April 14th, 2009
10:20 AM ET
11 years ago

Palin office accuses opponents of 'wanting their hands held'

Palin's office slammed criticism of her travel as politically-motivated.

Palin's office slammed criticism of her travel as politically-motivated.

(CNN) - Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's office blasted state Democrats late Monday for criticizing her decision to travel to the Midwest for speaking appearances in the closing days of the legislative session.

Her staff sent reporters an angry message with the subject line "Political Adversaries Allow Politics to Cloud Judgment in Final Week."

“It is nothing more than a politically charged shot in the dark,” Palin chief of staff Mike Nizich said in the statement. “We view the legislative session as a very serious state issue. This isn’t politics for us; this is Alaska’s future. I have worked for seven governors. Every governor has traveled during the legislative session. Had this group done its homework, they would have realized that Governor Palin has had numerous meetings with lawmakers this session and has been in constant communication with them.

“During the final week of session, legislators rarely want governors around stirring things up. We did not anticipate that the governor’s political opponents would want their hands held in the final hours of the session.”

The governor - who has opted to skip several major conservative gatherings this year, citing legislative demands - will spend half of the final three days of the session in Indiana, where she will headline a pro-life dinner and speak at an event for parents of children with Down Syndrome.

Earlier Monday, state Democratic Party chair Patti Higgins accused Palin of "putting her national political ambitions ahead of the needs of Alaska."

"Where is Sarah Palin? She is going to be halfway across the country, she’s at a right-to-life fundraiser and another event," Higgins said, according to the Anchorage Daily News. "We need a full-time governor who is thinking about our issues all the time, who is working and negotiating with the legislators and getting the job done we need done."

The governor has also come under fire from members of her own party. "There are some concerns [in the Capitol] about the focus of our chief executive because she's taken a speaking engagement in Indiana for a 36-hour period with only 72 hours left in the legislative session," state Rep. Jay Ramras of Fairbanks told the paper.

Over the weekend, Palin herself pushed back against critics of her decision. "I'll be gone for one day. I already have been on record with lawmakers on this," she told the ADN. "I told lawmakers, you know what, 'Please, don't make me feel that I have to ask you permission, lawmakers, to leave the capital city.' "

As the spring close of the Alaska's legislative session approaches, already-tense relations between the state's Republican governor and Democratic legislators have turned frosty. The governor's controversial pick for attorney general — the outspoken Wayne Anthony Ross — has not yet been confirmed.

Last week, Palin was forced to make another selection for a vacant state senate seat after Democrats rejected her first pick. By law, the governor had been required to choose a Democrat to replace Kim Elton, who's joined the Obama administration - but lawmakers rejected Tim Grussendorf, who had joined the party weeks earlier. (He said that he had been an undeclared voter mistakenly registered as a Republican.)

And Palin has repeatedly clashed with state legislators - including some members of the GOP - over her announcement that she planned to effectively reject about a third of the roughly $931 million in federal stimulus money that had been directed to Alaska, by not requesting the funds. Her office quickly said she was not rejecting the money outright, but looking for a public debate on government spending. Palin, who has made stimulus funding requests, has since said the money is still "on the table," and that she wants to come to an agreement with the legislature.

Filed under: Sarah Palin
soundoff (104 Responses)
  1. Edward Blake

    Sarah Palin is the Paris Hilton of politics. She's not going to go away until we quit giving her (undeserved) attention.

    April 14, 2009 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  2. Ed

    What great opportunty these Sarah Palin articles provide folks to vent their sadomasochism incognito, rather than taking it out on their immediate family or friends!

    April 14, 2009 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  3. Kim

    Sorry, but WHO CARES!!! Shes nothing, shes the governor of a state with less people than most big cities, and thats only until 2010. She will not be elected again, he approval is dropping big time, and Alaska sees that she is a politcal hack only out for herself and not the good of Alaska. Shes a joke, and the only story I cant WAIT to read about her is her loss in 2010...

    April 14, 2009 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  4. Myassis Dragon

    Leaving before the job is completed or " cuttin and runnin " is exactly what "mavericks" do isn't it?

    April 14, 2009 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  5. Mark

    She has a snotty, condescending comeback for everyone and anyone with whom she disagrees. Very unbecoming.

    April 14, 2009 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  6. george from alaska

    stop blaming alaska for sarah palin! she was voted into office up here by the oil companies putting extra money directly into each citizen's bank account. it was big oil and human nature that elected her governor. if the same thing would have happened in the lower 48 you could have elected minnie mouse with a landslide. anyone with any sense up here is ready to throw her out on her rear end at the next election. alaska is the cure...not the problem!

    April 14, 2009 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  7. Too True For You

    The depth of self-delusion exhibited by Palin backers would be uproariously funny if it weren't just a little scary. Let's see, it was REPUBLICAN legislators that were complaining. The Palin camp is trying to spin it into a democratic issue, and Palin backers seem willing to swallow that misdirection hook, line and sinker.

    "The President doesn't stick around when Congress is in session"? Huh? When there is important legislation, you bet your bippy he does, and has, every time an important vote is pending. Its called "l-e-a-d-e-r-s-h-i-p".

    She could communicate via conference call??? Well, yes, she could. Hey, isn't that what they mean when they say someone is "calling it in"? If that's OK with you, then I can see why Palin is worthy of your support. For me, I would rather have someone that didn't put their celebrity agenda before the job I voted them in for.

    April 14, 2009 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  8. JR

    Interesting that the criticism came from GOP members of the legislature and not democrats, but I guess ole Caribou Barbie can't miss an opportunity to twist the facts again. Can you see your critics from your house Sarah?

    April 14, 2009 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  9. Dianne

    Are we afraid of Sarah? You betcha'!!!
    Still trying to figure out who the "real" Sarah is, and also trying to gauge her true character. Hard to figure it out with her chameleon-type comments and comebacks.

    April 14, 2009 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  10. steve

    Same old, same old. Palin and her flunkies continue to use inflammatory rhetoric to cover up their ineptitude. Politics of the past, with no end in sight seems to be the Palin trademark.

    Besides having zero class, and horrendous manners, she and her aids aren't very savvy. I hope the Alaska lawmakers get on with the business of recovery, and see that her not being there is an incredible gift. Just get the job done for the people of Alaska.

    BTW Alaska has the most pork barrel spending per person. What's the big deal with taking the TARP funds? Yet another case of phony political nit-witery in the face of tough times.

    April 14, 2009 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  11. Dana


    GO SARAH WE NEED YOU FOR 2012! Yeah because team sarah and the rest of those crazy people who think you will be the next HRC and POTUS! Yeah Sarah for POTUS!

    Is that enough for you Sarah Lovers. Get over it – she's a dot in the history books. She makes Dan Q. look better and better each day she opens her mouth.

    Octomom/Sarah 2012 – Please we miss the laughs. Oh I forgot – Sarah is appearing daily with Jokes!

    April 14, 2009 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  12. Wynter

    The complaint came from an Alaskan Republican you dolts! Stop whining at the Democrats in the legislature when your own party is upset with this silly trip by Palin to Indiana to do a Pro-Life conference.

    And "you betcha" she will charge the state for her travel costs on Non-State Business. Someone just fire the woman!!

    April 14, 2009 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  13. Lisa

    And that attitude..dear Palin worshippers...is one of MANY reasons why she will never be President.

    April 14, 2009 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  14. rj

    i don't think doing conference calls with her is such a good idea. didn't someone spoof her into thinking she was talking to some foreign dignitary at one point?

    April 14, 2009 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  15. Wynter

    Maybe someone can offer her a Radio Show in exchange for resigning as Governator. It worked for Blagovich... Only this time give her a small AM radio station in a deep ravine in Northern Alaska!

    April 14, 2009 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  16. No Huey in this hunt

    Explains the dysfunctional dynamics of her family nicely though.

    April 14, 2009 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  17. Robin in SC

    One little nugget buried in here...she tried to replace a democratic state senator, replacement required to be a democrat, with a guy who just registered with the democratic party a few weeks ago and said that he was undeclared but mistakenly registered as a republican???? You've got to be kidding! She's trying to put a wolf in sheep's clothing into her own state senate and cover the tracks! Is there nothing this woman won't try? How can Alaskans tolerate this woman?

    April 14, 2009 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  18. Sniffit

    Holding hands is no big deal. You'd think with her track record on "family values" she'd have more of a problem with her own party and all this teabagging talk. 🙂

    April 14, 2009 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  19. JILL

    What a mess the Republican Party has become.

    April 14, 2009 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  20. Los

    Just take a look at the spat she's having right now with a 19 year old boy. Do you really think she would know what to do if PUTIN REARS HIS HEAD?

    April 14, 2009 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  21. phoenix88

    wow, more things that aren't Palins fault

    big shocker

    think the latest article about her is funny, she is taking off for a speaking engagement IN THE MIDDLE OF AN ALASKAN BUDGET CRISIS

    I'm guessing she won't be voted back in as govenor

    but please, make her a canidate for pres, that would be a hoot

    April 14, 2009 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  22. Dean

    Sarah Blasting the democrats for her midwest trip to speak on abortion. LOL Hey Sarah it was Republicans you know your own party who were upset with you leaving Alaska's business unfinished so you can promote yourself.. This woman is crazy lock her up

    April 14, 2009 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  23. David S.

    This girl whines and complains about everything. She will make an interesting presidential candidate.

    April 14, 2009 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  24. E.J. in Tacoma

    The GOP needs to to get a grip on their party! First they were in praise of McCain's wonderful surprise bringing Palin out at the convention now they can't shut her up! If she runs it should be a Palin/Jindal ticket that would really shake the party up that be very entertaining to watch.
    Not a chance they would win but none the less quite amusing!
    E.J. in Tacoma

    April 14, 2009 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  25. Gary

    Boy, Palin sounds and looks more like Bush every day. Ducking and dodging responsibility and then trying to make it look like the others are inept – when in reality, she's incapable of dealing effectively with the situation. We've seen this movie before, and it ended badly.

    April 14, 2009 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
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