DeMint: Palin Will Help the GOP

Sen. Jim DeMint, known for his "Waterloo" comment, is cool to a Palin presidency.

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By Andrew Burt, Washington Whispers

Sen. Jim DeMint doesn't seem ready to stop making headlines. The folksy South Carolina conservative and arch opponent to President Obama made news this week when he said that the administration's healthcare plan would prove to be Obama's "Waterloo."

In an unrelated interview, we asked the author of the new book Saving Freedom about Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's future, and that of former Vice President Dick Cheney. On both, DeMint seemed to indicate that their future wasn't in the White House.

DeMint suggested that Cheney's recent involvement in the public debate was focused on correcting what the former veep sees as inaccurate portrayals of the Bush-Cheney term, not a bid for a broader role. "I don't think Cheney's going to have a role in the future, and I don't think he pretends to have a role," said DeMint. "He's done some things to defend the actions of [his] administration, which I don't blame him doing, but I don't think you'll see him as a key figure as we go into the next election."

But the senator does see a role for Palin, who recently announced she was stepping down as governor before the end of her term. "I think she'll be an outspoken spokesperson for the principles of freedom and conservatism, and I think she will really help the Republican Party, just like Newt Gingrich," he said, referencing the former House speaker who's toyed with but never committed to a presidential bid. "I don't know if Sarah Palin will be running for office again or not," said DeMint. The political scene could change in three years, he added: "The landscape's going to be totally different."

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