Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

Nicolle Wallace Defends Herself in Palin Clothes Flap

Updated 7:53 p.m.
By Juliet Eilperin
Nicolle Wallace -- a former Bush White House official and McCain campaign aide who helped orchestrate the roll out of GOP vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin -- has defended herself in a lengthy interview with The Daily Beast, saying she is the victim of "an organized campaign" to discredit her.

Yesterday Fox News contributor Fred Barnes, who recently interviewed Palin, said that Wallace deserved the blame for the $150,000 the Republican National Campaign spent to outfit Palin and her family. "The person who went and bought the clothes and, as I understand it, put the clothes on her credit card, went to Saks and Neiman Marcus... the staffer who did that has been a coward," Barnes said, identifying Wallace as the aide responsible for the shopping expedition.

In an interview with Ana Marie Cox, Wallace remarked, "this campaign may do me in," and when asked why she was making such a comment, the former White House spokeswoman elaborated: "There's obviously an organized campaign to lay blame for things at my feet and I'm not going to engage before the campaign ends. I have a very long relationship with Fox News, and the notion that someone would call me a coward on the air and accuse me of putting $150,000 on my credit card without a single person calling and checking with me suggests that something is going on."

Wallace devoted much of her remarks to defending Palin as well as herself, describing the high-priced clothing as part of a routine campaign expenditure. "The campaign provided clothes for Sarah Palin and Todd Palin and their five kids to wear at campaign events, and most of it was returned," she said. "And the truth of it -- as Sarah Palin describes -- it's in the belly of her plane and available for ad filming or events. The campaign made no effort to hide it from anyone. It was on our disclosures."

Voters, she argued, should judge the Alaska governor "by her record" rather than her outfits.

"She has a uniform, she wears skirt suits," Wallace said. "She has not changed her appearance. She is in the public eye, it's all for everyone to examine. I don't know exactly why she has brought such strong reaction from the press and from supporters and detractors. But it is completely unfair for her to have to deal with any aspect with the story of the clothes."

For all the recent controversy, Wallace appeared to suggest in the interview that she's not the kind of person to hold a grudge.

"Campaigns bring out the warriors in everybody," she said. "The very nature of debate, the reason it makes good live television, is it's two mother lions defending their cubs. But as soon as the campaign is over, everything changes."

Palin, for her part, adopted a much more casual look tonight when addressing an overflow crowd at Shippensburg University in Shippensburg, Pa. In the time between her main speech and her talk to the overflow room, she took off her magenta suit jacket and replaced it with an oversized Navy-blue T-shirt that said SHIP in large white letters and, below that, HAPPENS, in smaller letters. At the very bottom, in tiny letters, lay the name of the university.

By Web Politics Editor  |  October 28, 2008; 7:23 PM ET
Categories:  Sarah Palin  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Crist Extends Early Voting Hours in Fla.
Next: Ohio Republicans Turn Voting Feud Into an Ad

Comments

I think we will learn after the election that it was Cindy (the Snob) McCain who decided that Palin needed a makeover.

It is obvious to me that Cindy (the Snob) with her high priced wardrobe was certain that Republicans needed a designer dressed and well coiffed VP candidate and Sarah's duds just wouldn't do.

It has been widely reported that Cindy McCain took charge of the campaign after John was counted out in the Primaries and this is certainly not beneath her. I am convinced that come Nov 5, someone in the McCain campaign will throw Cindy under the bus.

Posted by: skeptic10 | October 30, 2008 1:00 PM | Report abuse

I think we will learn after the election that it was Cindy (the Snob) McCain who decided that Palin needed a makeover.

It is obvious to me that Cindy (the Snob) with her high priced wardrobe was certain that the Republican candidate needed to be designer dressed and well coiffed and Sarah's duds just wouldn't do.

It has been widely reported that Cindy McCain took charge of the campaign after John was counted out in the Primaries and this is certainly not beneath her. I am convinced that come Nov 5, someone in the McCain campaign will throw Cindy under the bus.

Posted by: skeptic10 | October 30, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

NW was just doing what any loyal, hardworking flackey does --drink the Kool-aid and follow orders. Once the campaign failed to vet Sarah Palin before they selected her, nothing the McCain camp did after that could have made a difference.

After watching the republican campaign and their "rollout" of Sarah Palin, I can only conclude that Governor Palin is a petty, vindictive, manipulative, divisive, arrogant, intellectually incurious, hypocritical power hungry liar.

Posted by: DCNative69 | October 30, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

NW was just doing what any loyal, hardworking flackey does --drink the Kool-aid and follow orders. Once the campaign failed to vet Sarah Palin before they selected her, nothing the McCain camp did after that could have made a difference.

After watching the republican campaign and their "rollout" of Sarah Palin, I can only conclude that Governor Palin is a petty, vindictive, manipulative, divisive, arrogant, intellectually incurious, hypocritical power hungry liar.

Posted by: DCNative69 | October 30, 2008 12:03 PM | Report abuse

>>Voters, she argued, should judge the Alaska governor "by her record" rather than her outfits.

Then why was a new $150,000 wardrobe even needed??? Are Republicans genetically unable to see the ironic inconsistency of their own words?

82 days till the end of the Bush administration.

Posted by: CardFan | October 30, 2008 11:00 AM | Report abuse

It's fun to watch Republicans implode.

Posted by: unpluggedboodah | October 30, 2008 10:53 AM | Report abuse

I've been watching Nicole Wallace peddle her spin for nearly two months now. Nothing, and I mean nothing, that comes out of this woman's mouth is genuine. She's rightfully being blamed for the poor roll-out of Sarah Palin. We can all agree, Democrat, Republican, and Independent, that Palin's roll out was amateur at best (no access to media, memorizing only soundbite talkingpoints, cramming for the debates, etc.). Should she be thrown under the bus for the $150,000 wardrobe malfunction? Probably not. But she's on the team and she's lied enough for the campaign thus far that she can take a bullet for them when need be. She's loyal to a fault and loyalty isn't always pretty.

Regarding other people's comments about the Obama's campaign not having infighting spill out or squabbles aired every second hour of the day like the McCain campaign. Probably because, Obama can manage a team. Seems like McCain couldn't manage a McDonald's night shift.

Posted by: iluvkmart | October 29, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

You people need to heed Wallace's suggestion and judge Palin by her record - not by her clothing.

Does no one realize the clothing flak came out in the news AROUND THE SAME TIME the report from Palin's investigation was released? Why is Palin's wardrobe still an issue and there is N0 discussion regarding Palin's breach of ethics?

Palin committed many of the same acts in office that she accused her predecessors. And this article from Alaska suggests she's just like Ted Stevens: http://mudflats.wordpress.com/2008/10/11/house-gate/

Posted by: Intervention | October 29, 2008 4:14 PM | Report abuse

You people need to heed Wallace's suggestion and judge Palin by her record - not by her clothing.

Does no one realize the clothing flak came out in the news AROUND THE SAME TIME the report from Palin's investigation was released? Why is Palin's wardrobe still an issue and there is N0 discussion regarding Palin's breach of ethics?

Palin committed many of the same acts in office that she accused her predecessors. And this article from Alaska suggests she's just like Ted Stevens: http://mudflats.wordpress.com/2008/10/11/house-gate/

Posted by: Intervention | October 29, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

"Voters, she argued, should judge the Alaska governor 'by her record' rather than her outfits."

If NW really feels (or felt) that way, why then even spend ANY $$ on clothing for Palin? Just let her wear her consignment-store specials & then publicize that & brag about it to underline the "hockey mom, just like you or me" image.

The reason why was because THEY DIDN'T WANT ANYONE TO JUDGE HER BY HER RECORD. Wallace's back-tracking rationalizations are soooo weak, just like the VP they picked & the thinking they used to choose her.

Posted by: gtluck | October 29, 2008 3:37 PM | Report abuse

You seriously have to wonder how McCain's people and the Rs would govern given their prediliction for munity when things go wrong. You have never heard a peep of this kind of dischord from the Obama campaign, much less the open savagery we have seen this past week. Obviously, it helps that its winning. But maybe its winning form has something to do with team loyalty and good management.

Posted by: wharwood | October 29, 2008 2:23 PM | Report abuse

OMG sorority girl Wallace is a bimbo just like Palin.

Posted by: julian9682 | October 29, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Hi-
The lady likes her clothes. Why did Ms. Wallace not realize that Neiman-Marcus was not likely to provide the right "set dressing" for a "hockey mom?" She screwed up and,like the rest of FOX/White House/McCain/Palin people will not fess up.
It is unfortunate that warm caring people like myself are having "milk- through-the-nose" moments with the stupid human tricks the Palin debacles engender. I thought I was above that. Thank you Ms. Wallace and the Divine Sarah for helping me come to closure with my inner child. Hopefully Pres. Obama will redistribute some wealth my way (like they do in socialist Alaska) so I can get some professional help on this issue (Does anyone know what happened to Stuart Smiley?).

Posted by: doctort | October 29, 2008 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Listen, if I'd have known $150,000 in clothes money could get the Republicans to stand in a circular firing squad and FIRE I'd have started a collection long ago! The reason this story has legs is it goes so to the nub of the "image" painted for Palin. The Maverick hockey mom gets packaged in $150,000 worth of duds? And sorry, I live in LA where clothes aren't cheap but $150,000 is simply out of the norm for 99.99999% of Americans -- more than most people would spend for clothes in their lifetimes; more than most people make in a year. Nobody expects any of these candidates to look like ragmuffins, but she was Governor of a state for Christ's sake -- wasn't ANYTHING worth wearing that she owned? None of the other candidates get their clothes paid for so it's not an issue. But the real story here is that a McCain operative is willing to diss the VP nominee a week before the election and keep this story alive. Utterly unfreakin' believable. When Joe Biden opens his mouth and inserts foot the one thing you DON"T see is some anonymous quote leaked out blaming Joe, or his aides. The poster above who said we can judge alot about these guys by virtue of their campaigns hit the nail on the head. Obama/Biden '08~

Posted by: Omyobama | October 29, 2008 3:35 AM | Report abuse

Why wouldnt the campaign buy clothes for their candidate??Its not like she runs back to Alaska every other day to do laundry, or in one place long enough to air out her shoes.Palin has been on the go more than any other person in the campaign, Dem or Repub, and to think she might need a new pair of britches would be so bad.
Nicolle Wallace is a smart, well seasoned Woman who knows what it takes to get through a campaign.Oh, and did i mention SHES HOT.Maybe its the intelligence level or ability to debate with men and women of stature possibly greater than hers, i dont know. But its prety sad at this point in the campaign people are tossing each other under the bus as if someone besides McCain will be to blame for his loosing campaign.

Posted by: mullett | October 29, 2008 2:28 AM | Report abuse

Perhaps if she had been willing (and capable) to discuss "the important things" earlier on her RNC handlers wouldn't have thought it necessary to outfit and accessorize her like some silly frou-frou Barbie doll and peddle her like some cheap brand of substandard soap. With so much lip service paid to the notion of being authentic and real (and yes, "just like us") AND her calumny-tinged query, "Who is the REAL Barack Obama?" how can she not feel that she brought this upon herself? People DO feel that they rightfully deserve to know who is the REAL Sarah Palin. I don't want Tito in a hardhat or some slick Madison Avenue image-maker to spin a mirage of who will actually be a feeble septuagenarian heartbeat removed from the presidency.
"Just like us?" I don't think so.

Posted by: kmarin | October 29, 2008 12:38 AM | Report abuse

Martin Luther King Jr was a Republican .

Tiger Woods is a Republican .

Denzel Washington is a Republican .

Sam Cooke & Otis Redding were Republicans .
__________________________________________

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=as3Hb6p7pcI
___________________________________________

Nat King Cole spoke at the 1956 RNC
UNFORGETTABLE
___________________________________________

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53ith7bNN8w

Posted by: RaZoR777 | October 28, 2008 10:29 PM | Report abuse

Martin Luther King Jr was a Republican .

Tiger Woods is a Republican .

Denzel Washington is a Republican .

Sam Cooke & Otis Redding were Republicans .
__________________________________________

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=as3Hb6p7pcI
___________________________________________

Nat King Cole spoke at the 1956 RNC
UNFORGETTABLE
___________________________________________

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53ith7bNN8w

Posted by: RaZoR777 | October 28, 2008 10:28 PM | Report abuse

Meanwhile, the money spent on clothes dwarfs all the crazy things BHO has spent money on, like the Acropolis he built, and his trips to HI. I can provide links if anyone wants, but here's something much more important:

http://24ahead.com/blog/archives/008230.html

Yes, you read that right: BHO wants to use pre-teen kids to get votes.

The Soviet Union might still be around if BHO had been their leader.

Posted by: LonewackoDotCom | October 28, 2008 10:24 PM | Report abuse

........... McCAIN * PALIN * 08 ...........
___________________________________________

"R A G - D O L L" Four Seasons , 2nd http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3UZKoUppu-Q
___________________________________________

Gov.Palin we love you just the way you are.
___________________________________________

HULLABALOO 1960s 3:00 min. medley .
Watching Obama's KOOL-AID drinkers choke .
___________________________________________

......... M c C A I N * P A L I N .........
___________________________________________

Posted by: RaZoR777 | October 28, 2008 10:07 PM | Report abuse

How to Drag Out an Embarrassing Scandal
by the Republican Party.

1.) Everyone go to their favorite media source and blame the scandal on someone else in the campaign.
2.) Draw attention to the fact that the offending behavior has been halted and repeatedly complain about the media coverage, so that a new cycle of media coverage begins about the complaints about the media coverage.
3.) Have someone leak a story that points out that everyone involved was supposed to keep quiet but there are a few "rogue" members of campaign that are not following orders.
4.) Repeat on a daily basis.

Posted by: tsawyer_mv | October 28, 2008 10:07 PM | Report abuse

" The choice was to make Sarah Palin look like a scripted robot or an unscripted ignoramus."


--- This message was paid for by the John McCain Camp of the Bush/McCain/Palin campaign committee. ---

Posted by: targaray | October 28, 2008 10:03 PM | Report abuse

am i missing something or is she suggesting that the clothes were purchased, worn, and then returned? ick. i thought the story was that they were going to be "donated". as my old boss would say, these guys could screw up a (non dry) dream. the missed another opportunity to turn this rediculous story positive by announcing they would auction the clothes off on ebay or something and donate the proceeds to charity.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | October 28, 2008 9:55 PM | Report abuse

Defending themselves from Obama's KOOL-AID

drinking VAMPIRES ........................

Nicolle Wallace & Sarah are a team and the

liberals are just Obama's evil VAMPIRES

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E9U4DP8CumA

Posted by: RaZoR777 | October 28, 2008 9:49 PM | Report abuse

Heehee! Reading some of the wacko right wing comments on these boards is a perfect way to demonstrate exactly what is wrong with modern Republicanism.

Want to rise from the ashes of defeat? Here's the program:

1. We will dfend the U. S. A.

2. We will be careful with the taxpayers money and control spending.

3. We will not tell you how to live your life.

4. All Americans are welcome to our tent.

Get rid of the nutjobs, neo-fascists, the purposely ignorant and those waiting the rapture candidates. (They'll vote for you anyway).

Build a center-right fiscally conservative, socially moderate coalition and Americans will respond.

Are there any real Republicans left?

Your nation needs you.

Posted by: toritto | October 28, 2008 9:48 PM | Report abuse

It is hard for me to feel sorry for Nicole Wallace just because her buddies at Faux News jumped all over her. Doesn't she know that dogs turn on each other sometimes? She and Palin are probably fighting for McCain's attention. They know he may be done with Cindy once her face lift falls.

Posted by: quacksgirl21 | October 28, 2008 9:46 PM | Report abuse

SO which is it? Are the clothes in the "belly of the plane" or were they given back. It cannot be both. Seems like there is some "misstating" going on.

Posted by: risdmom | October 28, 2008 9:40 PM | Report abuse

Check out this video of super racist McCain supporters at a rally in PA, one old guy even says people tell him that they will shoot Obama if he is elected:


http://liesliesmorelies.blogspot.com/2008/10/racist-mccain-rally-goers-pt-8.html

Posted by: absolutkt1 | October 28, 2008 9:34 PM | Report abuse

Defending themselves from Obama's KOOL-AID

drinking VAMPIRES ........................

Nicolle Wallace & Sarah are a team and the

liberals are just Obama's evil VAMPIRES

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E9U4DP8CumA

Posted by: RaZoR777 | October 28, 2008 9:30 PM | Report abuse

Quiz Question:

Which is the scariest?

a. Sarah Palin
b. How much Republicans adore her
c. Sarah Palin is actually George Bush in
a skirt and glasses. (you notice that
you never see them in the same room at
the same time)
d. How Republican are attracted to bright and shiny objects.
e. All of the above.

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 28, 2008 9:10 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 28, 2008 9:08 PM | Report abuse

Obama's admission that he's for redistribution of wealth has lead in these past few days instead to a redistribution of votes...down to 2% lead in Gallup traditional, 4% IBD, 5% Rasmusson and Zogby, and falling.

Posted by: thecannula | October 28, 2008 8:51 PM | Report abuse

I think every Republican except for Karl Rove is stupid. I cant even exclude Alan Greenspan anymore. Why, Nicole, Why? You managed to find the ONE woman in America who did NOT need a makeover...I saw the UTube videos of her up in Alaska,at her Governor's desk, at the debate table, and she looked great.

Most of us would need $150,000 just to look like Sarah Palin's BEFORE pictures. I'm not a fan, and I plan to vote as often as possible, with the help of ACORN, for Barack Obama, but I am already sick of the RNC blaming everything on Sarah Palin. Nothing is ever John McCain's fault.

The Republicans could be winning. Try this: ROMNEY/HUCKABEE

Posted by: katalina911 | October 28, 2008 8:46 PM | Report abuse

Spenders and wasters. At least spending can be an investment.

Posted by: janefree0513 | October 28, 2008 8:43 PM | Report abuse


.

.


Voted One Of America's Top 5 Political Blogs for the Election of 2008


.


BOOKMARK IT NOW !!!!



http://www.myspace.com/37thandostreet

.


.

.

.


Voted One Of America's Top 5 Political Blogs for the Election of 2008

.


BOOKMARK IT NOW !!!!



http://www.myspace.com/37thandostreet

.


.

Posted by: 37thandOSt | October 28, 2008 8:41 PM | Report abuse

I am as offended as anyone that Sarah Palin has been inflicted on us. But I must say ... this wardrobe stuff doesn't really bother me ... especially compared with the REAL issue involving Palin .. her absolute lack of qualifications. If the Republicans are going to spend $$$ on set design at her rallies, it might as well include her clothes.

If anything, this story only reinforces that great nickname she has ... Caribou Barbie. McCain picked her off the shelf at the toy store and is now dressing her up.

Posted by: rofo | October 28, 2008 8:26 PM | Report abuse

I can't believe it. Palin and Co. are running roughshod over the very people who try to help them.

Oops! That's right, I almost forgot, they're Republicans. It's in their genes.

I can't wait until the November 5th GOP internecine fingerpointing bloodbath that will follow the GOP train wreck that takes place the day before.

I'll be laughing all the way to the polls a week from today . . . and I'll be watching the election returns on Fox News with relish as their "fair and balanced" anchors squirm with disappointment.

Posted by: reporter1 | October 28, 2008 8:19 PM | Report abuse

RaZoR777 spewed: "Obama's KOOL-AID drinkers are so evil"

Can YOU say "White Supremacist"?

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 28, 2008 8:16 PM | Report abuse

Quiz Question:

Which is the scariest?

a. Sarah Palin
b. How much Republicans adore her
c. Sarah Palin is actually George Bush in
a skirt and glasses. (you notice that
you never see them in the same room at
the same time)
d. All of the above.


Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 28, 2008 8:13 PM | Report abuse

My heart breaks and my eyes tear for poor Nicole Wallace.

I just hope she gets her cubicle at the Heritage Foundation before the others do....she needs to get humpin' on the ol' resume.

Posted by: Jaxxon | October 28, 2008 8:07 PM | Report abuse

My heart breaks and my eyes tear for poor Nicole Wallace.

I just hope she gets her cubicle at the Heritage Foundation before the others do....she needs to get humpin' on the ol' resume.

Posted by: Jaxxon | October 28, 2008 8:07 PM | Report abuse

Palin's defense really boils down to being too naive to understand what is going on and I think that blaming Wallace for this is unfair. Palin had to have enough sense to ask where all these clothes were coming from or to take some responsibility for the construction of her image. Campaign operatives bear a certain responsibility. However, the candidate can not claim to completely under the spell of their advisers.

Posted by: kcollier | October 28, 2008 8:06 PM | Report abuse

dkliman,

an epiphany may be too much to hope for, but a week from tonight they certainly will have to acknowledge that the majority of us (perhaps a stunning majority of us) don't see it their way.

Posted by: HydeParker | October 28, 2008 8:06 PM | Report abuse

I like this...

Wallace - "I have a very long relationship with Fox News"

And they shoot you in the face and you still defend them. THAT'S LOYALTY. All the way to your political grave.

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 28, 2008 8:06 PM | Report abuse

Great article and GO SARAH .

WAAATSUUUUP WIT DA MEDIA ? ___________________________________________

Obama ...... YOU DON'T OWN ME

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7vypwwuQ6YY

Obama's KOOL-AID drinkers are so evil .

Posted by: RaZoR777 | October 28, 2008 8:04 PM | Report abuse

dkliman,

an epiphany may be too much to hope for, but a week from tonight they certainly will have to acknowledge that the majority of us (perhaps a stunning majority of us) don't see it their way.

Posted by: HydeParker | October 28, 2008 8:04 PM | Report abuse

wander*

Posted by: dkliman | October 28, 2008 7:52 PM | Report abuse

If it's the GOP, then there's always going to be a scapegoat--if its not somebody in the current inner circle, or a fall guy, if it is.

How's the bus look like from under there, Ms. Wallace?

Honestly, this debacle, along with cindy mccain's $300,000 outfit for the republican convention should forever end republicans' attempts at calling $200 clinton or $400 edwards haircuts "elite."

We cannot blame the republicans, for they simply don't get it. It's best to just let them go wonder in the wilderness, where maybe they will have an epiphany.

Posted by: dkliman | October 28, 2008 7:50 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company