Governor Palin just released the following statement through SarahPAC:
Just wrapping up an awesome four day trip to the Hawkeye and Granite States. Visiting with residents there it’s easy to see why they play such an important role in vetting America’s leaders. Todd and I were able to interact directly with informed Americans and hear their concerns first hand outside the media spin.
Yesterday morning I joined the “Jump Right in and Run” half marathon in Storm Lake, Iowa and last night in Manchester, New Hampshire we enjoyed a lovely dinner at the Puritan Back Room. The local folks we met with were wonderfully nice and true American patriots. Their concerns were common – the massive burden of government on small businesses, the abysmal economic and employment rate and their strong desire to restore America.
These good folks are tired of politics as usual; Tired of being spoon-fed by packaged politicos and tired of the twisted sound bites and 30-second ads. They want solutions and they deserve strong, honest leadership.
Thank you to the citizens of Iowa and New Hampshire for your hospitality, your thoughtful questions and picking up where the media left off in vetting and challenging us all on our vision for America’s future.
Have a safe and happy Labor Day. We will see you again soon.
– Sarah Palin
As her self-imposed deadline to decide on a presidential run nears, Sarah Palin told a robust crowd of about 1,000 people here Monday that the Tea Party has thrived without a single standard-bearer and would continue to do so.
“The Tea Party movement is bigger than any one person, and it’s not about any one candidate,” Palin said. “And thank goodness we don’t have any one single leader. The movement is about bringing together debate and discussion of solutions from ‘We, the people,’ not the politicos.”
Palin hit on many of the themes — combating “crony capitalism” and the permanent political class — that she focused on in her highly anticipated speech Saturday in Indianola, Iowa. But in New Hampshire, her emphasis was more on the future of the Tea Party than how she might define her own potential candidacy.
“Let’s talk straight about some of the problems in trying to grow this movement that is so needed,” said Palin, who has said she will decide on whether to run for president by the end of September. “It’s media-incited internal squabbles, unfortunately, and we can nip some of that in the bud right here and right now because we’ve got a lot of work to do, constitutionalists. Our challenges today are too great. We simply don’t have time to be bogged down in internal conflicts and friendly-fire conflicts.”
Palin and her husband, Todd, spent about two hours at a Manchester restaurant on Sunday night, chatting with patrons and engaging in political discussions with some of the famously hard-bitten voters who often defy national trends in the first-in-the-nation primary state.
After her speech on Monday, Palin shook a few hands and was rushed away to the airport to return to Alaska, where she will presumably spend time finalizing plans about her political future.
Via CNN, here’s a short video snippet of her speech today.
Update: (h/t Damian) CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on her New Hampshire speech:
To her credit, she can deliver a good stump speech. And she doesn’t need a teleprompter.
Rachel Streitfeld, also from CNN, writes:
Sarah Palin spoke to a wildly supportive tea party audience in Manchester Monday, but although she seemed to present herself as the best candidate to win back the White House, she didn’t give the voters what they wanted.
“Run, Sarah, run,” the large crowd chanted as the former Alaska governor smiled. Some people screamed her name with an ardor usually reserved for pop stars.
But Palin did not announce her candidacy, and instead focused on a critique of President Barack Obama in a speech reverential in its treatment of the tea party and dismissive of several of her opponents, of Washington and of politics as usual.
The tea party icon took a swipe at Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who rearranged his campaign schedule to speak at two tea party events this week, and implied he is a reluctant convert to the activists’ power and scope.
“Now, we’re seeing more and more folks realize the strength of this grass-roots movement,” she said. “And they’re wanting to be involved. I say right on. Better late than never – for some of these candidates especially.