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. pikerover

    Sure Palin wanted Fox....... Fox is the mouthpiece of the Right Wing. Fox would have tossed softball questions at her. Questions she could have understood.

    November 14, 2009 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  2. dick delson

    Sarah Palin joins the ranks of George W. Bush. Like Bush, she too is a moron. And John McCain must have been drunk on something when he picked her to be his VP running mate. It took here 6 years to get through four colleges, one of which I've never heard of. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that the GOP puts her up for President in 2012. Can't you just wait for her to debate President Obama with her maverick nonsense.

    November 14, 2009 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  3. Abby

    Why are we still talking about this dumb woman? Every word out of her dumb mouth is an innuendo, a cliche, or an out and out lie. The saddest thing about Sarah Palin is that she doesn't realize that the American public knows that she is a moron. And like most morons, she just can't stop talking long enough to realize it.

    I think it is interesting that she went out of her way to disparage Katie Couric and to embarrass Nicolle Wallace. When you read between the lines of the statements attributed to both of these women, it isn't hard to see that Mrs. Palin most definitely has a problem with strong, intelligent women. Why? Because she knows that she cannot compete with them on any level. Everything that comes out of her under-educated mouth does nothing but out her for the idiot she is.

    As the story goes, John McCain did not spend much time with Mrs. Palin before picking her as his running mate.

    I have no doubt that that is true - and that McCain, who is nothing but an elderly bore, needed something to ignite his failing campaign.

    All Palin did was sink it, him and herself.

    I cannot wait for the day when her name is no longer mentioned. I really can't.

    November 14, 2009 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  4. dwight huth

    The real question remains did Sarah Palin prematurely opt to abort her last term in office just to spend her contributor's money on herself instead of campaigning on the issues? It seems like more and more these days that the conservatives are nothing more then a reality t.v. program being ran by the Fox News agency.

    November 14, 2009 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  5. jtsilver2th

    Tell me this all of you liberals- Miss Sarah is perfectly capable of making up her own facts and she writ out her story real nice.

    Now these Washington DC people need to accept the truth- If Sarah Palin hadn't of picked that liberal John McCain to be on her ticket she would have been sittin real purty in the Whites House today. Cuz McCain lost the election for her supportin things like the Wall Street bailout and refusin to go to Michigan etc.

    November 14, 2009 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  6. dave

    I love the proof readers of this story. The title of this book of lies SHOULD be 'Going Rouge' as it is stated in the story above (at least until someone wises up), but i believe the title is reallyu 'Going Rogue' (which is also a joke)

    November 14, 2009 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  7. Bacchus999

    Surprise Palin is a liar. Someday the neocons will get how unworthy this woman is of all the hoopla

    November 14, 2009 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  8. Eyes Wide Open

    Wow, another journalistic low.

    So this is supposed to be a "news" article?

    Wallace denies the "gist" and "specifics" of the article and then of course gets allot of questions asked of her and of which there is plenty of detail, right? Wrong.

    This is like High School, well she said, then she said.

    Again, when a liberal lies, the media doesn't go immediately out of their way to find someone to dispute the story. Usually it will take a day or two for the media to get around to the criticism and then there's an attempt to verify what someone says.

    CNN appears to want to make sure any detractors of Palin will get IMMEDIATE and UNQUESTIONED attention. So have at it, LIberals CNN will give you free airtime and publicity if you are willing to call Palin a liar, no proof necessary!!

    November 14, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  9. Captain John

    Palin's record for truthfulness is pathetic, even for a politician.

    November 14, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  10. Party Purity will never bring Political Power!

    Looks like the Palin tome has a new title, "Going Rogue, an American LIE".

    November 14, 2009 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  11. fbythesea

    Sarah Palin clearly is rushing to cash in on her 15 minutes of fame. Soon enough, she'll just be a funny story and still good material for comedians. She should stop blaming others for her embarrassing appearance with Katie Couric. She was clueless about the most basic facts and should pick up a book or two before having someone else write one on her behalf.

    November 14, 2009 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  12. Jim

    The Palin lies continue. Thank God she is not the VP. It's about time John McCain is honest with the American public with what he truly believes today about this self serving woman. Her greatest lie is that she is a Christian.

    Despite the Christian label she tries to so actively sell to the public, she shows no true Christian traits at all. She does not love her neighbor as herself, instead she worships the "Golden Calf" i.e. money, above all else. She guards her personal freedoms but en ies others theirs. The proof is how she how she resists giving any help to aid individuals being hurt by the recession which the Republicans, in the most part, created. She says that she opposes abortion but she doesn’t want to help families or single women after these babies are born.

    What she really opposes is an individual’s right to chose. If you oppose abortion don’t have one. But give people the freedom to make their own choices between themselves and their God.

    She claims to be pro life, yet she supports unjust wars, the death penalty and opposes universal heath care. But of course, she loves her guns so she can defend herself against those heathen liberals. She seeks revenge at every opportunity, rather than turning the other cheek. She knowingly lies, aka, “bearing false witness” and spreads fear, panic and venomous hate. Claiming to be Christian certainly doesn't make it so.

    November 14, 2009 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  13. Simmy

    I believe Wallace.....The nerve of someone with no career giving Katie Couric a helping hand.....What a laugh......Katie showed strength just by giving her the time of day.....Too funny....

    November 14, 2009 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  14. grace

    Sarah prefers to believe what she prefers to be TRUE. She just can't get it straight. She thinks it would be LOVELY to sit down and have dinner with LEVI. WHY? He is just out trying to make a buck during his 15 minutes of fame, too.

    November 14, 2009 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  15. Peace

    Palin is the dramma queen. We all watched the interview carried by Kate Couric. She fumbled even to say what kind of magazines she reads. Who is to blame, the person who pushed her to take the interview (Nicolle Wallace) OR the ignorant one (Palin) who was not able to answer such a simple question!

    November 14, 2009 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  16. Perusing-through


    Katie Couric's interview of Sarah Palin is considered softball when compared to interviews done by most major media outlets. For a person to be a heartbeat from Presidency and Commander-in-Chief of a Superpower nation, Palin election to V.P. would have been an abomination.

    Sarah Palin failed the interviews because she was not ready, and still not ready, and it is as simple as that.

    November 14, 2009 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  17. Michele

    Go Nicolle. Do not let this woman rewrite history, even if she will never even be a footnote in a history book. Palin is all about pushing Palin, and throwing everyone else under the big bus with her gigantic photo on it (you'd think someone might have said that was a bit much, heh, Meg Stapleton?) As usual, she refuses to admit that anything was her fault. "It was a bad interview" but only because Couric was the wrong person to talk to, not because Palin said anything stupid. It was a bad interview because Wallace had some ulterior, peculiar motive, not because Palin refused to prepare for it. Sarah, we are onto you. You will be gone before the bus needs any more gas. And, by the way, what kind of MPGs does that campaign ad get? 5?

    November 14, 2009 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  18. pod

    I would believe Palin ANY DAY over those advisers. She was found NOT guilty on ALL the ethiics charges that her enemies kept trying to smear her with. She has demonstrated that she possesses great character over the course of her life and political career.

    November 14, 2009 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  19. mk

    Palin Lying? Really? Shocking.

    November 14, 2009 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  20. new mexico john

    I imagine McCain sure has some buyers remorse about Palin. she has thrown everyone under the bus.

    November 14, 2009 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  21. PAUL W.

    Again, It is only news when you find a Republican who isn't lying!

    November 14, 2009 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  22. joe

    Of course she had to make stuff up. She needed filler to justify the large advance. Leaving as Governor was the smartest thing to do, she no longer needs money which is why Todd quit his job too. The funny thing about these bozos is that they lie so often they actually believe their own lies to be truth.

    But hey, what do they care? She's had her fame, she is making more money than she ever thought would be possible for a person like herself and that's all they really care about.

    November 14, 2009 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  23. Notuorc

    I'd like to give a "shout-out" to the publishers who finally got on Palin vocab "bandwagon."

    November 14, 2009 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  24. Mike

    Sarah has to make things up because she lives in a fantasy world where its more important that she look good, rather than the truth be told. She's an American Evangelical Christian. She can't do anything else. She's been forgiven, over & over & over. The "...sin no more" part is optional.

    November 14, 2009 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  25. mannygazbee

    only the party of blockheads and dummies believe palin and foxnews and walls street journal. anyway thanks to palin for exposing the whitehouse fact that foxnews is a propaganda arm of the republican party.
    when will foxnews analyse the fact that republican party have had abortion in their health insurance since 1991, ?
    yet they ran against abortion in all elections ever since. the blockheads and dummies will still find a way to explain it or sweep it under the doormat at foxnews.
    by the way, does palin show any signs of being a journalism graduate in her artful dodging of interviews from fellow journists? lol

    November 14, 2009 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
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