The Breathtaking Ignorance of the Washington Post’s Rachel Weiner

Either stunning ignorance, laziness, sheer incompetence, or outright deception.  Take your pick.  Not that any of those options is unusual for our friends at the Washington Compost. The most surprising aspect of Weiner’s piece is that it, presumably, was meant to give Governor Palin some credit for Deb Fischer’s upset win Tuesday night in Nebraska. Weiner even managed to make sense…for a while:

Tuesday night, a little-known state lawmaker won the Nebraska Republican Senate primary, beating out two better-funded and better-known rivals.

A week earlier, Sen. Deb Fischer had gotten the endorsement of former Alaska governor Sarah Palin.

Yet in the wake of Fischer’s victory, Palin’s involvement has gotten little attention.

It isn’t anything Palin did wrong.

“The timing of her endorsement was perfect,” said Fischer campaign manager Aaron Trost. Palin endorsed a week before the vote, giving Fischer an eleventh-inning boost of credibility. “It was when voters were paying attention.”

It was also her second winning pick of the cycle — she also backed Indiana Senate nominee Richard Mourdock, who unseated Sen. Dick Lugar (R) in a primary last week.

So far, so good. Unfortunately, Weiner’s careens wildly off track and into the land of make believe with this idiocy:

Palin may have lost credibility as a kingmaker after the last cycle. She endorsed scores of candidates, many of whom turned out to be high-profile flops — most notably Nevada’s Sharron Angle and Delaware’s Christine O’Donnell.

The only part of that Weiner got right is that, yes; Governor Palin did indeed endorse Christine O’Donnell in the primary against Mike Castle. O’Donnell may not have been the perfect candidate, but when compared to Mike Castle, she was the second coming of Ronald Reagan. Moreover, there’s nothing conclusive to support the notion that Castle would have beaten the “bearded Marxist“, Chris Coons,  had she endorsed Castle or declined to endorse anyone. (After all, Delaware is the state that elected Slow Joe Biden year after year after year…) Indeed there’s nothing to support the idea that O’Donnell wouldn’t have won the primary anyway. The evidence on this is, at best, inconclusive. I digress.

What about Weiner’s other assertions? Did Governor Palin back Sharron Angle in the 2010 Nevada Senate Primary and did she somehow “lose credibility” with her endorsements in the midterms “last cycle”? Let’s take a look, shall we.

First, as we noted yesterday, the continuing meme that Governor Palin endorsed Sharron Angle in the Nevada Primary is utter BS. It never happened. I challenge Weiner, or any of the other mainstream media morons who continue to promulgate this idiocy, to produce one shred of evidence to the contrary. Parenthetically, if Weiner is talking about the general election, what’s her point? Every Republican I’m aware of endorsed Sharron Angle in the general election. I’ll wager that even Mandate Mitt preferred Angle over Dingy Harry. Is Weiner suggesting Palin should have endorsed Mr. Cowboy Poetry in the general? If so, perhaps she can name one other prominent Republican who did. I won’t hold my breath on that one since…there weren’t any.

Weiner’s other contention, that Governor Palin lost credibility as a result of her endorsements in the 2010 midterms, is so sublimely stupid that I had to read it several times to make sure I was reading her words correctly. Sadly, I was. Let’s look at what happened in the real world. As Jedediah Bila noted, Governor Palin’s success rate in 2010 was a stunning 71%:

Palin’s 71% endorsement success rate thus far—52 wins out of 73 declared races featuring Palin-endorsed candidates (eight additional races are undecided as of 1:30 p.m. on November 4)—is impressive, especially considering that she embraced a number of underdogs in traditionally blue states. Of particular importance is the fact that eighteen of the twenty candidates backed in Palin’s Take Back the 20 initiative have won their races (one race is undecided as of 1:30 p.m. on November 4). That’s a 90% success rate.

It would be most interesting to hear Weiner’s explanation as to how such a remarkable success rate is consistent with “lost credibility”.  We won’t, of course, since it’s nothing of the sort. Quite the opposite, in fact. Conservative activists were certainly aware of Governor Palin’s influence. In a poll of conservative bloggers (that would be those people who live and breathe politics day in and day out), 62% declared her the MVP of the 2010 election:

Out of the following people and groups, which do you think was the most valuable player in the election cycle?

Jim DeMint: 10.6% (7 votes)

The NRCC: 16.7% (11 votes)

The NRSC: 0.0% (0 votes)

Sarah Palin: 62.1% (41 votes)

The RGA: 9.1% (6 votes)

The RNC: 1.5% (1 vote)

In an interview with the National Review’s Robert Costa at the conclusion of the end of the 2010 primaries, Rick Santorum was asked about the relative importance of several prominent Republican’s endorsements in that cycle:

“Palin is the only endorsement anyone wants,” he laughs. “If you ask who the most influential endorsers are, Palin is numbers one, two, and three, with maybe Sen. Jim DeMint at four. Her endorsement is the only one that matters this year. Just look at what she did for Nikki Haley.”

What about Romney, the man Santorum supported in the 2008 presidential campaign? “No offense to Mitt, but he doesn’t carry the weight,” Santorum says. “Mitt can help you with some finance people, maybe in some small way, but his pull is insignificant compared to Palin’s.”

I could go on, but you get the point. Remind me again: What was the obtuse WaPo reporter talking about when she referred to Governor Palin’s “lost credibility” in the 2010 election cycle?



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