Sarah Palin, former Alaskan governor and former U.S. vice presidential candidate, annouced her support for Sen. Orrin Hatch this week in a surprise endorsement given in a Fox News interview.
Palin joins other GOP heavyweights in pledging support for the six-term Utah senator — this coming just days after Republican 2012 presidential candidate Mitt Romney offered his endorsement to Hatch. In an upset during the Utah Republican Convention, Hatch couldn’t secure the 60 percent delegate vote required to avoid a primary election to take place in June.
“Orrin Hatch is part of the one percent. No, not that one percent you’ve heard about. He’s part of the one percent of national politicians who I think should be reelected.” Palin said.
Since hitting the national stage as Sen. John McCain’s vice presidential runningmate during the 2008 presidential election, Palin has collected a series of uncomfortable public appearences.
In a 2008 ABC News interview with Katie Couric, Palin stumbled through foreign policy topics, particularly in responding to a question Couric asked Palin about a statement the former governor made: “You can actually see Russia from land here in Alaska,” Palin said when asked about her foreign policy experience.
Also in 2008 as sitting governor, Palin carried out a tradition of giving a governor’s pardon to a Thanksgiving turkey, while the slaugtering of other turkeys is happening right behind Palin during an on-camera interview. During the incident, Palin was on the GOP ticket as vice president to candidate Sen. McCain.
Hatch welcomed Palin’s endorsement saying he is “deeply honored,” commenting on the former governor’s committment to stand for liberty.
“There are few as committed to the cause of liberty and the ideals that have made this nation great as Sarah Palin,” said Hatch in a press release. “Her voice is critical to pushing for the real reforms that are essential to righting our fiscal ship and ensuring America is prosperous for our children and grandchildren.”
Sen. Hatch will defend his long-held seat in the U.S. Senate from former Utah state senator, Republican Dan Liljenquist, on June 26 in the primaries. The victor goes on to challenge Democratic candidate Scott Howell, also a former Utah state senator who narrowly captured the needed minimum 60 percent delagate majority to defeat opponent Pete Ashdown.
As election day approaches, annoucements of other GOP endorsements were made on Hatch’s behalf.
“I want him to win,” Palin said. “I join Sean Hannity, Mark Levin and other Conservatives who would like to see ‘Mr. Balanced Budget’ return to Washington.”
Hatch promised to bring the values of Utah to Washington D.C.
“My promise to the people of Utah,” Hatch said, “is that I will never stop fighting to bring those common-sense Utah values to Washington.”