September 9th, 2008
04:41 PM ET
6 years ago

McCain camp launches ‘Palin Truth Squad’

McCain has launched the 'Palin Truth Squad' to dispel rumors about her.
McCain has launched the 'Palin Truth Squad' to dispel rumors about her.

(CNN) – John McCain’s campaign defended Sarah Palin Tuesday over a report that highlighted some of her travel expense claims as governor, and announced the launch of the “Palin Truth Squad” to fight future attacks on the VP nominee.

The Washington Post reported Tuesday that the Alaska governor had billed the state a per diem for 312 days she spent at home, and requested reimbursement for plane rides and hotel rooms for her husband and children, including a $707 room when her daughter accompanied her on a trip to New York to attend a Newsweek forum.

The paper noted that officials said the claims were justified under existing state regulations.

The McCain campaign said that Palin had reduced yearly travel expenses by roughly 80 percent of the amount spent by predecessor Frank Murkowski, in part by selling the governor’s private jet. Roughly half the $93,000 spent went to cover expenses incurred by her family. In a post on the campaign’s Web site, adviser Michael Goldfarb told supporters that Alaskans were paying “pennies on the dollar,” and accused the Washington Post of “hunting for ‘scandal.’”

“As governor of the state, Palin is expected to travel across Alaska to meet her constituents and attend community events. As a mother of five, she occasionally brought her children with her,” wrote Goldfarb. “Her travel-related activities have been appropriately documented, are completely transparent, and entirely legal. She also saved Alaskan taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars in the budgeting process and hundreds of thousands in cutting waste from her own office. It is an impressive record of reform by any measure.”


The McCain-Palin team has made her record on cost-cutting a central element of her vice presidential bid.

The campaign — which has been sending “fight the smears” e-mails whose tone echoes similar messages from Barack Obama’s campaign — also said staffers and major campaign surrogates at the state and national level were forming an official rapid response team that will respond to rumors about the Republican vice presidential nominee, sending alerts and campaign statements to voters and reporters.

“We will not allow those on the left and in the media to smear a woman who has always served her constituents with honor,” the campaign said in a statement. “We know the truth and are committed to ensuring it as well."

The McCain-Palin team has campaigned on media coverage that they describe as excessive or unfair.


Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (373 Responses)
  1. Tammy - KCMO

    Truth squad or cover up? My guess would be the latter.

    September 9, 2008 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  2. Rob

    Republican truth squad = oxymoron. The fact remains that Palin and her travel expenses are still being investigated by the Alaska legislature. Not rumor, Fact !

    September 9, 2008 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  3. kkcoughlin

    She is a book banner...That is unamerican. Then to turn around and try to fire the librarian is scary. Ed Koch is right.

    September 9, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  4. Clark Shaffer

    "Truth Squad" give me a break. Neither of them Palin or McClueless has any idea. They're campaign is all about saying whatever people want to hear without any substance and complete accusation against the other party. God help us if this is what we have to live with after November.

    September 9, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  5. Johanna not voting GOP

    Palin also fired, according to the Politico, "a campaign adviser whose mother-in-law fought Palin's legislative agenda, a local political mentor who she felt represented the "old boys' network," a police chief who she said tried to intimidate her with "stern look[s]" and a state commissioner who refused to fire her sister's ex-husband."

    September 9, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  6. That's Reality

    “Her travel-related activities have been appropriately documented, are completely transparent, and entirely legal. She also saved Alaskan taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars in the budgeting process and hundreds of thousands in cutting waste from her own office. It is an impressive record of reform by any measure.”

    LOOKS LIKE ALL YOU LIBERALS MISSED THIS, BUT THEN YOU WOULDN"T WANT TO ACKNOWLEDGE THESE BITS OF TRUTH WOULD YOU? APPARENTLY THE CITIZENS OF ALASKA KNOW THE TRUTH AND LOVE HER FOR IT !!! You can try to smear her all you want but the fact remains, she's more qualified to serve as vp than your presidential candidate is to serve as pres.

    September 9, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  7. Greg in Colorado

    I find it rather odd that a once Hillary follower would find themselves voting for a republican. Are you dislusional? Are you really a democrat? I can't believe that some people would abandon their party! Like Hillary has any similarities with Palin. What a waste of a vote. I wonder how Hillary would feel if she knew her followers were really voting for McCain. Must not have been a true follower.

    September 9, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  8. Obama-Junkie, IL

    There's no way to hide it McCain, Palin's a "porker" like many politicians.

    September 9, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  9. Reagan

    As a Democrat I am appalled at the Palin smear campaign going on.

    STOP IT!!!! Do you people realize how bad your making thing's for our party? How juvenile and crazy it sounds when you call the Republicans school yard names or try to compare them to fictional characters? It sickens me...

    September 9, 2008 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  10. That's Reality

    “Her travel-related activities have been appropriately documented, are completely transparent, and entirely legal. She also saved Alaskan taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars in the budgeting process and hundreds of thousands in cutting waste from her own office. It is an impressive record of reform by any measure.”

    LOOKS LIKE ALL YOU LIBERALS MISSED THIS, BUT THEN YOU WOULDN"T WANT TO ACKNOWLEDGE THESE BITS OF TRUTH WOULD YOU? APPARENTLY THE CITIZENS OF ALASKA KNOW THE TRUTH AND LOVE HER FOR IT !!! You can try to smear her all you want but the fact remains, she's more qualified to serve as vp than your presidential candidate is to serve as pres.

    CNN-THINK YOU COULD POST THIS CONSERVATIVE VIEW FOR A CHANGE?

    September 9, 2008 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  11. Sarah Bell

    What good is a "Truth Squad" if it's filled with LIARS???

    September 9, 2008 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  12. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Somewhere McCain is hiding behind Palin's skirt. Come out, come out from hiding McCain and attempt a new speech for yourself. Palin isn't talking about sustance, she's just driving home more and more why McCain and Palin are the "Bridge to Nowhere". McCain's has distance himself from being his own Maverick.

    September 9, 2008 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  13. TxPat

    The real difference between a Hockey Mom and a pit bull is, apparently, that pit bulls can't lie.

    September 9, 2008 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  14. Ducey From Canadian - Obama/Biden 08 - Vote for Them if you enjoy life

    Bottom line ... If you vote for McCain you're only destroying you're nation. McCain/Palin have no real agenda except to kill more American's soldiers and cizilians, let alone give big corporations more money which they dont need and take all they can from normal average people. Heck, you Government cant even tell one story to the attacks behind 9/11 and keeps changing the timelines and events.

    If you want to live in distress and struggle vote McCain. Put it this way, 33% of the US like Bush, the rest don't and many because they know he isnt right for the job and not qualified. So why would you put Palin the unknown in? and McCain the Bush Campaigns Carbon Copy?

    Republicans = Corruption and misguidance

    Democrates = Change and a better world

    September 9, 2008 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  15. Joe C from Austin

    Hillary2012 wrote:

    "We have seen same kind of attacks on Hillary
    Now you all repeating to Sarah Palins

    Voter will vote Mc Cain Palin ticket in Nov 4th"

    I used to think such poorly worded comments were just a reflection of the type of people who vote republican, but is it possible that the Republican National Committee or the McCain/Palin campaign are outsourcing the job of troll comments to India?

    The comment sounds a lot like the stilted english I hear when I call technical support and the call is routed to India.

    September 9, 2008 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  16. sario

    From what I understand there are certain expenses that political figures can claim and they are legal. It may sound unbelievable to us, but that is the way the government functions. Just as many people can claim expenses on a work related trip for their company. It is easy to condem her, as well as all other politicians, but we just don't have all the facts. Some of the expenses seem odd to say the least without any other information, like the trip to NY by her daughter, but some do not apper so odd, like the food expenses, seeing as governors have a full time cook when in office that are quite expensive as well, which she would not have utilized.

    What is more concerning is the time spend at home. 300 days. Now, some jobs can be done from home. However, I think when working for the public, the individual has to sacrifice a lot, and one such sacrifice should be (and this is just my opinion) to be in the governor's house majority of the time or the white house (when president).

    I would imagine that many parents would be very concerned if a principle of a school spend a majority of time working from home.

    September 9, 2008 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  17. CJ

    LOL-Is it for Palin or against her-LOL!

    Clearly she needs a truth campaign just to make sure what comes out of her mouth aren't a whole bunch of lies....Heck, McCain needs to have one himself "And she made a profit too!". Yea right, a plane costs was $27Million and she sold "off of Ebay" for $2Million-looks like the Alaskan goverment lost $20million thanks to Palin. Add that to the debt she caused Wasilla, and she's actually newsworthy.

    September 9, 2008 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  18. Dale Ward

    Mccain could care less for this woman,he is a deceiver like the one we have in office now,Do you think she is going to have any say in his decision I think not,Get real people,For those people that are on social Security better wake up because the Republicans could care less about you.

    September 9, 2008 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  19. Sick and Tired!

    The McCain /Palin ticket is freigtening! It is devisive and we're all falling into the trap! They are distracting us from the real issues! Come on people wake up! We have to be smarter than we have been for past eight years. We should have learned not to make the same mistake THRICE!

    September 9, 2008 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  20. CAK

    I can't believe the rantings on this board.

    1st of all, her total travel expeditures weren't even 20 pct of what the former Governor spent. I think his was around $450,000.

    A little geography lesson. Go look at a map of Alaska and see where Juneau and her home town are located. Also notice you can't drive a car.

    You are grasping at straws here, folks. Instead of all this vile, wait for the interview on ABC, the debate on Oct 2. Why are all of you so worried?

    September 9, 2008 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  21. Scott from Rochester

    Oh...forgot to mention...

    It has been said before in CNN articles...

    In quite a few cases, when Palin has traveled in Alaska, she was asked to being her family.

    Is she supposed to pay for the trip out of her own pocket? When she's asked to bring them? In addition, the expenses are LEGAL in Alaska! What are you WHINING about in the first place. It's a moot point!

    OMG!!! Quit foaming at the mouth and screaming your partisan baloney. I know Obama has a squad of peeps where their sole job is to drown every possible comment area with Democratic Party B.S.

    Open your eyes and think like the Americans you can be...ie. People that can read, listen, and make reasonable decisions on who to elect in the upcoming election.

    It doesn't matter who you elect. As long as you make an INFORMED decision.

    September 9, 2008 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  22. Tom

    McSame and Failin' wouldn't know the truth if it bit them on the backside, which it will on November 4!

    September 9, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  23. Florida Gal

    Isn't this copying the fight the smears thing that Obama has?

    September 9, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  24. SONGBIRD MCCAIN

    Palin Truth Squad

    Palin Truth...isn't that an oxymoron?

    September 9, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  25. LS

    Trying to convience Obama supporters that McCain and Palin is what America needs? Hey, we are smarter than that.

    There is no way that you are going to convience people who see and know what McCain is up to and why Palin was picked, and to try and convience us to vote for someone who lies and is deceiving, just won't happen.

    Obama supporters are concerned about the issues. McCain supporters are concerned about genitals. There is a BIG difference.

    September 9, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
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