ABC News' Teddy Davis reports: Sarah Palin can still pack ‘em in. The former Alaska governor is scheduled to deliver 7:45 pm ET remarks to 6,000 paying customers on Friday evening in Salina, Kansas.
“I think people look at her as ‘one of them,’” said Don Weiser, the vice president of the Salina Area Chamber of Commerce. “I think it’s her lifestyle. She hunts. She fishes. She’s not arrogant. She doesn’t see herself as ‘up there’ and them as ‘down there.’” Weiser thinks that the business crowd will also take to her free-market message. Salina, a town of 46,000 people, is located 90 miles north of Wichita. The Salina Area Chamber of Commerce has hosted several high-profile speakers over the years at its annual banquet including future President Ronald Reagan in 1978; future Vice President Dick Cheney in 1994; and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani in 2005. But none of them drew a crowd similar to Palin. The closest, said Weiser, was former President George H.W. Bush who drew 2,500 people in 2003. For those having dinner at Palin’s sold-out event, tickets are $50-$75. For those sitting in the gallery of the Bicentennial Center (not getting dinner), tickets are $25. Per the terms of the contract which was negotiated through the Washington Speakers Bureau, the Salina Area Chamber of Commerce is not allowed to disclose Palin’s speaking fee. Press will be allowed into the event. Reporters and other attendees will not, however, be allowed to record her speech or take flash-photography. “That is her call,” said Weiser. “If it were up to me, I would love to have a news conference, recording, and picture-taking.” Palin will be introduced by Rep. Jerry Moran, R-Ks., the local congressman. Moran is currently running for the GOP’s Senate nomination against Rep. Todd Tiahrt, R-Ks. Although Tiahrt is not getting to introduce Palin, he will also be in attendance, according to Weiser, as will Sen. Sam Brownback, R-Ks., the incumbent senator. Brownback, who ran for president in 2008, is not running for re-election to the Senate so that he can run for governor. On Saturday, Palin is scheduled to deliver a paid speech to the National TEA Party convention in Nashville, Tenn. On Sunday, she will campaign for the re-election of Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) in the Houston area. Perry is being challenged in the GOP primary by Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas.