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Palin: McDonnell Personally Asked for Help

Anita Kumar

Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell repeatedly and personally asked former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin for help this summer in his campaign for Virginia governor, a Palin spokeswoman said.

But by late August, Palin learned that the McDonnell campaign no longer wanted her assistance, Palin adviser Meg Stapleton said in an interview tonight.

Earlier this week, McDonnell reacted with a bit of sarcasm when asked whether Palin would be campaigning with him. "There was a time earlier on when she was governor when I thought she would come here,'' he said. "But I think she seems to be busy with books and other things like that. We've still got about 20 different events scheduled down the road and she's not one of them."

But Stapleton says Palin is not too busy to come. She says that her boss offered to help McDonnell numerous times both in conversations with him and his campaign and through the Republican Governors Association.

"The Governor, SarahPAC, and I have all communicated to the candidate, the campaign and to the RGA the Governor's continued willingness to assist in any way possible - even as recently as two weeks ago,'' Stapleton said.

Palin drew enormous, enthusiastic crowds in Virginia while campaigning as Sen. John McCain's runningmate during the presidential election last year. But she is a polarizing figure that could turn off independent voters. In the summer, she drew criticism for abruptly resigning as governor and later insisting that the healthcare bill being considered by Congress would cause the creation of "death panels."

McDonnell decision to back away from Palin is typical of his attempt to moderate himself. In his comments this week, he tried to communicate that he did not want to be seen with Palin without saying that it was his decision.

In recent months, he has welcomed a succession of other national GOP figures to Virginia including Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty and former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney.

McDonnell spokesman Tucker Martin declined to comment except to say: "We do not anticipate Governor Palin campaigning in Virginia at this point. She has donated to our campaign, and we appreciate her support of Bob McDonnell, and her historic run as the Republican nominee for vice president."

McDonnell and Palin first spoke about her helping him at the RGA's annual meeting in Miami in December 2008, and Stapleton said their staffs spoke several times again before the general election began in June.

"Prior to June 2009, there were numerous conversations and requests for assistance,'' Stapleton said. "We said, 'of course!' "

In June, Palin and McDonnell spoke at the the House-Senate GOP fundraising dinner in Washington. McDonnell appeared at Palin's table to ask for assistance and she agreed, Stapleton said. McDonnell also spoke to Stapleton, handing her his business card and again asking for assistance, she said. She reiterated her promises to help McDonnell and asked his campaign to contact her, she said.

In August, Palin's staff was notified by a Northern Virginia Republican operative that McDonnell no longer wanted help, Stapleton said.

Later that month, a staffer from Palin's PAC personally handed a $2,500 check to McDonnell at a Virginia fundraiser, Stapleton said. She said Palin also planned to donate the expense of her travel from Alaska to Virginia for a future campaign event.

Last month, Stapleton said she contacted the RGA to reiterate Palin's commitment to help McDonnell.

"Make no mistake, the Governor will move mountains if the campaign wishes," Stapleton said.

By Anita Kumar  |  October 9, 2009; 8:51 PM ET
Categories:  2009 Governor's Race , Anita Kumar , Election 2009 , Robert F. McDonnell , Sarah Palin  
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Next: McDonnell Airs New Ad on Jobs


Kumar has been paid to carry the water for Dirty Deeds, and daggonit that's exactly what she's going to do..Give it up kid, he's not worth it.

Posted by: SMWE357 | October 10, 2009 4:35 AM | Report abuse

Yep. Kumar IS carrying water for the deeply feckless Deeds Campaign, which you will note, is treating Barack Obama as if he is one of the Living Dead.

However, as a broken clock is right twice a day, there IS a grain of truth to this story. The Palin people found out that the McDonnell Campaign hired the all-wise Ed Gillespie as a consultant, who aside from hating Palin and being a Mittens Man, is one of the Clown Shoes People responsible for driving the Republican Party over the cliff in 2006 and 2008. None of this should surprise grassroots Conservatives, who have watched the GOP become a parody of what it was under Reagan.

Now, when McDonnell needs to close the deal, he listens to the advice of someone who tells him to anger his base. It's not that McDonnell needs to bring Palin in. Nope, but what happens if in the next couple of weeks Deeds gets a second wind and starts closing the gap in NoVa and Richmond? Suppose his polling starts to tighten up over the next two weeks as the Dems start coming home and Indies start splitting?

Who are you going to use to get your base out, McDonnell? Romney?

Posted by: section9 | October 10, 2009 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Who need or wants a quitter to speak for them? and palin is not a governor Meg she is an ex governor who quit her job cause she couldn't hack it.JMO The people of Virginia better think twice about voting for McDonnell.Who need to rile up anyone's base to cause civil unrest?Just because palin was allowed to do that before does not make it ethical or right.When you need to cause civil unrest to win you are in deep trouble and a very unethical person just like palin IMO

Posted by: bennie1 | October 10, 2009 5:23 PM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin and the H1N1 virus have a lot in common. No one wants them.

Posted by: MOinkslinger | October 10, 2009 6:16 PM | Report abuse

This McDonnell is an ass, for sure.

Just a stupid move, as Palin draws bigger crowds than Obama (and sells more books!)

Palin is THE conservative in the Republican party, and THE best voice.

Palin was able to stop Obama's unconstitutional ObamaCare dead in it's tracks, and her scorching commentary on Obama's inept handling of the economy, and his lack of a coherent energy policy has received worldwide POSITIVE attention!

These stupid Republicans continue to try and be "moderate" and they will keep on losing.

When Republicans run as moderates they lose. When real Republicans run, CONSERVATIVE Republicans, they win landslide elections. And I mean real landslides, not like the one Obama claims to have won.

Palin is only the most influential politician in America, McDonnell is an idiot for hiring a loser like Ed Gillespie to "help" him.

I look at it like this. If McDonnell treats his "friends" like this, how will he treat the Virginia voters?

Posted by: gary4205 | October 10, 2009 7:16 PM | Report abuse

Palin is reminiscent of arsenic poison - no one wants her around because she could spread her poison simply by opening her mouth and a political death or irreparable stupidity of all will absolutely occur.

I'd like to know why SMWE357 above says, "Dirty" Deeds - do you have proof that Deeds has done something illegal, immoral or what is your reason for this nomenclature?

Posted by: MadasHelinVA | October 10, 2009 7:31 PM | Report abuse

Palin never drew a crowd bigger than President Obama, why has she been hiding behind facebook instead of going on a talk show like meet the press or something where she has to answer questions. We all know she didn't write facebook, she can't string 3 words togather.

Posted by: mmboucher | October 10, 2009 8:05 PM | Report abuse

The media is getting desperate. The only strategy now is to split McDonnell from his base. That won't happen. The revolution is too important to let that happen.

Posted by: ReaganTMan1 | October 10, 2009 10:17 PM | Report abuse

I wish Palin had come to Virginia campaigning for McDonnell. Because then Deeds would win.

Posted by: hitpoints | October 10, 2009 11:35 PM | Report abuse

I read a few comments back, that Sarah Palin drew bigger crowds than President Obama.

All I can say is, are you ready?



Posted by: Truthandlight | October 11, 2009 11:19 AM | Report abuse

I am a democrat, however, I am undecided for this election. If Palin comes to campaign for McDonnell, that will help me decide - in favor of Deeds.

Posted by: Postreader111 | October 11, 2009 11:29 AM | Report abuse

So Palin is too divisive for McDonnell?

She would only reaffirm his antiquated, biased thinking?

Posted by: SueMVetforObama | October 11, 2009 11:29 AM | Report abuse

Let us return to the days of yesteryear, To Nov4th 2008, to 365 electoral votes, 11p.m. Election over, no recounts, no missing ballot boxes, no Brady effect. no court challenges. McCain/Palin lost.
If it looks like a landslide, sounds like a landslide and smells like a landslide. Well you put the puzzle together and tell me what you find.

Posted by: Truthandlight | October 11, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

I do not believe that Ms. Palin still warrants the title "Governor". She pointedly said she did not need the title. She quit without good cause and for personal gain.

I would like to see WashPo and other media outlets question the use of that title and let Palin or Stapleton explain the contradiction of her still using it.

Posted by: ksmom | October 11, 2009 11:38 AM | Report abuse

Why is Palin still called GOVERNOR???
She WAS the governor of Guam, but she QUIT! How insulting to others that still hold their posts and do their jobs.

Also, news flash, I don't care, but I'm just saying...Palin does NOT draw a bigger crowd then the current President of the United States....not by a long shot. You Palin pervs, LIKE Palin herself, just MAKE STUFF up, like ALL THE TIME. You make it up and it it becomes Palin FUN FACTS, not actual facts.

Posted by: deosil1 | October 11, 2009 11:47 AM | Report abuse

First -- wouldn't it be nice if McDonnell would EVER tell the truth?

Did you or did you not accept Palin's offer to campaign and her PAC money and then blow Palin off, Bob? Did you or didn't you?

Second, if McDonnell was so disrespectful to Palin -- what does that say about his "commitment" to women and to the "Conservative Cause?"

It says what Creigh Deeds has been saying all along:

Bob McDonnell, who does not respect women, will say or do anything to become Governor.

Or -- is Sarah Palin is liar?

Take your pick, Virginia Republicans.

Posted by: rebeccajm | October 11, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse

McDonnell is not a friend to women. He has antiquated views on the role of women in our society. Voting for him would set women back 200 years.

Posted by: CRmaison | October 11, 2009 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Reality:Sarah Palin's Popularity is within the Rural Extreme Right, who call themselves Conservatives, though they are Poor and Uneducated, Hardly People of Great Intellect More over Fiscally Conservative.

I wonder what William F.Buckley would've Thought of Palin and her Fawning Extreme Rurals....


Sarah Palin is a Hollow, Floating, Bubble.

It Amazes Me, How she continues to Lambasted Herself and at the same time, the Media and Public, gives her such Attention !!


Posted by: omaarsblade | October 11, 2009 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Reality:Sarah Palin's Popularity is within the Rural Extreme Right, who call themselves Conservatives, though they are Poor and Uneducated, Hardly People of Great Intellect More over Fiscally Conservative.

I wonder what William F.Buckley would've Thought of Palin and her Fawning Extreme Rurals....


Sarah Palin is a Hollow, Floating, Bubble.

It Amazes Me, How she continues to Lambaste Herself and at the same time, the Media and Public, gives her such Attention !!


Posted by: omaarsblade | October 11, 2009 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Gee all this fuss on who should come or not come to campaign for a Republican candidate. What does it matter, I mean after all, what is a great and charismatic speaker worth. Great speeches are so not worth it, not necessary or desireable tool. What can be gained from having the ability to move people with a speech. Remember that folks, next time you hear a comment on how President Obama is "put down" because of his ability to give a "GREAT" speech. Wonder if they said that about Lincoln.
What really ticks the Republicans off is not only that Obama is one the great speakers of all time, he also has the intelligence, heart and ability to write many, many of his own speeches. He can then defend his positions with intellectual thought when asked questions. He also writes his own books. Republicans thought they had something of a great speaker in Sarah, but alas, she has neither the intellect or the ability to do anything but read what she's told to read and no ability to intellectually back up her words.

Posted by: mancoff | October 11, 2009 1:41 PM | Report abuse

A few factual errors in the comments: Someone stated that Palin draws bigger crouds than Obama, but the numbers show that Obama consistently drew crowds much bigger than Palin, in fact Obama drew the biggest audiences in Presidential campaign history. Someone suggested tha Palin is the most influential politician in America, well first of all Palin is no longer really a politician. After quitting her job half way through a single term as governor of one of the smallest and the most rural state in the Union, she can no longer really be considered a politician. Palin is now in the waning stages of celebrity. Secondly, the only way in which Palin is relevant at all is to the extent that 1. some extremely right wing religious nut still listen to her 2. the media giver her attention as a celebrity so the rest of us sometime hear the nonsense her writers write for her.

McDonnell doesn't want Palin around because she is a flake who never had any business pretending to be a politician. We live in an age where if media access is carefully controlled then virtually anyone can appear to be qualified (for whatever). Palin only looks good if you listen to her reading speaches eing written by other people. Every time she had an interview in which she had to come up with her own material it was painfully obvious that she was in way way over her head. She would probably be fun to have a beer with, but as the person making important decisions... well that is simply rediculous.

Posted by: bjuhasz | October 11, 2009 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Like two sticks, floating in the currents, missing each other in the dark of night. Typical Republican buffoonery.

Posted by: mikie44 | October 11, 2009 2:24 PM | Report abuse

Good grief, the woman is not a GD governor and for Stapleton to keep referring to her that way is ridiculous. She quit, Sarah Palin is has no official employment status so Stapleton really needs to shut her trap already.

Posted by: OceanDog | October 11, 2009 2:37 PM | Report abuse

From reading what McDonnell wrote in his thesis, I'd say he probably thinks Palin is too moderate to represent his views to Virginia voters.

Posted by: DonJM | October 11, 2009 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone actually believe anything claimed by the dynamic duo of dissembling(Palin&Stapleton)?

Remember those thousand + speaking offers?


Posted by: Siobhan80 | October 11, 2009 3:12 PM | Report abuse

Whocan really want to have a Stupid Clown anywhere close to campaign?
No matter coservative or Moderate - we all are himan to start with. Can any Normal Human propose any sense in stupid woman , who has no brains and breaks, saying whaever , but mostly lying.

People, howcan you seriously talk about her at all?

Posted by: lordmi | October 11, 2009 3:18 PM | Report abuse

I must be psychic. I saw her speaking career belly flop before it was even announced. Alls I can say is it's about time these people got the memo.

Posted by: xango_xango | October 11, 2009 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Can't get enough of all this internal Republican bickering and backbiting.

It is quite clear that the right-wing McDonnell, who is attempting to show he is somehow not the same guy who authored the thesis espousing outmoded 19th-century ideals nearly twenty years ago, is nervous about bringing a highly visible far-right presence like Palin in to campaign now that he is clearly ahead in the Virginia Gubernatorial polling.

While a Palin event with McDonnell would clearly energize and motivate turnout from the Republican's right-wing base, it probably would delegitimize his candidacy among many self-styled Independent voters. There seem to be many on the right who have failed to understand and accept that Palin's selection by McCain was a primary contributor to McCain's loss. It was not as large a factor as the economic collapse, or the general direction in favor of change after the failed Bush Presidency, or maybe even Obama's steady performance in the aftermath of the economic collapse and in the debates. But it was a factor, just as Colin Powell's endorsement was a factor. The Powell endorsement gave Independents another reason to vote for Obama just as Palin's performance in interviews and on the campaign trail gave them a reason to oppose McCain.

Probably a smart move by McDonnell to avoid association with Palin since he has a lead, including a very wide lead among Independents, currently. If he were trailing and needed to ignite his base, then perhaps he would welcome Palin. But since he is getting widespread Independent support, there is more potential downside to appearing with Palin than there is upside.

Posted by: OHIOCITIZEN | October 11, 2009 3:51 PM | Report abuse

For sure the only reason Mccain did not get so many votes is because of Sarah Palin. I find it horrible that a lady who had to go to 6 colleges, to finally finish one to be a commontary for the news, an than quits that job, an becomes a Governor an quits again------------was even chosen for a V.P, a big joke indeed. It took a little while to get past the Hocky mom, an good looking rear end she has an pretty face, before we came to our sense's! She made a disaster of the International speech in china, as she spoke in the states as seeing putin raise his head above Alaska, an couldn't name what magazines she read to Yeh,Yeh,ya betcha,wink,wink, an by the way I have a pregant daught who's a teen,an I believe in abstanance! The day of Palin has passed, so let it go quietly into the night, while a few fans an curiouse on lookers hang on to her skirts an look at her pretty legs. Wink, Wink,ya betcha McDonnell don't want that pretty little gal with feathers in her brain near his campagne.

Posted by: abbytreadway2 | October 11, 2009 3:59 PM | Report abuse

Why is the bogus Alaska Fund Trust still collecting money for 'the governor Sarah Palin'???

Ms Stapletongue -- would you kindly answer that question??

Posted by: EatWildFish1 | October 11, 2009 4:14 PM | Report abuse

From what I have been reading, many politicians have shied away from being connected with Palin. Her invitations for
speaking are not the "popular" figure she
was planning on.
When you have someone who bases their whole campaign on hate, anger, division of our country, spouting one lie after another, the intelligent politicians are wise to not include her.

Posted by: kathlenec | October 11, 2009 5:05 PM | Report abuse

I am so disappointed that Palin will not be joining McDonnell in Virginia.

Think of the photo-ops that will be missed- Palin and McDonnell on the Chesapeake Bay 'drill baby drill!' 'roads goin' to he11!'

Hosted by Rep. Virginia Foxx(R) a live shot of McDonnell, Palin, and Foxx shooting black bears from a Blackwater helicopter hovering over the Great Dismal Swamp, short statement take no questions message.
'Kill Bears, Not Grandmas'

Regent University law students, McDonnell and Palin and Robertson, presenting a thesis on why abortion should be denied to those 15 yr olds who are victims of rape or incest on CBN at 7 p.m. local
Christian Testimony 'When Daddies Can Be Uncles'

McDonnel sure seems to dump his friends and his beliefs at a moment's notice when the wind changes.

Posted by: Gracefulboomer | October 11, 2009 5:51 PM | Report abuse

McDonnell is another George W. Bush. People want a second helping of this kind of lying governorship? And as for Palin, she has never promoted anyone but herself. Two peas in a pod (I gues you could call the both of them "I"-POD).

Posted by: ronhamp | October 11, 2009 7:44 PM | Report abuse

The Alaska legal fund Palin had set up dissapeared over the weekend, what's up with that? Is the IRS, FBI or someone finally investigating?

Posted by: mmboucher | October 11, 2009 10:36 PM | Report abuse

When he asked, Sarah Palin was still a governor, not a famous-for-being-famous 'personality'.

Posted by: s1m0n | October 12, 2009 1:09 AM | Report abuse

Halloween is coming and McDonnell's afraid that an appearance by Palin will help strip off his "moderate" mask.

Posted by: BrooklynDemocrat | October 12, 2009 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Palin is fast becoming as popular as syphilis.

Posted by: Gatsby10 | October 13, 2009 5:51 AM | Report abuse

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