It appears as if the smug co-founder of No Labels John Avlon just can’t help himself. The reasonable, morally superior, moderate one has been trashing Governor Palin since she arrived on the national scene more than four years ago. He has made a small cottage industry out of this for himself and has parlayed this into getting a gig spewing his incoherent drivel on CNN. This site has taken him on several times for his garbage, and I bet will do so again in the future. I won’t link to any of his other work, as I don’t want him to get any more traffic. You can see a couple of takedowns of him here and here.
Today, the David Frum wannabe wrote his latest dishonest hit piece against Governor Palin in which he revealed the explosive bombshell that…wait, I hope you are all sitting down for this…Governor Palin has a staff! And she pays them!! I know. I’m just as shocked and dismayed as all of you are. I’m going to give Avlon the benefit of the doubt and assume he is not a stupid individual. He’s probably very bright. So, I think we have to conclude that Avlon is clueless due to the cocktail party bubble he lives in, or that he brings intellectual dishonesty to a new level. It’s probably a little bit of both.
What Avlon seems to be unwilling or incapable of understanding is that Governor Palin has never said no political figure should have a staff. She has always had people working for her. Her PAC does things that all other political action committees do- employ a handful of people, pay them for their services, raise money, and donate money to other candidates. Governor Palin has never claimed her PAC does otherwise. The point Governor Palin and others have been making about the consultant class is this- too many of them are only in it for the money and access to power, they have too much control over campaigns, and those that continue to lose over and over again keep on getting hired. Essentially, the political consulting business has become a racket. Does John Avlon want to dispute that? Maybe he’ll try, but he will look like a fool if he does.
Obviously, Avlon does not know the first thing about the people who work for SarahPAC or how Governor Palin operates. Not only that, he is not interested in knowing. Since I am not a part of Governor Palin’s inner circle, I am in no way an authority on her staff, but I have spoken to some who have interacted with a few of them. First off, her staff is relatively small. I have been told that the people who work for her are some of the most professional, loyal, and dedicated people in politics. In fact, one of her staffers is a founder of this website who went off several years ago to work for her. That does not sound like a political mercenary or hired gun to me. Her staff is never off talking behind her back or pining for face time on TV. I can’t recall ever seeing a staffer of SarahPAC do a TV interview. In other words, the men and women who work for Governor Palin do it for the right reasons. They believe in her and her message. What Avlon can’t comprehend is this- her small staff is not there to control her or handle her. They are there to assist her in getting HER message out to the masses. That is the difference between her staff and most of the consultant class Governor Palin referred to in her CPAC speech.
Another topic where Avlon goes horribly wrong is when he says Governor Palin doles out all this money for consultants, but does not give very much to candidates. This demonstrates such a low level of intellectual depth that he should probably call the financial office at Yale and ask for a refund for that expensive BA he received from them. What he and others of his ilk don’t seem to grasp is that Governor Palin could give all of her endorsees $1, and it would still have a huge effect. The simple act of her endorsement is far more powerful than the $5,000 maximum she could give to a candidate. Her endorsement has an exponential effect on a candidate’s fundraising and far exceeds whatever her PAC donates. We’ve all heard the stories of how the dollars flooded in like a tidal wave once Governor Palin went public with an endorsement. But it goes beyond that. Once the endorsement becomes public, the phone in the candidate’s campaign office starts ringing off the hook with people calling asking what they can do to help. Anyone who knows anything about politics knows that it’s the grunt work of making GOTV phone calls, stuffing envelopes, and precinct walking that wins elections. I have volunteered for and given money to candidates due to her endorsement. I’m not alone.
Ask any conservative candidate running in a GOP primary in a red state or district and they can only have one endorsement. Whose do you think they will want? Then ask them what would they rather have- $5,000 from SarahPAC that may not even be revealed until after the election, or a Tweet from Governor Palin giving her endorsement? Her endorsement is like the Good Housekeeping seal of approval. It allows a candidate to go out there to GOP voters and say, hey, I’ve taken the Pepsi Challenge and I’m legit. I know how Ted Cruz, Nikki Haley, Deb Fischer and others would respond. What would John Avlon say?
Maybe the most egregious point Avlon made, and that’s saying something, is Governor Palin is attempting to raise all this money so she can live the high life and travel in style. This is total garbage, and anyone who has seen Governor Palin in action knows this. Myself and others have witnessed this. At the big premiere of The Undefeated in Pella, the Gov and Todd rented a red Ford SUV and drove themselves from Des Moines to Pella. Myself and a couple others went out to Kansas City last summer for the Steelman for Senate rally. She was there with Todd, Willow, and Piper. They had the family RV, and a black SUV was rented for her 2 or 3 staffers that were there assisting her. Many others have reported running into her at the airport and being on her commercial flight after she did an event. Not exactly champagne and caviar living, huh, John?
So there you go, John. Your patent dishonesty has been exposed yet again. We know you’ll try this crap again in a few weeks. We’ll be here. I’m guessing that Yale and Columbia education bought you many things, but class and a clue were not among them.