Andrew Malcolm On How Gov. Palin Connects So Well With Crowds

Monday, February 13, 2012

Andrew Malcolm published a piece today at Investor's Business Daily about Governor Palin's undeniable ability to connect to the crowds who gather to hear her speak:

No wonder CPAC saved Sarah for last. And adjourned the conference during her applause.

No one in their right mind would go on-stage after Palin's political palaver. People who dislike or fear her are incapable of seeing or admitting it. But that doesn't diminish the reality that Palin is a rare political celebrity and, therefore, an unharnessed power to be reckoned with within the GOP for the foreseeable future.

We're not talking about her running for any office. We're talking about her influence, her enduring proven ability to attract and then ignite a crowd -- even before anyone sees her. The CPAC buzz was electric all-day. Impatient "Sar-ah! Sar-ah!" chants broke out during preceding speakers.

She has the ability to speak about issues that profoundly bother the audience in common ways and words that listeners instantly recognize and wish they had thought to say just that way.


Most politicians these days talk to their audiences or, worse, at them. Even the Real Good Talker, who made his name on a 2004 convention speech and has been giving too many ever since. Governing is hard work. Campaigning is tiring, but much easier. So, he has been and will be campaigning, blaming others as usual.

Obama's standard fundraiser remarks have become tired, repetitious collections of recited pleas for $upport that few would voluntarily pay $35.80 to hear, let alone $35,800 per plate.

Instead, instinctively Palin doesn't speak at or to audiences. She speaks for them. She tells them what they've already accomplished through the tea party, for instance, and what they can accomplish this year and beyond if united. It's empowering and invigorating, no longer burdened by the attacks of enemies, she need play no defense. The audience hears that she knows them and eagerly becomes hers. To criticize Sarah is to criticize them.

It's a refreshing phenomenon to watch politically when compared to the current bipartisan cast of characters trying to communicate publicly in this presidential election year. Fascinating, as on either side the ones who are running aren't connecting. The one who isn't, is.

Excerpting Palin speeches loses the flow, the knitting together of her thoughts with the audience's. Even television filters the electricity of listening in the same room. The best we can do for now is provide her full speech on video.

P.S. After his CPAC speech, Santorum and clan walked off the stage. After theirs, Romney and Gingrich stepped down to shake hands with front-row members for a few minutes. Good moves.

After hers, Palin got a standing ovation. She waved for two minutes then plunged into the audience. Moving slowly like a mini-mob from one side of the vast ballroom to the other to accommodate the waves of well-wishers with hands outstretched and cellphones poised. Some sections spontaneously sang 'Happy Birthday' for her. And she was thrilled every time.

Sarah Palin did this for the better part of another hour, longer actually than her speech. TV was oblivious, the crews coiling their wires to go home as she continued shaking and touching hands on the ballroom floor below.

Click here to read the full article.

(h/t Stacy)


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