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NewsReal Sunday: McCain Rejects Palin Criticism by Former Campaign Manager

October 11, 2009


Sarah Palin’s recent pre-order book sales success has produced tons of media attention lately — most of it negative, as the Left has passionately skewered Palin ever since she ascended to prominence.

But it wasn’t just those on the Left making Palin-bashing a pasttime.

During the 2008 Presidential election there were many reports of infighting between McCain’s staff and Palin. Many conservatives blame the staff for making Palin look foolish in some of her interviews with the press.  And now Senator John McCain’s former campaign manager Steve Schmidt is joining the chorus to try to crush Palin.

Schmidt: “She would not be a winning candidate…in 2012…and in fact, were she to be the nominee, uh, we could have a catastrophic election result.”

Thankfully McCain rejects Schmidt’s assessment and comes off as very gracious in the interview.  He understands that it doesn’t help cure the pain of yesterday to try to bring Palin down tomorrow.  Too bad Schmidt doesn’t seem to grasp that.

The Bible provided plenty of wisdom on this issue when the Apostle Paul wrote:

Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me. (Philippians 3:13-14)

Schmidt doesn’t help anyone move forward by letting his problems in the past shape his feelings on Palin’s future.  The future for Palin is wide open.  The only thing I’m certain of is that she will be selling a lot of books.

  1. Cas Balicki permalink
    October 11, 2009 7:49 pm

    As McCain’s former campaign manager, Schmidt must convince all of America that the loss was not his fault. To a campaign manager to bear the look of the loser is a death knell. If Sarah Palin looks good after his management, than his management of her was mismanagement and subsequently his political skills and instincts are brought into question. National campaign managers cannot afford to have their skills and instincts questioned. Irrespective of how he might feel about Palin, his career as a major player on the national political scene hangs on his sticking the kick-me sign on her back.

    • Mike permalink
      October 11, 2009 9:28 pm

      Cas Bal…. Is correct in the take on Schmidt!!! This man who was at the helm of the Mcain campaign fumbled the ball to many times so to speak & Obama & his cronies returned every fumble for a touchdown!!!!
      Schmidt is not capable of running a race for a small town Mayor!!!
      The mistakes he made are many & can be pointed out by a political novice!

    • December 4, 2009 5:33 pm

      If his reputation was so valuable, then he should have used his head. When he went after Sarah Palin, he killed his value right then and there. Sarah Palin has more value in her little figure than he has in his whole body.

  2. October 11, 2009 9:19 pm

    This may be an illustration of battles to come for the Republican party, especially in 2012. Schmidt is not alone, and McCain is just trying to be a nice guy. I think Palin was nothing but a token bone for the conservatives in order to keep them in the game. As the 2008 campaign progressed it was clear that McCains’s heart wasn’t in it. He wasn’t a conservative leader, and only hoped the right would rally behind him anyway.

    • Julie Trevor permalink
      October 12, 2009 6:34 am

      “He wasn’t a conservative leader, and only hoped the right would rally behind him anyway.”


      Also, McCain tried to transform himself fromm the hot-bloodied maverick to Mr. Nice Guy. This led to his failure to challenge Obama on issues.

      His lackluster performance during the campaign/debates, etc stunned even those of us who didn’t opt for him in the primaries.

  3. The Grubb permalink
    October 11, 2009 9:54 pm

    All Palin seems to have been doing since she and McCain lost the election, is try to convince people that it wasn’t her fault.

    To be honest, even though I consider myself a democrat, I actually liked McCain up until the 2008 election. He seemed like he had a lot of good ideas, and he actually did a good job as a senator. Of course I didn’t agree with him on everything, but I don’t agree with Obama on everything either. The point being, I might have actually voted for McCain if things were a little different.

    One of the main things being his choice for vice president. I have a lot more respect for McCain than I do for Palin. It was like a bad joke, like McCain was TRYING to lose. The only reason that I can fathom for him picking Palin over anyone else is the simple fact that she was a woman and McCain wanted to win over women voters who felt dejected because Clinton was already out of the race.

  4. Marylou permalink
    October 11, 2009 10:39 pm

    I rejoice to see a quote from the Apostle Paul from that great book worth reading.

  5. Marylou permalink
    October 11, 2009 10:44 pm

    Very gracious indeed.

    Thanks for this article which encourages unity rather than infighting. Kudos.

    • Paul Cooper permalink
      October 12, 2009 10:16 am

      Thanks Marylou

  6. Mike permalink
    October 11, 2009 10:56 pm

    Well written, Paul; and very brief. I have no argument with you this time.

    I believe John McCain has been more helpful to Obama than most Republicans; and he has also tried to kill some of the false rumors about him.

    • Paul Cooper permalink
      October 12, 2009 10:17 am

      Mike, this may be my first blog you have agreed with:)

  7. Sam Deakins permalink
    October 12, 2009 2:16 am

    McCain was his own worse enemy in the campaign. He tried to run as who he was not and when given the opportunities to address the Obama “unsolved mysteries” more often than not deferred. Palin was the only bright and shining moment in that less than a campaign campaign.

  8. Dale permalink
    October 12, 2009 3:40 am


  9. Jacob Mandelblum permalink
    October 12, 2009 4:41 am

    I don’t believe the proverb “making lumber off a fallen tree” applies to Sarah Palin but it shows without the shadow of a doubt, her detractors true colors and how rotten they are…

    I dare bet the reason for McCain not to have lost the election by a wider margin, was precisely thanks to having picked Sarah as his running mate and I’m sure that, should she run for President on her own platform, the same John Does that made her mayor and later governor will make her President…

    I backed McCain originally against BUSH and I’m sure he would have made a better Presidency but he was too much of a gentleman campaigning against a demagogue like OBAMA….

    Conversely, ROMMNEY or HUCKABEE would have mopped the floor with OBAMA and his platform on any of the the televised debates but never JOHN McCAIN…

    He failed miserably to prove that OBAMA was highly responsible for the economic debacle
    brought about by the mortgages manipulations, as when he proposed legislation to rein in the excesses of Freddie and Mae, his main opponent in the Senate was OBAMA, because he was on the take from them….

    And so is history written and we are harvesting what others planted, believing in tha pot of
    gold at the foot of the rainbow….

  10. MaryAnn permalink
    October 12, 2009 4:59 am

    Didn’t McCain say, at one of his townhall meetings, that Obama would make a fine president? Now that is how to run a campaign!

  11. jac mills permalink
    October 12, 2009 5:22 am

    As the campaign wore, so did Old John, and he looked tired most of the time. His words also were tired and worn, without spark and life, and repetitious to boring. If you were undecided, candidate image alone could have pushed towards BHO. On that aspect, it was no contest. Palin added something for a little while, but not enough to sway. All told, a failed campaign, poorly run, no teeth and got what it deserved. Even though I voted that way.

  12. Keith permalink
    October 12, 2009 5:37 am

    There were many many people like myself who volunteered to work for McCain during the campaign for one reason. Because Palin energized us.

  13. Jack Hampton permalink
    October 12, 2009 6:18 am

    Has still not figured out the problem was the guy at the head of the ticket. I cannot forget his mothers own words when asked about his lack of conservatism and her reply “well they will have to hold there nose and vote for him” I have to wonder how long she has been holding her nose. Well legions did not hold there nose and did not vote for him and of course we got Mr. The Grubb from aboves canidate. I respect McCains service to our country in the same war I participated in But Col. Bud Day the senior POW and Medal of Honor recipient said that McCain did not speak for POW’s. McCain was a loser from jump street a RINO and the darling of the media they turned on him like sharks on a bleeding member of there own species.
    Make no mistake Palins appeal is real and the left fears the hell out of her. If she bones up on a couple of things and gets a little voice training she can win it with out doubt. I do not know if she will run against the One but she can beat him and beat him badly. Huckaby was never more than a regional canidate and will never really have a chance. I never trusted him.

  14. October 12, 2009 6:33 am

    Yes, Mr Schmidt, because McCain as the Republican candidate in 2008 certainly didn’t result in a “catastrophic election result”, right?

  15. October 12, 2009 6:37 am

    Its too bad that people could not understand the real potential that Sarah Palin had and still has. She would have been 50 times better than the idiot we have in there now. Come 2012 I hope Sarah Palin gives it another run for President. Do to the one in the Oval Office now, we need Sarah Palin in office more than ever. I would not trust anyone but her.
    I know they can’t buy her, and I absolutely know she would clean house all around.

  16. Hal Kohn permalink
    October 12, 2009 8:07 am

    McCain’s campaign failed because of ineptitude. They allowed themselves to be put in a box, and behaved as though they were running for Miss Congeniality. The Democrats had painted McCain as an angry man, and McCain’s campaign did everything they could to create a non-hostile image. What they created was a loser.

  17. Terry permalink
    October 12, 2009 8:31 am

    It is a measure of Sarah’s potential , that the Left has done it’s best to tar her early and heavily. McCain wouldn’t have won the election with or without her. His campaign was badly run, and transparent (to use a currently popular but as a practical matter, relatively meaningless word) in it’s disarray, compared to the slick machine on the Obama side. There was and is far more scandal to tar Obama with than there ever has been with Palin, McCain foolishly embodied gentility in that regard–he took most of the questions regarding Obama off the table from the start. Perhaps his campaign manager could best be faulted for that, either for supporting his candidate’s humble gentility, or for not telling McCain how foolish that stance was against a totally ruthless and corrupt opponent.

    • Jack Hampton permalink
      October 12, 2009 12:00 pm

      Not to mention the fact that McStain was scared to death because Obama was black. He feared the dreeded term racist. But Palin understands that term no longer has the sting it did unless it is truly racist. It would not be wise for an apponent to make that charge against her.

  18. Dick Cress permalink
    October 12, 2009 8:58 am

    Palin would get my vote and support and so would J.C. Watts.

  19. Fritz Becker permalink
    October 12, 2009 5:15 pm

    Palin is attacked for one simple reason, she isn’t part of the Washington/Beltway establishment. Steve Schmidt is almost as much of a loser as that carpet bagger Mark Mckinnon, does he really think that anyone will hire him to direct a campaign after ripping his own candidate. Sure, it will get him on the 10 am slot on MSNBC, into a few cocktail parties, and maybe get to write a book nobody will read, other then that he’s finished, he would have been better off keeping his mouth shut.

  20. MikeD permalink
    October 12, 2009 7:35 pm

    We should all realize that Sarah Palin had more ability to govern than Obama and Biden combined. She is a capable manger of people and proved that in her past active lifestyle and work ethic. The two now occupying the White House never did anything but criticize our constitution and run campaigns to which they are now playing (paying) pay-back. How can we expect anything from a campaign in which the terms ‘transparency’ and ‘rule of law’ by Obama and his cohorts were used repeatedly and yet has not been shown at all by any of the Obama cabinet members? The American people were lied to with promises of Hope for the solving of all Americas’ needs and all we have received is ‘change for worser’ than before.

    • Terry permalink
      October 12, 2009 8:06 pm

      Cabinet Members? Does he have a Cabinet? I could have sworn he didn’t (other than Hillary); just Czars. I wonder if he even meets with the “real” cabinet members!

      • October 12, 2009 8:18 pm

        I don’t think he does anything except talk to his CZARS, some we are paying a salary to. But we have no say of what anyone does in this administration, they forgot they work for us. Thank god it will be only until the elections in 2010 and 2012, then there history.

    • October 12, 2009 8:26 pm

      I agree, but first we need to clean house come the election in 2010. Make sure everyone you know understands that we can not put another Democrat in office no matter what. Spread the word. In 2012 we again must take this President out of the oval office. Then I hope Sarah Palin runs again. America needs her desperately, I hope she understands this. But in the meantime spread the work, no more Democrats put back into office.

  21. KYATL permalink
    December 4, 2009 4:44 pm

    When you read Sara Palin’s new book you will learn the truth about Schmidt. He was clearly inept as her manager during the election. Although she never speaks out against anyone, the facts speak for themselves. She did not fit their particular box and they continued to bind and restrict her every word and deed. I’m just happy now she’s free to speak her mind, share her values and vision for the nation without someone from the far left throwing yet another ethics charge at her. They tried to destroy her. The legal fees she paid to fight those bogus charges was more than she earned in the 2 years of being Governor. I hope everything she and her family endured will be redeemed in the days and years ahead. This woman has value. People who say she isn’t intelligent only show their own stupidity. I would vote for her no matter what office she ran for because she has integrity.


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