I’m sorry. I don’t know how to break it to all of you in the lower 49, and the rest of the world… We here in Alaska have known from Day 2 (on Day 1 we were too much in shock to think), that Sarah Palin was never going to go away for us. Win or lose, we would be branded with a big “SP” on our flank for all time. No longer would people hear we were from Alaska, and react with, “Wow. Is it cold? Is it dark 6 months out of the year? What do you do up there in the winter? Do you need a passport? Is crab cheap?” We knew from the beginning we’d be forced to answer questions about Sarah Palin for the rest of our lives.
But you….you outsiders didn’t know. And we didn’t know either, that despite losing the race for Vice President….and in spite of actually causing the loss for the Republican ticket, that you would have to live with her too. No, people won’t be asking you if you know her, or what Wasilla is really like, or if you see her in the grocery store. But she will be in your life for a long time to come, like it or not. (patting you on the back).
Agents from the William Morris Agency and elsewhere, have come knocking. There even has been an offer to host a TV show.
“Tomorrow, Governor Palin could do an interview with any news media on the planet,” said her spokesman, Bill McAllister. “Tomorrow, she could probably sign any one of a dozen book deals. She could start talking to people about a documentary or a movie on her life. That’s the level we are at here.”
Barbara Walters called me. George Stephanopoulos called me,” McAllister said. “I’ve had multiple conversations with producers for Oprah, Letterman, Leno and ‘The Daily Show.'”
Asked whether Winfrey was pursuing Palin for a sit-down, Michelle McIntyre, a spokeswoman for Winfrey’s Chicago-based Harpo Productions Inc., said she was “unable to confirm any future plans” for the show.
John McCain plucked Palin out of relative obscurity in late August and put her on the national GOP ticket. Now, she has to decide how and where to spend her time, which could have implications for her political future and her bank account, with possible land mines of legal and ethical rules.
Ethics shmethics. That’s never stopped her before! Is that a crack in the door? (running start, slamming shoulder into door…) OOPH! (rubs shoulder and tries again) ….OOOPH! (rolls up sleeves backs up and gives it one more try) ~~~~~~AAAAAAAAAA!!!! OOOOOPH! (Door splinters and comes off hinge. She kicks it in with her shiny red pump and straightens her jacket. Steps over threshold, brushing off palms.) “I knew it was God’s plan!”
Palin is considering about 800 requests for appearances from December through 2009, with 75 percent coming from out of state. A year ago, just a sprinkle of requests came from beyond Alaska’s borders. They range from invitations to speak at The Chief Executives’ Club of Boston to attend a 5-year-old’s birthday party, from a prayer breakfast in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, to a business conference in Britain.
And the rest of the country may be seeing more of her than we will. We’ve been sans Governor for a while now, and there is a great deal of pressure for her to actually….I don’t know…..govern. But the siren song of the spotlight might just be too tempting for our newest and biggest celebrity. Her advisors may want her to stick around and work, but she’s been known to go “rogue” before.
While books and movie deals could be worth millions of dollars, it’s not clear if Palin would be able to legally earn it. State rules say she cannot accept outside employment for compensation. But there appears to be little in the way of precedent left by former governors to judge if book deals or lucrative speaking appearances amount to “employment.”
OK. (slaps a $20 bill on the table) Anybody want to bet me that she’s going to suddenly decide that she would be breaking ethics guidelines by accepting a multi-million dollar book deal, and a movie about her life? Anybody?……………….Anybody?