The XX Factor

Palin’s Florida Success

Unless Lisa Murkowski pulls out a last-minute victory in Alaska, yesterday’s primaries weren’t kind to female candidates. The exception was Pam Bondi, who is close to being declared the victor in Florida’s Republican attorney general primary . Bondi, a former prosecutor whose résumé includes Fox News talking-head gigs, got a late campaign gift last week in the form of an endorsement from Sarah Palin . Bondi’s Web site prominently features the Palin stamp of approval, alongside her NRA “A” rating, her enthusiasm for Arizona’s harsh immigration laws, and her opposition to card check. But despite those conservative badges, Bondi only registered as Republican in 2000- she’d been a Dem since 1984 , and switched her party affilation a week after her boss, a Democrat seeking office, committed suicide. At the time, another former boss was the leading Republican candidate for state attorney. Bondi, who skipped voting in the primaries in 1984, 1986, 1988, 1990, 1992, 2002, and 2008, says she doesn’t remember why she made the switch and added, “You develop your values and your ethics as you develop as an adult.” That’s true. But you don’t have to be a hardboiled cynic to wonder whether opportunism was one of those values-and whether, given Palin’s last-minute endorsement of a telegenic candidate polling well right on the heels of a rough primary night for her endorsees , it’s one Bondi shares with Palin.

Screen grab from Pam Bondi for Attorney General. Courtesy of