Sarah Palin & Tea Partiers: A Match Made In Heaven

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Sarah Palin Fan

I’m not kidding. It’s the perfect combination. A slew of ill informed protesters who heart Glenn Beck, think they know “true” conservative values and are convinced our country is turning into a dictatorship and Sarah Palin…an ill informed politician who hearts Glenn Beck, claims she knows “true” conservative values and loves to convince folks our country is turning into a dictatorship…and that Obama wants to kill your grandparents.

What’s not to love?

So yes, I’m bringing this up because she’s headlining their first convention, and that’s where it gets very interesting. Because while the Republicans have a big opportunity to pick up steam going in 2012, the Tea Party movement could completely undermine it…in much the same way the Deaniacs did in 2004.

A political scientist explains…

But courting what many call a fringe and inchoate movement carries huge risks, argues Alan Abramowitz, a political scientist at Emory University, in Atlanta.

He says a Republican shift toward the Reaganesque Tea Party ideal could lead to a sort of pogrom for moderate Republicans, forcing out those (think Maine Sen. Olympia Snowe) who don’t hew precisely to rock-hard conservative principles around economic freedom and limited government interference.

“The Republican Party is trapped by their base, which is going increasingly conservative,” says Mr. Abramowitz. “Yes, Republicans can do fairly well in the 2010 elections – it’s entirely possible that they could pick up 20 to 30 seats in the House – but they could read the wrong message from that. In 2012, if the economy is doing reasonably well again and Obama’s popularity has stabilized, that strategy is going to be very risky and this could all come back to haunt them.”

Oh, and Palin is getting paid anywhere from $75K to $100K to speak at the event. Looks like freedom pays handsomely!

My question: Does this hint at a third party run in 2012?