Empire editorial: Palin/Trump in 2012 - a marketing dream team

Donald Trump delivered a special Christmas gift to editorial cartoonists, comedians and the late-night talk show hosts they write for when news broke Friday that The Donald is leaving the Grand Old Party to keep his options open for an independent Republican presidential bid in 2012.

This also, or course, would be a gift for the Democratic Party due to the loss of a juicy target like Herman Cain, the self-destruction of Michele Bachmann and the increasing marginalization of contenders like Ron Paul, John Huntsman and that guy from Texas who forgets things and falls asleep during debates.

Facing a Newt Gingrich or a Mitt Romney becomes ever-easier for the president when the birthers — who think Barack Obama is our modern Manchurian Candidate — have to decide whether to follow a candidate with at least one clue or rush like lemmings off a philosophical cliff behind a tea party flavor-of-the-week like Trump.

Every candidate needs a sidekick, and we have the perfect choice. Who has the scruffiness of a soccer mom and the lipstick of a pitbull, all wrapped up in the mystique that comes from living next to a biologically-dead lake in the wilds of urban Wasilla? Who has the experience of trekking down the national campaign trail, with the added benefit of several months as governor of an oil-producing state?

Donald Trump and Sarah Palin will be a dream team. They should be the next big Alaska-based reality show. More dirt than “Gold Rush Alaska,” more hard landings than “Flying Wild Alaska” and far more dangerous to America’s political future than “The Deadliest Catch” is to the boat crews — it’s Discovery’s “Trump/Palin in 2012.”

Pairing up a man who can’t stop talking with a woman who mangles the English language as well as history — it’s a natural choice and rife with possibilities. Will the Donald debate himself? Will Sarah read a newspaper and remember its name, much less the contents?

Please, Mr. Trump, the next Alaska tourism season will start just as your next season of “The Apprentice” ends. It’s perfect timing. Extra attention never hurts Alaska’s economy, and Palin can probably deliver whichever state she spends the most time in, unless that state is Alaska.

We appreciate your spirit of sharing, Mr. Trump. You are a guy whose lawyer says has pledged to use his personal wealth to “level the playing field” against incumbent Obama. (You might want to watch “Citizen Kane,” and then check the real history of William Randolph Hearst first, though. They say the smartest politicos use other people’s money.)

Should you take our sound advice, Mr. Trump, and take on our former governor, we caution you to also take a step Sen. John McCain apparently gave little attention to during his last run with Palin — check her references.

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