November 14th, 2009
04:26 PM ET
11 years ago

McCain campaign adviser pushes back on Palin book

(CNN) -A former top adviser and spokeswoman to John McCain's 2008 presidential campaign is pushing back against comments reportedly made by Sarah Palin in her new book.

Nicolle Wallace tells CNN that Palin's account of an ill-fated interview with CBS's Katie Couric during the 2008 presidential campaign is not true.

In excerpts of her new book "Going Rogue: An American Life" that were obtained by other organizations, including the conservative Web site Drudge Report, the former Alaska governor and 2008 Republican vice presidential candidate discusses her interview with Couric.

"From the beginning, Nicolle [Wallace] pushed for Katie Couric and the CBS Evening News. The campaign's general strategy involved coming out with a network anchor, someone they felt had treated John well on the trail thus far," writes Palin, according to excerpts obtained before Tuesday's release date for the highly-anticipated book. "My suggestion was that we be consistent with that strategy and start talking to outlets like FOX and the Wall Street Journal. I really didn't have a say in which press I was going to talk to, but for some reason Nicolle seemed compelled to get me on the Katie bandwagon."

Related video: Palin book blitz begins

The Drudge Report says it obtained a portion of the book in which Palin claims McCain campaign adviser Nicolle Wallace pushed for the now-famous Katie Couric interview because the CBS anchor needed a self-esteem "boost."

"'She just has such low self-esteem,' Nicolle said," continues Palin in the excerpt. "She added that Katie was going through a tough time, 'She just feels she can't trust anybody.' Nicolle had left her gig at CBS just a few months earlier to hook up with the McCain campaign."

Contacted by CNN, Wallace denied the gist and specifics of Palin's account of the Couric interview, which aired at the end of September 2008.

Palin and Wallace do agree that the Couric interview didn't go well.

"I knew it wasn't a good interview," Palin tells Oprah Winfrey, in excerpts of an interview that is scheduled to run Monday, one day before Palin's book is officially released.

In excerpts of the book, Palin also writes that she thought there was something peculiar about the way Wallace would talk about her days as White House communications director for President George W. Bush.

"I had to trust her experience, as she had dealt with national politics more than I had. But something always struck me as peculiar about the way she recalled her days in the White House, when she was speaking on behalf of President George W. Bush. She didn't have much to say that was positive about her former boss or the job in general. Whenever I wanted to give a shout-out to the White House's homeland security efforts after 9/11, we were told we couldn't do it. I didn't know if that was Nicolle's call," writes Palin, according to the excerpts.

Wallace said Palin's account is completely false.

"It's not even like it's slightly wrong. It's like I feel totally the opposite. I would never disparage the president. I adored him then and I adore him now."

Wallace seemed mystified by Palin's accounts, conceding that there were enough strategy miscalculations during the campaign that Palin "didn't have to make stuff up."

Filed under: Popular Posts • Sarah Palin
soundoff (314 Responses)
  1. Russell Miller

    Nicolle Walle and her husband Mark Wallace are Romney people, who worked for Romney before his pullout....Mark was the Texas Finance chair for Romney.

    They started a sabotage of Palin when it was clear Obama would win.
    This is the huge story out there that their friends in the media won't report, even at Fox.

    Nicolle invented 1)Palin didn't know Africa was a continent 2)Palin was a diva 3)Palin wanted expensive clothing...then she invented a lie about another campaign operative...Scheuneman, that he was fired.

    He was not fired....why the hit by Wallace...because he leaked it to Bill Crystol, that both Mark and Nicolle Wallace were behind the Palin smears.

    November 14, 2009 08:09 pm at 8:09 pm |
  2. Jenna

    Actually, I'm happy that Sarah Palin is back in the public eye.
    I had the best time watching Saturday Night Live skits.
    Everyone I knew – friends, family, coworkers were laughing nonstop for weeks based on the skits by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler and all the other Palin provided fodder.
    Remember the time she went to save the Thanksgiving turkey, and in the background was a man sticking a live turkey into a machine that cut it's head off.
    She's God's gift gift to Democrats.

    November 14, 2009 08:09 pm at 8:09 pm |
  3. angelia

    Enough already!!!!! Who is Sara Palin? never heard of her before she was tapped for vice pres. she could not even finish what she had commited to to the people of the great state of alaska! And some people out here think she coudl be president? Get real...she just needs to go back to alaska...get a job and take care of here family!

    November 14, 2009 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  4. Joe

    Let's play the part where she says she has foreign policy experience because you can see Russia from Alaska again. Who was it that made her say that?

    November 14, 2009 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  5. Karl

    McCain and Palin would BOTH have been bad ( and I say this as a Republican).

    He -because he makes a terrible choice, she – because she has no brains.

    November 14, 2009 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  6. Joanna in PA

    Every time the womens lips moves she is lying. Since Sarah is a unemployed blogger now, it bet she has time to read this. So Sarah, Nobody was against your teenager being pregnant. its the irony of what you spew that was so outrageous. "family values" lol. You and your hubby were to busy seeking fame and glory to pay attention to what she was doing. never the less, things happen. Us libs as you like to call us were calling you out on the hypocrisy. She lies and lies which can all easily be fact checked. But people like her don't bother with the facts do they? Obama moved in God we trust is a fine example. MORAN!! do your homework!! The GOP AND BUSH DID> LOL LOL LOL

    November 14, 2009 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  7. Tom

    Why is Palin so proud of being a "rogue"? Doesn't she know that a rogue is a loner with no following and no friends? Typically, a rogue is antisocial and destructive–unable to get along with others. Why does she think that this a desirable quality?

    A leader needs to be able to influence others and pursuade them to that she is able to achieve goals that her followers believe in. A rogue cannot lead because she cannot unite her followers> she is simply creating a personality cult–THIS IS NOT LEADERSHIP.

    November 14, 2009 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  8. Stacey

    If Sarah Palin looked like Janet Reno, would anyone care what she said or did? Didn't think so.

    November 14, 2009 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
  9. Joanna in PA

    I am no conservative, but i wonder why they can not come up with a leader with at least 1/3 of a brain? Surely there MUST be at least one? The Neo cons accuse us of outright hatred for this women. Well, she did cause the hate toward Obama with her made up lies. Obama didn't even play that game back which was extremely commendable. Not sure if i could've. but what we really do not like is that she is not the brightest bulb in the bunch. Its very very dim. And hypocritical. That is truth not hatred.

    November 14, 2009 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  10. scott

    Now, we hear about how John McCain's campaign staff sabotaged his campaign by matching Sarah Palin with unfavorable interviewers. Tell us more, Sarah. It couldn't possibly be Sarah's inept performance, which betrayed her not-ready-for-primetime qualifications for national office. Sarah, the only people who could possibly believe this crap are the idiots who flock to see your snarky jabs and folksy, empty rhetoric.

    November 14, 2009 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  11. M Paul

    5+2=7 everywhere, anytime and anywhere... Can you tell your friends, teachers and parents that I can only give the right answer in front of my grandparents? Now, we know that FoxHATE is the place to lift up ignorance.

    Chantilly, Virginia

    November 14, 2009 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  12. David, Austin, Texas

    Sarah Palin enhancing the truth...lying? Really? And that's news to ANYONE?

    November 14, 2009 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  13. Annie, Atlanta

    worriedmom, where did all that hate come from? You do realize that we're all Americans, right? And that we all have the same hopes and dreams for ourselves and our families, right? Wow. I don't wish any ill will towards Sarah Palin. She doesn't make me crazy. She's not very bright, but she's a woman and a mom, just like me. I just don't agree with her politics. And do you realize that the "Chosen One" you refer to is our President? I don't think he's "chosen" other than by a majority of the Americans who voted last November. He's just a man, and he's trying to clean up a mess the best way he can. I don't liken him to Jesus Christ. Isn't that heresy?

    November 14, 2009 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  14. kimberly

    There is good news and bad news from this. The bad news is there are people that ACTUALLY think palin is more than a side show act. The GOOD news is there are not NEARLY enough of them to matter in 2012. Although I am sure palin will not win the republican primary, I am PRAYING she runs again, I would LOVE to see her fall on her face again, it was a blast the first time around...

    November 14, 2009 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  15. Eugene

    After the book comes out, we know who is really going to need a "self-esteem boost". Hint: They hunt moose from an airplane.

    November 14, 2009 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  16. sandy

    And somebody would be surprised that Palin is truth impared?

    November 14, 2009 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  17. pat

    I have no idea what the hullabaloo in this article i about. Ms Crowley is about as clear as mud. What are the specifics on this pushing back by McCain personnel.

    This appears to be a typical female spat of much to do about nothing. There is nothing articulated in the article about this spat, either by Crowley, or what Palin, Curic, or Wallace have said. Somewhere there must be a scorned woman or two as hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.

    It looks like someone claims the interview by Curic of Palin went bad and someone is to blame. I would think Crowley would have something better to report upon.

    November 14, 2009 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  18. Todd

    Jonhnny mac was a rino, all rino's will be delt with and true conservitive will reign supreme. And when this current communist admin is gone this country will finnally get back to work.until then hang on to your wallets and lock and load!

    November 14, 2009 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  19. Olivia

    SLAMMER! . . . Gotta love it when Republicans reap what they sowed. They created a babbling idiot!

    November 14, 2009 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  20. kim

    Here we go again CNN. Another palin story, and wow!! the comments are still open, you people live for the nutcase leftist who swoops down on these stories like voltures. Why don't you stop this madness and hate mongering. I have over 600 post from left wing nut cases, who have said some of the most horrible thing about this woman and her family, and there is no right wing blog that I have visited that comes close to saying anythng about a democrat, any democrat including Obama, as bad as the things that they have said about her, and CNN you continue to feed off of it and allow it. You should be ashamed of yourself.

    November 14, 2009 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  21. Thomas, AK

    Schmidt we all know the book is full of lies....I think we just love a train wreck...

    You guys need to shut her down now.....the clown show is over and we are sick of it. John McCain needs to make a statement that he made a huge mistake on letting the biggest terror attack happen to his campagine........ She's laughing at all b/c she loves the attention and money....

    November 14, 2009 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  22. Kenton

    When did being a "maverick" and a "rogue" become a euphemism for "being a bonehead?"

    November 14, 2009 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  23. Fred - MO

    Can someone tell Palin and Lynn V. this is not a fairy tale and they are not in HighSchool. Palin is a mean spirited person and she's upset that her looks did not get her a pass beyond AK..

    The GOP needs to stop this messy lying woman before she does any additional damage to the party of NO!

    November 14, 2009 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  24. Linda in Texas

    Stick out your tongue, close your lips and blow!

    November 14, 2009 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  25. Linda in Texas

    Stick out your tongue, close your lips and blow! Change channels or turn it off.

    November 14, 2009 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
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