Sarah Palin rolled into Madison, Wisconsin today using a Tea Party rally as an excuse to attack union members, but the wheels promptly fell off of her bandwagon as only 6,500 people showed up for the rally, and reports on the scene say that many of those in attendance were there to protest Palin. Not even the Koch Brothers and their magic buses could draw a crowd for Palin.
The Koch Brothers threw their front group Americans For Prosperity into the effort to hold an anti-union rally in Madison headlined by Sarah Palin. All the resources were deployed, Palin fans were begged to attend, Americans For Prosperity had no less than 13 buses lined up, and despite all of this, the crowd never came.
According to the Wisconsin Capitol Police, “The Wisconsin Capitol Police estimate that about 6,500 people were outside on the Capitol grounds and vicinity at 12:30 p.m. Saturday. There is no way to accurately determine how many people were attending any specific event. As of 12:30 p.m. there were no law enforcement incidents or arrests on the Capitol grounds and vicinity.”
The problem is that the pro-union/anti-Palin forces may have outnumbered the pro-Palin crowd by a significant margin.
Bill Leuters of the Isthmus described the scene as, “The pro-Palin crowd filled only part of the King Street entrance, down to about 50 feet from the Capitol side of the Hans Christian Heg statue. And although there was some spillover of tea partiers to either side, the rally was dwarfed by the counter-protesters who filled the back end of the entranceway and spilled into the street.”
In Wisconsin, Sarah Palin reaffirmed her power to draw a crowd…..for the other side. CBS News reported that the pro-labor crowd literally surrounded Palin’s tea partiers, “Hundreds of pro-union labor supporters are surrounding smaller groups of conservative Tea Party members attending a rally featuring former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.”
The Koch Brothers sent in Sarah Palin to defend their best boy Scott Walker, and all they got for their money were some tired old platitudes about union thugs, Obama’s budget, and the usual grouchy Sarah Palin laundry list of gripes that 75% of America has long since tuned out. Forget being a presidential candidate, Sarah Palin isn’t even a decent headliner.
Both Michael Moore and TV’s Monk outdrew Sarah Palin’s rally tenfold, so much for that Palin charisma and star power that the media used to tell us so much about. 100,000 people gathered on multiple occasions in Wisconsin and topped anything the right has ever done, but the media still lives the lie.
Even though the media refuses to acknowledge this fact, the Tea Party just isn’t much of a draw. Despite endless media hype Glenn Beck’s Rally to Restore Honor bombed. Remember, the Tea Party’s big 9/12 protest in 2009? Nobody would blame you if you didn’t because only 30,000 people showed up to Freedom Works’ national event.
The Tea Party was never a grassroots movement. It is a mobilization effort undertaken by right wing billionaires designed to energize the social conservative grassroots of the Republican Party. These people aren’t anything new. At their earliest inception, they were the new right, then they morphed into the religious right, then they became values voters, and now they are the tea party. The faces and motives remain the same. Only their name has changed.
The Wisconsin stunt was a desperate attempt by Sarah Palin to retake the media spotlight that Donald Trump has stolen from her. This was Sarah’s attempt to get back up on the national stage. She sees that GOP primary voters are anti-union, so she is going to be anti-unionest of them all.
It is all too little too late.
Only 6,500 people showed up in Madison today, and we aren’t even sure how many of them supported Palin. This is the reality of Sarah Palin’s existence. The Snow Snooki of American politics has finally bored her fellow Republicans to such a degree that even they have lost interest in her.
After today’s sad turnout, I’ll bet a second season of Sarah Palin’s Alaska isn’t looking so bad to her now.
I wonder if she has TLC on speed dial.