Handel Begins Martyrdom Tour

Those who might have thought we’d heard the last of Karen Handel are, unfortunately, wrong. Jim Galloway of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that the former Komen Foundation vice president and Republican politician, who resigned after her efforts to institute or maintain (depending on whose story you believe) a cutoff on Foundation funding for Planned Parenthood, is going to appear at Virginia’s famed right-wing Patrick Henry College this very evening. She’ll be publicly interviewed by none other than Marvin Olasky, the former George W. Bush advisor who is a very heavy hitter on the Christian Right.

According to Olasky:

When Karen Handel earlier this month bravely criticized Planned Parenthood executives’ ‘shakedown to coerce a private entity to give them grants,’ many on the pro-abortion side were furious with her. This interview will give students a chance to hear and question one of this month’s big newsmakers, and to see that a woman can knock over one of our contemporary idols and survive.

Oh, I’d say she’s surviving just fine.

For those of you unfamiliar with Patrick Henry College, it’s definitely one of the Christian Right’s most important power centers. Founded by Virginia-based homeschooling advocate Michael Farris, PHC is very much intended to serve as an elite transmission belt for bright young hard-core conservative evangelicals (a majority of them homeschooled) into entry-level jobs on Capitol Hill and (at least in Republican administrations) the Executive Branch.

I can’t imagine a better site for Handel to begin her martyrdom tour, and her return to politics. Just wait and see.

Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.