November 19th, 2009
06:28 PM ET
4 years ago

Christie, McDonnell explain Palin's absence from campaign trail

Palin wasn't exactly a welcome presence in Virginia and New Jersey during both governor's races.
Palin wasn't exactly a welcome presence in Virginia and New Jersey during both governor's races.

CEDAR CREEK, Texas (CNN) – Chris Christie and Bob McDonnell, the soon-to-be-governors of New Jersey and Virginia, both deflected questions Wednesday about why Sarah Palin did not appear with the two Republicans during their respective campaigns.

Christie said he only had three GOP heavyweights visit New Jersey during his campaign - Rudy Giuliani, Tim Pawlenty and Mitt Romney - and each came for a specific reason.

“I had a long standing relationship with Mayor Giuliani,” Christie explained. “Gov. Pawlenty and Gov. Romney both faced the same type of crises financially in their state when they took over that we did.”

McDonnell said his campaign had reached out to Palin nearly a year ago to campaign in Virginia, but said she was overwhelmed with requests at the time. When she stepped down as governor of Alaska in July, McDonnell said, their visitor lineup had already been set - a full four months before election day in Virginia.

“We thought she was a good leader for the party as the governor of Alaska and had some good reforms in the state, but she was in such incredible demand frankly for the longest time we were not able to work out anything for her to come in,” he said. “And then after she decided to leave office we had pretty much already arranged all of the folks that we had for the home stretch for fundraisers, including several current and former governors, and so we pretty much had our strategy set at that point.”

Christie and McDonnell made the comments at a news conference held during the Republican Governors Association's annual meeting near Austin.


Filed under: Bob McDonnell • Sarah Palin
soundoff (165 Responses)
  1. C from middle GA

    Deflected... Perhaps they wanted to run serious campaigns without discussing the view from their porches, bridges to DC, or moose burgers.

    November 19, 2009 09:42 am at 9:42 am |
  2. Tania

    Can't they just come out and say they didn't want her near them? Poison pill.

    November 19, 2009 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  3. John

    Enough with the Palin stories. Today is the Great American Smokeout. A day where millions try to quit smoking- at least for a day. Can CNN do the same with Palin stories?

    November 19, 2009 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  4. Santa Fean

    Palin is missing because she believes that man walked with dinosaurs and that goes against science.

    November 19, 2009 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  5. Dalton

    Both of these two men won their respective elections by positioning themselves as somewhat moderate, middle of the road Republicans. An endorsement or high profile visit by Sarah Palin would have reinforced the notion that they were intolerant, conservative ideologues.

    November 19, 2009 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  6. Robert

    STOP... STOP... STOP... S T O P already! This disgrace-of-a -'politician', (for lack of a better word) is of little interest to anyone but the media it seems. If this woman is of any consequence at all, it is because the media made her so. This story was submitted by a CNN writer, perhaps this writer should read yesterday's CNN Poll question. A resounding 85% of those who answered were NOT going to read her abomination of a book. Do you guys even look at this stuff??!!

    November 19, 2009 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  7. Shelly

    I wish she was missing now.

    November 19, 2009 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  8. Bob Dog

    It is fabulous entertainment to watch Sarah Palin rip huge chunks of flesh off the Republican Party. There can be no more satisfying entertainment.

    She parades all over the country, confident she is the best thing since sliced bread, while knowledgeable Republicans are bobbing and weaving, trying to keep her as far away as possible so she doesthe least amount of damage to their campaigns.

    Run, Sarah, run!

    November 19, 2009 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  9. susanj

    I live in New Jersey – I did not vote for Christie and if that woman came to campaign for him – I would have moved out of the state of New Jersey. It's bad enough we have a Republican governor, but to have that woman campaign her for him, would have been a slap in the face to mostly all New Jerseyians.

    November 19, 2009 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  10. John

    In other words, she had nothing of value to add.

    November 19, 2009 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  11. Gary

    It is really simple. They didn't offer enough cash and she decided it wasn'y worth her time. nuff said.

    November 19, 2009 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  12. carol

    She goes where she is not invited in most cases. These people are not scrambling for her support.

    November 19, 2009 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  13. sharon, newport news, virginia

    why do they even have to explain her not being there????? Wow you can actually win an election and be a Republican and not have her campaigning for you. What happened when she campaigned in New York???? A seat held by a Republican was lost that had been held by that party since the Civil War. I believe that is an excellent reason why you dont want her. She did manage to stick her nose in Virginia. She, who hates robocalls, issued a robocall asking voters to vote for her principals when they vote. I would think that someone who was too greedy to complete the job she was elected to do is not a very good example of a speaker in a governor's race.

    November 19, 2009 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  14. JS

    The media fascination with tearing Palin down is absolutely pathetic...why is this a story? Is every Democrat who wins an election being asked why (insert name of any left-wing politician here) was absent in their campaign? There's a simple answer here that is not at all conspiratorial – Palin is a staunch right-wing conservative. In areas where support from this type of individual will benefit a candidate, she will be asked to publicly support the candidate. In areas where it will not benefit the candidate, she will not be asked to do so.

    November 19, 2009 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  15. Jerry

    What a stupid question to ask of a private citizen , why not ask Obama why he is ruining our country.

    November 19, 2009 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  16. Felonious Monk

    I saw a Palin interview last night on Hannity. I cannot believe people actually support her even after hearing her thought process. She said some really silly things last night and was just simply Un-American.
    Un-American to the core!

    November 19, 2009 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  17. vic nashville , Tn

    Why some republicans keep distance from Palin

    Sarah Palin through Mc Cain under the Bus

    She wrote the verdict to GOP in her book

    That is death penalty for GOP

    November 19, 2009 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  18. mickey lane

    Thank you Govs Christie & McDonnell. I'm sure 'others' were trying to make it as if Palin had a falling out with the two of you.

    November 19, 2009 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  19. lucy2

    Because Christie did not run as a hard right Republican – he ran as "Not Corzine" and won a lot of Dem and independent votes (including mine) because of that. If he had brought in far right Palin, he probably would have turned off a lot of the moderates and liberals. And I think the article gives far too much weight to Palin's influence.

    November 19, 2009 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  20. Slim Pickens

    Get real, The only reason Sarah Palin did not appear with then candidate Chris Christie in New Jersey was because there was no room for her on the stage, once Christie waddled up. When he takes office in Trenton, Bayonne will rise up several feet.

    Also, Palin's daughter had to go to school that week because she had missed so many days running around the country with her mom that the school system wondered if she had withdrawn.

    November 19, 2009 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  21. AB

    What candidate wants to commit political suicide by having Palin show up?

    She's bad news for anyone.

    November 19, 2009 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  22. Crazy Cat Lady

    Tell the truth, fellas - you knew she'd be toxic to the moderates you needed to get elected.

    November 19, 2009 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  23. Eric

    Go Sarah!
    2012

    November 19, 2009 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  24. vince

    Why does CNN have to have a Palin story every single day?

    November 19, 2009 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  25. willard bullock

    I am belived that plain are great than mc mccain but plain will keep face on obama barack 20012
    So obama have too big problems about health care and musilims terroist

    November 19, 2009 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
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