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. Buckeye4u

    And the truth wins out....Palin is ,was,has been and always will be Pathetic!

    November 14, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  2. Sarah Fan

    Candy, your negativity and disparaging remarks added to the facts on the report keep you from ever being considered a journalist of integrity. However, this flavoring of the news, continues to drag CNN down from it's former number 1 news source for the nation and the world into a political rag sans journalistic value to democracy or our country.

    November 14, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  3. cgillette369

    who is john mccain?

    a former spurned lover of the media.

    November 14, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  4. not alone

    haha let the games begin 🙂

    November 14, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  5. SamSixpack

    Whereas Palin doesn't have a job, she can't really do much. Why not print something about the liars who claim they can gut Medicare without pulling the plug on somebody's grandma?

    November 14, 2009 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  6. LouAz

    She said, " She said . . . "
    Sounds like a Soap Opera. No wonder Rush loves it. I guess this passes as substantive policy in the New Flat Eart Party.
    What a gal !

    November 14, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  7. JAMEY

    Couric is known as a fluff interviewer. Even with Couric's fluff questions Palin bombed big-time. This "interview", for lack of a better word, gave the world a window into Palin's absolute lack of knowledge about anything outside of fishing. Palin blames everyone but herself, but the truth is she was then, and is now, totally unprepared for life on a national or international stage.

    November 14, 2009 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  8. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    I bet she didn't put the following in her book: Palin didn't know the duties of a VP, didn't know Africa is a Continent, didn't have a passport, didn't know you can't see Russia from Alaska and these are questions not asked in Courics interview. Palin still blaming everyone else for her lack of qualifications to answer simple questions upon her interview with Couric. Palin can't move on because she proved to be a failure as well as being just plain stupid.

    November 14, 2009 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  9. Jonathan

    Sarah Palin. . . Lying!????

    I'm stunned.

    November 14, 2009 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  10. teflon warrior

    Palin's the only one I see that's being honest, she gave them the best chance to win. The only smart move McCain made in the campaign.

    November 14, 2009 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  11. Mike J.

    THANK GOD this team did not make it to the White House!

    November 14, 2009 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  12. Aunt Bea and Opie

    Wow,how exciting,a "he said, she said"by two of the biggest liars alive.

    November 14, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  13. Stevenson Democrat

    She is more to be pitied than censured. Let her reign in peace over the nut-wing of the GOP. The fall out will help insure an Obama victory the next time around and perhaps put the GOP back on the road to sanity

    November 14, 2009 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  14. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    I can see the law suits coming and Palin won't see a dime of her book sell.

    November 14, 2009 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  15. Independent

    Just one lie after another....what do you expect when the co-author is Lynn Vincent....not exacting known for telling the truth....

    November 14, 2009 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  16. Joseph

    Wow she bashes the campaign that made her. McCain would of been president if he didnt choose her as a running mate. Truly an embarrasment that she is an American..

    November 14, 2009 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  17. Tony L

    This clearly shows the GOP is in disarray.
    With leaders like Palin Republicans will keep divided. They will not be a viable national party with the circus they have going on. Palin is loving the celebrity status just like most of the Repubs nowadays without realizing that this looks negative on the party that claims ethical standards. The GOP party leaders are clowns in a circus preaching the country right and wrong with skeletons in their own closets. They need to solve their own internal problems before trying to solve the country's problems.

    November 14, 2009 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  18. Duffey

    There is something very wrong with this woman. It's not her poltics, which she is certainly entilted to have. It's the over all behaviors, such as her vengful "tooper gate" , The manpiulation over her daugters pregnancy. The bizzare behavior on the campaign trail (McCains fault-he should have vetted her more completly). Wanting to one up McCain on a concession speach, her abrupt reignation as govenor. Finially her apparent ethics laspes that are currently being investiged.

    Her delusional book is even more proof there is a "mental illness" that is involved in her over all well being. I really hope that she gets treatment for it, since it may destroy her life and leave her family motherless.

    November 14, 2009 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  19. Clark

    Anybody that has ever dealt with the staffers of high level politicians knows how arrogant and "protective" of their "charges" they can be and usually are.

    To the point that if those people around their special politician aren't doing exactly as they are told and stand exactly where they are told ... they will keep them from getting any special favors or any help on even the simplest matters.

    For example .... have a picture taken with one of these high level politicians with the politician's permission and willing participation ... but without the approval of the staffers ... you probably won't ever be able to get a copy of that picture.

    November 14, 2009 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  20. Shane

    She's lying? No! Not Sarah! She has never lied!!!!

    November 14, 2009 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  21. seg

    When Nicolle Wallace writes her book, I'll buy it.

    November 14, 2009 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  22. katiec

    With her quitting her term of governor when Alaska was in a mess proves Palin does not, will not accept responsibility and blames
    others for any mistake, all lack of credibility she shows.
    Like a typical republican she points her finger at others while thumping her Bible while commiting unChristian activities.

    November 14, 2009 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  23. maf

    This will be great! Palin's book comes out and one by one, those she has written about will come forward and denounce what is said. I won't have to buy the book, chapter by chapter will be shredded right here on CNN.

    Do you still get to call a Governor who quit her post before the end of her first term a Governor, or is it ex-Governor, or is it just QUITTER!

    Let the trouncing begin.

    November 14, 2009 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  24. CTSadler

    Ok, I get why this piece would be in the ticker, McCain is still a relevant politician (albeit only slightly.) But the other four articles a day in here on Palin are more than unnecessary. Did you guys follow Tom Delay through every move he made on that stupid dance show? Palin is no longer a politician. She's an entertainer, if anything, and now should be treated as such. Here relevance is about the same as a Jon Gosselin or a Fergie. Perhaps you should do an entertainment "Ticker," or perhaps a new category for all of these ex-politicians who move on to more lucrative pastures, "Politainment."

    November 14, 2009 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  25. Dylan from MN

    Wow, Palin a liar? I'm so stunned. *rolls eyes*

    November 14, 2009 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
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