Karl Rove: Sarah Palin Needs To Stop Being So Thin Skinned
As I noted the other day, Karl Rove stated in an appearance on Fox News Channel that, based on the publicly available information, he believed that Sarah Palin was indeed going to run for President. This led Palin, through her SarahPAC to issue a statement blasting Rove, although not mentioning him by name:
It was this analysis that prompted Palin’s political organization, Sarah PAC, to issue a blistering statement overnight tamping down expectations about her political future.
“Any professional pundit claiming to have ‘inside information’ regarding Gov. Palin’s personal decision is not only wrong but their comments are specifically intended to mislead the American public,” the PAC said on its blog.
Of course, in his original statement Rove never claimed to have inside information. In any event. Rove appeared last night on Greta van Susterin’s show and the war of words continued:
On Wednesday night, former Bush administration official Karl Rove accused 2008 vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin of having “enormous thin skin” for getting upset over speculation about her future plans.
“It is a sign of enormous thin skin that if we speculate about her, she gets upset,” Rove said on Fox News. “And I suspect if we didn’t speculate about her, she’d be upset and try and find a way to get us to speculate about her … I’m mystified.”
Rove had said over the weekend that he thought Palin would run for president; in response, her political action committee put up an unsigned blog post saying “DC pundits” were using false information specifically intended to mislead the American public.”
Rachel Weiner at The Washington Post that Rove’s comments about Palin are actually part of a rather obvious effort on his part to undermine the candidacy of Rick Perry. That may be the case, but it’s also true that Rove and Palin have clashed in the past:
Rove is a paid pundit for Fox News, Rove has an incentive to take his skepticism public — and Palin has a stake in responding if she wants to remain in the public eye, for financial or political reasons.
In July of 2009, Rove questioned Palin’s decision to step down as governor of Alaska. “It’s a risky strategy,” he told Fox News. “Effective strategies in politics are ones that are so clear and obvious that people can grasp. It’s not clear what she’s doing and why.”
In October of 2010, Rove told the British Telegraph that he wasn’t sure Palin had the “gravitas” to be president: “With all due candor, appearing on your own reality show on the Discovery Channel, I am not certain how that fits in the American calculus of ‘that helps me see you in the Oval Office.”
Palin responded snarkily, saying, “Wasn’t Ronald Reagan an actor? Wasn’t he in ‘Bedtimes for Bonzo,’ bozo or something? … I’m not in a reality show. I have eight episodes documenting Alaska’s resources.”
She added in another interview, “Karl has planted a few other political seeds out there that are quite negative and unnecessary. You know what? I kind of feel like, why do they feel so threatened and so paranoid?”
Rove defended himself on Fox News, saying “a confident candidate doesn’t get thrown off” by questions.
It’s unclear if this is part of some underlying political war between the two or not, but things could get pretty interesting if Palin actually does decided to get into the race.