Palin fires up Chicago crowd

posted at 8:51 am on May 13, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

Last night, I flew down to Chicago to attend  Sarah Palin speech staged by WIND, our Salem Radio affiliate in the city.  Palin spoke for about 50 minutes to a highly enthusiastic crowd of more than 4500 conservatives, offering a range of subjects but delivering a single message: get involved.  Topics ranged from the local high-school girls basketball team that has been denied a trip to the national championships because of a boycott of Arizona to the Chicago Blackhawks — and a lot of emphasis on local corruption and the need to take action to rid the city of it.  Palin encouraged her audience to learn that reform is possible from the grassroots efforts of her own political career, starting off as a concerned mom on the school board to her crusading clean-government campaign in state offices.

Governor Palin didn’t eschew the political, either.  She talked about the need to find and support conservative candidates.  She emphasized her support of contested primaries repeatedly, telling conservatives that primaries allow candidates to “duke it out — peacefully, of course,” Palin emphasized to laughter.  But she also warned about splintering the party in the general election.  “We need to take the gavel from Harry and Nancy,” Palin told the audience, and restated it during her Q&A later in the evening.

To that end, Palin addressed the issue of her endorsement of Carly Fiorina during her speech.  Without mentioning Fiorina by name, Palin defended the California Senate candidate as “pro-life, pro-business,” and underscored Fiorina’s conservative credentials.  Activists need to back the “best conservatives we can elect,” Palin said, and said that activists have to have some pragmatism about electability.  Palin took a more veiled shot at Tom Campbell by noting that Fiorina was a better conservative choice than some of the alternatives.

She also challenged the notion of RINOs in her speech, which may also have surprised some in the audience.  While the name “Mark Kirk!” got yelled repeatedly, Palin warned about purity purges in the Republican Party, especially in this midterm cycle.  Palin admitted that RINOs exist but argued that they’re more rare than people think — and to remember that the goal is to produce conservative leadership in Congress and eventually in the White House.  That won’t happen, Palin reminded people more than once, while Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi control the agenda.

The crowd was highly receptive to the entire speech, although one could hear a little grumbling about RINOs during Palin’s argument.  It was an effective rally speech, but also a practical defense of her efforts and endorsements in this campaign season.  This speech differed from her address at the SRLC in that Palin stayed away from policy and focused on themes and encouragement.  It was entertaining enough that two of the local news stations that covered it underestimated the time Palin spoke by almost half, and the WIND audience would easily have remained for twice more.

Addendum: Before the speech, I met Governor Palin briefly in the VIP reception – to which I arrived late after a series of delays at the airport that forced me to change in the restroom into my dress clothes. The photographer took our picture as I introduced myself to her, and the Governor graciously responded, “You do good work there!”

I did take video of the entire speech, but the Internet connection in my hotel won’t support the uploads.   I’ll have it by the weekend, but C. Steven Tucker actually got a better angle and a closer shot. Visit his YouTube channel for the various chapters of the speech. Here is Part 1:


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NoLeftTurn on May 13, 2010 at 10:23 AM

great comment

james23 on May 13, 2010 at 10:53 AM

Anyway, to understand Palin you need to accept a couple of things about leadership – no one can grow it in a bottle, or artificially produce it, no matter how deep a tan or how beautiful the columns. It is a naturally occurring phenomena. One either possesses leadership qualities or does not. Palin is a leader. People recognize it.

runner on May 13, 2010 at 10:37 AM

This is exactly correct. In the military, it is known as “command presence”, where an individual is respected merely by their presence. This does not mean that an idiot with “command presence” will garner undying loyalty and respect. You still have to be good at what you do.

A good example of “command presence” is, of course, Reagan. Another, yet mostly unrecognized, political leader with command presence is Condoleeza Rice. She had it, and didn’t understand it. I’ve watched her enter a room and instantly almost everyone defers to her. She was uncomfortable with that, but it was undeniable.

BobMbx on May 13, 2010 at 10:56 AM

Who says she doesn’t comment herself?

:-o

Abby Adams on May 13, 2010 at 9:06 AM

So, who would be the ghost writer?

HornetSting?
Katy the Old lady?
Ann? sorry

BobMbx on May 13, 2010 at 11:01 AM

speaking of the military, shouldn’t this be somewhere in the headlines ?

runner on May 13, 2010 at 11:07 AM

I sincerely believe that Palin battles on because ofvher love og God and her love of this country. She has been relentlessly attacked from the moment McCain introduced her. I believe she knows that if she is being attacked it’s because she is being effective. I don’t see personal ambition in Palin, I don’t get a sense it’s ego or narcissism with her, I see a true blue American woman who knows the time is short to turrn this ship away from the giant fiscal and immoral iceberg it’s going to hit. She fights on because she trusts God to watch out for her and with our prayers and support she will go as far as God wants her to. I believe God controls all of our destinies as much as we’ll let Him by putting our lives in His hands and by following His dictates. I’m a person of faith and this is how I roll and I am very blessed.

I can’t wait to say… President Palin!

CCRWM on May 13, 2010 at 11:16 AM

I know her negatives were largely handed to her by the leftists at SNL, but they’re sticking. It seems that most people either think she’s stupid or extremist or both.

itsnotaboutme on May 13, 2010 at 10:10 AM

The traditional media will never, ever correct the image that they worked so hard to establish for Palin so the peoples will never get the correct impression. Whose left on American Idol, what’s happening on the latest reality shows? (rhetorical questions)

Vince on May 13, 2010 at 11:23 AM

(P.S. Does anyone know if there’s some fund or something we can contribute to help those girls get to that basketball tournament? It’s pretty sad that the Jimmy Carters running the school are so beholden to Dem Party interests, but I guess I am not surprised given that it’s Illinois we’re talking about.)

NoLeftTurn on May 13, 2010 at 10:01 AM

At the end of the day it’ll turn out they were a little short of funds for the trip to communist China and the Arizona circumstance presented opportunity. Remember the Chicago way don’t let a crisis go to waste.

heshtesh on May 13, 2010 at 11:31 AM

hagiography.

sesquipedalian on May 13, 2010 at 9:02 AM

This from a supporter of the guy that’s constantly getting photographed haloed in light.

What a terrible joke you are.

TheUnrepentantGeek on May 13, 2010 at 11:34 AM

Palin is going around the media. She is also going around the Beltway GOP. They haven’t figured this out yet.

Palin is being persistent in her message, but she has added a new, and very Reaganesque message which leads me to believe that not only will she run, but she will be very effective at running.

She emphasized Reagan’s wisdom that one should not cater to the Mushy Middle, but clearly enunciate a conservative message that will bring the Mushy Middle to our side. The people in the Beltway do not get this, which is why they got rolled so easily by the Democrats during the Bush era.

People in the Middle have no convictions: they are waiting to be led to them. Reagan understood this. Palin gets this in her bones. It’s that leadership gene she’s got.

What a lot of our contemporaries don’t understand as well is the hostile media environment that Reagan ran in. The Press was dominated by the Left in his day. We were five years past our defeat in Vietnam. Hollywood was dominated by the Cultural Left the same way it is today. They hated Reagan. You just don’t see it now because he is gone.

Once she gets going and talks with the people and does Town Halls and the like, you will see what a phenomenal, self-confident candidate she his, and the Left and the Obama White House will curse themselves for having lowered the bar on her.

All they have done is to have made her bulletproof. They are stupid people on the Left. They just don’t know it yet.

victor82 on May 13, 2010 at 11:46 AM

When you met her Ed, did she make you write 500 times “Sarah Palin’s political career is NOT over”?

Seriously though, you really do good work, and are one of the main reasons I come back time and time again.

DrAllecon on May 13, 2010 at 11:48 AM

I met Governor Palin briefly in the VIP reception

lucky dawg!!!

John the Libertarian on May 13, 2010 at 11:50 AM

Me? I oppose non-conservatives regardless of party or affiliation.

memomachine on May 13, 2010 at 9:06 AM

Exactly what she was warning about, a purity test that only you determine who is “fit”.
That fractures a party, not unite, and with that attitude, Nancy will still be in charge.
With you:
Brown…not elected
Rubio…not elected
That alone should show you that you are not decisive, but divisive…

right2bright on May 13, 2010 at 11:58 AM

Re: she can’t overcome the negatives the MSM gave her

Why do you think she’s keeping up this frenetic pace of speaking engagements, fundraisers, and other events? She’s doing the hard work of traveling the country with a 50-state strategy that she mentioned in Chicago, to meet people one on one. She does Q&As after most speeches now. She took time in Washington, IL a few weeks ago to meet separately with kids and teenagers for 45 mins after her speech.

If, after 2 years of traveling the country and meeting people, she decides she doesn’t have enough support, she probably won’t run. Except that right now, everywhere she goes, people are sporting “Palin 2012″ buttons, shirts, hats, etc.

Re: she’s preaching to the crowd

Do you mean like the gay boyz over at http://www.Hillbuzz.org? They’re committed Hillary fans, who went over to McCain, but who have consistently said the only way they wouldn’t work for Palin 2012 is if Hillary runs. Just this week though, they’ve begun to backtrack on that, and may support Sarah even if Hillary runs.

Or do you mean like the Jews over at http://www.JewsforSarah.com?

Hmmm.

Gays. And Jews.

That sounds like the conservative choir to me … /sarc

hrh40 on May 13, 2010 at 11:59 AM

Wish this event would have been pubicized more, I had no inkling she was in town, I would’ve loved to attend.

Archimedes on May 13, 2010 at 12:03 PM

Since Palin is now aligning quite closely to AllahPundit’s own position on RINOs and political pragmatism it’ll be interesting if he is more gracious to Sarah.

Me? I oppose non-conservatives regardless of party or affiliation.

memomachine on May 13, 2010 at 9:06 AM

Palin is now measurably to the left of anything I remember Allah writing about RINOs. She’s basically adopted Michael Medved’s RNC Cheerleader posturing, whereas Allah has been one of the most critical bloggers on Charlie Crist that I have read.

For whatever reason, no one seems to want to talk about Mark Kirk from Illinois, and it sounds like Palin wanted no part of that discussion. But her sister-in-arms Michelle Bachmann made a remarkable unforced error on Kirk, going waaay out of the way to praise this worthless RINO in a radio interview that I heard.

Jaibones on May 13, 2010 at 12:28 PM

Wish this event would have been pubicized more, I had no inkling she was in town, I would’ve loved to attend.

Archimedes on May 13, 2010 at 12:03 PM

The morning RINO Big John at WIND was promoting the show.

Jaibones on May 13, 2010 at 12:30 PM

PS And Big John is no Palin fan at all. The whole thing is weird.

Jaibones on May 13, 2010 at 12:31 PM

Keemo on May 13, 2010 at 8:57 AM

I get what you mean, and AP kinda upsets me too. But in defense of Allahpundit, I think he considers it his duty to present the other point of view.

How’s that? Do you buy it?

xax on May 13, 2010 at 12:32 PM

On a side note, her 2nd book is now #120 on Amazon (it hit ~#50 yesterday), and it won’t be out for more than six months.

ornery_independent on May 13, 2010 at 12:34 PM

Ed, you didn’t mention what you thought of her when you met her.

upinak on May 13, 2010 at 12:37 PM

ornery_independent on May 13, 2010 at 12:34 PM

ornery… you know you shouldn’t say that. She is a quitter remember! /s

upinak on May 13, 2010 at 12:38 PM

On a side note, her 2nd book is now #120 on Amazon (it hit ~#50 yesterday), and it won’t be out for more than six months.

ornery_independent on May 13, 2010 at 12:34 PM

Mitt’s book was in the top 50 at amazon.com for about two weeks. I don’t think it ever made it into the top 10.

bw222 on May 13, 2010 at 12:41 PM

victor82

people in the middle have positions. A lot of us are in the middle because we are evolving from being on the left and firming positions found on the right. Have to travel through the middle to get there, ya dig?

ginaswo on May 13, 2010 at 12:45 PM

Hillbuzz was there also and has extensive post covering the event..

ginaswo on May 13, 2010 at 12:46 PM

Topics ranged from the local high-school girls basketball team that has been denied a trip to the national championships because of a boycott of Arizona…
Isn’t that disgusting? Trashing the kids’ dreams for political correctness’ sake:
http://www.chicagobreakingnews.com/2010/05/highland-park-basketball-team-trip-to-arizona-scrapped.html
itsnotaboutme on May 13, 2010 at 9:59 AM

Should be no surprise when one considers that in order to discredit a potentially serious rival the commies thought nothing of stagnating a functioning state government with a barrage of absolutely bogus ethics violations

did not concern them one bit how that would effect the people of the state, in fact they delight in the disruption of peoples lives

f&$k the commie garbage

Sonosam on May 13, 2010 at 12:50 PM

I’m glad the Cuda is not afraid to visit my home state of Illinois. It’s in desperate need of conservative leadership. I hope her visits inspire the people there to rage against the machine.

NebCon on May 13, 2010 at 12:52 PM

JUST ONE COHERENT CONSERVATIVE…..JUST ONE…..

….One that is an effective communicator, not boring, energetic, can fire up a crowd, can LEAD……..

Where are these leaders? And please don’t rattle off the names of the uber-boring PENCE, DEMINT, RUBIO, ROMNEY.

Can we get someone on the GOP side that gets the base FIRED UP AND READY to defend America (if we even make it till November 2010)?

PappyD61 on May 13, 2010 at 1:07 PM

Is there a story posted on HA on the Highland Park High School girls basketball team?

d1carter on May 13, 2010 at 1:09 PM

Speaking of Sarah, she will be in Charolotte this week-end for the NRA convention. Others there will be Glenn, newt, Oliver North, Charlie Daniels will perform, Chuck Norris and LaPierre. Sarah will be doing this fee free. This per WND.
L

letget on May 13, 2010 at 1:27 PM

Re: she can’t overcome the negatives the MSM gave her

Why do you think she’s keeping up this frenetic pace of speaking engagements, fundraisers, and other events? She’s doing the hard work of traveling the country with a 50-state strategy that she mentioned in Chicago, to meet people one on one. She does Q&As after most speeches now. She took time in Washington, IL a few weeks ago to meet separately with kids and teenagers for 45 mins after her speech.

If, after 2 years of traveling the country and meeting people, she decides she doesn’t have enough support, she probably won’t run. Except that right now, everywhere she goes, people are sporting “Palin 2012″ buttons, shirts, hats, etc.

Re: she’s preaching to the crowd

Do you mean like the gay boyz over at http://www.Hillbuzz.org? They’re committed Hillary fans, who went over to McCain, but who have consistently said the only way they wouldn’t work for Palin 2012 is if Hillary runs. Just this week though, they’ve begun to backtrack on that, and may support Sarah even if Hillary runs.

Or do you mean like the Jews over at http://www.JewsforSarah.com?

Hmmm.

Gays. And Jews.

That sounds like the conservative choir to me … /sarc

hrh40 on May 13, 2010 at 11:59 AM

+ 10,000,000,000,000

Spot on. The Boyz from Boy’s Town have basically said they are done with democrats, including Hillary (as far as voting) They personally like the Clintons, have met them, and respect them. But they are done. At least that’s what I get.

They have written a great summary of Sarah’s speech here:

Ronald Reagan was born in Illinois — and so was Sarah Palin’s 2012 presidential campaign. Our analysis of Palin’s Rosemont and Washington Speeches

People underestimate this powerhouse at their own peril! Sarah Palin is a force of nature like this nation has never seen. I will always thing Ronald Reagan was our greatest President, but know Sarah has Reagan’s spirit in her soul, and adding her own unique spirit and abilities, I think she will be far more effective than Reagan as President.

Sarah has studied Reagan….learned from Reagan. She has also studied Alinsky and knows the left’s playbook better than they do! I’d like to think she has also read Sun Tsu, but that’s just me!

We are going to be in for a real treat come 2012 because Sarah is going to be putting on a clinic showing how this game is play!!

President Palin has a really nice sound to it.

Oh, and Thanks Ed. You are the only reason to read HA.

gary4205 on May 13, 2010 at 2:34 PM

Arrgh!

Thing=Think

Play=Played

*note to self, proofread!! (the moron is implied)

gary4205 on May 13, 2010 at 2:37 PM

PS And Big John is no Palin fan at all. The whole thing is weird.

Jaibones on May 13, 2010 at 12:31 PM

On the other hand Amy Jacobson, Big John’s on air compadre posted this last night with the title My new LOVE…Sarah Palin!

gary4205 on May 13, 2010 at 2:47 PM

She’s a real winner. Fun to watch her.

AnninCA on May 13, 2010 at 2:56 PM

So, she sold out a 4,400 seat theater in metropolitan area of 9,000,000… meh, a Gallagher/Carrot-top show would do that.

And Gary4205, both hands on the keyboard.

Doorgunner on May 13, 2010 at 3:12 PM

From what I have seen the last two years, nobody who is prominent out there in politics today does retail politics as well as Sarah Palin.
Nobody.
When she is in the same room with you, she can include everyone in feeling like she is talking to them personally. She changes people’s minds in person. The people who already were on her side leave reinforced, fired up and ready to go do something about it.

This is a special ability, not many have it. Let’s not throw that away, when now we need this more than ever.

Brian1972 on May 13, 2010 at 3:12 PM

So, she sold out a 4,400 seat theater in metropolitan area of 9,000,000… meh, a Gallagher/Carrot-top show would do that.

And Gary4205, both hands on the keyboard.

Doorgunner on May 13, 2010 at 3:12 PM

If you are determined to remain unimpressed/skeptical, then that is your call. You are missing the point, though.

She has done this repeatedly, all over the country.

There have been crowds in much smaller metro areas that were much larger. Like Louisville, Ky where there was 18,000 at one event. The NRA convention in Charlotte, NC this weekend is expecting 80,000, their largest convention in that city to date. Palin being the keynote speaker has more than a little to do with that.

Brian1972 on May 13, 2010 at 3:17 PM

Hillbuzz had this to say after the event:

Interestingly, Ed Morrissey from HotAir was in the audience, and we got to meet him, which was fun. He’s Michelle Malkin’s cohort on that site, and very nice in person (as is Malkin herself).

This was very much a presidential campaign speech by Palin — as she continues to work out her platform, sound out her supporters, and hone what works for her. We’d call it a tour-de-force, but Palin still has a year or so to go before she declares her candidacy…so we need to leave her room to improve between then and now. If she’s this good today, in May of 2010, we don’t know what to call the caliber of what she’s capable of with more than a year more of this under her belt.

She was funny, sharp, relaxed, natural, and unapologetically conservative while pointedly criticizing the disaster that is the Obama Administration — while offering her own solutions to remedy this president’s many defects.

It would be hard to imagine 5,000 people hanging on Mitt Romney or Tim Pawlenty’s ever word the way they do with Palin.

Do 5,000 people even know who Pawlenty is?

Can 5,000 people pick Romney out of a lineup?

These are questions the RNC needs to ask itself every day — while it gets the heck out of Palin’s way and lets her do her thing.

Interesting take from gay guys in Chicago who worked for Hillary in ’08.

But…but..she’s a Christofascist homophobe!

Brian1972 on May 13, 2010 at 3:27 PM

hagiography.
sesquipedalian on May 13, 2010 at 9:02 AM

sesquipedalian Parrot?

WaPo on Palin op-ed: We’ll publish garbage if you’ll click on it …
8 posts – 7 authors – Last post: Dec 10, 2009
The same might be said for HarperCollins when they saw the final draft of Palin’s misinforming, falsehood-laden fantasy hagiography
mediamatters.org/blog/200912100046 -

Op-Ed Columnist – Herbert Hoover Lives – NYTimes.com
Jan 31, 2009 … But as the liberal blogger Markos Moulitsas Zúniga observed, the site invites visitors to make donations and read Palin hagiography while …
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/01/opinion/01rich.html

· ‘Sarah’: The Palin Biography – TIME
Sep 16, 2008 … But the hagiographic elements of this book are, unexpectedly, mixed with enough controversy to portray Palin as a fairly sharp-elbowed …
http://www.time.com/time/arts/article/0,8599,1841241,00.html – Similar

· A.Word.A.Day –hagiography
Jan 29, 2010 … Hagiography (sense 1). Sarah Palin. Hagiography (sense 2) … “There’s a whiff of hagiography in the sometimes sympathetic portrayal of the …
wordsmith.org/words/hagiography.html

Politicususa – Top Sarah Palin Posts
May 8, 2010 … Palin’s Hagiography Tour Strains Federal Law at Ft. Bragg · Sarah Palin is the Radical Right’s Weapon of Mass Destruction …
www.politicususa.com/top-sarah-palin-posts -

sesquipedalian Parrot, Tool, Fool, Useful idiot?

DSchoen on May 13, 2010 at 4:16 PM

Sarah Palin 2012!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

TheAlamos on May 13, 2010 at 10:04 PM

Speaking of Sarah, she will be in Charolotte this week-end for the NRA convention. Others there will be Glenn, newt, Oliver North, Charlie Daniels will perform, Chuck Norris and LaPierre. Sarah will be doing this fee free. This per WND.
L

letget on May 13, 2010 at 1:27 PM

Too bad they are a week early for the NASCAR All-Star race. All of the above would be HUGE hits the weekend of 5/22!

Well, maybe not Newt ;)

Who is John Galt on May 13, 2010 at 11:37 PM

Wow…a Sarah post not posted by AP???

Oh, it’s a positive piece on her…never mind.

Dr. ZhivBlago on May 14, 2010 at 6:24 AM

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