The media has looked at the battle between Sarah Palin and Donald Trump as political one, but the truth is that Donald Trump has managed to outshine and fire Sarah Palin from the national spotlight.
Here is the video of Palin endorsing Trump’s birther investigation:
“I appreciate that Donald wants to spend his resources getting to the bottom of something that so interests him and many Americans. He’s not just throwing stones, from the sidelines,” champions Palin. “He’s digging in there, paying for researchers to find out why President Obama would have spent $2 million to not show his birth certificate.”
Trump’s reply to Palin was telling:
When asked about the rest of the field Trump said, “Sarah Palin the other night was so nice and so gracious to me on the birther issue. She really thought that I was doing a great service, by what I am doing on that issue.”
At first Trump’s seems like he is playing nice with Palin, but what he was really doing was demonstrating his leadership. By framing Palin’s comments the way he did, Donald Trump made it sound like Sarah Palin was praising his leadership. He created the perception that Palin was following his lead on the “birther issue.” The Donald was trying to establish that Palin is the second banana here.
Step aside, Sarah. A new star is on the scene.
Not only has Donald Trump pushed Sarah Palin out-of-the-way in the polls, but he has also knocked her off of her perch as queen of the far right media. On Fox News, Trump gets O’Reilly and she gets the Saturday night slot on Justice with Judge Jeanine. Trump gets a sit down with News Corp’s Wall Street Journal, and Palin gets ignored when she blasts Obama over the deficit on her Facebook page. The conservative media spotlight that Sarah Palin used to own now belongs to Donald Trump.
This story isn’t just about polling. This is a story of a charismatic media star who became famous for being famous being knocked off the stage by a more charismatic more established media star who is also famous for being famous. Trump and Palin are cut from the same cloth, except Donald Trump plays the fame game better than Sarah Palin.
As Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney can only sit and watch in astonishment, the Republican primary field has transformed from a political contest to a reality TV death match. Forget Romney versus Huckabee. The 2012 GOP field has become the political equivalent of Snooki vs. Kim Kardashian.
This isn’t about politics. This is all about fame, baby, and nobody plays the fame game better than The Donald.
What’s fascinating is that the GOP’s two reality stars are still playing their TV roles on the political stage. The gimmick in Sarah Palin’s Alaska was Sarah Palin. Sarah was often put in situations where she was made to look silly. The joke was on Sarah. It all had a sort of laid back fun entertainment vibe to it and 3 million Americans tuned in to watch.
Trump too has also transferred his reality TV character into the political arena. On The Apprentice, he is the boss. There is no goofy fun with Donald Trump. He is the fearsome corporate titan who calls quivering wannbes into his board room and drops the axe on their dreams when he intones his catch phrase, “You’re Fired.”
The fact that almost a third of Republican primaries voters would support Palin or Trump says more about the weakness of the Republican field than the strength of these two unlikely candidates. Republican voters are desperate for a star of their own to challenge Obama, and if they have to pull a fictionalized character off of reality television, then Trump 2012 or Palin ’12 it is.
Today The Week ran a headline that asked, Is Sarah Palin A Has Been? The more appropriate question is was she ever? Sarah Palin’s approval ratings have been solidly in the dumps since she was on the ticket with McCain. Palin started pulling a net negative approval rating in October 2008, and she has only continued to sink since then.
The media’s fawning love of Sarah Palin during the fall campaign made her a national celebrity. She was such a star that she quit her job as Alaska governor to go lay her claim to the fortune that came with her new-found fame.
Sarah Palin was only for the briefest of moments a national political star, but she was famous. The media has confused the two. What we are witnessing is not the political death of Sarah Palin, but the demise of Palin’s celebrity.
Donald Trump has killed Sarah Palin’s fame. Sarah Palin may be a star on cable, but Trump is a star on network. Trump’s viewership is almost three times bigger than Palin’s. Trump isn’t afraid to go on CNN or NBC and media whore it up. As Palin cowers from the media, Trump exploits it.
There is only so much fame available to crazy Republicans. A political party can only have so many reality TV stars whose fame is based on fame taking up space.
Donald Trump wanted to own that market, so he did something that no Republican politician ever has been able to do.
Donald Trump has fired Sarah Palin.