Opinion | The Unruly Heirs of Sarah Palin

Few female politicians before her have emphasized their motherhood as she did. She carried her child onto the stage shortly after accepting the nomination, deliberately portraying herself as a normal “hockey mom” and then a protective “gray mom”. Mrs. Palin’s demeanor was often derided as a gimmick and Mrs. Palin herself was an idiot. But the course of political events soon proved that she was up to something. The Tea Party wave of Barack Obama’s first term swept Palin imitators like Michele Bachmann and Christine O’Donnell to nationwide fame, women who can be found in jeans at firing range. , when they don’t speak in high heels. Instead of leaving family life at home in the way that men have always had, which the previous generation of women considered essential to career success, this new generation has witnessed the role of women. and how motherhood has contributed to their brand. By signaling their tenacity in the domestic sphere, they imply their tenacity in the political sphere. And they have increased their populist appeal.

Among those who saw their potential was Donald Trump’s future mentor Steve Bannon, who made a 2010 documentary called “Fire from the Heart” honoring Bachmann and other women of The Tea Party, as well as a 2011 documentary about Palin herself called “The Undefeated,” which framed her feminine and Everywoman image as an anonymous asset to the GOP.

Of course, Mr Bannon and the right in general have finally found another champion, and while Mr Trump leaves little room for those who also dislike Ms Palin, his time in office has helped conservatism. Her special transforms and spreads – giving rise to a new version, the Trumpier of Mrs. Palin grizzly.

This new generation’s tenacity makes Miss Palin’s “Going Rogue” days look subdued. Conservative mothers from around the country have turned local school board meetings into controversial squabbles of policy and curriculum, organized by groups like Moms for Liberty, who say they are “on a mission” the fire of freedom. “We are NOT co-parenting with the government,” reads the back of one of the t-shirts sold in the moms-to-be online store.

Shades of Palin can be seen in Representatives Lauren Boebert of Colorado and Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, whose gun shots recall Palin’s rural, hunting and fishing images. . But Kari Lake, the former hard-line news worker running for governor in Arizona, may be the model New Bear. One moment, she literally vacuuming the red carpet for Mr. Trump; next, she calls her Democratic opponent a coward and the media “the Devil’s right hand.” Ms. Lake shares about Ms. Palin’s instincts for the spotlight and her sense of optics, as well as her affection for copulating mama bears (Mrs. Lake often uses this term). But while Ms. Palin lost control of her image in front of a skeptical, often condescending media (remember Katie Couric’s infamous interview in which the candidate couldn’t name any newspapers by name. that she read?), strong, strong Mrs. Lake did. combat sports with reporters on her trail and excels at turning engagements into content. The rise of the New Mama Bear might not have been possible without the fragmentation of a media that is now engrossed more than ever in controversy and excess.


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