March 27th, 2009
08:10 AM ET
11 years ago

Palin's prayer remark angers former staffers

Palin's speech last week has some former aides grumbling.

Palin's speech last week has some former aides grumbling.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Some of Sarah Palin's former campaign aides are frustrated with the Alaska governor for remarking in a lengthy, freewheeling speech that she had refused to pray with them before last October's vice presidential debate.

Palin told the story in a speech to a GOP dinner in Alaska last Friday.

"So I'm looking around for somebody to pray with, I just need maybe a little help, maybe a little extra," she said of the moments before the debate. "And the McCain campaign, love 'em, you know, they're a lot of people around me, but nobody I could find that I wanted to hold hands with and pray."

As the audience laughed, Palin noted that she meant no disrespect to the McCain campaign and that ended up saying a prayer with her daughter Piper.

A handful of the McCain campaign staffers who traveled with the former vice presidential nominee nearly every day for two months caught wind of Palin's remarks on Thursday morning - and they aren't thrilled with her quip.

"We all talked this A.M.," said one former Palin aide in an e-mail. "This set off a nerve for sure with a lot of people."

"It's yet another example of the few staff still loyal to Palin questioning their loyalty and ardent defense of her over the several months since the campaign," said the aide, who was granted anonymity to speak candidly about campaign colleagues.

Since election day, Palin has publicly griped about the way she was handled by the McCain team and pushed back against some of the campaign advisers who attacked her anonymously in the press.

But another former staffer said that in doing so, Palin is failing to distinguish between the strategists at McCain headquarters and the people who were at her side every day from late August through election day.

"It's about us people who were on the plane, who showed extreme loyalty to Palin, continually getting thrown under the bus or slapped in the face by her comments, whether she means it or not," the staffer said, adding that Palin's remarks "cause you to question not only your loyalty but her judgment as a leader."

The former aides said they place part of the blame for Palin's post-campaign candor on the governor's staff in Alaska. Several have reached out individually to offer advice or assistance to the governor, but "have gotten only pleasantries in response," said one aide.

"Who is the one making the decision that she needs to be out there saying these things?," the second staffer asked. "Someone needs to be telling her, 'Listen, let's not talk the campaign any more.' We need to talk about what's relevant and thinking about her influence as a voice in the Republican Party."

"The people that she has, either working at her PAC or advisers in Alaska, aren't exactly making the best decisions for her," the staffer said.

Palin's office in Alaska did not respond to a request for comment.


Filed under: Sarah Palin
soundoff (450 Responses)
  1. Ray Fisher

    I don't know how deep she can lower herslf in BS before finally breaking a record or something. Why can't she at least say something near intelligent instead of being a drama queen at all times??? My lord, get this woman a soap opera so she can stare into space!!!

    March 26, 2009 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  2. Moderate Democrat

    What a worthless and dispicalbe little whiner this lady is.

    I can imagine if she were VP of the USA. We would get a daily complaint about how hard her job is and lousy all of americans are for making her work.

    The lady is nothing but white trash.

    March 26, 2009 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  3. greg in fl

    blah blah blah.. why couldnt she just go to a corner by herself and pray there, just her and God.. oh wait, i forgot, she is a perfomer and she needs an audience, even when she is talking to her Creator.. just shows her insincerity at the most tender of moments. i feel sad for her.

    March 26, 2009 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  4. Concerned Citizen

    Prayer really works! NOT!!!!

    March 26, 2009 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  5. Obama gal

    Palin/Jindal 2012
    A winning combination

    March 26, 2009 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  6. Lori

    Palin prays? Is this before she's calling another human being a 'terrorist' or after? God would be so proud of you, Sarah! So proud!

    March 26, 2009 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  7. nanette gramer

    We all know how wonderful these people were....not! Sarah rocks even if she goes alone!

    March 26, 2009 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  8. Lesley Anne

    This is a case study in exactly what not to do when you are seeking national public office. And then to publicly complain for months after your team loses the campaign is incredibly immature.

    March 26, 2009 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  9. Thanks, but No Thanks

    The problem is that Palin only knows how to be an attack dog – you know, the pitbull with lipstick.

    March 26, 2009 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  10. Jim

    Palin is such an IDIOT!!!

    March 26, 2009 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  11. Reggie

    I am just tired of hearing about Palin. Well, its up to the GOP to shut her up.

    March 26, 2009 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  12. Shawn

    Good grief. Who cares? This has-been will never matter, so stop trying to make her into something besides a spectacularly failed VP candidate and a mistake.

    March 26, 2009 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  13. SouthernMan

    Who is paying CNN for all the advertising Sarah Palin gets here? Surely there must be a law somewhere this breaks. If the woman opens her mouth to speak and a word comes out that is not news. Give us a break!!!

    March 26, 2009 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  14. debbie

    here we go again. why don't you file the Palin stories with "Octomom". They're more closely related and just about as interesting to most THINKING people.

    March 26, 2009 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  15. Liz T, Tucson

    This woman blames others so she won't have to fae the fact that she and people like her (if there are any) do not appeal to the majority of Americans. If she was not governor, she would probably be in pageants with her daughter.

    March 26, 2009 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  16. Jack

    I guess I would tend to believe that Palin made the story up. But the McCain staff members are a little bit too sensitive. It's just another megalomaniac politician, winging it. She merely seized an opportunity to possibly advance her cause by saying she prayed. In the midst of the telling of the contrived anecdote, she thought she'd take another shot at the staff. Just some business as usual. Not anything that should further tighten a sphincter.

    March 26, 2009 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  17. Wolf-Woman Palin Charlotte, NC

    This woman is pathetic and CNN needs to stop putting everyone of her bathroom visits on the news.

    Give it up CNN. It is not your personal responsibility to keep this fable going!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    March 26, 2009 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  18. Steph

    I am praying that she stays out of the media for a very long time. Can I get an Amen?

    March 26, 2009 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  19. Joe Sith

    "So I'm looking around for somebody to pray with, I just need maybe a little help, maybe a little extra," she said of the moments before the debate. "And the McCain campaign, love 'em, you know, they're a lot of people around me, but nobody I could find that I wanted to hold hands with and pray."

    So let me get this straight. She didn't want to pray with THEM... It's not that anyone REFUSED to pray with her. And she's criticizing them for not being acceptable people to pray with?

    Does this make any sense to anyone?

    March 26, 2009 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  20. Vic

    Here is one question I'd like to see answered: What remark coming out of Sarah Palin's mouth would be acceptable to the public. I'm highly doubtful there is an answer - or at least up to now, there has been none. Highly reminiscent of Hillary Clinton's quest to get traction is that she was criticized and accused of every imaginable situation when she was a candidate for the presidency, yet now - as Secretary of State - can seemingly do no wrong. Advice to Sarah: Quit running until 2011 - then it'll hopefully be "Sarah who?" It's an idea!

    March 26, 2009 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  21. Barry

    Have you ever noticed the most religiously overt are usually the least ethical ?

    March 26, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  22. KansasGirl

    Are these RINO'S kidding? She needs to distance herself from this beltway party, as she is. Also, regarding David Jacobson, NY, NY, there are alot more bumbling hicks out here than you. I mean, New York is such a great city to live in, right? You couldn't survive in the midwest one year.

    March 26, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  23. maria, california

    didn't she pray that Gods will be done for this country and that she had faith and she knew and prayed that the next president would be God's choice? she was right our new President was Gods choice!

    March 26, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  24. Paul Dobro

    I listened to much of the speech and it was painful. Her sentance structure, tone, and substance were horrible. She claimed to not be complaining and whining, but it sure seemed that way to me. She has watched the Ziegler "documentry" too many times and truely believes nothing is her fault. SHE had no platform for moving the GOP forward and somehow things you can grow the numbers on the far right instead of being more inclusive of moderates.

    Lastly, as a catholic, I pray both alone and group (Rosary). I really don't need more people to have God listen to me. And Piper SHOULD HAVE BEEN IN SCHOOL!

    March 26, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  25. Vickie

    I am so tired of hearing this women's name or views on anything.... I'm an Alaskan and recently as our Governor Palin decided for herself and not the people to give back over 60% of the stimulus monies. Here in the State of Alaska we have a 40% Drop out Rate – These monies can help retain those valuable individuals! She is a Joke – Those in the lower 48 that think they know what their supporting have no idea, absolutely no idea....

    March 26, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
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