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Sarah Palin has stepped out of the shadows and sent a warning shot across Donald Trump’s bow. Largely silent for most of the election since she endorsed Trump some months ago, Palin is speaking out after Trump made comments that have been interpreted as a change in his anti-immigration position.
While there’s no actual concrete policy shift, and just comments made on cable news, Trump has said he could back away from his proposed plan for a mass deportation of undocumented immigrants.
That has angered Palin, who went on the record with the Wall Street Journal.
In recent days, Mr. Trump has shifted away from calling for mass deportation of illegal immigrants to suggesting some could stay if they paid back taxes.
“If Mr. Trump were to go down a path of wishy-washy positions taken on things that the core foundation of his support has so appreciated, and that is respecting our Constitution and respecting law and order in America, then yeah, there would be massive disappointment,” Mrs. Palin, the Republican nominee for vice president in 2008, said in a telephone interview with the Wall Street Journal. “Parts of that message we heard in the last week are clearly not consistent with the stringent position and message that supporters have received all along.”
Support from Palin undoubtedly helped Trump during the primaries, especially when she had previously been associated with more traditional conservatives like Senator Ted Cruz.
But since then she has been on the backburner. He has done few campaign events with her, and she did not receive a speaking slot at the Republican Convention in Cleveland. When asked about the apparent snub, Trump made the bizarre claim, “It’s a little bit difficult because of where she is. We love Sarah. Little bit difficult because of, you know, it’s a long ways away.” Palin has previously spoken at conservative events like CPAC on the east coast without any transportation problems.