As time goes by, more folks on the Right realize that there’s more to America than what happens inside the DC Beltway. Furthermore, they are beginning to discover that what happens in New York and Hollywood drives what happens in Washington DC. Fox News Channel political commentator and columnist Andrea Tantaros is one of these folks, and she has a radical idea for the person many would consider conservatism’s brightest star: Forget politics and go into daytime television.

Sarah Palin, Tantaros argues, is too great a lightening rod to be effective politically. Were she to run in 2012, Palin would be a “distraction” for both Democrats and Republicans.

If you think the deep division and party gridlock is bad with President Obama, the alleged uniter, at the helm, picture what a Palin candidacy – and, if that works out, a Palin presidency – would bring. She could barely govern in Alaska with the onslaught of allegations and baseless lawsuits thrown at her daily. Life in the lower 48 would be increasingly more challenging.

If politics isn’t the path for Palin, then what is?

Palin should get this through her head now: She would be far more influential as a talk show host than she would be as a presidential candidate. … With the exit of Oprah Winfrey now slated for 2011, … Sarah Palin, former governor of Alaska, first female GOP vice presidential candidate, mother, author, liberal hallucinogen and now television commentator, [is] poised to fill the void left by the Queen of Talk.

Just imagine the Sarah Palin Show, with weekly contributions from Mark Steyn on what’s happening on Broadway, John J. Miller with the latest Sarah Palin Book Club fiction picks, and Dennis Prager with advice on men, women and happiness.  A few months of Prager and folks might be wondering what they ever saw in Dr. Phil.

Tantaros’s idea is, quite simply, brilliant:

[Sarah Palin] is arguably more in touch with the American woman than Winfrey. She’s birthed and reared five children – one with special needs. She’s faced challenges common to moms everywhere, from figuring out how to balance a family’s checkbook to teen pregnancy. And she’s juggled career and family more adeptly than almost anyone else.

She is arguably more in touch with current American culture. Winfrey acts as a moral arbiter, endorses material goods and peddles New Age nonsense; Palin, her feet more firmly on the ground, could speak about values and current events that affect every household.

For conservatives who still think that television would be a waste of Gov. Palin’s talent and could not hold a candle to the role she’d play in the White House, think for a moment about the reaction to Oprah’s endorsement of “The One.” If Oprah Winfrey kept her political opinions to herself, according to two economists, 2008’s Presidential race would have been between John McCain and Hillary Clinton.

A couple of things must happen for the “Sarah Palin Show” to become reality. First, the former governor and her advisers must recognize that culture and influence are more important, in the long run, than a short-term political victory. Second, either a conservative in the entertainment industry must step forward or someone must overcome incredible political biases and recognize Palin’s massive market potential.

Would millions tune in to the “Sarah Palin Show?” Some argue that Oprah’s rating decline resulted from the endorsement for “The One.” Others state viewers are burnt out on daytime talk shows. Whatever the cause, Oprah Winfrey isn’t getting the numbers she once did, which probably played a role in her decision to hang it up in 2011. One show does stand out during the “Oprah” ratings slip. According to Tantaros, Sarah Palin’s appearance gave “Oprah” its highest ratings in two years. Why not give viewers a strong, conservative woman who can connect, as Tantaros writes, “with regular people … in social, cultural and emotional ways?”

Love her or hate her, Sarah Palin is a media star. Andrea Tantaros is spot-on in suggesting a “Sarah Palin Show” over a Palin presidential bid. It would be a shame to waste all that potential influence on a few tumultuous years in the White House, or any other branch of government for that matter.