Sarah Palin rained on Mitt Romney's parade yesterday by showing up in New Hampshire during his 2012 announcement speech but she will have to do more that just play a political gadfly if she wants to be president.
A prescient Wall Street Journal column on Friday outlines Palin's dilemma. A darling of the right, she has solidified her base by attacking all the other candidates who stray from Republican orthodoxy but she has failed to come up with any new policies herself.
It is easy in politics to play the attack dog and Palin has done that very successfully, but whether she can ever be a fully fledged candidate remains to be seen.
In terms of policies Romney is far ahead of the field. His announcement was a brisk and clear 'it's the economy stupid' speech going after Obama on his critical weakness.
Romney has the experience and ability to back up his attacks , his political machine is revved up and ready. This is his hour and he is the man the White House fears most.
Palin on the other hand would be their dream if she somehow came through the primaries.
Sound bites won't work in debates or long media interviews.
Neither do flaming attacks on opponents based on catch phrases and clever words.
Palin may never actually become a candidate and her gadfly syle of attack politics will always please her base and make her even richer no matter what.
But if she wants to get into the big leagues with Romey she will have to do better than a sneak attack on Romney while he is announcing his candidacy.