December 2nd, 2010
03:19 PM ET
4 years ago

An Unscripted Moment on Palin's book tour

Spirit Lake, Iowa (CNN) – It was an unscripted moment on Sarah Palin's tour to promote her new book, "America by Heart." As hundreds of Palin's fans filed inside a cordoned off area of a northern Iowa Walmart today, this CNN crew popped the question asked of countless potential White House contenders: "Are you any closer to an announcement on running for President?"

The country music that Palin's handlers had blaring at the signing station presumably to drown out such questions suddenly stopped. We asked the question again.

"Am I doing interviews?" the former Alaska governor asked. "I thought I got to talk to the nice people. And where's our music and where's our good enthusiasm?" she persisted.

We repeated the question. "Not any closer. No," she responded.

With the music still off, we squeezed in another question about former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney's comments on Wednesday night's "Tonight Show with Jay Leno." On the program, Romney seemed to take a jab at Palin's decision to step down as Alaska's governor. "It's hard to imagine a circumstance where I would quit," Romney said.

As of today's book signing, Palin indicated she hadn't heard Romney's remarks. "What did Governor Romney say on the 'Tonight Show'?" she asked us.

Upon hearing his comment, her response was brief. "Oh, he probably had some different conditions," she said. It was an apparent reference to the controversies that swirled around her final days as Governor including ethics complaints and a legal dispute over a state trooper who was once married to her sister. Palin's actions were cleared by a state board investigating the matter. In her resignation speech last year, Palin suggested that costly legal battles had forced her to step down.

There was no opportunity to follow up on Palin's comments at the book signing. This CNN crew was informed our allotted time to cover the event was up. The event itself was tightly controlled. Customers were told no cell phones or cameras. Representatives of the media were escorted in to Palin's book signing station, three at a time. As for that music, Palin asked us if we had turned it off. "Because that wouldn't be cool if you did. These Iowa people, they got my back. And I got their back," Palin said after one of her handlers put her hand in front of our camera.

For the record, we didn't turn the music off. But it did help."

The turnout at this stop on Palin's book tour was a sign of her continued political strength. As Spirit Lake's Mayor Blain Andera noted, more than 500 people stood in line for Palin's autograph in a town of roughly 5000 people. Andera said he was leaning toward supporting a Palin presidential bid.

Palin urged many of the people in line to also watch her reality TV show, "Sarah Palin's Alaska" on cable's TLC. "I think that she's very funny. I watch her show every Sunday," said Palin fan Emma Dau.

Another Palin fan, Shannon Dunham started camping outside of the Walmart at 3am for an autograph. "She's just a generational, iconic figure and a great example for our girls," Dunham said.


Filed under: Mitt Romney • Sarah Palin
soundoff (137 Responses)
  1. Laverne

    It is amazing that this woman who has so much mouth hasn't responded to Joe Scarborough and Ed Rollins comments. Any other time she is all mouth, this is going to be interesting!

    December 2, 2010 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  2. Indy

    It is beyond belief that there are still people out there that think Palin will make a run for POTUS. She has fooled everyone in the media by pretending that she might make a run, and by the media falling for this she has managed to stay in the news everyday and sell more books. She cannot and will not ever have a chance to occupy the Whitehouse. The more people that watch her show the better off Dems are as it clearly shows that she is not Presidential material and never will be. She is very good at fooling people and the media into making her newsworthy and I must admit a very shrewd and yet crude way to make a good living by flogging books and speeches for big dollars.Rich, yes Whitehouse, never !

    December 2, 2010 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  3. CBR

    She does have a following in various parts of the country. Ms. Palin's second book tour and her television reality show are going strong. 2012 is right around the corner as far as Sarah Palin is concerned. She now has the funds to start the campaign rolling.

    The way primaries are set she could very well win the struggle for the nomination. The conservative wing of her party is well-placed to have a candidate fo their liking run for president.

    December 2, 2010 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  4. Dave

    Trolling for mere popularity.

    December 2, 2010 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  5. Rev. Billy Sol Hargis

    Hopefully Sarah will consume herself and there will be nothing left. Burp! How rude Sarah, please continue eating. You may not leave the table until you are all gone.

    December 2, 2010 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  6. Michael

    Palin embodies all the worst of America: ignorant, arrogant, ill-mannered, belligerent, power-mad, selfish.
    We do not need her type representing our country – they make us all look bad.

    December 2, 2010 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  7. Dan Halen

    Apparently you all caught her with her panties down and she didn't have her scripted remarks ready, or somebody forgot to pull the string in her back for her usual canned response. Great work CNN!

    December 2, 2010 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  8. Dave

    "She's just a generational, iconic figure and a great example for our girls," Sure, if you want your girls to be quitters and not master their primary language. You betcha she's a role model

    December 2, 2010 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  9. Peter E

    I just can't get myself to support a person who insists that only small town red-state conservatives are real Americans. 80% of America is urbanized! They too are REAL Americans who work hard at their jobs, go to church, love their families, and yes, even get to vacation in the great American wilderness once in a while! She cannot represent America by disrespecting over three-quarters of it!

    December 2, 2010 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  10. george from alaska

    all i got to say is up here in alaska...where we know her for real (not just some lower 48 fantasy) she wouldn't win in her own state. we stomped her whacko senate candidate wiith write in votes.

    palin wants to move our state capital near her home in wasilla at the economic destruction of thousands of juneau families. sarah lied about her position on this to the voters. her non-elected husband even called the top state republican to ask for this. does this sound like someone who is anti-goverment and pro-family to you?

    anyone that even remotely thinks palin is anything but an egotistical political opportunist with limited skills, qualifications & intelligence is quite frankly a fool.

    December 2, 2010 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  11. LiLa

    I think Palin's funny too but that doesn't make her Presidential material.

    December 2, 2010 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  12. Tx Democrat

    Another town of "real" Americans... uneducated, dumb, backwoods rednecks just like Palin.

    December 2, 2010 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  13. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    "Oh, he probably had some different conditions,"

    Yeah he did Silly Sarah. He actually governed a state where the population of Boston is more than your entire state stupid. I may not agree with old Mormon Mitt's views, but he didn't abandon his post.

    December 2, 2010 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  14. Robrob

    "Oh, he probably had some different conditions,"

    Well, if nothing else that was probably the best of all possible responses she could have given. Maybe she's learning?

    December 2, 2010 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  15. Corey

    Figures she'd be at Wal-Mart.

    December 2, 2010 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  16. Ken

    All I can say is..."question mark?"

    December 2, 2010 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  17. Larry

    Another town with a combined IQ of room temperature.

    December 2, 2010 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  18. Joe Taylor

    THis must be a joke still thanks for the laugh..
    "She's just a generational, iconic figure and a great example for our girls,"

    If my little daughter is ever into politics and elected to serve I hope she finish her term instead of becoming a dumb celebrity who is making the rest of the world laugh.

    December 2, 2010 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  19. sparky

    SarahTuna is an bonafide idiot.....and UberIdiots line up to buy her book

    December 2, 2010 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  20. NameEllie

    And you wonder WHY people around the world think Americans are complete idiots. It's because only in America would someone as PHONEY and FAKE when it comes to real leadership and political intelligence is followed by a bunch of idiots who KNOW she's dumber than hell, but still consider caribou barbie relevant!!! What a joke!!

    I'm sure these same folks would follow Jim Jones when he told them to drink his cynaide kool-aid!!! People are fooling themselves if they think Sarah Palin is qualified to lead a pack of manna grizzlies, they'll eat her up faster than she can say "ya'betcha"!!

    December 2, 2010 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  21. BM

    Shocked by the amount of Idiotic folks in IOWA. I thought IOWANS were not easily fooled!

    December 2, 2010 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  22. Fair_is-Fair

    Shows how smart the people in Iowa are. eekkkkkkk!!! Sounds like eighth grade eduaction.

    December 2, 2010 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  23. Trisha Z

    Sorry, but she is not a great example to my girls. A friend of mine recently said that she would not want Palin as the President but she really admired her core values and liked her a lot. She was referring to the fact that she married her high school sweetheart and seemed to be a good mother. Well that may be so, but she is also a quitter and an opportunist. Sure she had legal issues going on, but that doesn't stop because you quit. The presidency also lasts 4 years, would she quit on that too? She quit to sell books and get a reality show. She quit to capitalize on her 15 minutes of fame. There is no way you can tell me she would have quit if she had not been the 2008 nominee for VP. Further, she is not an example to my girls, because she has trouble putting together intelligent sentences. When she interacts with her family may be one thing, but when she is actually trying to make a point or give an unscripted opinion, listen to her. Listen to how many prepositions and run on sentences she uses. Very basic things. I don't want my girls looking to her for any sort of example.

    December 2, 2010 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  24. bj

    Well, I don't have her back. In fact I am shocked that there are so many idiots in Iowa. Oh well, the fruit doesn't fall too far from the tree.

    December 2, 2010 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  25. Doo Leoo

    "I can't hear you, President Putin, the music is too loud"

    December 2, 2010 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
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