Palin pressed on Medicare during bus tour stop
May 30th, 2011
04:19 PM ET
12 years ago

Palin pressed on Medicare during bus tour stop

Mount Vernon, Virginia (CNN) - The politically charged battle over entitlement reform briefly interrupted Sarah Palin's tightly scripted bus tour on Monday, when a tourist visiting George Washington's historic home at Mount Vernon told Palin to "protect our Medicare."

A middle-aged woman who said she worked in the health care industry approached Palin while she was signing autographs and posing for pictures with tourists at Mount Vernon, the second stop on Palin's closely watched "One Nation" bus tour.

"I work in health care," the woman announced. "Please protect our Medicare."

Reporters covering Palin's Mount Vernon visit were positioned too far away to hear the remark, but a CNN microphone picked up the audio.

It was not clear if Palin responded. She was swarmed by starstruck tourists and drawn in multiple directions, so it is possible she did not hear the comment.

The exchange comes as Republican presidential candidates like Mitt Romney and Tim Pawlenty have been forced to answer for a controversial budget passed by House Republicans that would dramatically alter the popular health care program for seniors.

The cost-cutting budget, designed by Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan, would replace Medicare with a voucher system that would let patients buy health insurance on the private market. Democrats, meanwhile, are accusing Republicans of trying to abolish the program.

Palin's visit to Mount Vernon was her second bus tour stop of the day, before heading to Fort McHenry in Baltimore and the battlefield at Gettysburg.

Palin and her family were escorted through the Mount Vernon grounds by John Marshall, the manor's designated tour guide for special guests. They entered the historic grounds on the "One Nation" bus - which features yellow Alaska license plates - through a back entrance.

The tour lasted about 45 minutes, according to a Mount Vernon official who guided members of the media to an outdoor position about 100 yards from the Washington home, where they could take photographs of the Palins.

Once in view of the press, Palin and her daughter Piper were seen listening to a handful of Mount Vernon employees in period dress.

Daughters Willow and Bristol walked ahead, while husband Todd lagged behind and chatted with John Coale, an informal adviser and the husband of Fox News anchor Greta Van Susteren. A handful of staffers were also present.

Also joining Palin were her parents, Sally and Chuck Heath. Chuck Heath was wearing a purple T-shirt emblazoned with "ALASKA" and excitedly snapping photos.

The family posed for a portrait in front of the Washington home, and then shook hands and took pictures with the group of tourists. They also visited Washington's tomb before departing.

Filed under: 2012 • Medicare • Sarah Palin
soundoff (65 Responses)
  1. BobAD

    Palin could care less about your Medicare or anything else. She just wants to make money off the fools that follow her around. She is still a POS.

    May 30, 2011 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  2. GI Joe

    The politics of building her personal worth, while spewing hatret and lies. My my my my my.

    May 30, 2011 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  3. bellablue

    Dear God, You know that new planet that was discovered a short time ago . . . . Well, the aliens who live there need a new President!! Would you PLEASE send Sarah Palin there ASAP!!!!!

    May 30, 2011 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  4. John

    You so-called journalists are shameless! How exactly was Palin "pressed" on medicare. Your proof is that ONE person in a large crowd shouted something about medicare that she may or may not have heard? Beyond belief, you people are!

    May 30, 2011 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  5. observer

    The title is mis-leading. Getting asked about an issue once can hardly be called "pressed". I was expecting to read what she had to say since she was "pressed" on the issue. It is very disappointing to realize that CNN got the question but had no idea if the question was answered.

    May 30, 2011 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  6. James

    Palin won't run, but that just means that we'll have to listen to her and her brain dead base and the yellow journalist rags, like CNN, talk about 2016 and whether or not she will run then.

    May 30, 2011 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  7. Lynne

    If she's not going to throw her hat into the ring, then she's really putting on a good dog-and-pony show. Maybe she's trying to hype her books and TV shows to shore up the Palin family coffers?

    May 30, 2011 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  8. Bruce

    Really, who cares about Palin?????????? She's a quitter. She isn't news-worthy. The media acts likes she's a celebrity, she's NOT. She's an idiot.

    May 30, 2011 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  9. jon

    It is so nice that she has been able to buy a 1.7 million dollar house in Scottsdale, AZ. The American dream has worked well for her – unfortunately not for most middle-class folks. But of couse Rush Limbaugh would tell you that you also can achieve that result. Yeah, sure! That is the ploy they use – give big breaks to the rich because you too can become one of them.

    May 30, 2011 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  10. Adalbert

    Palin’s appeal is mostly to those who believe in lies and fairy tales. Unfortunately, we have more than our share of ignorant and naive people in this country. Many of them are dangerous right wing and religious fanatics from the middle ages with twisted and outdated views on just about everything. Unfortunately, with the help of the media this bimbo is getting lot more attention than what she deserves.

    May 30, 2011 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  11. Anonymous

    Stop giving wall to wall coverage of her stupid family road trip (paid for by her dumb followers).

    May 30, 2011 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  12. Ellizabeth

    She couldn't handle being governor of a very small (population-wise) state. She quit. Quit. How could one ever think she could or more so should handle the complexities and demands of governing the entire US? Pure folly that. But that's how too many Americans are now thinking–or more aptly not thinking these days. The Tepublicans unfortunately do represent America...dumbed-down America. Alas.

    May 30, 2011 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  13. Bwar

    how telling that fox 'news' anchor Greta Van Sustern's husband is the Palins 'informal' advisor....i feel sorry for the other republican candidates who has to compete with this person (Sarah Palin) who has Fox in her hip pocket.

    May 30, 2011 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  14. probbins

    Here's a new story America... Why doesn't Mrs. Palin wear a wedding ring? Talk about conservative values. I am married for 32 years and have NEVER taken off my wedding band? What the hog she rode today was too rough. Give me a break. And who is taking care of her handicapped son this month..... give me a break. She is a travesty for this county... and any American contemplating her winning the presidency of the United States of America... needs to have thier head examined. People, this country is facing a lot of things and Sarah Palin is not the leader we need. OMG... get me a drink!

    May 30, 2011 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  15. GI Joe

    Can you imagine poor Todd having to listen to that shrill voice 24/7? Poor guy. I understand Greta Van S. has a big crush on him. ha ha ha ha ha

    May 30, 2011 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  16. Papasan

    Lets go down the GOP memory lane… This weeks memory lane...

    Birther Conspiracy, Deather Conspiracy, The Rapture, Donald Trump, Failure to Kill Medi Care via Ryan Plan, Glitter Gingrich, Paw Paw Pawlenty, Brain Dead Bachmann, Tea Bagger Nut Cases, Right Wing Loonies, and now the GOP is tossing out the dazzling Mittens Romney for President.

    Palin is just insult to the GOP's massive injury to the USA, Patriot in name only, Unqualified most certainly, Complete Nut Case for sure!


    May 30, 2011 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  17. Indy

    Its a sad day when the Palins go on a all expense paid vacation and there has to be coverage of the failed Governor.It must be hard to know reality in your million dollar ride, but all she has to do is give a few Regan quotes and anti goverment sound bites and the trip is paid for

    May 30, 2011 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  18. mark

    seniors must simply learn to live with less. America is in a huge budget crisis. exercise, diet, pray, and go to church. less government the better for future generations. tax breaks for the wealthy will create jobs for our children. God Bless.

    May 30, 2011 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  19. David

    She is on a family vacation showing her kids a little history. She is smart enough to promote it without saying she is running for President. This raises her profile and gives her the opportunity to make more money writing books or being on TV. The media loves the sucker TV ticket of Fox News Palin-CNBC The Apprentice Trump. They even have Greta's husband babysitting. Who is going to ask her what newspapers and magazines she reads this election cycle? She must have studied PT Barnum and how to run a circus and make money. Maybe she can fix Trump's hair?

    May 30, 2011 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  20. gina

    Palin is afraid of answering the questions on medicare or any other issue because that means she would actually be putting her views on record on something tangible.

    May 30, 2011 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |

    A WHORISH leader of the Republican Party, sitting on the back of a motorcycle?

    Well, hoochie grizzly momma!

    Still, I must say that Sarah looks good considering she aborted her baby while she was at college at the University of Hawaii.

    That is a biker looking BABY KILLER, aborting a dark skinned baby with her brown Hawaiian lover!

    Looks like Todd Palin is trying to bang his other daughter Piper. Piper on the back of Todd's bike riding as his biker b1tch.

    We all know that Todd fathered the retarded baby (Trig) with his eldest daughter Bristol, then passed it off as Sarah's so that John Mc Lame could win the election.

    Some family they are, these Palins.


    May 30, 2011 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  22. Clwyd

    I would think sarah's parents would be ashamed of what they have created!

    May 30, 2011 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  23. Henry

    Is there anything unbiased about Fox News? Palin is employed by them and now Greta van Susteren (I am sorry for the Dutch for having her associated with them) is "in bed" with the Palins. So Fox is in her pockets and CNN is sniffing after her like a dog. Only MSNBC is not associated with her – too much.

    Boy oh boy, what have we become?

    May 30, 2011 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  24. Four and The Door

    "I work in health care," the woman announced. "Please protect our Medicare."
    The only person in Washington who apparently cares enough about Medicare to come up with a plan to save it is Paul Ryan. The Democrats hope that by ignoring the well-established financial problems of Medicare, somebody else will solve them. They may be correct. Paul Ryan.

    May 30, 2011 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  25. Steve, New York City

    I can't wait for Palin to start comparing herself to Ronald Reagan again.
    Incredible that the media pays so much attention to such a morbidly stupid individual. She's maybe only "slightly" smarter than the actors in Jersey Shore. Maybe I'd hire Palin to shoot and skin a moose (though not likely to need that in New York City) – but Palin is clearly totally unqualified to hold any national office.

    May 30, 2011 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
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