April 8, 2010

2012 already? Showcase previews GOP contest

Posted: 09:00 PM ET



Like it or not, the 2012 presidential race is already underway.

Beginning Thursday, thousands of Republicans will gather in New Orleans for the Southern Republican Leadership Conference, a three-day event that's the GOP presidential nomination's equivalent of the annual NFL Scouting Combine for aspiring draft picks.

The lineup includes prominent Republican VIPs who might run for president, including former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Texas Gov. Rick Perry. And political observers will be looking for clues about the nascent battle for the Republican presidential nomination.

Four years ago in Memphis, Tenn., Mitt Romney made a splash at the event, coming out of nowhere to finish a surprising second at the conference’s straw poll. The strong showing was an early indication that the Massachusetts governor would be a player in the 2008 presidential contest.

(The conference, however, isn't always a reliable predictor of the eventual GOP presidential nominee. The winner of the 2006 straw poll was former Republican Senate leader Bill Frist of Tennessee, who never ran for president. Another closely watched Republican who spoke at the event — former Virginia Sen. George Allen — ended up losing his seat later that year.)

But even if its top performers don't always go on to the GOP nomination, the SRLC serves as the first real opportunity for party leaders, prominent donors and the political press corps to size up the early field.


Filed under: GOP • Politics

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michael armstrong sr.   April 8th, 2010 9:08 pm ET

I hope the hell that our republican party is not trying to put Sara into the race for president surly there not that stupid .

Theresa   April 8th, 2010 9:55 pm ET,my....the Republican Party Leadership candidates....the majority of them are members of the Misfits Club!!!! What a sad group to pick from!!!!

Cajazz76:24:8   April 8th, 2010 10:17 pm ET

Finally LKL you have a winner!!!!

RON PAUL AND ANN COULTER ...The Republican Ticket for 2012..

SARAH PALIN....The Secretary of Ignorance..

JESSIE VENTURA...The Ambassador of Bullcorn..

ROD BLAGOJEVICH...The Secretary of Educational Toys..

Dodie   April 8th, 2010 10:43 pm ET

Sarah Palin preaches to her disciples that the current war in Iraq and Afghanistan is akin to a messianic affair and the United States could act out the will of the Lord. Sara Palin continued to preach:

"Pray for our military men and women who are striving to do what is right. Also, for this country, that our leaders, our national leaders, are sending U.S. soldiers out on a task that is from God.......That's what we have to make sure that we're praying for, that there is a plan and that that plan is God's plan.....The US being secured through divine intervention!”

One must wonder. Does this sound like Palin is praying that the mission in Iraq and Afghanistan will be aligned with God's will? So when the nukes are being lobbed towards the US, Sarah will kneel down and pray for god to save us? Where is the division between Church and State? Hell, where is any division between her god and her religion..... spoken like a true right wing Christian Fundamentalist!

Sarah "shooter" Palin needs to mount her dead horse and ride back to the land of country pumpkin where she can see Russia from her home.

This farm girl may be a cheerleader; however, she definitely runs center-fold to any comic strip for an elected office!

Yes, Sarah! god help us if you become president as we will definitely need something!

Gerald Jolly   April 8th, 2010 11:36 pm ET

Unquestionably the biggest joke of the new century.

Imagine a person that could'nt take the heat of governing a low populated state and resigning, becoming the President of the most powerful country in the world.

If one was going to conjure up the most ridiculous joke of the century Sarah Palin as President Ha! Ha! Ha!

The only advantage I could see to that scenario would be that she could spend time at the WINTER WHITEHOUSE in Alaska watching what the Russians are up too from her back porch.

Can you imagine Sarah having a meeting with the joint chiefs of staff, and having to write all the questions she would need to as by writing them on the palm of her hand, the armpit of her arm the space between her toes and the crack of her!@#$.

Imagine her bringing two of her daughters iligitimate children to take the OATH of OFFICE.

Imagine her raising everyones taxes so she could replenish her wardrobe every month.

Imagine her insisting on removing the buffallo on one of our coins and replacing it with a moose.

Imagine being escorted by 12 snowmobiles when riding in her antelope pulled sliegh at all presidential parades.

Imagine her resinding health care for all those who are not TEA PARTIERS, or REPUBLICANS,

Yep Folks.


Judy Knight   April 8th, 2010 11:53 pm ET

Oh my God, I can't believe we have to listen to Sarah Palin for 2 years, not even knowing where she lives but she can she Russia from her house. And yes Sarah, there is a North and South Korea.
She is not capable of running her own life, let alone the terribly distraught country we live in!!!!

MaRiA805   April 9th, 2010 12:29 am ET

Hurray!!!... Thank you Mr. Larry King finally the real talk am looking for on national tv and YES on your show wow!!.I hope this evolves to a continuous debate beacuse like myself and many americans desirve to hear the truth and lets face it the media sometimes edits or is sensored & controled by other means . can't wait to tell my family and friends.. Your really having Ron Paul & Jesse Ventura Tomorrow WOW!!.. ...Thank God for Free Speech..

Hugh in California   April 9th, 2010 1:10 am ET

The sorry truth is that there are too many religious fanatics living in America believing they're merely conservative fundamentalists supporting politicians like Sarah Palin. This woman would not even be a political star in the republican party otherwise. The right wing has gone so far off the political mainstream they are walking a tight-rope and could fall right into the abyss and take the rest of us with them! "Bomb, bomb, bomb Iran" is Palin's answer to Iran's nuclear poliferation. Yes, that was John McCain, but Sarah Palin has already accused President Obama of not getting tough enough with Iran's nuclear plans, and if she had her way it would mean using military force to remedy the situation. Take God there is no need to hit the red button just yet!

I like to show political humor and sarcasm whenever I can but this is not something to be merely laughed at - in all seriousness. I'm not so concerned about Sarah Palin as I am with all the religious nuts in this country. That's right - nuts! She could not even get elected without all these patriotic hatriotics with their narrow-minded view of the world.

I cannot believe these teabag extremists can try to label and call our president so many things that are totally untrue and cheer on this scatterbrain who - in all seriousness and candor - is probably not up to the job of running a carwash, let alone a country! It's not enough to say "God Bless America," anymore; it should be "God Help America" if these so-called patriots are successful at electing anyone to high office with the limited mindset of someone remotely close to that of Sarah Palin! Beware what you wish for.

Hugh in California   April 9th, 2010 1:13 am ET

Excuse my typos; I meant to say "Thank God there is no need to hit the red button...."

Ted   April 9th, 2010 9:25 am ET

I think any intelligent person, regardless of party affiliation, should have shivers running over his or her back just at the thought of this woman being our president!!

We already had a president with a high IQ of 75 whom the whole world hated and laughed at, do we need someone with even less education and intelligence? It is a mystery to me how did Sarah become a governor with her junior highschool knowledge and ways.
Perhaps a lot of mooses and grizzlies voted for her.

Expat American   April 9th, 2010 9:37 am ET

I pray that Sarah Palin emerges as the front runner for the GOP candidacy for President in 2012.

It would be a historical event if/when educated American voters are given the opportunity, in front of the entire world and real time global news, to soundly defeat an ignorant, unintelligent hate/fear monger who hides behind a fabricated bastardization of European Christianity and a beauty pageant bikini to justify her core beliefs of ignorance, lies, bigotry, racism while representing her base of 'Real America'.

Palin 2012.

Theresa   April 9th, 2010 1:36 pm ET

I don't think it's just Sarah Palin that should make people give their heads a shake. Just invite a few of her friends along...Rush, Glen. Michelle, Anne, Tancredo...that's just to name a few. How sad these choices are...if any get elected ..envision the 50'& 60's that's the world you'll live in!!!! I'm a sister's an American sorry I feel for her!!!

Angela Savage Austin   April 9th, 2010 1:59 pm ET

For someone who was a Vice President candidate and regarding Foreign affairs she say perky statements such as "I can see Russia from Alaska"...she sounds equally as ignorant to belittle President Obama as a Community Organizer...and fail to see that the World is a his experience is valued Sarah Palin....can you see that? I BET YA CAN!!!!!!!!

Betty   April 9th, 2010 2:05 pm ET

Can't believe that Sarah Palin knows more about Nuclear weapons than the Generals at the Pentagon. Can't believe that she thinks that the only True Americans, are the people who believe what she believes. And would also like to know how in the world she thinks that America can have police, schools, highways, & all that our country needs to make our country great, without taxes. That she knocks the President of the United States , but props up K, in Afghanstan.
What country does she really support?
This woman is a time bomb ready to go off at any time.
I am tired of the media giving her free air time to sprew her hatred and dishoner the President of the United States of America.
She has crossed the line of free speech.
She incites violence.

shanna Moore   April 9th, 2010 6:11 pm ET

Hi Larry !
I just listen to Sarah Palin insulting President Obama.
How this woman who didn't go to College because she got pregnant by a fisherboy who married her is out limit. Obama is well educated and like Michelle Obama. Maybe Republicans are ready to send an housewife who came to become a Mayor in a small City in the lost State of Alaska and a partime Governor by the power of a powerful Politician to the Wjite House.
In fact, they hate this Country enough to choose to spend 10 billions a month of the taxes payers' money by doing war in a foreign Country instead of helping poor people to live a better life and have treatments when they are sick.
America is not great when Citizens are beging money around Streets corners to feed they children or are dying because they cannot see a Doctor or have treatments. Obama didn't bring this to America. The Dems neither...
Obama came to save our Country and this is God's figth against the Republicans who are spending money to make him fall because Americans of Main Street and they children are crying to him.
Have a nice day!

Gerald Jolly   April 9th, 2010 8:40 pm ET

Although I dont think it would ever happen, if Sarah Palin ever was elected to the Presidency of the United States of America, it would bring about the darkest days of our Union and constitution.

We must all guard against that from ever happening, and not allow ourselves to ever think it could not happen

Case in point, A COWARD, A DRUNK, A DRUG USER, and THE WORLDS BIGGEST LIAR was elected to two terms as the President, and just look at where and what has happened to our country because of that.

WE MUST BE VIGILANT, and make sure we go to the polls and insure that will never happen.

Speak to your families and friends.


Cathy   April 9th, 2010 8:45 pm ET

How do think anyone can save the country when the current president wants to tax to death half the people and the other half pay no taxes. There won't be a country to save.

Diane   April 9th, 2010 9:29 pm ET

Ck out the racial makeup @ the Southern Repulican Conference today and ask yourself which party is Radical!

john robinson   April 9th, 2010 10:28 pm ET

I'm an African American, born in 1964. These people, and their hate scare me. I'm a very peaceful man. I see diversity as an asset for my Country. The blatant racism that the Tea Parties, and the Republican side of the Congress have displayed in the first year of this new President, gives me a glimmer of the fear that my Parents must have had to deal with in their youth, and adulthood most of their lives. This leads me to a profound question. What have we really, trully learned from the deaths of Meadger Evers, John,and Robert Kennedy, or Martin Luther King Jr.? What have we learned from these tragic moments of our American history? If we continue this hateful road that we've recently been on,........Apparently nothing. I view healthcare as I saw the same care that strangers showed when they helped emergency workers desperatley trying to save lives at ground zero on September,11th. The same agape love, as i saw strangers opening their homes to Katrina survivors. That same care, and urgency trying to save lives as those workers try to get to those trapped in the recent coal mine explosion. We as a nation should show love for our fellow Countrymen. In saying; "No one should go into financial ruin, and homelessness for healthcare, and unemploment." That's what America MUST be about.

Dodie   April 10th, 2010 1:17 am ET

@ john robinson

What an incredibly insightful well written blog with such clarity. Very impressive! Your expression of the generational over-time experience of being from a dark skinned race and coming to the realization, not much has changed is compelling and profound. With the realization we can come together as a country; however, it is seldom and usually attached to a catastrophe.

Thank you for sharing your insight! Hopefully others will read what you have written and gather some needed knowledge.

Thank You John Robinson, Thank You

Milly   April 10th, 2010 9:26 pm ET

Let us just see what happens in 2012. I think we are all in for a big surprise. I love surprises....................................... Have a very wonderful day. I love you all.

mary-jane   April 10th, 2010 10:57 pm ET

Sarah Palin is a right wingnut with her religion that paves the way. Very frightening!

Ted   April 11th, 2010 11:00 am ET

@ Milly

I love surprises, too, however not the ones that ruin my life for the next four years. We should get more mature about politics, do not vote for a pretty face, but for character and insight.

Rose   April 12th, 2010 2:28 pm ET

Palin is a sad reflection of the ignorant Americans who support her. There would not be 'a Palin' if we did not have so many stupid people in this country. By stupid, I mean people who have no clue about foreign policy, civics, history and the misapplication of religious right wing belief into complex political situations i.e. using End-of-Days biblical prophesies to influence positions on Middle East conflicts. No clue, yet they hold "positions" on issues.

I don't mean people with differing viewpoints, I mean people with no viewpoint due to ignorance. With no information to discern truth from bull crap, they are easily stirred by Palin's shallow rhetoric. And she's banking on it. Many use the Tea Party as a dumping ground for their racial prejudices.

Plain said in her Tea Party speech in February: "It's that same kind of misguided thinking that is seen throughout the Administration's foreign policy decisions. Our president (Obama) spent a year reaching out to hostile regimes, writing personal letters to dangerous dictators".

What she failed to mention (as usual): Pres. Bush and Clinton also wrote personal appeals. In 2007, GW Bush wrote a personal letter to North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, raising the possibility of normalized relations if he fully discloses his nuclear programs by year. In 1999, Associated Press article reported, "North Korea's leader, Kim Jong Il, received a letter from President Clinton brought by a special envoy to the isolated Communist country".

There are too many false and misleading claims by Palin to note here. But her dimwitted supporters wouldn't know the difference. Some background, understanding or perspective is required to agree or disagree. Some critical thought (any?). There are others in office who are sophisticated enough to know how to manipulate Palin supporters for their purposes. Palin supporters are sadly lacking and they continue to be a poor reflection on America, as is Palin herself.

Rose   April 12th, 2010 5:18 pm ET

Palin in an interview with Fox News urged President Barack Obama to declare war on Iran in order to get re-elected in 2012.

She stated: "(Obama) decided to declare war on Iran or decided really to come out and do whatever he could to support Israel, which I would like him to do.” She continued to state that a military attack would change the dynamics in what could happen within the next three to five years. Yes, Sarah – change the dynamics into World War III.

It's all part of Palin's End-of-Days religious and tainted mentality. Help bring on apocalyptic war, support Israel with no consideration to the status of the peace process or breaking of international law re: illegal settlements. Eventually all of this is supposed to lead to the painful deaths of non-Christians as Jesus returns flying down from the sky, bringing much happiness to those who survived the "rapture". Reality check desperately in need here. The only army required is an army of good psychiatrists.

Palin may fancy herself as a soldier of God, but she has the Devil's agenda – as in death and destruction for the rest of us who don't wish to see the world annihilated.

Ted   April 13th, 2010 9:22 am ET

@ Rose

Amen, Rose, noone could say it any better.

Rose   April 13th, 2010 4:31 pm ET

Palin regurgitates over simplified information without analysis. She recently expressed an opinion based on Pat Buchanan's writing. She also delivers verbatim AIPAC's (American Israel Public Affairs Committee) position. AIPAC has a very strong lobby in the US and Palin has chosen to side with a lobby rather than take a position that is more reflective of America's balanced interests.

After Natanyahu's visit, Palin again regurgitated his anti American efforts in the region (i.e. illegal settlements, demands against Iran). She is good at memorizing (lacks original thought), but clearly not good at understanding multi faceted issues.

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