Senator John McCain’s former running mate joined him on Friday at an Arizona rally intended to rally the Republican base behind McCain, who is facing a tough primary battle against a challenge from the right by former Rep. J.D. Hayworth.
It was Sarah Palin’s first appearance with McCain since their 2008 electoral defeat, and in today’s Republican party the one-time Alaskan governor clearly outshines the veteran senator.
Dressed in a form-fitting black leather jacket, Palin was greeted by massive applause and chants of “Sarah, Sarah” as the two came onstage together. Several news stories noted that there seemed to be far less enthusiasm for McCain, and one poster in a thread live-blogging the event at Democratic Underground pointed out that MSNBC had cut away from the event promptly at 4 pm, while McCain was still speaking.
Palin used the occasion to slam the media for suggesting that members of the Tea Party movement might resort to violence in their outrage over the passage of health care reform.
“We might as well call it like we see it,” she stated. “In respect to the Tea Party movement, the beautiful movement, everyone here today, we are all part of that movement. … Everyone here supporting John McCain, we are all the Tea Party movement.”
McCain did his best to emulate Palin’s Tea Party rhetoric, saying of the opposition to health care legislation, “There’s something going on, and it’s a revolution. … We’re going to take it on in the Senate. We’re going to take it on in the streets.”
McCain has already threatened that Democrats should expect “no cooperation for the rest of the year” from Senate Republicans. It has yet to be seen, however, in what manner he expects to take his revolution to the streets.