Opinion: New GOP star Sarah Palin makes instant plea for campaign money


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St. Paul, Minn. — Sarah Palin is quick.

No more than five minutes after completing her rousing speech last night, the newly minted vice presidential candidate sent out her first national Internet fundraising appeal as a nominee seeking campaign money.

The Republican National Committee, which sponsored the pitch, is hoping that Palin’s stem-winder delivered at the national convention to a prime-time audience of millions transformed the first-term governor into Alaska gold.


The 10-paragraph note signed by Palin asks no fewer than three times for “$2,000, $1,000, $500, $250, $100, $50 or $25.” It also asks donors to give generously.

The missive was time-stamped at 9:10, when she, her family and presidential nominee John McCain were still on the stage of the Xcel Energy Center, basking in the Republican delegates’ four-minute ovation.

The money note says in part:

“As recent polls indicate, this year’s election will be close. In tight contests, voter turnout is absolutely critical. The Obama Democrats and their liberal special interests allies are spending unprecedented amounts of money on get-out-the-vote drives.

‘We must counter this effort and the nearly $1 billion the Obama Democrats and their allies will spend to defeat John McCain and our Republican candidates at all levels. And we need your help to succeed.”

Again, the pitch asks for “$2,000, $1,000, $500, $250, $100, $50 or $25,” which would be “crucial to providing the advertising and get-out-the-vote programs our candidates need to fight back and win.”

The self-described hockey mom asked for the “$2,000, $1,000, $500, $250, $100, $50 or $25” on behalf of the Republican National Committee. The RNC can raise and spend unlimited sums on behalf of the McCain-Palin ticket.


The candidates themselves cannot raise money directly into their campaign accounts because McCain has agreed to accept an $84-million federal grant to help fund his campaign. And that money comes as soon as he accepts the nomination tonight.

Democrat Barack Obama was not far behind Palin.

At 3 a.m. today, the Democrat’s campaign sent out an e-mail saying: “I wasn’t planning on sending you something tonight. But if you saw what I saw from the Republican convention, you know that it demands a response.”

The e-mail signed by campaign manager David Plouffe sought small-dollar donations, saying: “McCain’s campaign has decided that desperate lies and personal attacks — on Barack Obama and on you — are the only way they can earn a third term for the Bush policies that McCain has supported more than 90 percent of the time. ...

‘But you can send a crystal clear message. Enough is enough. Make your voice heard loud and clear by making a $5 donation right now.’

The amounts raised by the appeals won’t become clear until late October, when the campaigns must file their September fundraising reports.

— Dan Morain