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Entries in Bus Tour (45)

Tuesday
May312011

Sarah Palin Visits Liberty Bell, Plans Bus Tour Stop in New York

Jeff Fusco/Getty Images(PHILADELPHIA) -- More than a hundred tourists, fans, and members of the media crowded around Sarah Palin as she visited the Liberty Bell Museum in Philadelphia on Tuesday.

She told ABC News that she's relishing her whirlwind road trip.

"Each site we're at is just so inspiring," she said.

Palin confirmed she's heading to the Empire State next, saying, "We're going to spend a little bit of time here before we go to New York."

Todd Palin and other members of the Palin family accompanied the former Alaska governor on a tour of the museum as fans, press, and school tour groups jockeyed for her attention. Palin shook hands and took photos -- one with a crying child who stopped wailing when she bent down to pose next to his stroller.

As far as her plan for the 2012 election, Palin maintained she's still figuring out her plan, but confirmed to reporters that she will visit Iowa, a key state in the race to the Republican nomination.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
May312011

Rogue Is Vogue: What Is Sarah Palin Trying to Tell Us?

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- For the last 48 hours, the biggest mystery in political circles was where Sarah Palin and her giant tour bus, draped in images of the American flag and the Constitution, were going next.

She's already stopped in Washington, D.C., Mount Vernon, and Fort McHenry in Maryland. On Tuesday, she starts in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, and her next stops continue to be the subject of intense speculation.

"Many of the mainstream media are looking for kind of a conventional campaign type tour and I’ve said from that beginning that this isn’t a campaign tour except to campaign on our Constitution, our charters of liberty," Palin told Fox News' Greta Van Susteren in an interview broadcast Monday night. "I don't think I owe anything to the mainstream media...I want them to have to do a little bit of work on a tour like this."

So, if Palin's goal is to bypass traditional media, the bigger mystery may be why we keep scrambling to cover her like a traditional candidate.

The narrative of her trip is beginning to sound a lot like a grade school, "What I did on my summer vacation" routine.  Palin's getting asked mostly the same question about her 2012 presidential ambitions at each stop along the way, and giving mostly the same non-committal answer.

"I don’t know. I honestly don't know," she told reporters on Monday. "It's still a matter of looking at the field and considering much.  There truly is a lot to consider before you throw yourself out there in the name of service to the public because it's so all-consuming."

There's evidence that despite her ability to get non-stop, almost obsessive attention from the press, she garners only a fraction of that interest from voters in her own party.

A recent Gallup survey found that while she has almost universal name recognition among Republican voters, her approval rating is just 48 percent.  Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, the nominal frontrunner in this still-fluid primary, has a 56 percent approval rating.

Even so, Palin has already succeeded in doing two things this week: making herself the center of the story, and poking the mainstream media in the eye.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Monday
May302011

Sarah Palin Insists Bus Tour Isn’t for Campaigning

Randy Snyder/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Sarah Palin stopped by the National Archives in Washington, D.C., Monday with her family to see the U.S. Constitution, and insisted to reporters that her bus tour is not a campaign tour.

Palin, who has yet to announce her presidential ambitions despite much speculation, said her tour is not about building support for a possible run but to visit historic sites with her family, to restore faith in the country and to show people that big government isn't always the answer.

"This isn’t a campaign bus. This is a bus to be able to show America how much we appreciate our foundation...and to remind ourselves that we don't need to fundamentally transform America. We need to restore what’s good about America," the former Alaska governor said as she left the National Archives.

Palin said this was the first time two of her kids had seen the Constitution.

"It's heartwarming, and it means so much to so many of us to...be here and see the foundation of America," she told reporters.

Palin launched her "One Nation" bus tour Sunday -- on the back of a Harley -- at the annual Memorial Day gathering of the patriotic Rolling Thunder riding group.

Palin's team hasn't released a schedule of her tour, but the former GOP vice presidential candidate's next stop is expected to be Gettysburg, Pa.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Monday
May302011

Palin Kicks Off Bus Tour on Motorcycle, But Is She Running?

PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Sarah Palin launched her bus tour this Memorial Day weekend, not on a bus, but on the back of a Harley, with expected stops in Philadelphia, Gettysburg, and all the way through early primary state, New Hampshire.

Palin began her trip riding across the Potomac River from Virginia into the nation's capitol.  During the first leg of her tour, she joined Rolling Thunder, an organization that aims to raise awareness about American military personnel who are missing in action, or prisoners of war.

Earlier this week, the former vice presidential candidate released a video to announce her tour after weeks of being noticeably absent from the political stage.  Palin's tour might appear to be more than just a public spectacle, as many other potential Republican presidential candidates gear up for the 2012 election.

When asked by ABC News what the motivation behind the tour was, Palin said, "It indicates a desire of ours to get across America and remind ourselves about our foundation; how important it is to respect and protect our Constitution."

Political professionals are left wondering if Palin's latest step onto the public stage is a political move at all, since she does not have the required campaign structure to run a formidable race.

"This is a bit of a re-roll out," said Ken Vogel of Politico.  "This is a chance for her to re-introduce herself in a more retail politics grass roots way than she has been conducting herself over the last several months where she has been really detached from it all."

Vogel added that building a strong campaign staff is an important step towards candidacy, but her hard-core base of supporters seem willing to follow her no matter where she goes.

"All she has to do is throw up a website, occasionally refer to it in a Facebook post and she can raise a lot of money," he said.

This weekend also hinted that other Republicans, including former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, former New York Gov. George Pataki and current Texas Gov. Rick Perry may consider dipping a toe in the nomination waters.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
May272011

Rolling Thunder Riders Praise Sarah Palin's Participation in Rally

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- For the riders of Rolling Thunder, the news that Sarah Palin will participate in their national rally on Sunday came as a welcome surprise.

"I think that’s wonderful," said Gerri Tramel, president of one of Rolling Thunder's Tennessee chapters. "Anybody that's involved -- Republican, Democrat, Independent, whatever -- if you're involved with our veterans, I think that's wonderful. Not just Sarah Palin -- anyone that's a politician."

For more than 20 years, as many as half a million motorcycle riders from across the country have descended on Washington, D.C., during Memorial Day weekend to raise awareness about prisoners of war and those missing in action. Rolling Thunder announced Thursday that Palin accepted an invitation to participate in its May 29 rally. She'll kick off her One Nation Tour the same day, a bus trip along the northeast coast that aims "to educate and energize Americans about our nation's founding principles."

"If she wants to support the troops, we're all for it," said Greg Benson, president of Rhode Island's Rolling Thunder chapter.

"I certainly welcome any positive publicity surrounding our cause, anything to bring attention to POWs and MIAs," said Jeffrey Stewart, who leads a Rolling Thunder chapter in New Hampshire, a state that will be crucial to Palin if she runs in 2012. "Whether it's a celebrity or a politician-celebrity -- I'm not exactly sure what she is right now -- having Sarah Palin there means more people will be paying attention to our cause."

But there are riders who worry that Palin’s presence might take away from the aim of the event.

"I don't know if she's using the veterans or the amount of people there for a political gain," said Susan Bailey, whose husband, Winston Bailey, is the president of an Ohio chapter of Rolling Thunder.

"As far as her running again, I don't know, she seems kind of wishy-washy, quitting the government," Bailey said, referring to Palin's curtailed gubernatorial stint in Alaska. "Whether she's really committed to it is my question."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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