Matt Continetti discussed Sarah Palin in an interactive chat with Washington Post readers. Here's a taste:
It's great that Sarah Palin has the vote from conservative Republicans, but how about conservative Democrats like Jimmy Carter fans? Don't you think in order to win, she will need their vote as well as moderate Republicans/Democrats?
A. MATTHEW CONTINETTI WRITES:
Interesting question. Palin probably already has the support of Democrats who say they are ideological conservatives. You see, I'm not sure whether Jimmy Carter's remaining fans are "conservative" Democrats, actually. They tend to be liberals, many of whom worked in his administration.
In the 30 years since the 1980 election, we've seen the two parties sort by ideology. What few "conservative" Democrats remain tend to be Blue Dogs from the Midwest and South who say they'll be different from the urban, coastal liberals who dominate the Democratic party. But in the end the Blue Dogs often go along with the party leadership, and thus there won't be many of them left on November 3.
As for moderate Republicans and Democrats, here the question becomes more complicated. Partisans tend to back their presidential nominees in high numbers. What Palin needs are independent voters, who went for the Democrats in 2006 and 2008 but are swinging right in 2010. Right now, independents don't like Palin. She needs that to change if she wants to be president.
Read the entire chat here.