In a statement to Breitbart News, former Alaska governor Sarah Palin responded to President Obama’s comments in a recent interview with New York Magazine’s Jonathan Chait that he sees “a straight line” starting from Palin’s vice presidential nomination in 2008 to the rise of the Tea Party movement and ultimately to the candidacy of Donald Trump.
In an email statement to Breitbart News, Palin wrote:
There’s a reason pro-American activists have been living rent free in President Obama’s head these past eight years. Some may feel guilty about the running tab, but I’ll just add it to his doubling of the national debt to $20 trillion. This far-left administration is the overseer of a piled-on $200 trillion unfunded liabilities bill that’s destroying our children’s future, and that’s what should occupy the President’s headspace, not some hockey mom from Alaska. He’s right though — the rise of the Trump movement began in 2008 when the “silenced majority” that’s been trampled on by both parties rose up, found their voice, and uses it mightily today.
In his interview with Chait, Obama said that “the attitudes” and “moods” Palin “captured during the  election increasingly were representative of the Republican activist base, its core.”
I see a straight line from the announcement of Sarah Palin as the vice-presidential nominee to what we see today in Donald Trump, the emergence of the Freedom Caucus, the tea party, and the shift in the center of gravity for the Republican Party. Whether that changes, I think, will depend in part on the outcome of this election, but it’s also going to depend on the degree of self-reflection inside the Republican Party. There have been at least a couple of other times that I’ve said confidently that the fever is going to have to break, but it just seems to get worse.
Palin, who was an instrumental figure in the rise of the Tea Party movement and the Republican electoral victories that allowed the GOP to reclaim their House and Senate majorities, was an early supporter of Donald Trump. Her endorsement of Trump last January before the Iowa Caucuses was his first major endorsement.