Despite leading in the polls and his near constant presence on cable news channels, Donald Trump has yet to gain a meaningful political endorsement. Sure, there have been plenty of celebrity plugs, which include Mike Tyson, Denis Rodman, Gary Busy and Tila Tequila (to name just a few), but no actual politicians, either currently serving or retired (which is kind of surprising given that Trump is, you know, the frontrunner for one of the two major political parties).
But that’s all changed.
Early on Tuesday, Trump’s official Facebook page posted an event for a speech and ralley that evening with the description, “Mr. Trump will have a major announcement and a very special guest in attendance."
In just a few hours of scuttlebutt on the political blogosphere, the “very special guest” was revealed to be none other then former Alaskan Governor and ex-vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, who would be endorsing the New York Real Estate mogul.
The evidence for a Palin endorsement of Trump is pretty solid. Her daughter Bristol wrote a blog post saying she HOPED her mom endorsed Trump and, thanks to a very investigative user at FreeRepublic.com, a private jet has been documented flying from Anchorage to Iowa (where the rally is being held).
Update: Yep, Sarah Palin has endorsed Donald Trump.
The move comes as no surprise, as Trump and Palin have maintained long and cheerful relationship with one another. Here’s a brief history of the two’s political best buddieship:
Palin Praises Trump’s Birther Crusade, April 2011
This election season isn’t Trump’s first foray into presidential politics. Last time around, he briefly toyed with the idea of running for the GOP presidential nomination. Key to his drive and popularity was Trump’s dredging up of the age-old anti-Obama conspiracy that he wasn’t born in the United States and was hiding the fact by not releasing his birth certificate. The statements gained Trump ground with hardcore conservatives, tons of free press…and Sarah Palin’s praise.
"I appreciate that the Donald wants to spend his resources in getting to the bottom of something that so interests him and many Americans,” Palin said in an interview on Fox News.
Unfortunately (or fortunately depending on your opinion), Obama did release his birth certificate later that month AND announced the death of Osama Bin Laden a few days after that, both of which seriously deflated Trump’s campaign momentum.
The Infamous Trump-Palin Pizza Summit, May 2011
The first time the two are documented together came not soon after Palin's initial public lauding of "The Donald," the ex-governor stopped by New York City on a much publicized road trip across the country. The two went for pizza in a highly publicized event and which sparked arguably one of the best rants by Jon Stewart on The Daily Show.
Trump Stands Up for Palin to Howard Stern, February 2013
Although it was months after the 2012 election and Trump had stepped away early on in the primary season, he was still riding the publicity of his possibly running for the nomination and may have been laying the groundwork for his current campaign, along with promoting Celebrity Apprentice. So he stopped by Howard Stern's radio show in early 2013 and was pressed by the shock jock, who asked, "You think Sarah Palin’s an idiot, don’t you?” To which Trump responded, “No, I don’t. I think she’s tremendous," and, "I think she’s a wonderful woman and there is a group of people that absolutely adores Sarah Palin. I think she’s been treated very harshly by the media.”
Palin Stands Up for Trump Against BuzzFeed, February 2014
Almost a full year after he defended her against Stern, Palin returned the favor. In early 2014, campaign Trump was still it in the early stages, and his team brought in BuzzFeed political journalist McKay Coppins to profile Trump in what they hoped would be a humanizing piece for millennials. It wasn't. And less than a week later Palin was slamming Coppins in the conservative press, telling Breitbart.com that the "nervous geek isn’t fit to tie the Donald’s wingtips.”
Palin Jokes About Running With Trump on SNL 40, February 2015
Probably one of the few stand out moments from last year's Saturday Night Live 40th Anniversary Special came when Palin made the surprise cameo in a scene of cameos and asked Jerry Seinfeld how much Lorne Michaels would pay her to run for President in 2016. She then of course added the idea of bringing on Trump as a running mate.
Palin Praises Trump's Campaign Launch On Facebook, June 2015
It's hard to remember, but when Trump launched his campaign over the summer with that intense speech about illegal immigrants, not a lot of people took him seriously. He hadn't proven himself in the polls yet and gained nothing but mockery from most in mainstream media and major political circles. The one exception? His (by now) BFF Sarah Palin, who sang his praises in the below Facebook post.
Like most new best friendships in the 21st century, Trump acknowledged the support and returned it on social media (although via a different platform).
Thank you Sarah--Let's have pizza in New York soon with you & your great family https://t.co/SQ6LsNZ6UC
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 17, 2015
Palin “Interviews” Trump, August 2015
In a segment that even the most hardcore Trump and Palin fans would admit was pretty unfavorable, Palin interviewed candidate Trump for her show on One America News Network. It's ten minutes of conservative fear mongering at its best, with buds Palin and Trump mugging it up for the camera.
Palin Defends Trump's Proposed Muslim Ban, December 2015
When Trump's campaign first began gaining serious ground, many pundits predicted that its demise lay in Trump's mouth. The predictions were that he would say or propose something so insane that the blow back would end his candidacy. And in December, when he proposed a ban of all Muslims from entering the U.S., the proposal was ridiculed in the press and by his opponents but didn't seem to hurt Trump with his supporters. AND one of the few big names that came out in support of the idea? You guessed it! Sarah Palin, who penned an epic Facebook post in defense of the idea--which she called "common sense."