By Paul Bedard, Washington Whispers
Worse than Dan Quayle before her, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's bright star has fast faded in the eyes of Washington Republican officials and analysts, calling into question her efforts to become a national party figure ready to run for the White House. "She's just not ready for prime time," said a party strategist who has worked for former President Bush. "I mean, she's starting to look like she's having trouble being governor of Alaska." At issue is her weak debut, hampered by the mishandling of her by Sen. John McCain's campaign, and subsequent family issues such as the most recent tiff with Levi Johnston, the father of her first grandchild and ex-fiancé of her daughter Bristol.
Since running for vice president with McCain, Palin has made efforts to be a national figure, starting a political action committee and speaking at national events in Washington. But she has also blown other chances, backed out of speech commitments, and allowed herself to be caught in a fight between state and national aides who have different roles for her in mind. While some Republican officials say that there is time for her to recover, many are already looking to others to carry the GOP flag, such as Mitt Romney or Newt Gingrich, in the 2010 and 2012 elections.
Check out more Washington Whispers.