February 24th, 2012
05:55 PM ET
11 years ago

Newly released Palin e-mails show frustration and discussion of her marital status

Washington (CNN) - Thousands of newly released e-mails from former Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin show her frustration with the increasing ethics complaints filed against her and the mounting legal costs her family was personally incurring.

Also there is one tantalizing e-mail from Sept. 26, 2007 - almost a full year before she was tapped for the unsuccessful GOP presidential ticket - with the subject line saying "Marital Problems." Addressing two of her gubernatorial aides, she said "So speaking of ... If we, er, when we get a divorce, does that quell 'conflict of interest' accusations about BP?"

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That is apparently a reference to the oil company her husband, Todd, worked for. The oil company and the state would have a lot of dealings, but what exactly is meant in referring to the conflict of interest is not clear.

There is no further explanation about whether Palin was being serious or whether it was meant as a joke or sarcasm.

In a Twitter post Saturday, Palin poked fun at the media for their treatment of her e-mail, writing: "Good work, media. My '07 'divorce' email was a joke mocking you for making up divorce rumors. Keep up the, er, credibility-building efforts!"

What she is referring to is unclear since the e-mail was written in 2007, a year before she was tapped to be on the Republican ticket and many months before her marital status would be the focus of national stories.

Palin adviser Doug McMarlin said the divorce comment wasn't meant to be taken seriously.

"Governor Palin was clearly speaking tongue-in-cheek in the email," McMarlin said. "This email was during her fifth pregnancy and the Palin marriage remains one of the most solid in any environment. We thank the media for their, er, continuing attention to this particular issue."

Seperately, a Palin friend told CNN: "That divorce mention was a joke. The 'er' should have been the first clue. If you do the math, she was just finding out about her fifth pregnancy so they were quite close and doing well."

The Palins' marital status has been the source of rumors for years since she emerged on the national stage in 2008.

Several Alaskan websites reported in the summer of 2009 – soon after Palin resigned as governor – that a divorce was impending. Representatives for Palin have in the past vehemently denied any talk of divorce.

A Palin associate told People magazine in August 2009: "No truth to any of the rumors...No divorce. No affairs." Palin posted on her Facebook page a note saying she and her husband "remain married (and) committed to each other and their family."

These newly released e-mails also show clearly how frustrated Palin was, in the months leading up to her resignation, with the intense focus on her and the cost of it.

In April 2009, when another ethics complaint was lodged against her, Palin wrote to some aides: "Unflippinbelievable...I'm sending this because you can relate to the bullcrap continuation of the hell these people put the family through."

Ethics charges against Palin included an allegation she fired Alaska's public safety commissioner over his failure to fire a state trooper who was involved in a divorce with Palin's sister, complaints over travel expenses, and whether she used her influence to get a supporter a state government job.

A month earlier, when talking about the numerous Freedom of Information requests made with the state and how to respond to a reporter's query, she wrote they had cost Alaska over $1 million.

And then she said "We've all had to pay for OWN legal defense in this political bloodsport-it's horrendous-why do you think Todd is on the slope today? i am paying to defend in my capacity as GOVERNOR-actions taking in my official position. This is unheard of anywhere else." She went on to say "I can't afford this job."

In the e-mails, she and her aides also talked about the controversy over her being out of the state in the winter and spring of 2009. One aide e-mailed her indicating Palin had spent a total of 94 days out of Alaska. She was told the number dropped to 84 if Palin's travel days were counted as "in-state" since she spent at least part of the day there.

These e-mails are part of a second batch of documents released by the state of Alaska as part of a Freedom of Information request, which included CNN, that originated in fall 2008 after Palin became the vice presidential nominee.

This batch mostly covers the period of October 1, 2008, through July 26, 2009, when Palin left office. The state was supposed to release these last fall, but asked for an extension through this month.

The e-mails were released Wednesday to reporters physically located in the state and discs containing them were mailed to the respective media organizations on the same day. The Anchorage Daily News posted copies on its website, and CNN was able to examine them there.

CNN Political Reporter Peter Hamby contributed to this report.

- You can follow Kevin Bohn on Twitter @KevinBohnCNN

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Specter disputes Santorum account of support

Axelrod on GOP candidates: 'All hat, no cattle'

Filed under: 2008 Election • Sarah Palin
soundoff (332 Responses)
  1. Desijoe

    Seriosly people.... There is a treatment for this thing – the pathological obsession with the Palins. I voted for SP as the VP and would vote for her again. Would pick her over BO any day for the POTUS; twice on Sunday. But even I do not remember her as often as the libs do!

    February 25, 2012 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  2. amf140

    32,000 emails and this is the best the Left could come up with. How about we take a look at the emails of BHO while a State Senator and a US Senator. So if Sarah is truly as "un-newsworthy" as the Left keeps saying, let"s ignore her and take a look at him. Maybe we should vett him half as much this time around as she was vetted in 2008.

    February 25, 2012 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  3. catmom


    not a word on this site about Corzine but plenty of Palin articles, how telling, but i understand what kind of people read this on a regular basis, the lost

    February 25, 2012 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |

    No, because the article is about Sarah Palin. My goodness, why do you people whine when something you don't like is being said about someone you do like? It's the same thing when something negative is pointed out that a Republican did, you people flock to the boards whining about what a Democrat did. Grow up for goodness sakes. By accepting the Vice President nomination she put herself out for public comment and criticism. By using her children as props when she thought it would help her, she opened herself and them up for public comment and criticism. By going on the campaign trail and pandering to certain people with her racist comments, she opened up herself to comment and criticism. Bottom line, Sarah Palin is a public figure who voices her opinion, she and all you whiners need to get over it.

    February 25, 2012 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  4. Gothaze

    If you cant take the heat! Stay out of the kitchen!

    February 25, 2012 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  5. phenoy

    I knew it. Once she went black, she can never go back....

    February 25, 2012 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  6. mystereo

    Palin is really married to a black masta.

    February 25, 2012 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  7. Name I have hope there will be change in November

    Really, this is news.

    February 25, 2012 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  8. Tim

    The press is stirring up rumors of a near-divorce between Sarah Palin and her husband Todd but it looks like the "lamestream" media missed the joke.

    Sarah Palin was joking; the Palin e-mail was actually sent to Sarah Palin's colleague, not her husband.

    February 25, 2012 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  9. krg

    She is totally not likable. The woman has not one redeeming quality....how could any man be married to her?

    February 25, 2012 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  10. P.G

    I think, er, she'd make a great president, errrrr

    February 25, 2012 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  11. alibaba

    if she cant stand the heat-maybe she should go back to banging black college basketball players?!

    February 25, 2012 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  12. alibaba

    if she cant stand the heat-maybe she should go back to banging black college basketball players?!!

    February 25, 2012 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  13. GWB is the single worst national leader in the history of mankind

    if she cant stand the heat-maybe she should go back to banging black college basketball players?!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    February 25, 2012 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  14. GWB is the single worst national leader in the history of mankind

    if she cant stand the heat-maybe she should go back to banging black college basketball players?!

    February 25, 2012 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  15. Stan

    Why is this newsworthy? 1) It is almost FIVE years old (but headline tries to make it relevant as NEWLY RELEASED emails) 2) She is not running for any office for now - there are candidates who are (including Obama!) - let's keep coverage to him and 3) What is newsworthy about someone (5 years ago) joking about divorce? This is CNN desperate to keep up its crusade against SP. If ONLY they would go back over the President's emails and history with the same passion!

    February 25, 2012 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  16. twalk

    SP is a joke and faker. Repub so so obsessed with this quittier shows how delusional they really are.

    February 25, 2012 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  17. Lenny Pincus

    My sense is that Palinites are much more interested in her than normal people.

    February 25, 2012 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  18. ja

    well the line states once you go black it is hard to go back

    February 25, 2012 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  19. Dave, CA

    Amf140- SP wasn't vetted in 08- that's the problem ROFL! I love how you think this was "the best" "the left" could come up with as if anyone is seriously concerned about her-or ever was. She's a trainwreck. Train wrecks get attention, but that doesn't mean they're qualified for leadership.

    But I'm wasting time arguing over a supporter of such a m o r o n. So in the words of Sarah Palin your brainless idol, "I quit."

    February 25, 2012 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  20. Ken

    Wow. Who let Sarah Palin have 5 children.

    February 25, 2012 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  21. bdl1978

    wait......does this mean conservatives are not as perfect and wholesome as they pretend to be? the truth is everyone has skeletons in their closets and everyone has a dark side, so for conservatives to act like their poop doesn't stink and pretend to be good ol fashion american values blah blah blah what a joke. the divorce rate is over 60 percent and your local church is a breeding ground for intolerance and hatred. I trust a "conservative" politician as far as I can throw him or her.

    February 25, 2012 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  22. kateslate

    Wonder what bimbo the eventual R nominee will pick this time! Hopefully some who can take the heat!

    February 25, 2012 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  23. vivian

    The women is an ignorant ideologue who has no business in politics. That said, who cares about her marital problems? Is this anyone's business? I hate the beotch, but at what point are we peering into someone's personal life? Palin's marital issues are simply nobody's business.

    Just because she is a wench doesn't mean that we have a right to micromanage her personal affairs. CNN should ignore these silly, stupid stories and focus on substance.

    February 25, 2012 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  24. kateslate

    DYWM....her emails are public record due to the fact she was a public official. If you don't want your emails to be public, don't run for public office. Don't you want to know what your public officials are doing, both R and D? I do! Let me at em! I want to know what is going on behind the scenes. At TAXPAYER EXPENSE! I am paying for it! I want it!

    February 25, 2012 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  25. AgrippaMT

    Once again, Sarah provides written evidence that she and her whole family are pure, unadulterated trailer trash. You can take them out of the trailer, but you'll never take the trash out of them.

    February 25, 2012 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
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