Palin Joins Bachmann In Bashing Perry Over HPV Vaccine

In an appearance Monday night on Fox News Channel, Sarah Palin joined in the attacks on Rick Perry over his decision to mandate Garadisil inoculations for all seventh grade girls in Texas:

Sarah Palin might have sounded like an ally of Representative Michele Bachmann on Monday night when she assailed an executive order in Texas mandating that girls receive the HPV vaccine, calling it a possible product of “crony capitalism.”

But, as Ms. Palin continues to consider her own presidential bid, the comments could also be interpreted as her first overt attack on Gov. Rick Perry of Texas, the man who signed the 2007 order — a move he later withdrew and was forced to defend at the Republican debate on Monday night.

“I knew even at that time something was up with that issue,” Ms. Palin said on Fox News after the debate, noting that Mr. Perry’s former chief of staff had ties to Merck, the company that manufactures the Gardasil vaccine. “And now we’re finding out, yeah, something was up with that issue. It was an illustration or a bit of evidence of some crony capitalism.”

Here’s the video:

To some extent, Palin jumping on Perry along with Bachmann seems unusual because she had previously avoided criticizing him, and even sent signals that some interpreted as signs that she might endorse him if he chose to run for President and she did not, but that’s changed in recent weeks. Whether this signals anything or not is anyone’s guess, but the “crony capitalism” tag is one that clearly resonates with Tea Party supporters and, if Palin really is thinking about getting into the race (and I still don’t think she is) then it would be a weapon to use against him. Of course, Perry could turn around and point out that Palin has “crony capitalism” problems of her own.

In any case, the one person who clearly benefits from this infighting on this right is Mitt Romney, because as long as they’re fighting with each other, he’s looking like the adult in the room.

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2012, Politicians, Quick Takes, Sarah Palin, US Politics,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. narciso says:

    Not surprisingly, Doug, the link ‘doesn’t mean what you think it does’ there is a wider point about the CDC and Merck, but that you wouldn’t be interested in that

  2. Anonne says:

    People in glass houses…

  3. Neill Fendly says:

    Palin has the oerfect role, forget the issue, stay on the sidelines and never get on the playing field. Actually as long as she stayts there I am good, my GOP has bigger problems and don’t ned her to become another one.

  4. Don says:

    What awesome moral and medical authority this woman has! Didn’t her daughter take something like $262,000 for promoting abstinence? Perhaps all the girls in Texas should just follow the Palin’s foolproof commitment to abstinence and they won’t get pregnant or HPV. It is certainly better to give Bristol $262,000 to insure all teenage girls stop having sex than it is to give Perry $5000 and have all girls vaccinated to help prevent cancer.