Cue the Palin Attack Ads?

What Women Really Think
Oct. 7 2010 12:31 PM

Cue the Palin Attack Ads?


In September, Slate ’s John Dickerson wondered whether the Palin effect (as seen in, for instance, Joe Miller’s surprise Alaskan primary victory) would carry over to the general election and help her candidates of choice beat out Democrats and win over independents. Democrats are starting to bet that it won’t: In a poll released today, Palin’s favorability rating has dipped to just 22 percent , with nearly half of those polled holding an unfavorable opinion of her. In California, where Carly Fiorina has trumpeted her Palin endorsement, polls are starting to show that it’s actually doing her damage: According to Politico , "Fifty-three percent of those surveyed said they would be less inclined to vote for a candidate endorsed by Palin, while only 21 percent said they would be more inclined. " In New Mexico’s gubernatorial campaign, Democrat Diane Denish,  fewer than 10 points behind Palin-endorsed Susana Martinez in the polls, is reportedly mulling attack ads using Palin’s image. And in Pennsylvania’s Senate race , Democrat Joe Sestak just released an ad tarring his opponent Pat Toomey as just as right-wing as Palin. Up until now, he’s mostly tried to nick Toomey for his Wall Street ties . (Toomey’s raved about Palin, but she hasn’t endorsed him .) Surely there are more attack ads to come, and I’m curious to see what they’ll look like. Is she a potent enough symbol on her own that just her name and image next to that of the candidate in question will be damning enough for Palin-haters, or will more explanation be required?


Photograph of Sarah Palin by Getty Images.

Noreen Malone is a senior editor at New York magazine.



Blacks Don’t Have a Corporal Punishment Problem

Americans do. But when blacks exhibit the same behaviors as others, it becomes part of a greater black pathology. 

I Bought the Huge iPhone. I’m Already Thinking of Returning It.

Scotland Is Just the Beginning. Expect More Political Earthquakes in Europe.

Lifetime Didn’t Think the Steubenville Rape Case Was Dramatic Enough

So they added a little self-immolation.

Two Damn Good, Very Different Movies About Soldiers Returning From War

Medical Examiner

The Most Terrifying Thing About Ebola 

The disease threatens humanity by preying on humanity.

Students Aren’t Going to College Football Games as Much Anymore, and Schools Are Getting Worried

The Good Wife Is Cynical, Thrilling, and Grown-Up. It’s Also TV’s Best Drama.

  News & Politics
Sept. 20 2014 11:13 AM -30-
Business Insider
Sept. 20 2014 6:30 AM The Man Making Bill Gates Richer
Sept. 20 2014 7:27 AM How Do Plants Grow Aboard the International Space Station?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 19 2014 4:58 PM Steubenville Gets the Lifetime Treatment (And a Cheerleader Erupts Into Flames)
  Slate Plus
Slate Picks
Sept. 19 2014 12:00 PM What Happened at Slate This Week? The Slatest editor tells us to read well-informed skepticism, media criticism, and more.
Brow Beat
Sept. 20 2014 3:21 PM “The More You Know (About Black People)” Uses Very Funny PSAs to Condemn Black Stereotypes
Future Tense
Sept. 19 2014 6:31 PM The One Big Problem With the Enormous New iPhone
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Sept. 20 2014 7:00 AM The Shaggy Sun
Sports Nut
Sept. 18 2014 11:42 AM Grandmaster Clash One of the most amazing feats in chess history just happened, and no one noticed.