This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," January 19, 2010. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: Right now, former Alaska governor Sarah Palin joins us by phone. She's the author of the mega-best seller "Going Rogue" and a Fox News political contributor.
Governor Palin, nice to hear from you. And Governor, as you listened to the concession stand (ph) of the attorney general here in Massachusetts, what'd you think?
SARAH PALIN, FORMER GOVERNOR OF ALASKA, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR (Via telephone): Oh, this is -- this is huge. You just witnessed a wicked political pivot across our country, and I think this victory of Brown's can't be overstated -- not just Brown, too, but look at the recent developments in New Jersey and Virginia, now Massachusetts. This is a tidal wave that's sweeping the country that's telling politicians in D.C. the status quo is not acceptable.
VAN SUSTEREN: From a purely strategic point of view, why do you think this happened? What -- did she have a misstep? Or what happened?
PALIN: I don't think it was a misstep on her part and one that you can pinpoint, but it was this overall message of (INAUDIBLE) arrogance this go-around wasn't going to win. Common sense victory is what was going to be seen coming from Scott Brown's candidacy, and that's what you saw. It was going to be independence and common sense (INAUDIBLE) And I think it was quite evident there at the end of the day, when you look at the way that Scott ran his campaign, it was quite simple and it was shoe leather and it was that tough work ethic that a lot of Massachusetts residents are known for. That's what he employed, versus calling on the big guns from D.C. and bringing in the elite to do the speaking for him. It was sort of (INAUDIBLE) American (INAUDIBLE) He represented that.
VAN SUSTEREN: You know, in some ways, I sort of think -- I look at it a little differently. I think she got torpedoed. On December 19th, she was up 20 points. Right after December 19th, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid bought that Nebraska vote for $300 million, which enraged everyone. Then about a week ago, the unfortunate thing for Martha Coakley was the deal with the union, the special treatment. So those two sort of cataclysmic events I think brought her down those 20 points very fast because those two events made a lot of people very unhappy.
PALIN: This is a referendum on all those things that President Obama has been standing for, though. This victory tonight of Scott's is a referendum on his and the left's policy agenda. And what this message is that's being sent to Washington is that the status quo is not acceptable. But the people are opposing government takeover of health care. They're opposing increasing American debt. And they're opposing the left's agenda of increased intrusion in our lives, especially our small businesses.
So yes, it was many different factors all coming together at once. And thank God for that, I think a lot of the people will say, because this is a step towards taking our country back.
VAN SUSTEREN: Did you endorse Scott Brown? And if not, why not?
PALIN: I would have, had he requested it. But I so respected that he didn't call in a whole lot of outsiders asking them to come do the bidding for him. He did this himself. And that again was kind of that underdog status of his that is so respected. Usually, a candidate like Scott is reliant upon and strengthened by their own grass roots effort. It was good for him to do it the way that he did, to run this campaign.
So I wasn't asked to be a part of it. I think I twittered a couple of times my support for him at the last minute there, but all along, I was rooting for him.
VAN SUSTEREN: Do you have any sort of thoughts for Martha Coakley? I mean, it must be sort of bruising to take a beating like that and you got to wake up the next day and sort of get going again. You've won some elections, you've lost some elections. You got any advice for her, for tomorrow?
PALIN: Yes, I think she can share the news with her colleagues, other Democrats, others on the left, to say, Hey, this is what democracy looks like, Democrats. You listen to the people or Democrats are going to hear our voices even louder in November. I think she can share that lesson. And then, you know, let's hope that everybody works together there in Massachusetts, especially on the challenges facing that state. Hopefully, she'll help contribute some positive ideas for Mr. Brown as he goes to Washington. And he's going to Washington in a pick-up truck, no less!
VAN SUSTEREN: You know, if I thought that the tea party movement was sort of a threat to the Republican Party, tonight now it may look like the people who support the tea party may be moving back or might have an opportunity to move back to the Republican Party. What's your thought of the tea party movement versus the Republican Party tonight?
PALIN: I don't look at it as two opposing forces. I think the tea party movement is so much a part of the Republican and independents who believe in smaller, smarter government and strong national security. I think the tea party movement has been another voice out there, and it would do our country well for all these different voices who believe in the common sense solutions to start working even closer together.
The tea party movement represents that message that political power is inherent in the people -- the people, and that government (INAUDIBLE) directed with the people. It's sort of people's will. That's what the tea party movement (INAUDIBLE) and that's what independents so often believe in, certainly what the planks in the Republican platform are supposed to be representing.
VAN SUSTEREN: All right, now, there are a lot of options with health care right now. The Democrats can try to do something so that they don't have to go to a full 60-vote -- maybe they can do a reconciliation. You can do all sorts of things. Or maybe health care has got to go back to the beginning and start all over. What do you think is going to happen now with health care? Not what do you want, but what do you think is going to happen?
PALIN: Oh, that's a good way to put it because what I want is for them to scrap it and start working with conservatives on common sense, market-driven, patient-oriented solutions. But instead, we need to watch for the Democrats to try to ram through this health care takeover, despite this very loud, this clear statement tonight from the people.
I think right now, Rahm Emanuel, Obama supporters there at the White House, they're thinking of every trick in the book to get around this -- Pelosi and Reid. So the people have to be ever vigilant and hold these politicians accountable.
VAN SUSTEREN: Do you think it's -- I mean, there have been a lot of sort of nasty, derogatory remarks coming out of Washington about the way Martha Coakley ran her campaign. I mean, obviously, I have a little different thought since she came down 20 points after some very important events happened in Washington. What about that sniping, or at least what we hear of the sniping about her from Washington, from Democrats in Washington?
PALIN: Yes, they need to get over that real quickly. I've been there, too, where a candidate has been -- blame laid on a candidate for a campaign not being victorious at the end of the day. It just wastes time. It wastes human effort and resources. Democrats should get over that. Just get (ph) that chapter of the book and just start trying to work together, everybody there in Washington, to get some solutions to the challenges facing this country, health care being one of the big ones.
VAN SUSTEREN: Governor, thank you very much for joining us.Content and Programming Copyright 2010 Fox News Network, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Transcription Copyright 2010 CQ Transcriptions, LLC, which takes sole responsibility for the accuracy of the transcription. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. No license is granted to the user of this material except for the user's personal or internal use and, in such case, only one copy may be printed, nor shall user use any material for commercial purposes or in any fashion that may infringe upon Fox News Network, LLC'S and CQ Transcriptions, LLC's copyrights or other proprietary rights or interests in the material. This is not a legal transcript for purposes of litigation.