Sarah Palin might not really be able to see Russia from her backyard, but can she see the White House? That’s the question many are asking after the premiere of her reality TV show, “Sarah Palin’s Alaska,” on TLC.
We’re analyzing reactions from CBS, The Daily Beast, ABC, and CNN.
“Sarah Palin’s Alaska” premiered Sunday night, giving viewers across America a chance to see Palin and her family’s day-to-day adventures---at least, that’s how the Palins describe it.
Real Clear Politics’ Scott Conroy tells CBS News this show could be just one massive campaign ad for a potential presidential run in 2012.
“It seems like she was really trying her hardest to say this was about Alaska, but you know, the cameras are focused on her and her family. And really, it’s a political ad that she doesn't have to pay for. In fact, she’s getting paid to do it, and to me, it’s something that’s going to remind people about what they like about Sarah Palin.”
But in an interview with The Daily Beast, producer Mark Burnett says the show is not part of a political campaign.
“The show ‘is completely non-political... It’s absolutely not trying to show one thing or the other. She is showing everything.’”
Maybe not, but Palin doesn’t shy away from political references either. When faced with a nosy new neighbor, journalist Joe McGinniss -- who rented a house next door in order to write what Todd Palin referred to as a “hit piece” on his wife -- the couple came up with an interesting solution.
“Todd and his buddies got out there and built a 14-foot fence and I was very thankful for that. By the way, I thought that was a good example. What we just did, others could look at and say ‘Oh, this is what we need to do to secure our nation’s border.’”
Political or not, analysts are wondering what sort of impact the reality show would have if Palin chooses to run. ABC’s Cokie Roberts believes it could go either way.
“She has to decide: Is she going to make her life as something of a celebrity and take that path, or is she going to get serious about politics and government? I think at this point she hasn’t decided and this program is a way to keep her options open.”
CNN’s Jim Acosta, however, points out the timing of Palin’s show could not be any better--- if 2012’s really on her mind.
“The timing of all this is very conspicuous. That’s because the show runs about 8 weeks. That takes us into the middle of January. That’s when we’re going to see some of these top Republicans who are running for president throwing their hat into the ring, and what better way to roll out your presidential campaign than a reality TV show?”
So what do you think? Could “Sarah Palin’s Alaska” become Sarah Palin’s America? Or -- is she not yet ready for a prime time political slot?