differences Palin has with Romney. IMHO

  • polarfan

    Sarah isn’t getting into a catfight with MB nor will she go on Sunday shows nor will she attend any debate moderated by some leftwing clown.  Sarah will campaign from the heartland as we all have wittnessed with her bus tour and trip to Iowa.  For this type of grassroots campaign you don’t need a lot of money.  

  • palin45potus


    Another awesome Coulter piece,

    from my favorite Coulter!

    Keep up the good stuff, Nicole!

  • technopeasant

    I wrote this yesterday as one of Romney’s 10 strategies to defeat Sarah Palin:

    Michele Bachmann= Sarah Palin (split the Tea Party vote)

    Thus I disagree with your premise. Anything that takes the focus off an eventual Romney-Palin confrontation is simply counterproductive or detrimental in terms in furthering the political interests of Sarah Palin.

  • palin45potus

    Just thinking about the NH Union-Leader carrying water for the Mittster, this paper sure has changed since the good old days.  Back when Bill and Nackey Loeb ran the show, the GOP candidate had to be a proven conservative, and be able to not just talk the talk, but walk the walk!  They would NEVER have chosen to back someone like Mitt over Sarah.  I’m not sure that they’d even choose to endorse him in a General Election against Obama, except grudgingly, with a big question mark as to his usefulness.

    Imagine, if you will, that Sarah, Todd and the gang hit New Hampshire like a "Nor’easter" next winter.  

    Between town hall meetings, Snowmobile races, Hockey Games, Fishing Co-op visits, and visits to skeet ranges, these hardy New Englanders will want to adopt the Palin’s as their own.  

    I just can’t see Mitt, with all these weak positions, which we are all documenting, hanging in against the "Sarah Storm!"  New Hampshire’s motto is "Live Free or Die", and there aren’t enough transplants from liberal-land to water that spirit down! They have a real libertarian streak that will really take to Sarah, once they get to know her, and her positions.

    I’m going out on a limb now and saying that she New Hampshirites are Sarah’s for the taking!

  • technopeasant

    What a "catfight" or talk about a "catfight" symbolizes:

    1) A woman is not ready to become POTUS

    2) Women would rather fight each other than win the GOP nomination

    3) Women are not serious political players

    4) Women are too emotional

    5) Women cannot be trusted in leadership positions

    • unseen1

      fight to determine the king of the jungle.

    • MaMcGriz

      Thankfully most Americans are smart enough to know it takes two kitties to make a catfight, and will notice Sarah is nowhere near any of this caterwauling  

      • CharterOakie

        And obviously there’s nothing catty about Sarah Palin…  ;  )

        For that matter, Michele Bachmann isn’t catty, either.

    • puma_for_life

      Tlhe whole catfight thing is totally demeaning to all women.  Neither MB nor SP have displayed any signs of a catfight.  This is a  media fabrication that they want to spin.  I give MB credit for not taking the bait and I know SP won’t either.  I don’t think it does either of them any good to be able to be labeled in that way.

    • Guest

      Sarah will not engage in this effort by MB and the LSM so it is a moot point.

  • BostonBruin

    I wonder what Romney will do if he senses that MB might take votes away from him in NH? NH showed signs of becoming more red last November with the election of Kelly Ayotte and both US House seats switched from Dem to GOP.

  • unseen1

    the better comparision would be  Mccotter and Bachmann.  and McCotter blows  her  away

    • gilamonster8

      Wecome back McCotter could rise in the polls if he got himself a George Washinton wing.

    • Pete Petretich

      I’ve read one interview w/ McCotter. He seems like a straight talker, like someone who will not be bashful about criticizing Mitt$ter’s warmism or Bachman’s opportunism.

      Which is all good for Sarah. More money she can save and less of a chance that she’ll have to "go negative" in the primaries!

    • JeannieBinVA

      McCotter might be a nice VP pick for Sarah. They’re both straight-shooters, they’re on the same page on economic policy, and personality-wise I think they’d get on like a house afire. I’m glad he’s in.

      • AFinch

        I strongly disagree.  I’ve only started looking into McCotter’s record, but so far I;ve discovered that he voted for "cash for clunkers," voted for the auto bailouts, voted for union pension bailouts, voted for card check, voted against an amendment that would remove the PLA requirement from some federal contracts, and received a  "D" from the competitive enterprise institute’s labor score card.  He also authored a bill that would give tax breaks to pet owners.  His economic policies bear very little resemblance to Palin’s as far as I can tell. 

        • JeannieBinVA

          His pro-labor votes were representing his constituents in Michigan; perhaps you think he should vote against his constituents’ interests and wishes. (What a great campaign line: "Vote for me, I’ll make sure more of you become jobless and homeless." /s) 

          Sarah is also on the side of union workers (NOT union leadership). She regularly mentions her and Todd being proud union members. I am sure she will continue to appeal to union workers as Reagan did, and having McCotter as her VP would bolster her credibility with that major constituency in important midwestern states.  

          On macro issues McCotter is solid:  He was the first Republican to break ranks and speak out against TARP (as no doubt Sarah would have loved to do, if she had been free to speak), he has spoken out strongly and consistently against the stimulus and obamacare, and he is one of the few Republicans (along with Sarah) willing to take on the banking industry and Wall Street. He’s also pro-defense and very much in line with Sarah’s views on most issues, both domestic and foreign. 

          It’s also really telling of his character and his sense of perspective that he doesn’t take himself too seriously, unlike the other declared candidates. And his sense of humor is simply delicious! Honestly, if Sarah doesn’t run, he’s the one person in the field I could see myself voting for.

          • AFinch

            Interesting perspective.  The disction you make between union workers and union leadership is an important one.  It’s also important to distiguish between "pro-labor" votes and "pro-union" votes.  McCotter’s votes were to protect the entrenched union interests–not to protect labor or workers.  In fact, a lot of union workers would be happy to be free from union constraints.  You think that voting to weaken unions’ stranglehold on the manufacturing sector in this country is equavlent to saying "I’m going to make you become jobless and homeless"?    Quite the opposite, actually, and a good, strong, articulate leader can make that distinction–just as Palin did when she spoke directly to union workers in Wisconsin. 

            I’m not ruling McCotter out, but I still have a lot to learn about him and his union votes are a big red flag for me. 

            • JeannieBinVA

              I guess my point was, as a legislator and representative of a specific district, McCotter has direct responsibilities to the people in his district which may clash with his overall perspective on economic issues. I don’t agree with the auto bailouts, etc., but the fact is if the auto industry along with all the related supply and parts businesses had died, 10s of thousands more Michigan workers would have lost their jobs, with no comparable replacement jobs in sight for years, if ever. These problems were decades in the making, and none of the available solutions in the short-term were very palatable. 

              Of course McCotter will take heat for some of his votes, but IMO he was doing the best he could with a bad situation. At least he didn’t vote "present". And his "5 core principles" are right up Sarah’s alley.

  • unseen1

    I  agree with this post.  Romney  is in trouble.   Wether Bachmann is working for  romney or  not  I think  he is so weak  that Bachmann  without  Palin in the race has a chance to  beat Mitt.   He will have to attack Bachmann at some point.   when Palin gets in the rac ebachmann  if perry sits  out  could become the  establishment  pick.   Or  take  away enough  ABP conservative  votes  that Mitt will not  be able to  get the wins  

    • puma_for_life

      I guess we have to wait and see how much money Bachman raised…it sounds like maybe not as much as she had hoped or she would be  bragging by now.  Her popularity is a complete fabrication by the press.

  • Jules

    Nicole, you are giving Bachmann way to much credit and press. You should be able to talk about Romney’s women problem without bringing in Bachmann who can only benefit with ANY comparison with Palin… Bachmann was never been able to make it on her own so she needs her name being mentioned next to Palin, the woman people are interested at…In fact, I would not be surprised to see Bachmann follow Palin around once she declares…Just to be mentioned.
    Sarah Palin is the real threat to win the GOP nomination and presidency. The LSM knows that, the GOP establishment knows that. So they are doing their best to dismiss her by doctoring polls and using Michele Bachmann. Bachmann is HAPPILY playing the role of the stalking horse because any attention she gets is good for her. She and her husband are opportunist hustlers that will reach as far as they could. Any press she gets is great for her so there is no need to have her front and center on any C4P thread. I agree with Techno, anything that gets us away from Palin vs. Romney is unproductive….Let Bachmann be: True conservative and tea party voters know what she is up to and are just patiently waiting for Sarah to get in…Once Palin gets in, the only way for Bachmann to have any headline is to attack Sarah…and that will be it for her political career.

    • Reckoner_3

      True true, Jules I dislike it when Sarah gets compared to Bachmann as an equivalent. It’s very false

      But Nicole C did a good job here.

      " That’s right, Michele, you’re not. You have no executive experience, have never won a statewide office, have never run on a national ticket, nor balanced a $14 billion budget three times. Thanks for pointing it out. Oh, and you’ve never stared down Big Oil, signed the largest vetoes in your state’s history, nor had a conservative film maker ante up $1 million of his own money to document your political career.

      While we’re at it, I’m pretty sure Governor Palin would never run for a seat in Congress, just to turn around and start campaigning for the presidency on the taxpayer dime six months later. She’s not wired that way. Moreover, unlike Bachmann who rejects the label, Governor Palin is a proud feminist, laying claim to the women’s movement begun by Republican stalwarts Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton. "

  • susiepuma

    I do like your posts Nicole – just enough snarc to make me remember that you were once a Dem too – guess we do sarcasm better than GOPer’s or we forget the GOP Golden Rule – be nice to everyone even if they are kicking you in the teeth – not me – I’m gonna Fight Like A Girl……….

    • bjwilson83

      A lot of Tea Partiers used to be Dems too. I’ve always been a Republican, but something funny I’ve noticed lately is that while I disagree with their principles, I seem to get along better with some Dems than I do with certain Republicans, especially establishment ones.

  • irishcoins

    I might title this, "Enlarging the Tent". 

    When this Bachmann Rollins stuff first came out, and Rollins began his attacks on Palin, grabbing the low hanging fruit, to quickly inflate Bachmann’s numbers, and thus justify his being hired, I had some concern that maybe Bachmann did not know what Rollins was doing.  But Bachmann has clearly taken Romney’s challenge to do what she can to prevent Sarah from winning Iowa, and has perhaps been offered some kind of promised position in return.  So Bachmann is out to try and get as much momentum going, before Sarah "announces". Those were my thoughts 2 weeks ago.  And those thoughts were in the aftermath of the NH debate, where all the candidates were attacking Zip, rather than each other, and that was good, because it enlarged the GOP voter base, and "enlarged the tent", with each candidate adding to and doing their part to bring in more supporters for the common good.  So I was initially aghast at what Rollins was doing to Sarah, in spite of all that Sarah had done to support Bachmann.

    And I wrestled with this for about 3 days, and about 10 days ago, I began to realize that Rollins, a boxing promoter by trade, was just doing what Rollins did best, and was basically bringing out the wrestlers or boxers before the fight, to make their surly comments and outrageous accusations against each other, to thus increase attendance and ticket sales for the fight.  So I gave Rollins no mind.  Rollins could do no harm to battle hardened and fully vetted Sarah Palin anyway.  And the net outcome would be increased ticket sales and an increased conservative voter base, and a continued net contribution toward "expanding the tent".  Think of it this way, Bachmann Rollins are just selling tickets to Sarah’s Party.  So yes, I tend to agree with the author’s thesis.   And 3.2 million FB for Palin vs. 200,000 for Bachmann is not going stop the momentum of SarahTeam.  Bachmann will only aid Sarah at this point.  Every time Sarah is challenged, she will get stronger.

    The goal remains at this point is to enlarge the tent.  Enlarging the tent, is an ancient expression illustrated in Acts where the early church quickly expanded and multiplied.  The message remains, to "Go and find your place with Organize 4 Palin".

    o4p Dallas FtWorth Metroplex and north to the TX OK border is Palin Country

    • Nicole Olmstead Coulter

      I totally agree, Irish. Thanks for boiling my piece down to the essence. I wish I had done a better job explaining it myself. Ha!

      I’m thinking of writing another piece in your honor. "Enlarge the tent."

      Do people realize that the Democrat primary in 2008 got three times more votes than the Republican primary because of the "cat fight" between Barack and Hillary?

      And coincidentally, the GOP returned the favor in 2010, where Republican primaries, in general, attracted two or three times the turnout of the Democrat primaries.

      This is a turnout battle.

      What the GOP establishment might underestimate is the degree to which Palin will attract atypical Republican voters, and even independents, thereby enlarging the tent.

      They see Palin-Bachmann as a zero-sum game, where Bachmann fatally wounds Palin against the establishment stooge. This assumes a normal GOP turnout.

      I’m inclined to believe women like Gwen Ifill and Donna Brazille, who although liberal, got it right about Palin:

      "Don’t underestimate the degree to which women will be drawn to her story."

      If the Republican party experiences an influx of female voters in its primary in 2012, then Mitt may be the one fighting over a shrunken pie of the pie, instead of vice versa.

      • irishcoins


        Romney’s carving out the middle of the pie was my concern originally. RINO Romney was positioning himself to take the big middle, with a bunch of cross over SEIU votes. But that big middle is Sarah’s.  As I found out yesterday, we are not to discount someone just because they voted Dim last election, or they are Black and voted Dim, or they are LDS and went to BYU.  The depth of Sarah’s support is profound, and comes from all races, sexes, religions, and parties, and political persuasions.  Her record of not working with GOP politicians so much as working with whomever is there to serve the people, and fight for conservative principles in government, cuts across traditional party demographics.

        So if you want to recapture the spirit of Reagan’s Big Tent, take a look at some of the original documents, for instance, Isaiah 54:1-3:

        1 Sing, O barren, thou that didst not bear; break forth into singing, and cry aloud, thou that didst not travail with child: for more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife, saith the LORD.  
        2 Enlarge the place of thy tent, and let them stretch forth the curtains of thine habitations: spare not, lengthen thy cords, and strengthen thy stakes;
        3 For thou shalt break forth on the right hand and on the left; and thy seed
        shall inherit the Gentiles, and make the desolate cities to be inhabited.

        And take a look at Acts and the growth of the original church, which came about by multiplication.  Take a look at Chapters 6 and 12, particularly Acts 12:24,

        24 But the word of God grew and multiplied.

        The principles are universal to building a political campaign and building a church. You can find some essays on these passages, if you look, easy enough.

        Your essay on "enlarging the tent", needs to take a look at the details of just what Reagan did to form his coalition, and what worked, and what can work now, and the issues that are specific to Sarah.  Sarah is not Ronnie Reagan.  For instance, Sarah is, perhaps, not as pro life as many might think, as Sarah would probably be more inclined to allow women to make a lot of their own choices.  I may be wrong on this, but after listening to her Human Life Speech, I came away thinking that Sarah Palin was not a crusader so much as a leader by example on the life issues, which is a far more powerful way to lead.  Unlike Ronnie Reagan, Sarah did not support communists in her youth.  Sarah has always been Sarah.

        Take a look at this 2009 piece by Don Anastas, titled, "Ronald Reagan’s ‘Big Tent’ Was No Circus":

        And lay out Reagan’s coalition in detail, and examine just what changes need to be made for Sarah’s coalition.  What are the boundaries?  When Reagan welcomed a particular political group into his big tent, he remained true to his own set of principles, rather than just accept folks in that would vote for him, and then own him.  This is where Sarah has a magnitude of order advantage over all her opponents.  Most of her opponents, when their positions are examined, stand for nothing. And Sarah has a handle on America’s heart. This is a powerful combination. So those are the two things to align, just what Sarah stands for, and just what is the heart of America.  Think supply and demand. 

        Anyway, good luck with this, Nicole.


        • Nicole Olmstead Coulter

          Thanks Irish … Glad we found something we agreed on :)


    MB is actually helping Sarah. Look at her as a bright light shinning on Sarah, showing the differences between the two.  That will save Sarah from having to point out the differences when they get to the debates.  What a better way to compare the two.  As I noted in past post, their is a difference between equating MB with Sarah and comparing the two.  Comparing is healthy – equating is pure left wing media meme.  Do not fall for the trap. 

    • MaMcGriz

      A lemon is not a papaya.

  • ADRoberts

    Romney = politician
    Palin = statesman
    Bachmann = ?

    • Pete Petretich

      MM = second fiddle, paper pusher, welfare queen…

    • bjwilson83


  • ADRoberts

    Oh, by the way. Since the article was primarily about Romney, he still has done nothing to be conservative with topics 1.  Romneycare (what can he do?)  2.  Global warming (following Al Gore)  3.  Pro-abortion.  ( either you are in favor of life or you’re not) 

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