True, colonists used it first, as love of country.
But from Patriotism:(Note, cigar has declared himself an advocate of communitarianism.)This changed in the 1980s. The change was due, in part, to the revival of communitarianism, which came in response to the individualistic, liberal political and moral philosophy epitomized by John Rawls' Theory of Justice (1971); but it was also due to the resurgence of nationalism in several parts of the world. The beginning of this change was marked by Andrew Oldenquist's account of morality as a matter of various loyalties, rather than abstract principles and ideals (Oldenquist 1982), and Alasdair MacIntyre's argument that patriotism is a central moral virtue (MacIntyre 1984). Largely in response to MacIntyre, some philosophers have defended constrained or deflated versions of patriotism (Baron 1989, Nathanson 1989, Primoratz 2002). Others have argued against patriotism of any sort (Gomberg 1990, McCabe 1997). There is now a lively philosophical debate about the moral credentials of patriotism that shows no signs of abating. A parallel discussion in political philosophy concerns the kind of patriotism that might provide an alternative to nationalism as the ethos of a stable, well-functioning polity.
Palin's use returned it to its original meaning, love of country.