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Ear to the Ground

I Ran for Vice President and All I Got Was This $150K Wardrobe

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Posted on Oct 22, 2008
AP photo / Matt Rourke

Extreme Makeover: Politician Edition? Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin balances on black boots while holding baby Trig at an Oct. 18 campaign stop in Lancaster, Pa.

Did the Republican National Committee splash out a staggering $150,000 since early September to get Sarah Palin all spiffed up for the campaign trail? And if she and John McCain don’t win the election, does Palin get to keep all those versatile and stylish career separates?

Update: The Huffington Post has some startling information about Palin’s alleged personal shopper (who’s also, strangely, said to be the source of McCain’s own robocall woes in 2000), and—surprise!—all roads lead to Karl Rove.


According to financial disclosure records, the accessorizing began in early September and included bills from Saks Fifth Avenue in St. Louis and New York for a combined $49,425.74.

The records also document a couple of big-time shopping trips to Neiman Marcus in Minneapolis, including one $75,062.63 spree in early September.

The RNC also spent $4,716.49 on hair and makeup through September after reporting no such costs in August.

The cash expenditures immediately raised questions among campaign finance experts about their legality under the Federal Election Commission’s long-standing advisory opinions on using campaign cash to purchase items for personal use.

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thebeerdoctor's avatar

By thebeerdoctor, October 25, 2008 at 6:55 am Link to this comment

re: Hippy Pam

Your outrage is heartfelt here. The reason I quoted Nancy Sinatra’s famous opus (hey, Frank’s little girl wants to make a record, you got a problem with that?) is that These Boots Are Made For Walking uses English very similar to the Alaska Governor. For example:
“You keep lyin’ when you oughta be truthin’
You keep samin’ you oughta be a changin’
what’s right is right but you aint been right yet”

But the thing I object to most of all? Sarah Palin has given the moose a bad name. When I think of Moosehead, I use to think of Canada’s oldest independent brewery. Now alas, I am also reminded of the hockey mom who only regrets not being able to name one of her children Zamboni.

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By hippy pam, October 25, 2008 at 6:08 am Link to this comment

Yep…and here is this “bitch”[i.e.female pit bull]Parading around in her EXPENSIVE POWER SUIT and BOOTS while MY FRIEND ON SSI LIVES ON $17.00 per month in foood stamps…And another friend cannot REPAIR HER CAR TO GET TO WORK….and my SON was LAYED OFF FROM A JOB OF 12 YEARS and will probably LOSE HIS HOUSE cuz I’m in NO POSITION TO HELP….While this uneducated,uninformed and small minded DOG spends $150,000.00 on “FRIPPERY” and $22,000.00 on MAKE-UP?????WHAT IS WRONG WITH THIS PICTURE???IS THIS WHAT THE AMERICAN PUBLIC WANTS “IN CHARGE” OF THE VITAL FUNCTIONS OF AMERICA???

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By thebeerdoctor, October 25, 2008 at 5:27 am Link to this comment

re: Fadel Abdallah

A few things to remember about the Governor of Alaska: She is a prepackaged fraud. When anyone notices any of her numerous inane comments, she shrugs it off by claiming it was just a joke. She is vindictive. Don’t take my word on this, just read what people have said who have crossed the Palin crime family’s path.  Alaska is a giant state with a tiny population and politics becomes the petty coin of an oil fiefdom realm.
But Sarah Palin is an ambitious politician. The brass knuckles are barely concealed beneath the gloves. No wonder she has trouble calling someone like Eric Rudolph a terrorist. The man who set off the bomb at the 1996 summer Olympics can be given some slack, according to Palin: his actions were misguided, but his heart, with his great concern about abortion, was in the right place. The same can be said for those folks in North Carolina who harbored this fugitive for years. North Carolina is an important battleground state for the Palin/McCain ticket.
As for John McCain, the genuine geriatric war participant, it might best be explained like this:
“You’ve been a messin’ where you shouldn’t have been a messin’
And now someone else is getting all your best
Well these boots are made for walking, and that’s just what they’ll do
One of these days these boots are gonna walk all over you.”

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By Fadel Abdallah, October 24, 2008 at 7:45 pm Link to this comment

By hippy pam, October 24 at 3:21 pm #

Is it REALLY HEALTHY for that impaired[p.c.]downs baby to BE DRAGGED AROUND LIKE THAT IN THE NOISE-LIGHTS-FLU SEASON GERMS-?????Or is “mooseturd” AN UNFIT MOTHER????If my daughter[or yours] did that with their child….PROTECTIVE SERVICES WOULD BE ON IT LIKE FLIES ON A TURD…......
Thanks hippy pam for saving me the pain of being the first to make the same comment you made above. In fact, when I first saw a picture of Sarah Palin dragging that impaired baby into these noisy and unhealthy gatherings, I thought this woman does not know anything about the rights of impaired children to be specially treated and protected. I thought that parading that child around was a very cheap and down criminal way to elicit sympathy and support. I am wondering why not many Americans have noticed and protested what you noticed and protested!

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By hippy pam, October 24, 2008 at 4:21 pm Link to this comment

Is it REALLY HEALTHY for that impaired[p.c.]downs baby to BE DRAGGED AROUND LIKE THAT IN THE NOISE-LIGHTS-FLU SEASON GERMS-?????Or is “mooseturd” AN UNFIT MOTHER????If my daughter[or yours] did that with their child….PROTECTIVE SERVICES WOULD BE ON IT LIKE FLIES ON A TURD…......

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By Fadel Abdallah, October 24, 2008 at 3:32 pm Link to this comment

Well! No, things are not well! I am just wondering if Sarah Palin was a woman of substance then she should have refused this generous 150 thousand dollars to artificially beautify her. So one can dare to say that she accepted to be “prostituted” to look like a high class prostitute for those superficial citizens who only look at the surface of things!

Of course, this issue doesn’t only tell you something about the cheap character of Palin, but it also tells you a lot about McCain’s and all his campaign apparatus judgment that thought about this Hollywood-like cinematic trick.

This issue could have been overlooked if the whole nation, and by extension the whole world wasn’t going through the financial crises that make many families loose their sleep over whether they’re going to make it through tomorrow!

If this out-of-touch pair (i.e. McCain-Palin) will win the election, then I will give up on the hope for my adopted homeland!

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By Inherit The Wind, October 23, 2008 at 11:29 am Link to this comment

PatrickHenry, October 22 at 2:59 pm #

By PatrickHenry, October 22 at 1:33 pm #

$7500 with his own $$$$

$150000, with other peoples $$$$.

Who would you want to spend your tax $$$$?

Weird. I’m 100% in agreement with PH all the time these days! (And have a good laugh, too!)

If I were a Re-thug, IF McCain wins and some crackerjack statistician can show that spending $150k on Palin’s duds put it over the top, I’d be absolutely THRILLED with her wardrobe. 

But if I were a Re-thug and the McCain loses, I’d be d***ed p*$$ed that my hard-earned contributions went on her back!

And to think these same Re-thugs were wetting themselves over John Edwards getting a $400 haircut…

Me? I’m amazed that Cindy McCain walks around wearing a $5000 Chanel ceramic watch. For her, that’s slumming and like wearing a plastic Casio to you or me. I’d be certain she’d be wearing a Patek Philipe,  an Audemars Piguet, a Breguet, a VanCleef or a Vacheron Constantine for a minimum of $30-40k.

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By hippy pam, October 23, 2008 at 6:30 am Link to this comment

I know I can not afford to shop at neiman marcus…Nor can any of my friends….We have all we can do to keep food on our tables,utilities paid and gas in our car.Never mind we have to SCRAPE to get FLU SHOTS with “the season” coming on….Because most of us have LITTLE OR NO INSURANCE….Thank You “ole bullsh*t” for WHAT YOU HAVE DONE FOR US ON YOUR WATCH…..and I definitly DO NOT WANT ANY MORE OF IT…...Vote OBAMA…

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thebeerdoctor's avatar

By thebeerdoctor, October 23, 2008 at 2:02 am Link to this comment

re: Cyrena

“To put it another way: Palin received more valuable clothes in one month than the average American household spends on clothes in 80 years.”
Sam Stein,
The Huffington Post

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By cyrena, October 23, 2008 at 1:13 am Link to this comment

By thebeerdoctor, October 22 at 6:45 am #
Beerdoctor writes:

You would think that burning through one hundred fifty grand worth of dough, they could have at least booked one remedial class or course in the U.S. Constitution. Her recent revelations about what the Vice President’s job is about, shows that, despite her red leather jacket and snappy appearance, she is still as misinformed as ever.”


I’m with you beerdoc. $150K would pay for at LEAST one BA/BS, an MA, and a PhD to boot.

BTW..Obama made sure his suit for the Democratic Convention/Nomination acceptance was made by union workers. Now, since he almost always has on the same plain understated outfit, (maybe a flashy tie from time to time) Black suits, (union made) white shirts, (they don’t look silk, and I would know) I just don’t see how it could add up to all that much.

Now admittedly, it’s been a while since I’ve purchased men’s clothing, but still….how much can a union-made suit cost? I KNOW he doesn’t spend that much on his haircuts. (Southside Chicago barbers…MAYBE $22.50 MAX for the cut, and say a $5.00 or $6.00 tip, though he probably tips better than that.) Or, he could go to Campus Cuts, where it’s even cheaper, ‘cause they only use clippers there. It’s more like ‘In-and-Out Cuts.’

Now I’m *not* trying to be disrespectful or a smart ass here on Palin and the baby. BUT…I swear to god I thought that was a doll she was carrying. WHY is she carrying that baby like that? Isn’t he supposed to be her 5th or 6th? She looks like it’s her first time ever picking one up.

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By R in Colorado, October 22, 2008 at 9:47 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Guess it wasn’t just lipstick they were putting on that pig, ooops, I mean pitbull.

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By jackpine savage, October 22, 2008 at 8:05 pm Link to this comment

Marshall K,

Funniest thing i’ve read this week.

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By Marc Schlee, October 22, 2008 at 4:41 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

She has to drop it all off at Central Casting the day after the election.



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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, October 22, 2008 at 3:59 pm Link to this comment

By PatrickHenry, October 22 at 1:33 pm #

$7500 with his own $$$$

$150000, with other peoples $$$$.

Who would you want to spend your tax $$$$?

Report this

By marcus medler, October 22, 2008 at 3:10 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

hey Patrick Henry do the math. Obama(if true)7500 in new duds vs 150 grand. Sounds a bit like the tax proposals, middle class support vs le’ grand class support.

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, October 22, 2008 at 2:33 pm Link to this comment

Oh boy,

RNC buys Caribou Barbie wardrobe with bling.

Obama went out and bought himself (5) wool suits for $1500 ea.  He can afford it, tax write off for business.

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By wildflower, October 22, 2008 at 1:20 pm Link to this comment

McCain - what a guy! He like so many of his fellow Republicans votes NO on legislation that would help provide health insurance to America’s nine million uninsured children (SCHIP), but YES on a 150K wardrobe for Sarah Palin.

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By jules59, October 22, 2008 at 12:37 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Hmmm, $150k for clothes and make-up at Saks and Neimans; daily half caf/vente/ slim/vanilla/iced/ lattes from Starbucks, all expenses paid trips to NYC with prego teen daughter compliments of the “good people of Alaska-real Americans”; a top of the line English “pram” for the new baby; time in the day to train for a marathon. That’s it, I’m quitting my job and becoming a hockey mom.

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By expat in germany, October 22, 2008 at 12:03 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Hilarious title! Thanks for the laugh. I needed that.

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By Thomthum, October 22, 2008 at 11:53 am Link to this comment

the RNC should spend every dime they have on clothing for her…shop baby shop!

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By ZombieNation, October 22, 2008 at 10:53 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

While “JOE the PLUMBER” & “JOE & JANE SIX-PACK” buy their clothes from WALMART.

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By octopus, October 22, 2008 at 10:41 am Link to this comment

Let me know the next time ya’ go swimmin’...

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By Kashilinus, October 22, 2008 at 10:03 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Terrific title.
This is okay. Spreading the wealth among the wealthy.

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By Opening Eyes, October 22, 2008 at 9:45 am Link to this comment

Palin has run for office as mayor, governor and now as VP on a platform of reforming corrupt practices in government.  But when it comes to getting her house built for free (eliminating the need for building permits before the skating rink and her house got built) and having a governor appointed personel board that is supposed to discipline the governor in Alaska, it doesn’t add up.  What it means is that she is against corruption in government as a means to get into the driver’s seat, but it doesn’t apply to her when it’s her agenda that needs to be met. 
Gov Palin, you’ve got some troubled constituents in Alaska thanks to getting better known.

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By Marshall K, October 22, 2008 at 9:32 am Link to this comment

Ya know, I’m thikin she coulda got the same hair do from Rhonda Faye at Deedee’s Curly Q for 20 bucks. It’s like when the Gunderson’s won $200,000 on a scratch off.  They went out and got a buncha new clothes, went to Vegas, got a new pickup, new car, a bass boat, and they partied pretty good for about six months, ya know.  Now he’s back workin in the gas station and she’s knocked up again.

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By Hemi*, October 22, 2008 at 9:23 am Link to this comment


Respectfully I think YOU missed the point.

This election is a fraud. Your current president is Hank Paulson. And if the democrats win your president will likely be Robert E. Rubin. Keep your eyes on the kooky lady in the designer duds doing her “fancy pageant walking”, she’s the evil mastermind behind it all!

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By Maryanne Jameson, October 22, 2008 at 9:08 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

At least they didn’t put Sarah in boxcar pantsuits. And she does look sensational in those high heel boots. But, if you look at 10-year old videos of her, she was always pretty in whatever she chose to wear. The fact that she is pretty, appealing, and happy has driven her detractors crazy from the start. Settle down, witch-burners. It’s almost over.

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By Mainesongwriter, October 22, 2008 at 8:42 am Link to this comment

Governor, may I please request that you donate the Saks 5th Avenue red leather jacket to the Goodwill store in Gorham, Maine. A lot of women and men hunt up here, and that jacket could be a life-saver, much more visible in a snow storm than “hunter orange”. Thank You.

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By rowdy, October 22, 2008 at 8:40 am Link to this comment

tell me again, which party is “elitist”?

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By Louise, October 22, 2008 at 8:33 am Link to this comment


Oh boy do you miss the point.

So supposing they auction off the lot. Please, do you think for one minute the folks attending that auction will be anything but over valued, overbloated, filthy rich so-called conservatives?

Give me a break!

Oh and then they’ll give the money to charity. Probably one of their favorites run by one of their “favorites” who syphons 85% off the top. This IS NOT helping anyone, except them, the non-producers who daily steal from us, and pad their self-serving conceit with a little good [NOT] PR!

Hillary buys her own clothes!

And, so do all the deluded and mis-led conservatives who shop at Goodwill!

Thank goodness for Goodwill, ‘cause there is NO goodness coming out of the Greed Over Principle, party. If there’s nothing in it for the leadership, there’s nothing in it!

Good golly fellow, haven’t you been listening? Sharing and caring and spreading the wealth around is a BAD thing. Ask McCain, he’ll tell you so!

Along with giving “right” a bad reputation, these folks give “Christianity” a bad reputation!

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By purplewolf, October 22, 2008 at 8:15 am Link to this comment

Not only did taxpayers pick up the tab for this, they also paid for clothes for all of her kids and Odd Todd of snowmobile fame. Bet they even paid for Levi’s new rags when they drug him out to parade the future husband of a pregnant Bristol Palin to the masses in the lower 48.

What? Didn’t she have any clothes to wear already. Didn’t her pay as mayor/governor pay enough for her to clothe herself? They got taxpayers to pay her to live/sleep in her own house while being governor, I’m certain thay paid to dress her also. Another rip-off of the peons for the rich elitists.

Country First my -ss. We’ll cut government waste, you betacha!

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By Hemi*, October 22, 2008 at 8:13 am Link to this comment

This is minor and this is bullsh*t. Yes, yes it’s a huge amount of money. Nobody is going through the wardrobes of the other candidates and how they paid for them. There isn’t a single bitch or bastard among them that isn’t wearing more dollar value at any campaign appearance than that of my entire wardrobe. Their god-damned watches likely cost more than I earn in a week. How much did the phoney Greek columns cost? That was money well spent. Stop acting like this blind-sided you!

The clothes are being auctioned later for charity, give it a rest. Yep, they touted her as the “hockey mom”. Even the most diehard liberals didn’t expect her to be out there in a housecoat or camouflage sweat pants. FYI Billary’s pant suits were not part of the Jaclyn Smith line at K-Mart. If you want to get your own designer panties in a bunch discuss the millions being spent by both parties on this sham election. And what have you learned from all those millions spent? Obama slept through a shitload of sermons and McCain’s older than dirt.

You swallow the bailout and choke on the wardrobe expenditure? Grow the f*ck up!

Both parties suck. I’m voting for F*cktnut and Douchenozel in 08! (And you think you’re not!)

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thebeerdoctor's avatar

By thebeerdoctor, October 22, 2008 at 7:45 am Link to this comment

You would think that burning through one hundred fifty grand worth of dough, they could have at least booked one remedial class or course in the U.S. Constitution. Her recent revelations about what the Vice President’s job is about, shows that, despite her red leather jacket and snappy appearance, she is still as misinformed as ever.

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By Marc Schlee, October 22, 2008 at 7:16 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

A copy of the “Who Wants To Be A Nazi” home game.



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By hippy pam, October 22, 2008 at 7:10 am Link to this comment

RED and BLACK are POWER COLORS-Worn to show STRENGTH…And yes-she carries the “kid” to show her self as a “martyr”[a child with Downs Syndrome”].I think she should STAY AND HOME AND CARE FOR HER KIDS…Maybe teach Bristol about Birth Control/Abstinence/Concequences….Oh-I Forgot….She does so many other dishonerable things…SO…Her kids have a GOOD TEACHER…..

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By David Dixit, October 22, 2008 at 7:06 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

and what a delightful tail (sic) it is…
Unfortunately you cannot teach an old dog new tricks !
And it is a very old dog.

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By Matt, October 22, 2008 at 6:54 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I guess I’m a little confused about the circumstances here.  Is the problem that the RNC paid for these clothes?  I despise Palin as much as anybody, but aren’t the male politicians in this race wearing expensive suits as well?

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By GARY GUNN, October 22, 2008 at 6:50 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)



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By Catherine, October 22, 2008 at 6:21 am Link to this comment

This is disgusting during these hard economic times, but then Mrs. Mooseburger has to look as expensively dressed as Cindy McCain does. Too bad they can’t buy her a new brain.

I’ve not seen this story on any of the msm stations yet, except Keith Olbermann’s “Countdown” last evening,  but if the bloggers will take it and run, the other stations will have to pick it up…with Faux Noise of course spinning it out of control.

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By Louise, October 22, 2008 at 6:16 am Link to this comment

I really don’t care what the Rancid Nasty Criminals at RNC do with their money, but if they try to call this legitimate campaign expenses and expect a pay-back that’s a bit much!
Clothes for the baby? Now we know why she hauls him out on the stage at every rally! I suspect the same thing applies to the other kids. “Remember, smile and cheer and stand there, and you can keep all those lovely outfits.”
Bribery or payoff. Necessity or greed. Whatever it is, it just highlites once again, the REAL values guiding the repubs and the gov from Alaska.
Maybe when she loses and has to go back to the frozen North, she can donate those clothes to some republican women and kids who haven’t had any new clothes for the last eight years!
Naw, that wont happen. That would be spreading the wealth! And as we all know, That’s a BIG NO-NO in the McCain/Palin campaign!
A “worthy charity” on the other hand could be ... oh, I don’t know. Maybe helping ease the pain of a “worthy” but losing lady with a boost to her wardrobe? Or maybe it could be “clothed” in the “Alaska needs” catagory. After all, she is their governor and she does need to present a “certain” image. Especially now!
What I want to know is ... given the demands of hopping back and forth across the country, to deliver her rabble rousing to her aroused rabble, when does she find time to go shopping? This escapes my comprehension. But then I never could understand “shopping” as some kind of a charge! Also, as we all know from the endless news clips, her wardrobe seems to consist, for the most part, of two things. The red thing and the black thing.
Red and black, So appropriate for the season of witches and goblins and things that scare little kids in the night.
So, are we to believe the Palin has spent $150,000 on two outfits?
By golly, another good example of really bad management, doncha know?

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By Curious Orange, October 22, 2008 at 6:02 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Divide and conquer still rule the day

My only hope is a third party will show Americans the way

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By hippy pam, October 22, 2008 at 5:47 am Link to this comment

My friend and I were talking about this amount of money spent to make this woman LOOK COMPETENT…Both of us agreed that this amount of money would have been better spent giving my friend [and lots of others] FOOD STAMPS of more than the $17.00 per month she is allowed-even tho she is disabled and on SSI.How about giving this money to a CHILDRENS CENTER for HEALTH ITEMS-An inner city PLAYGROUND???But No….They spend it TO SPIFF UP a CANDIDATE…Just goes to show WHERE THEIR PRIORITIES ARE…..

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By ThatDeborahGirl, October 22, 2008 at 5:26 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

As a Democrat I suppose I’m supposed to muster up some sort of righteous indignation over this.

As a woman I say that 150 grand is downright frugal of the GOP and for any woman that has to shop for the national stage Palin is on.

I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that this article was written by a man. Maybe an unmarried man. Or a man who hasn’t been married long enough to know - never criticize how much a woman spends on clothes.

And shame on you for making me defend anything to do with Sarah Palin but damn, every woman has her limit but clothes? Stick to politics honey, stick to politics.

“Heaven grant me patience. Clothes are very important.” (Not going to tell you where that quote is from. Your penance is to go look it up yourself.)

And hell yes, she should get to keep the clothes. I can’t even see Cheney as being cretin enough to ask for them back and that’s saying a lot but then again, he’s definitely been married long enough to know better.

Let’s not stoop to GOP/FOX “News” level idiocy with stuff like this again, shall we?

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By Susan Bales, October 22, 2008 at 3:54 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I’m no fan of Palin’s, but these expenses make sense to me.  She has to look good on a moment’s notice; she can’t be running for VP, dressed in Walmart. But there will be complaints, no matter what she does.

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