The McCain/Palin campaign autopsy continues today as CBS, feeding off the interest created by the extremely unflattering Vanity Fair Palin profile, releases some previously unforeseen and entertaining e-mails between Sarah Palin and top McCain aides last October. In the first e-mail, Palin demands that something be done to quash talk of her husband’s former membership in the surprisingly mainstream Alaskan Independence Party, which advocates for secession from the United States. Not a good look for a vice-presidential candidate! Even though the final presidential debate was just hours away, she wanted a statement released so the issue would be “put to bed.” McCain’s chief strategist, Steve Schmidt, replied that she should just ignore it, but Palin wasn’t appeased. After adding some of her own allies to the e-mail chain, she falsely asserted that secession wasn’t even part of the AIP’s platform, and claimed that Todd’s enrollment was a mistake. Then, channeling that unfunny SNL segment from around that time, she insists, “I still want it fixed.”
Of course, actually “fixing it” would require a time machine so that Todd Palin could be prevented from ever joining a group that hates America. But, surely to Schmidt’s regret, the McCain campaign didn’t possess a time machine. So instead, he just tore Palin’s argument to pieces:
Secession. It is their entire reason for existence. A cursory examination of the website shows that the party exists for the purpose of seceding from the union. That is the stated goal on the front page of the web site. Our records indicate that todd was a member for seven years. If this is incorrect then we need to understand the discrepancy. The statement you are suggesting be released would be innaccurate. The innaccuracy would bring greater media attention to this matter and be a distraction. According to your staff there have been no media inquiries into this and you received no questions about it during your interviews. If you are asked about it you should smile and say many alaskans who love their country join the party because it speeks to a tradition of political independence. Todd loves his country. We will not put out a statement and inflame this and create a situation where john has to adress this.
You know, we thought that maybe stories of campaign infighting would have become played out by now, eight months after the fact. But they haven’t, at all. We’re just glad that members of the McCain campaign are still bitter enough to keep leaking private conversations to the press. Bless their hearts.
Palin E-mails Show Infighting With Staff [CBS News]