ST. PAUL, Minn., Sept. 4 — Dennis Prager was on the air last week on the day Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin was named to the Republican ticket, and without missing a beat, the conservative radio host pronounced her "an American Margaret Thatcher."
Her speech to the convention, Prager said Thursday during a break in his program, "just reconfirmed my love at first sight." Across the table, Sen. Orrin Hatch was slipping on the headphones to join him and immediately went on offense when he went on the air.
"I’ve really been offended by how the mainstream media have tried to smear her by attacking, in essence, her daughter," the Utah Republican said. "It was pathetic. It was hitting below the belt. It was despicable."
In a long corridor leading into the Xcel Energy Center that is packed with radio broadcasters, a new narrative about the presidential election was emerging rather noisily, at least among those on the right who make their living in front of microphones. Many conservative hosts, who had been downright skeptical of Sen. John McCain and his unorthodox brand of Republicanism, are ecstatic about Palin — all the more so because her nomination helps them strafe their favorite target.
From the titans of talk — Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham — to conservative hosts who loom large in their local markets, the cheering for Palin has been nearly unanimous. Ingraham praised her assault on the "entrenched elites." Men on the right who were quick to dismiss charges of sexism against Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton now accuse Palin’s critics of treating her, as a mother of five, with undisguised contempt.
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