Although nobody knows yet whether former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin plans to announce her candidacy at her much-anticipated Iowa speech tomorrow at noon, details of the speech's substance are beginning to emerge.
ABC’s Shushannah Walshe and Sheila Marikar report, citing unnamed sources, that Palin will offer a “full-throated defense of the Tea Party.”
“Regardless of what she decides to do, this rally is for the Tea Party to kick off this [presidential] campaign,” a source told ABC.
Palin's speech is expected to focus on her prescriptions for the ailing economy, and to be highly critical of the president in the aftermath of the recent downgrade of the country's credit rating. The theme has been one that Palin has been hammering lately on social media like Facebook and Twitter.
"Blaming the Tea Party for our credit downgrade is akin to Nero blaming the Christians for burning Rome," Palin wrote in a Facebook post on the subject. "Tea Party Americans weren’t the ones 'fiddling' while our country’s fiscal house was going up in smoke. In fact, we common-sense fiscal conservatives were the ones grabbing for the extinguishers while politically correct politicians and their cronies buried their heads in what soon became this bonfire."
Palin is also expected to draw contrasts between President Obama's campaign promises in 2008 and his accomplishments as president. Last week, Palin tweeted a link to a YouTube video titled “Obama Lies 7 Times In Under 2 Minutes!”
But aides to Palin might be trying to pour cold water on the notion that Palin will declare her presidential aspirations on Saturday. ABC reported that a source close to Palin's political action committee said the team was upset that Tea Party organizers hyped her appearance as a possible setting for a 2012 announcement.
This could have been part of the reason that Palin partially backed out of the rally earlier this weekend. The former governor was reportedly upset that former Delaware Senate candidate Christie O'Donnell, whom Palin endorsed, had been scheduled to speak before her, and that Tea Party organizers were "lying" to Palin aides. Palin eventually decided to speak, but inspired a week of will-she-or-won't-she speculation inside the Beltway.
Palin's political action committee also put out a statement on Monday saying that "D.C. pundits" were “citing false information that she has made a decision and set a date regarding a future campaign.”
“Any professional pundit claiming to have ‘inside information’ regarding Gov. Palin’s personal decision is not only wrong, but their comments are specifically intended to mislead the American public,” the statement said. "These are the same tired establishment political games that fuel the 24-hour news cycle and that all Americans will hopefully reject in 2012, and this is more of the 'politics-as-usual' that Sarah Palin has fought against throughout her career."