Chicago Sun-Times
The scoop from Washington

Sarah Palin clothing flap; RNC paid bills from high end stores.


Hat tip to Jeanne Cummings of Politico, with a story today driving some of the political conversation: The Republican National Committee paid some $150,000 for clothes from high end stores for Sarah Palin and her family, according to newly filed campaign disclosures.

Statement by McCain-Palin spokesperson Tracey Schmitt on Politico report about Gov. Palin's clothing:

"With all of important issues facing the country right now, it's remarkable that we're spending time talking about pantsuits and blouses. It was always the intent that the clothing go to a charitable purpose after the campaign."


The response from the campaign is insulting to the American people. Go to the Huffington paper and see the outfits and see the way she dresses in Alaska. Outfits from Dillards would have been appropriate. Dressing her family is outrageous. That red jacket caught my eye, that cost a few gallons of milk, loaves of bread,peanut butter, Manwich, insurance preminum, and gasoline for a family. A jacket like that at Dillards would have been more reasonable for the hockey mom. She is not Cindy McShame. Her clothes cost 4x Joe the Plumber's salary, most househod would take 80 years to spend that on clothes? Are they that crazy? Are they that insensitive? These people go all over the country pretending to know how you feel? You don't need 150,000.00 to express your limited thoughts to the American people. Why didn't they take the 150,000.00 and send her to a tutor so she can learn and not repeat those tired comments. And please teach her what the job duties are of the job she wants. When anyone goes for a job interview, they know the qualifications and what your job duties will be. She's made those same dumb statements 4 times. Children shouldn't be allowwed to listen to her. It should be against the law. It's yet another sad day in the McShame campaign.

Makes you wonder how much the DNC spent on Michelle Obama. The DNC had been pushing the Jackie O look for months.

How much did the other candidates spend on clothing for themselves and family this election? How about some comparables, particularly before this makes news. With Election budgets in the hundreds of millions, let's see if 150K is considerable before writing a fluff piece on it.

which charitable purpose? I'd like to know the specifics. are you sending these niemans pants suits to the goodwill afterwards?

i'd like to knwo why a woman who touts walmart would not show how fashionable american women can be on a shoestring budget. michelle obama did so in a "cheap" (affordable) dress from whitehouse/black market.

as an actual candidate, sarah should either do the sam eor shut up about being a walmart mom.

Everybody who's spent $150,000 in their lifetime on clothes please stand up. Our national political class lives in a different world than those of us down here. But this is in character for the GOP...the vapid Palin, who still isn't bothering to figure out what a VP does since she'll never get there, is playing her childs' game of dress-up just like her Miss Alaska days. The third-grader who asked her the VP question would be more qualified for the job. And more qualified than McCain, for that matter.

RE: remarkable that we're spending time talking about pantsuits and blouses.

Umm, yeah, it is. I mean since McCain brought up John Edwards $400.00 haircut what the hey, it *must* be "fair" game. But I guess we should count our blessings, that's $150K less to spend on the mudslinging, so you go girl... back to Alaska.

It sucks she needs to spend that much to make her look decent.

This is the woman who says she is the one of us....... ? Oh my Goodness please tell me where is the closest Republican post here in Atlanta, I need to pick up my check for clothing from Saks.I know we have given to the party so I must be on the list for buying clothes too for fall !NOT !
I seriously would have flipped out if I had given money I thoughfully sent all requests for money this time back to the party with a note telling them how much I disaproved of their choice for VP.... Boy was I right ... what a example she has set and what a hypocrite she turns out to be !She is a shame.
S Hinton Dallas Ga

earmarks, baby earmarks....

Just Plain Silly! The woman needed some clothes, I won't begrudge the Republicans for dressing up the Barracuda! I mean Governor Palin!

Come on people, an $800 Billion Dollar Bailout versus new clothes? What the hell even AIG executives went on a 400 hundred thousand dollar retreat.

Makes you wonder how much the DNC spent on Michelle Obama. The DNC had been pushing the Jackie O look for months.

Nothing. She buys her own clothes. More to the point, she is careful with her expenditure. She needs to look good on the campaign trail, true, but she buys either off the rack, or previously-unknown designers (e.g. Maria Pinto, from Chicago). The result has been that her clothes are accessible to everyone, and dresses she wears have been flying out of the shops, and Maria Pinto has been able to open a new store. I can't see ordinary people flocking to Saks.

Barack has bought suits designed and manufactured in the US.

The Obamas walk the walk. Palin will happily take whatever she can as if she were entitled. My question is: who approved the expenditures from the RNC? Didn't they realise that clothing is explicitly not covered as a legitimate campaign expense? McCain knew this; it was his own reform!

Oh I have to wait for aproval from Lynn Sweet? Ok then I'm sure my comment wont get aprovedbecause it wasn't in favor of the Obama side. We shall see if you all a Sun are one sided!

The RNC can use their money for whatever they want, but please let's lose the I'm just like you lines. There is someone running that does appear to be like me and that is Obama. I saw the picture taken of Obama with his feet up on a table, and what did I see? His shoes had holes that had been resoled. The article stated that he has had his shoes resoled at least twice. That is probably what most of us would have done.

I think one of the main problems with election year politics is how often these things are taken completely out of context. So far in the last two days I have heard how much money Ms Palin has spent on her clothing and how she has spent tax-payer money to transport her minor children with her to political events. A blogger above commented on how much a "few gallons of milk, loaves of bread,peanut butter, Manwich, insurance preminum, and gasoline" would cost in relation to political spending. I also wonder how much of the basic life commodities could be purchased if Mr. Obama spread a little of the wealth of his record setting million dollar campaign fund. Joe average - which most of us REALLY are- with our simplistic little household budgets cannot even begin to fathom the enormity of budgets such as theirs. It is like playing monopoly. When we hear of budgets in the millions and billions, we have no sense of comparison and perceive these numbers as astronomical. We may feel enraged, however if we look at our national income - and I do not have the statistics in front of me - we are probably talking in the TRILLIONS of dollars. TRILLIONS. So before we complain, lets look at the big picture and we should put ALL American spending up for scrutiny. I often wonder when complaints are raised about the budget for Iraq how much we are spending as a nation on such things as bubble gum and manicures. Again, I do not have the numbers in front of me - but guesstimating that a manicure costs ~$15 and given the fact that there is a nail salon in every strip mall that I pass, in a given year, Americans could easily spend 7 billion on Manicures alone. By the way, I would love to get a good manicure every month, but I choose to spend my money on milk and peanut butter. Now, should we talk about chewing gum, soda-pop, music down loads, text messaging services and other frivolities before we start throwing stones at the candidates? By the way, American soldiers would be getting paid for their service regardless of being in Iraq or the home soil - but no one seems to take this into account when complaining about how much we are spending on the war there. On a different topic - it is a egocentric attitude to think that Sarah Palin is not qualified to be a leader of this country. She has already proven herself as a true leader, but just because most of the American people had never heard of her, doesn't mean she doesn't know what she was doing. Take an analogy from philosophical question of the tree falling in the woods. If Sarah Palin tackles old school politics, gets bills passed to spark the economy and increase revenue for her state - but no one is there to hear about it - did it really happen?

A woman wearing a $3000.00 jacket has NO clue about what an average working mother is facing these days. Her insensitivity and arrogance is trumped only by her inability to answer direct questions with simple, factual and coherent answers.

I haven’t heard Lynn’s commentary before. Is she a fashion columnist or is this just an op-ed? If she is a reporter, could she please dig into some real news like connections to terrorism? Just an example, if she needs more newsworthy topics, I can provide.

Arrogance and hubris is what it takes to ignore the political effect of spending $150,000 on clothing during this economic black hole. It is certainly not a lack of sensitivity, or is it?
Perhaps her Republican base do not see that way.

Arrogance and hubris is what it takes to ignore the political effect of spending $150,000 on clothing during this economic black hole. It is certainly not a lack of sensitivity, or is it?
Perhaps her Republican base do not see that way.

Every person that has had their home foreclosed on will feel much better wearing a $3,000 Valentino jacket in the homeless shelter...chuckle chuckle

...and the cost of Obama's suits and ties? Of course the ties that he is wearing are not what I am worried about. His ties to radical anti- Americans are what concern me.

The closed mind of liberals is appalling. If Obama gains control of this government, you could be the first to pay the price. They don't like your way of life. Their way is the Taliban, central government in control of all you have and you. For example, one can't even ask a question without becoming the target of a smear campaign. The Obama forces will force you into servitude that you cannot imagine. Liberals are deceived above all people. But, because of this deception you'll never know it until it is too late. Above all you may be the most to be pitied. Hope you enjoy wearing berkas!

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on October 22, 2008 7:35 AM.

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