NY-23: Palin for Hoffman, No Endorsement from Pawlenty
John McCormack had the news first. Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who has largely stayed away from candidate endorsements this year, swung for the fences yesterday and endorsed Conservative Party candidate Doug Hoffman in New York’s 23rd Congressional District.
Political parties must stand for something. When Republicans were in the wilderness in the late 1970s, Ronald Reagan knew that the doctrine of “blurring the lines” between parties was not an appropriate way to win elections. Unfortunately, the Republican Party today has decided to choose a candidate that more than blurs the lines, and there is no real difference between the Democrat and the Republican in this race. This is why Doug Hoffman is running on the Conservative Party’s ticket.
Palin’s endorsement moves this campaign from the sidelines to the center stage of the off-year elections. It’s sort of telling that Jake Tapper of ABC News mistakenly thought that Dick Armey was endorsing Hoffman as a reaction to Palin. Armey actually endorsed Hoffman on Monday — it’s just that the national media wasn’t quite paying attention yet.
The first repercussion of Palin’s move? Last time, reporters got a chance to ask Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R-Minn.) if he’d make an endorsement in the race, and Pawlenty said he hadn’t been following it. That the little special election has become a litmus test is a story in itself; that Pawlenty, who is promoting his political action committee right now, passed on a chance to endorse a moderate Republican in a historically Republican district is another story.