New Republic Senior Editor John B. Judis gave his views on Sarah Palin's momentous address to the 2008 Republican National Convention just after her speech. Judis made some sharp, pithy and right on the mark comments. And in particular, in answering his colleague Michael Crowley's questions, showed amazing prescience. Of course given the immediacy of the moment, some of Judis's negative remarks were not entirely prophetic, but were understandable given his liberal bias.
For example, the supposed "scandals" that Palin was purportedly involved in in Alaska turned out to be media and leftist blow-ups. But in one area Judis made a comment which is now entirely relevant to the 2016 election.
When questioned by Crowley if he thought that Palin's attacks on candidate Obama were "too negative" Judis replied with an important observation:
"I was thinking afterwards, what kind of voter would Palin appeal to? Who would actually be moved by this? The kind of voter I was thinking about was the Perot voter, especially the 1996 Perot voter. Very anti-government, very sceptical of Washington. And I think her message would appeal to some of those voters- and some of them live in places like Ohio."
After Mitt Romney's loss in 2012 there has been substantial analysis of why he lost, and how the next Republican candidate could do better. This has taken the form of two different lines of thought. One, supported by "The Gang Of Eight" and in particular Marco Rubio, sees an appeal to Hispanic voters as providing the winning numbers. Not only for 2016, but far into the future to counter the eventual, as they see it, legalization of the multi-millions of illegals and their children.
The other viewpoint, as presented especially by Sean Trende at Real Clear Politics LINK, is that if the millions of White voters who sat out the McCain and Romney candidacies, can be motivated by a populist, Perot-ite candidate. That, plus the most probable drop off in Black voters after President Obama retires, would be enough to win the key marginal states like Ohio.
Judis, as seen below in this 2008 post convention video, clearly identified the Perot voter as important, and saw Sarah Palin as having a particular appeal to them.
If Palin is the 2016 GOP standard bearer, and especially if teamed with an Hispanic such as Senator Cruz, or New Mexico Governor Martinez, would have an outstanding chance of strikingly increasing the White and Hispanic support, and could win the White House with the states indicated in the map below.
The map is from an article on how Palin could replicate William Jennings Bryan's populist campaign, but with the winning edge, as set out at this LINK The post shows that even without Ohio, Palin could win if the House chose the president but of course she would have every chance of winning in Ohio with Perot voters support.