Palin, Perry Stand Firm Behind Christmas

Photograph by Chris Miller/AP Photo

Alaska Republican Governor, Sarah Palin, center, greets 7-month old Nora Frame and her mother Ruth, right, of Pelican, Alaska, during the inaugural annual Christmas open house at the Governor’s Mansion, in Juneau, Alaska, in this 2007 file photo.

The Fourth of July may still be a couple of weeks away, but apparently it’s never too early to focus on Christmas — or, at the least, plumb it for political points.

Sarah Palin, kicking off Act Two of her Fox News career, touted for viewers yesterday her latest literary offering.

“Writing a book — a book about Christmas and pushing back on the politically correct who would like to take ‘Christ’ out of Christmas,” she said on “Fox & Friends” in giving an update on what she’s been up to since she vanished from the network’s airwaves in January.

In her inimitable (unless you’re Tina Fey) rhetorical style, she described her effort as “a kind of a legalese how to push back and protect the heart of Christmas.” She quickly made clear, though, that she’s not penning a tome: “At the same time, a very festive and happy and jolly book about tradition and recipes and fun things about Christmas.”

In terms of setting holiday policy, though, we can’t help but think that Palin has been one-upped by Rick Perry.

Like Palin — John McCain’s surprise running mate in the Arizona senator’s failed 2008 presidential bid — Perry’s national aspirations ended up for naught when his bid for the 2012 Republican presidential nod spectacularly flamed out (what were those 3 Cabinet departments he was going to eliminate?).

But unlike Palin, who after returning to Alaska decided to resign as governor well before her four-year term was ending, Perry kept his day job — the Texas governorship he’s now held since December 2000. And in that post, at a ceremony last week that included a gaggle of Santa Claus impersonators, he signed into law legislation dubbed the “Merry Christmas” bill.

As reported by the Associated Press, the measure “removes legal risks of saying `Merry Christmas’ in schools while also protecting traditional holiday symbols, such as a menorah or nativity scene, as long as more than one religion and a secular symbol are also reflected.”

Perry took note of the seasonal disconnect, saying, “I realize it’s only June. But it’s a good June and the holidays are coming early this year.”

He added: “It’s a shame that a bill like this one I’m signing today is even required, but I’m glad that we’re standing up for religious freedom in this state. Religious freedom does not mean freedom from religion.”

Can an interview with Palin on the ever-lurking Scrooge threat be far behind?

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