Sarah Palin isn’t like other politicians. I know this from personal experience, having watched her speak to a massive Tea Party event that I covered while researching my newly published book about conspiracy theories, "Among the Truthers." She is not so much listened to as worshiped. Her stock right-wing policy formulations and anti-Obama barbs are not really the source of her appeal. Rather, Palin is loved for the personal qualities she embodies: Her large family, her decision to give birth to a child she knew had Down syndrome, her son who served in Iraq, her small-town clapboard roots. There is a rapturous quality that comes over right-wing audiences when she speaks, as if they were in the presence of a Madonna figure come to deliver America from its travails.
Of course, the America that Palin's audiences view her as delivering is "white America."