Speculation was rife yesterday after former Alaska governor Sarah Palin announced a “One Nation” bus tour of the US and hinted at a White House run next year by saying: “I have fire in my belly.”
The populist former US vice presidential candidate’s move came as right-wing hopefuls jockey for position in a so-far lackluster field for the Republican nomination, from which two top-polling figures have recently withdrawn.
Palin’s bus trip, starting in Washington tomorrow and going up through New England, will take her “through our nation’s rich historical sites” over the coming weeks, she said on her Web site.
“Our nation is at a critical turning point. As we look to the future, we are propelled by America’s past. It’s imperative that we connect with our founders, our patriots, our challenges and victories to clearly see our way forward,” Palin said.
Speaking on television on Friday last week, she said: “I am so adamantly supportive of the good, traditional things about America and our free enterprise system and I want to make sure that America is put back on the right track.”
“And we only do that by defeating [US President Barack] Obama in 2012. I have that fire in my belly,” she told a Fox news interviewer.
The bus tour announcement came amid mounting speculation that the “Tea Party” favorite will throw her hat into the ring for the GOP nomination to take on Democrat Obama in next year’s White House election.
This week, there were reports that Palin has bought a large house in Arizona, seen as potentially a better base for a presidential campaign than her northwestern US home state.
Palin, who was US Senator John McCain’s surprise running mate in the last White House election in 2008, has also authorized a feature-length film about herself, further suggesting she is preparing to raise her profile significantly.
Recent polls suggest no great enthusiasm for any of the announced or potential candidates for the Republican nomination, with even leading figures like former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney garnering less than 20 percent support.
Other Republican candidates like former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty, libertarian US Representative Ron Paul and former US House speaker Newt Gingrich have so far inspired even less excitement.
One survey early this month said Palin and property tycoon turned celebrity game show host Donald Trump were encountering outright rejection, with 58 percent saying they would never vote for either of them.
Trump, who had been flirting with running for months, announced days later that he would not be seeking the GOP nomination, while Christian right darling and former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee withdrew from the race on May 15.
Palin confirming a White House run would certainly energize the Republican race, even as observers note that her selection as GOP candidate would be welcomed by some Democrats as all but guaranteeing Obama’s re-election.
Asserting her patriotic credentials, Palin’s tour bus proclaims “One Nation” above the tag line “Under God. Indivisible. With Liberty and Justice for All,” and “We the people” over a US Constitution scroll.
“We’ll celebrate the good things that bring Americans together; those things that will give us the needed strength to meet the heady challenges ahead,” she said on her Web site. “I’ve said many times that America doesn’t need a ‘fundamental transformation,’ instead we need a restoration of all that is good and strong and free in America!”
“So, together let’s prepare ourselves for the days ahead by reminding ourselves who we are and what Americans stand for,” Palin said.
‘OBVIOUS DIFFERENCE’: The Wuhan Institute of Virology has been researching bat coronaviruses to trace the SARS pathogen, which is 80 percent similar to SARS-CoV-2 The Chinese virology institute in the city where COVID-19 first emerged has three live strains of bat coronavirus on-site, but none match the new contagion wreaking havoc around the world, its director has said. Scientists think COVID-19 — which first emerged in Wuhan and has killed more than 340,000 people worldwide — originated in bats and could have been transmitted to people via another mammal. However, the director of the Wuhan Institute of Virology told state broadcaster China Global Television Network that claims made by US President Donald Trump and others that the novel coronavirus could have escaped from the facility were
SPACE RACE: The China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp mission aims to land a robotic rover and put a probe into orbit around the planet China is targeting a July launch for its ambitious Mars mission, which includes landing a remote-controlled robot on the surface of the Red Planet, the company in charge of the project has said. Beijing has invested billions of dollars in its space program in an effort to catch up with its rival, the US, and affirm its status as a major world power. The Mars mission is among a number of new space projects China is pursuing, including putting Chinese astronauts on the moon and having a space station by 2022. Beijing had been planning the Mars mission for some time this year,
China is poised to enshrine individuals’ rights to privacy and personal data for the first time, a symbolic first step as more of the country of 1.4 billion people becomes digitized — and more vulnerable to leaks and hacks. The legislation is part of China’s first civil code, a sweeping package of laws that is being deliberated during the annual meeting of China’s National People’s Congress, which began on Friday after a delay of more than two months due to the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a recent draft, an individual has a right to privacy and to have their personal information protected. Data
India has moved additional troops along its northern border as it prepares for an extended conflict with China, after several rounds of talks failed to ease tensions between the nuclear-armed rivals. China has already placed about 5,000 soldiers and armored vehicles within its side of the disputed border in the Ladakh region, an Indian government official said, asking not to be identified, citing rules. India is adding a similar number of troops as well as artillery guns along the border to fend off the continuing incursions by the Chinese army, the official said. The standoff began on May 5, when troops clashed