New book on Palin blasted as 'lies'
September 15th, 2011
01:17 PM ET
10 years ago

New book on Palin blasted as 'lies'

Washington (CNN) - Todd Palin released a scathing statement late Wednesday about author Joe McGinniss, whose new book about former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has grabbed internet and tabloid headlines, as well as received harsh criticism from The New York Times.

In a statement distributed to members of the media, Palin's husband said the book "is full of disgusting lies, innuendo and smears."

"This is a man who has been relentlessly stalking my family to the point of moving in right next door to us to harass us and spy on us to satisfy his creepy obsession with my wife," Palin said. "His book is full of disgusting lies, innuendo, and smears. Even The New York Times called this book 'dated, petty,' and that it 'chases caustic, unsubstantiated gossip.'"

McGinniss' book, "The Rogue," is set for publication next week and is the latest work from the bestselling author who first rose to national prominence with "The Selling of the President 1968," which described the marketing of Richard Nixon during the 1968 campaign. He subsequently wrote a crime trilogy and two controversial books about the Kennedy family.

In early 2010 McGinniss moved to Wasilla, Alaska to begin research for a book about the 2008 GOP vice presidential nominee and rented the house immediately next door to the Palins.

His arrival was met with criticism from the Palin clan and national media.

When asked about McGinniss' presence in Alaska, Palin, who is considering a bid for the White House in 2012, told Fox News "Some people just need to get a life."

"Bless his heart, he needs to get a life," she said.

But in an interview with NBC News that aired Thursday, McGinniss said it was happenstance that the Palins' neighbor was renting her house.

He said he wanted to write the book because Palin is a "phenomenon," and the negative reaction he received was yet another example of Palin's temperament.

"She overreacts. She has no modulation in her responses to stress," McGinniss told NBC. "In other words, she freaks out."

Although McGinniss said Palin instructed those closest to her not to speak with the author, he interviewed people in Alaska who he said knew the couple and used his months of research in "The Rogue."

McGinniss' book has not been made available to CNN for reporting and it has not yet been released in stores. However, the Times and NBC read the book and reported on the more salacious storylines in the over 300 page hardback, much of which received tough critiques from the news organizations.

"Although most of 'The Rogue' is dated, petty and easily available to anyone with Internet access, Mr. McGinniss used his time in Alaska to chase caustic, unsubstantiated gossip about the Palins, often from unnamed sources like 'one resident' and 'a friend,'" the Times wrote in a review published Wednesday.

In the interview with NBC News, McGinniss said Sarah and Todd used cocaine in the past, a claim that has not been verified.

When asked by NBC how he substantiated the claim, McGinniss said "well you talk to somebody who snorted it with her."

"You talk to many of Todd's friends who describe him as having been on the end of the straw frequently in his youth," McGinniss said. "I'm not saying Todd and Sarah Palin today abuse cocaine or even use it, but there is no question they both did at one point in their lives."

According to NBC News, McGinniss alleged in the book that Palin had an affair with Todd's former business partner Brad Hanson.

Hanson denied that charge in a statement Thursday.

"This is the same old story that went around in 2008," he said. "It is a complete and outright lie. Todd and Sarah Palin have been good friends for many years, and in fact we still own property together. We sold a former joint business venture for business reasons, nothing more. These attacks are shameful and those making them seem to be out only to destroy good people and make money doing so."

McGinniss also wrote, as reported by NBC, that Palin had a sexual encounter with former NBA star Glen Rice in 1987, before she was married to Todd.

The New York Times wrote that the book also rehashes "conspiracy theories," including that she may not be the mother of her youngest son, Trig.

"It is perhaps the most blistering assessment of her character possible that many Wasillans who'd known Sarah from high school onward told me that even if she had not faked the entire story of her pregnancy and Trig's birth, it was something she was eminently capable of doing," McGinniss wrote in the book, according to the Times.

The Times came to this conclusion in their review: "There is one area, and only one, in which 'The Rogue' is dead-on. Mr. McGinniss knows how publicity works. He appreciates, not to say emulates, the way members of the Palin family cash in on celebrity and contradict themselves without penalty."

Filed under: Sarah Palin • Todd Palin
soundoff (431 Responses)
  1. rtbrno65

    How many more books about the Palin's are there going to be? Are people really that interested in these slobs?

    September 15, 2011 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  2. Tea Party Express

    Why would Palin lie? She has the the purest intentions and wants to see the USA go back to being normal.

    September 15, 2011 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  3. FatSean

    Like I care about what some corrupt white trash from the most heavily subsidized state in the Union has to say. You failed, you quit, you suck.

    September 15, 2011 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  4. Joe from CT, not Lieberman

    Holy Cow! Todd can read?

    September 15, 2011 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  5. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Sarah Palin, who cares. After her lies, is it karma?

    September 15, 2011 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  6. U.S.Army-OverLord

    It wouldn't be the FIRST time she lied. 😉

    September 15, 2011 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  7. Dennis

    Todd is getting his panties all in a twist! I am surprised at the number of people who still find this family relevant.

    September 15, 2011 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  8. Larry L

    How about those "death squads" that are coming to get granny? You reap what you sow...

    September 15, 2011 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  9. TAM/otlset

    McGinniss is a lying creep, and everyone knows it.

    September 15, 2011 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  10. UhYeaOk

    How pathetic, I don't want Palin as president but I don't think this type of bashing is ok for anyone. I suppose the wolves on the left will have a field day with it though.

    September 15, 2011 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  11. ClydeTheSlyde

    Something tells me that where the Palins are involved, truth is stranger than fiction.

    September 15, 2011 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  12. Woman In California

    From Another Ticker: President pauses for beer with future Medal of Honor recipient:

    A True Centrist – complained about this being a photo opt for the president. What an ignorant person you are. Did it not occur to you (and I'm sure you are unable to think) IF by some chance you were given the opportunity to have a beer with the POTUS you just "might" want it spilled all over the major networks and newspapers? Most of us would. Pres. Obama is constantly in the news (he's used to it) but for this gifted individual this is probably a once in a life time moment. Please get OVER your hatred of our president. Statements such as yours are completely ridiculous.

    September 15, 2011 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  13. Moe Green

    Six in ten tea party Republicans say the Department of Education should be abolished...

    September 15, 2011 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  14. LOL

    C'mon Mr. Snow Mobile "Racer", your just ticked because your then fiancee (now wife) slept with a black guy, and your just finding out about it....

    September 15, 2011 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  15. munkittrick other words, it was true!

    September 15, 2011 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  16. Bob O'Brien

    II'm disappointed in Glen Rice.

    September 15, 2011 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  17. Daivie

    Heath Bar Meets Rice Krispies. Palin's support will now move far beyond her base as her cocaine use and fling with Glen Rice mirror the fantasies, if not behaviors, of millions of Americans of all political persuasions. As the news spreads, she may lose a tea partier or two, but will pick up sympathy among normal Republicans plus Independents and some Dems who have had similar experiences.

    September 15, 2011 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  18. Thomas

    We're talking about a pair who named their kids "Track", "Willow", "Bristol", "Piper" and "Trig".

    Does ANYONE out there truly believe they weren't on SOME kind of narcotic at the time?

    September 15, 2011 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  19. Jim

    If Sarah says it's a lie, then it must be true.

    September 15, 2011 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  20. beevee

    Why don't the palins sue the writer of the book if what he wrote about them are a pack of lies. This is common in this country. You can't slander some one.

    September 15, 2011 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  21. Bill

    Now I understand what Ronald Reagan meant. Sarah Palin is a true welfare queen.

    September 15, 2011 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  22. Love it

    Bet it's all true.

    September 15, 2011 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  23. Russ

    Some people need to get a life? Look who's talking. Anyway the truth sucks don't it Todd!

    September 15, 2011 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |

    Take some of your own medicine,.. you Tundra Hillbillies. Sarah has been spreading lies, innuendos, hate, promoting division and discord, hiding behind her Facebook blog,.. making millions in the process,.. what did you think,.. you have a monopoly on that kind of journalism.

    September 15, 2011 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  25. Joe YOU LIE Wilson

    not a fan of Palin, and I wouldn't be suprised if some of these actually turned out to be true. but even if she did do coke... so what? that was long before she was in office. even if she had a fetish for big, black guys... so what? that was before she was married.

    September 15, 2011 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
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