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. gb0423

    so I guess good old Todd did not know about the Sarah sleeping with Glen Rice just before they got married...Todd sounds like a jealous punk!

    September 15, 2011 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  2. R.I.P. Damon

    Everyone knows that the Palins are a bunch of backward hicks who don't have the right to defend themselves or have their own opinions...just ask the media!

    I'm sure all the liberals who will undoubtedly find this statement from Mr. Palin stupid and offensive would have no trouble with a complete stranger moving next door to them with the implicit goal of digging up dirt on them.

    September 15, 2011 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  3. Mr. Madtown

    Run, Sarah, Run. .
    A very long run. . .
    Off a short pier.

    September 15, 2011 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  4. Marcia Greenwood, IN

    Sarah doesn't mind lying about other peoples lives and motives-remember death panels-but hates it when others lie about her-Maybe if her lies were not so outragous-I can see Russia from my house-others lies about her would not be so outragous

    September 15, 2011 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  5. creole

    Don't feel so good huh Sarah when the mud is thrown back at you Ms. Teabag first lady.

    September 15, 2011 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  6. Paul Willson

    I am no fan of Ms.Palin BUT this book sounds like pure garbage. The allegations do not match the person we have seen over the last few years . This is charecter assination on a large scale . I hope she & her husband sue this "author" for all he is worth.

    September 15, 2011 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  7. Rogue351

    Well it is about time people started reporting about the real Palin. Sarah loves to criticize other about everything and anything it is good she is getting some of her own medicine. And those of you who confuse patriotism with greed you need a wake up call. Be assured Palin is 85% greed and maybe 15% patriot. As with nearly everyone in the media and political scene today. Palin is only posing as a real middle class American person. Don't think for a second that Palin knows how never having enough money feels. Not for a single second.

    September 15, 2011 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  8. Tea Party

    Palin is what she is,white trash!! Never knew white trash could make it that far up North! remember most rumors have a little bit of truth. I'm guessing Sarah did coke and slept with her husbands partner!!

    September 15, 2011 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  9. JimmyFlim

    Snorting cocaine off an oil drum while snowmobiling. Had I known this about her in 2008, and had I known Obama would be such a dud, I may have actually voted McCain!

    Just kidding. She could have snorted half of Columbia, I still would never have voted for her or the grandstanding goat.

    September 15, 2011 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  10. Ralph

    Those that are inclined to believe this will and those that aren't won't. I am offended that her face is still in the public eye. She is delaying her announcement of running for President so she doesn't need to be accountable to the people that oversee election campaigns. If she is going to run, announce and run from a level playing field. Don't try to cheat the process to do what you want and avoid the regulations... or continue what you are doing and when it comes time to vote, realize there are some of us that will not elect a president that cheats.

    September 15, 2011 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  11. loxsley

    If the NY Times doesn't like it, I'm gonna read it for sure.

    September 15, 2011 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  12. alaskan

    Todd the Fraud.

    September 15, 2011 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  13. Byrd

    OK, who out there either gave Todd a dictionary or taught him how to spell innuendo? You were warned not to feed the wildlife.

    September 15, 2011 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  14. sammieb51

    So look who's calling the kettle black - the man who goes for all the extras his masseuse can give! GMAB.

    September 15, 2011 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  15. Pat in il

    There is even so much more that can be said about the palin's double standards. For instance, their first born was definitely one of those "early" babies. Nobody really cares about things like that, but they do care about lies and double standards. Nobody listens to Todd anyway because he's just a lazy user and loser.

    September 15, 2011 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  16. rick jolie

    of course it's all a lie. the palins would never do anything like that. and if they had done anything immoral, which of course they haven't, they would admit to it. just like they would never say anything bad or untruthful about other people. unless thy deserve it.

    September 15, 2011 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  17. Mick

    wow, sad sarah accusing some of else of innuendos and lies, gee that is all that you do against Obama you stupid twit
    please run so I can have a good laugh – maybe she will win as the repugnicants have pathetic leadership.....

    September 15, 2011 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  18. peckbag

    Sarah Palin is "full of disgusting lies, innuendo and smears."

    September 15, 2011 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  19. George

    Another loser lib looking for attention.

    September 15, 2011 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  20. Citizen

    That's an awful lot of hate from the left. I dislike Palin, but I have never seen anyone pursued as Palin is.

    September 15, 2011 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  21. Me

    Interviewer: Ms. Palin, did you read this man's book about you and your family?

    Sarah Palin: I have read ALL of the books!

    September 15, 2011 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  22. Norm

    Awwww...poor Todd.
    It's tough when you get a rude awakening like this.
    I predict a good old family values divorce for these two in the near future.
    People with skeletons in their closet should be smart enough to stay out of the bright white lime light.
    Tricky Rick PArry is finding that out too.

    September 15, 2011 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  23. Wes B.

    This is all pretty stupid. But McGinniss is correct when he says "She overreacts." Her response is exactly what he's talking about!

    A silly salacious book like this doesn't even deserve to be recognized by Palin. Yet, she and Todd are releasing statements and getting all upset by it. Do you see Barack Obama or Hillary or John McCain or Barney Frank or Mitt Romney or anyone else releasing press releases anytime someone accuses them of something? Of course not. The point is, if she's going to be a high-level public servant, she needs to stay above the fray–not lower herself into the pit. But she can't do this. Time and again, she refuses to let things go.

    (Actually, usually the only people that DO address outlandish salacious accusations are those like Anthony Wiener, Sen. Craig, John Edwards, Eliot Spitzer, and alllll the other politicians that were actually found to be GUILTY.)

    She still acts very much like a high school drama queen. She loves the attention when people say nice things...but can't take the bad things. And when you're running for the highest office, there will be lots of bad lies told. And you have to stay above it. She does not do this. At all!

    September 15, 2011 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  24. Ron In CA.

    This guy is a trash purveyor like kitty Kelly "the poison Pen Author ". These low life people write unauthorized biographies about celebrities full of unflattering information and innuendo. Don't buy their book.

    September 15, 2011 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  25. Bruce Wayne

    And yet the author clearly has a long list of accolades. I believe I'm more apt to believe someone who's done their homework than the prom queen.

    September 15, 2011 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
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