A month or so ago I predicted that Sarah Palin would not run for office, but would instead try to position herself as a “kingmaker” within the Republican Party; if she could convince GOP candidates that she was capable of delivering a substantial bloc of Republican voters, then the candidates would have to kiss her ring to obtain her endorsement. This would keep her a viable political celebrity and help to ensure continuing (paid) speaking engagements.
So far that hasn’t happened; to date I have seen no reports that any GOP candidate has been pressing for Palin’s endorsement.
But in what is (for me, at least) a surprising twist, Donald Trump seems to have stepped into the role Palin seeks to fill. To date Trump has met with Mitt Romney, Herman Cain, Ron Paul, Michele Bachmann, and – we now learn – Rick Perry. What’s more, Trump apparently turned Perry into a Birther.
Of course, the irony is that it was Sarah Palin herself who started this fad when she met Trump and the two of them – for unknowable reasons – went to a chain pizza restaurant where Trump embarrassed himself by failing to eat his pizza like a true New Yorker. Jon Stewart explains:
I have absolutely no idea why the Republican presidential aspirants think that kissing Donald Trump’s ring will do them any good – I can’t imagine that Trump wields any real power within the party – but I do delight in imagining how bitter it must make Palin to be ignored by the candidates and reality TeeVee alike.
Ah, politics . . . thy name is schadenfreude.