Hillary: I can't protest Ahmadinejad because Sarah Palin might be there

To show you what a sucker I am, I was all set to praise her this morning after the first stories came out last night for putting partisanship aside in the interests of a worthy international cause. Much like, oh, John McCain speaking next week at the Clinton Global Initiative.

Like I say, I’m a sucker.

“We are pleased to inform you that the keynote speakers at the “Stop Iran. Now!” Rally are confirmed to be Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, Governor Sarah Palin and Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel,” read an e-mail from a leader of a Jewish group planning the event.

But the curtain came down on the comedy sketch-turned-reality before the duo ever hit the stage: Clinton officials soon said they had not been told Palin would be on hand — and that her presence, which made the event a political one, would mean the absence of the New York senator.

The McCain-Palin campaign has not yet said whether Palin herself will still be attending the event, but released a statement criticizing Clinton’s withdrawal. “Governor Palin believes that the danger of a nuclear Iran is greater than party or politics,” said spokeswoman Tracey Schmitt. “She hopes that all parties can rally together in opposition to this grave threat.”

Am I hallucinating or didn’t Her Majesty and The One manage to momentarily overcome their differences last year and join hands in the interest of another good cause? How come that joint appearance didn’t make the Selma event a “political” one? Answer: It did, but Hillary didn’t stand to lose any votes by being there. She does stand to lose votes — for Obama, as his most prominent surrogate — if she shows up on Monday and gladhands the usurper, so naturally she put her party interest first and backed out. She’s the one making it a political event, not Palin. If she was half as committed to this cause as she pretends to be, she’d opt for a compromise: To avoid any fallout from having the two of them momentarily share a stage or, lord forbid, a handshake, simply coordinate the schedules so that they aren’t there at the same time. It speaks volumes that her first impulse was to say “to hell with it” rather than seek an accommodation.

As it is, now Palin’s invite is in jeopardy too. Exit question: Which party-over-country Hillary pander is more disgraceful, this one or the time she did MoveOn’s bidding by voting against that Senate resolution expressing support for Petraeus after the “Betray Us” ad?