From NBC's Ellie Hall
Sarah Palin has spent much of this primary season supporting her "Mama Grizzlies," touring the country to stump for female conservatives like Nikki Haley in South Carolina and Karen Handel in Georgia -- as she did yesterday.
But an analysis of her primary endorsements reveals that, so far this cycle, the former Alaska governor has actually lent her support to more men than women.
Among the 28 candidates she's endorsed, according to her Facebook page, 10 have been women and 18 have been men. And of the 12 Palin-endorsed candidates who already have faced voters, four men and four women ended up winning the GOP nomination, while two men and two women have failed to win their party's nod -- so a 67% success rate for Palin's endorsements.
(Thirteen Palin-backed candidates haven't yet had their primaries. And another three others -- Handel, Minnesota gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer, and Colorado congressional candidate Bob McConnell -- have their primaries today.)
In light of Palin's consistent message of women-powered politics -- such as her "Mama Grizzlies" Web ad, in which she proclaimed, "This year will be remembered as a year when common-sense conservative women get things done for our country" -- it's interesting to note that three out of her last four endorsements have been for men: Brian Murphy (MD-GOV), Rita Meyer (WY-GOV), John Gomez (NY-2) and Michael Grimm (NY-13).
In a few cases, Palin has purposefully not endorsed a female candidate -- like Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), with whom Palin has had a strained relationship. (Palin endorsed Murkowski's opponent in 2004 after Murkowski was appointed to the Senate by her father. Palin defeated her father in the 2006 GOP gubernatorial primary.) Palin threw her support in the race this year to Tea Party-backed challenger Joe Miller.
Palin also refrained from endorsing Colorado Senate hopeful Jane Norton when she appeared in Denver in May, despite praising the former lieutenant governor's pro-life stance in a speech in Washington, D.C., a week earlier. Her former 2008 presidential campaign running mate, John McCain, campaigned for Norton Sunday. Palin, however, did not endorse Norton's primary opponent, Ken Buck.