'Palin 2012' Is Latest in Long Line of Dubious Karl Rove Predictions

Rove is saying Sarah Palin will run -- but he's been wrong before

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Former Bush adviser Karl Rove said on Fox News Sunday that he believes Sarah Palin will enter the Republican presidential race sometime around Labor Day, The Washington Examiner reports. He said that Palin "has a schedule next week that looks like that of a candidate, not a celebrity," and cited a new campaign-style video Palin released on her recent visit to the Iowa State Fair. According to Rove, the Tea Party's "Restoring America" event in Iowa on September 3, where Palin is the keynote speaker, will be the time and place of the announcement: "This is her last chance," Rove said.  "She either gets in or gets out [after the Iowa visit].  I think she gets in."

Palin's flirtation with the 2012 race has been met with doubt from all corners, despite fully retaining the media's attention throughout. But the trouble with Karl Rove's announcement is that, well, he's been wrong before. A great deal, in fact. Back in 2007, Think Progress addressed a series of accolades showered on Rove, including statements that he was a "political genius" who "masterminded" the Bush presidency, with "a brilliant mind," etc., with a post entitled "Karl Rove's Record of Failed Predictions." A couple of favorites:

  • In 2006, roughly a week before the midterm election, Rove predicted “a Republican Senate and Republican House” by claiming sole access to “THE math.” [NPR, 10/24/06]
  • In an interview with The Wall Street Journal in August 2007, Rove said, as for the Democrats, “They are likely to nominate a tough, tenacious, fatally flawed candidate” by the name of Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Rove also made several inaccurate predictions regarding the success and legacy of George W. Bush at the time, but we'll give him a pass for that as he was Bush's adviser and thus to an extent had to paint things in a rosy light. But we won't give him a pass for his 2008 election predictions, which were later described as "comically, wildly inaccurate." Or in 2010, when he said during an appearance on the O'Reilly Factor that the odds are in favor of the GOP defeating health reform (though "I wouldn't bet the ranch on it.") The New Republic wrote a few months ago, "I don't understand the journalistic value of the Wall Street Journal providing a regular forum for Karl Rove to make bullish predictions for Republicans, because Rove is wrong a lot. "

However, let's note that Rove predicted Rick Perry would run in early July -- and as we all know, he was correct. So perhaps 2012 is his year, and Sarah Palin will announce her candidacy, and all of Rove's naysayers will feel foolish. Moreover, where Rove really put his name on the line was with his June 2011 Journal editorial, where he wrote that Obama had no chance of winning the 2012 election. If he ends up being right about both Obama and Palin, the media may have to accept him as the new Nostradamus.

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