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In speech world, one Sarah Palin equals three Tim Pawlentys

WASHINGTON — POLITICO’s Ben Smith has an interesting tidbit for those wondering how the free market values the emerging GOP field’s time. Writes Smith:

I’ve done a bit of reporting this year on the speaking circuit and politicians’ fees, and it strikes me that they provide a useful measure of a candidate’s value on a kind of open market.

With a few disclaimers, like that the personally-wealthy Mitt Romney doesn’t charge and that travel fees vary, it is a bit interesting to see how the candidates rank themselves in terms of how much their time is worth and how much groups are willing to pay to see them. So how do the candidates’ base fees stack up?

  • $100,000 — Sarah Palin (discounted to $75,000 if on the Pacific coast)
  • $70,750 — Newt Gingrich
  • $60,000 — Haley Barbour
  • $33,930 — Mike Huckabee
  • $30,000 — Tim Pawlenty (His fee starting in January, he doesn’t charge as an elected official)

So in the speechifying world, three Tim Pawlentys equal one Sarah Palin — with enough left over to buy one of these.

Read Smith’s full report here.

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