Monday, November 23, 2009

Sarah! fever hits the Roanoke Valley

"These people adore her. They love her. She's one of us. She's not this policy wonk who talks down to us and talks over us. She's a regular person." --Alyssa Cordova, 23, from Northern Virginia
Who says good old Ronald Reagan conservatism is dead? Just follow former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin around for a day and it becomes clear there are plenty of Americans who want a strong, principled, conservative leader ... and Gov. Palin fills that bill.

She was in Roanoke Sunday to promote her new book, "Going Rogue: An American Life," and thousands turned out to see her including about 500 who camped out in line overnight. They were not disappointed ... they received a surprise visit at midnight when Gov. Palin arrived in the Star City and stopped by Barnes and Noble to thank everyone for coming out.

A couple of my Republican colleagues from the 6th District weighed in on Gov. Palin's visit to their city:
"What's crazy is you walk up and down these lines, and a lot of these people aren't members of the Republican committees," Salem Republican Party Chairman Greg Habeeb said. "She brings out a different crowd. She taps into something that the Republican Party really needs to tap into."

Virginia House Majority Leader Morgan Griffith, R-Salem, saw that enthusiasm last year, too: "This is the energy that she brought to the ticket last year. ... We weren't giving out any [John] McCain signs at my office -- because no one was asking for them -- until she was on the ticket. And then we couldn't keep them in. People were getting upset because we didn't have enough."
Is it because many identify with the down-to-earth mom who believes and sticks to principles and conservative beliefs? The Roanoke Times goes on to describe her arrival at the bookstore:
Palin arrived at the bookstore to a chorus of cheers and screams, moving quickly with family members from her tour bus to the music-and-movies section of the store for the signing. Small groups were ushered in, where they stood in a line that wound between shelves before stopping at her table.
Even Tito the Builder stopped by to see his old 2008 campaign buddy:
Tito "The Builder" Munoz, whom Palin referred to in some of her campaign speeches last year, traveled to the event from Northern Virginia and was rewarded with a personalized signature in his book."I'm in the book! I'm right here, page 305," Munoz said as he pointed to a passage in "Going Rogue."
Everyone left with signed books and Gov. Palin, herself a military mom, left Roanoke on her way to Ft. Bragg.

Be sure to check out Roanoke area blogger Jerry Fuhrman who made note of Gov. Palin's visit with a trademark quip.

No comments: