June 25th, 2009
07:16 PM ET
13 years ago

Palin hits back at 'malicious' photo

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/06/25/art.palinpic.cnn.jpg caption="Palin is upset with a blogger who doctored a photo of herself and son Trig."]
(CNN) - A week after a high-profile uproar with comedian David Letterman over the late-night host's joke about her daughter, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin is again sharply responding to the appearance of her children in the public sphere.

Palin's latest response comes after liberal Alaskan Blogger Linda Kellen Biegel doctored a photograph of the former Republican vice presidential candidate with her 1-year-old son Trig, who suffers from Down Syndrome.

Biegel, who blogs in support of the Alaska Democratic Party under the name "Celtic Diva," superimposed a picture of conservative Alaskan radio host Eddie Burke over Trig's face in an apparent effort to show how close the radio host is with the Alaskan governor.

"Recently we learned of a malicious desecration of a photo of the Governor and baby Trig that has become an iconic representation of a mother's love for a special needs child," Palin spokeswoman Meghan Stapelton said in a statement provided to CNN. "The mere idea of someone doctoring the photo of a special needs baby is appalling."

Stapelton also suggested President Obama should speak out against such behavior from liberal activists.

"Babies and children are off limits," She said. "It is past time to restore decency in politics and real tolerance for all Americans. The Obama Administration sets the moral compass for its party. We ask that special needs children be loved, respected and accepted and that this type of degeneracy be condemned."

Responding on her blog to the uproar, Biegel said in no uncertain terms the doctored picture was intended to make fun of Burke, not Trig Palin.

"It's called 'Baby Burke' because it's Eddie Burke...basically his probable second-biggest fantasy about the Governor," she wrote. "So, connecting the dots for you...WE'RE MAKING FUN OF EDDIE BURKE!!!!!!"

Earlier this month Biegel filed an ethics complaint against Palin for wearing a jacket made by a company that sponsored her husband - a snow mobile racer - to a public event. An investigator ruled Palin had not acted wrongly and the Alaska governor accused Biegel "asinine political grandstanding."

Filed under: Sarah Palin
soundoff (307 Responses)
  1. Brian MacDougall

    Really? Desecration? Bad taste, maybe, like the Letterman joke. But "desecration"? I think the Governor thinks a great deal too much about her own graven image. To be charitable, she's a little too happy to rise to the most inconsequential bait dangled in front of her. To be less charitable, she likes to use outrage about her children to make political points. Either one makes her unsuitable for national politics.

    June 25, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  2. Robin

    If she did this...Shame on her! As she is a parent of a Multi Racial Child, I can think of lots of Photoshop tricks for that. How would she respond to that? Think before you act.

    June 25, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  3. Get over yourself

    If anyone is guilty of "asinine political grandstanding." it's Palin. Get over yourself already.

    June 25, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  4. Michael

    So Sarah Palin wants Barack Obama to censor the free speech of an American? Meghan Stapelton, Palin's spokesperson, called it a desecration? Here goes the Palin camp on another religious crusade! Trig Palin is a child like any other. He is not some holy child whose image can be desecrated. I dont know what is more appalling, Palin's inability to understand people's rights or her inability to keep her religion out of politics! Didnt the Republican party see how this ended last time?

    June 25, 2009 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  5. Daisy

    I'm REALLY glad this woman isn't our VP right now. Every time I start to think Obama stinks, I think of what the alternative was. The woman would be too busy whining about how unfair her world is to do anything productive.

    June 25, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  6. Sian

    Does the Governor realize that she is exploits her children for political gain. First she cavorted her pregnant daughter in front of the world while advocating abstinence. She uses every opportunity she gets to call attention to the fact that her child is disabled. Governor Palin needs to get over herself.

    June 25, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  7. M-AZ

    Hey Palin,

    Hahahahahahah! This is not about the little Trigger; it's about you. Stop using your kids...I don't care what anyone says. The photo is funny and the point is well taken.

    June 25, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  8. Tired of the Palins

    Dear Palin Family,
    How I would love NOT to read about how "abused" you are on a daily basis. It's amazing that the press tracks your spins on a daily basis. Your 15mintues is officially up. Move on. There are bigger worries in the world: Korea, Iran and the two wars going on.

    June 25, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  9. videodrome

    Geez, why is this even news??
    Palin should have NEVER been nominated to run for VP on the Repub ticket....too much drama.
    Hey, isn't there anymore Sanford news out yet? At least this man and his problems haven't reached news-over-kill status yet.
    Good grief, people.

    June 25, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  10. mark

    Lady, you'd never make it in the White House as Vice Prez or Prez. Your skin is too thin. I certainly wouldn't want you leading me.
    Stay at home and take care of your kids. The limelight you keep stepping into seems to expose you more every day...and it ain't a good thing.

    June 25, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  11. jAYjAY

    Palin, do not try to drag the president into your hypocritical tabloid crusade especially since you never once spoke out to your publican party on over 2 years of malicious attacks on he and his family.

    June 25, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  12. DK

    Sarah... you so desperately want to thrust yourself into the spotlight, then you have to understand you become vulnerable jokes, satire and people disagreeing with you and even making fun of you. If you are so thin skinned, how do you think you're "leadership" would transfer to the White House? If anyone knows about "asinine political grandstanding"... it's YOU Sarah.

    June 25, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  13. Kim

    Maybe someone should have told Palin before that when you put your children out in the public spotlight, they are basically free game for public criticism, etc. Quit complaining...it really is getting old.

    June 25, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  14. Steve

    I love that this woman is dumb enough to make a huge uproar about a hack photo shop job that no one knew about till she said something about it. All it does is call more attention to the photo and the issue itself which is negative for her. If she were smart, she would fire her entire staff. Every democrat should hope she keeps them and is the republican nominee in 2012, it would just be too easy. PALIN 2012!

    June 25, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  15. Shell

    Although I agree children should be off limits however when it was to her benifit Palin paraded those kids around for all to see during the campaign. She used them to portray her whole wholesome mom act. If she had paid as much attention to her children as she does making sure her name and/or face is in the news. She has no one to blame but herself. She put herself and her children in the public eye. This constant complaining about everything is just making her look even worse in my book

    June 25, 2009 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  16. Jason

    Obviously the liberal media is out to get her. Earth to Palin: there's a thing called "free press" in this country. Can't take a joke? Get out of the spotlight. We'd all love you for it.

    June 25, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  17. urban

    I've said it before and I'll say it again....she better start developing "thick skin" if she wants to be pres....these things are mild compared to what will happen if she runs for pres...like the old saying goes..."if you can't stand the heat......"

    June 25, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  18. Sam Walton

    An iconic image of a mother's love for her child? Depending on which side of the culture fence you stand, it could also be an image of a candidate who will do anything to get elected, even if it means using her children as political props. Maybe Gov. Palin wasn't savvy enough to realize that this was part of the branding effort. Now, she's upset over a satirical image involving one of her children? She served them up herself. Poor lady. She also doesn't seem to realize that her continued noise only fuels the unwanted attention.

    June 25, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  19. @BigMisterC

    Wow... the Palins really do need to develop a thicker skin if they want to continue to live in the public eye, and believe me there is no indication that they have any intention of ever leaving the the spotlight.


    June 25, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  20. Sick of Palin

    If you can't manage your own state affairs, don't expect the Obama Administration to do it for you. Just resign and let somebody qualified who isn't all about exploitation and drama take over in Alaska.

    June 25, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  21. Rock

    The whole political process has become appauling to say the least, the united states is a joke in the worlds eyes by making ellections look like and episode on jerry springer.
    Palin in general is a joke and should be embarassed by her own in ability to come off as a serious candidate for any seat other than the one she currently holds.
    No one took her seriously when she campaigned against Obama and no one will take her anymore seriously in 2012, she's a premadona whos only place in the news is in the worst of the tabliods published today.
    Save whats left of the republican party and just quietly bow out please.

    June 25, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  22. Michele Westminster, CO

    Go away Sarah....this women will use any means...INCLUDING HER KIDS....to keep herself in the media!!! Most of America would not have even seen this picture had she not brought it up.

    I feel sorry for her kids to have such a terrible role model of a mother!!!

    June 25, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  23. Doug Mitchell

    The "Media" is not acting fair in dealing with Sara Palin. Take all of the pot shots you want at her personally, but the rest of the family is totally out of bounds to the media. I have great disdain for most media reporting agencies, in that most report via an innuendo style of reporting, to create the story rather than report the necessary story, as trash talk sells. Think not then retrospectively examine how you report, if only by the lead in headlines, it has to be a "GRABBER" so to speak.

    Back off inaccurate reporting and chastise any media reporting that is not 100% accurate, as fair/quality also sells.

    June 25, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  24. Ken in NC

    It appears that the doctored picture of Gov. Palin and her son were not in the best taste, however, I feel that Gov. Palin should share some of the responsibility as she took her family with her on stage at political events and as such, she inserted them into the political process.

    I am of the opinion that children should be off limits in politics but when one inserts them into the process by bringing them out on stage with them, they become part of the process.

    With respect to Gov. Palin, if she truly has aspirations for the office of the POTUS, she should get a thicker skin and she should learn that it is not in her best interest to hit back each time she is attacked. This presents her with the image that she will react to everything that happens that she does not like and this is not good for a President. She has to learn to let some things roll off her back or let surrogates respond on her behalf.

    June 25, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  25. quoc

    how sick the liberal extremist uses chidren for her propaganda...I'm a liberal (and a father of two daughters) but I never..never endorse such behavior

    June 25, 2009 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
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