On ABC’s This Week program today, conservative columnist George Will had some harsh criticism for Sarah Palin’s decision to resign from her position as Alaska governor on Friday. Will said, “Still, she made a contract with them to serve out her term. And she said, in her own words, she now is a quitter.”
In her resignation speech, Palin said, “Life is too short to compromise time and resources and though it may be tempting and more comfortable to just kind of keep your head down and plod along and appease those who are demanding, hey, just sit down and shut up. But that’s a worthless, easy pass out. That’s a quitter’s way out.”
George Will responded to Palin’s logic by wondering what she was talking about, “I read it once, and seen it twice and I still have no idea why she did this. In one phrase, she seems to say this, will help the nation. It will free her up to help the nation. On the other hand, she says it’s her family, which I understand. She’s been fairly much impoverished by litigation that’s hurt her family and she may be wary of being referred to, as for example, a retarded flight attendant, by one HBO comedian.”
He then called her a quitter, “Be that as it may, the one that rings most hollow is she doesn’t want to put Alaska through the terror of being a lame duck governor. If she is just weary of it, one can understand that. Still, she made a contract with them to serve out her term. And she said, in her own words, she now is a quitter.”
Will didn’t buy the excuse that Palin was sparing the people of Alaska the nightmare of having a lame duck governor, and no one else should either. Blunting speaking, it is a weak line of bull. Under her own definition Palin is a quitter. If she didn’t enjoy being governor, she could have announced that would not run for another term, but my guess is that this would not have provided enough drama for Palin.
She did have a contract with the voters of Alaska, and it is very selfish of her to bail out on the people in that state who supported her. There are lots of good reasons for an office holder to resign, and they include family considerations, but Palin isn’t doing this to spend time with her family. She is already talking about a higher calling and nationally uniting Republicans.
The one criticism that is likely to stick concerning her decision to resign, is that she quit on the people of Alaska. I expect that this charge will dog her for as long as she stays in politics. If she runs in 2012, it is easy to see her opponents using this against her in ad after ad. It is very possible that her Friday attempt to further her political ambitions will result in the end of her political career.