The Palin Files

The Palin Files

Alaska has released thousands of emails sent and received by Gov. Sarah Palin during her first 21 months in office. Some are mundain; others provide insight into the Tea Party favorite.

Published June 11, 2011

The state of Alaska on Friday released more than 24,000 pages of emails that Sarah Palin sent and received during her first 21 months as governor. They were released in response to Freedom of Information requests made by media outlets when then-presidential nominee Sen. John McCain (R-Arizona) plucked Palin from obscurity and planted her in the center of the national limelight.

News organizations paid $775 for six cartons of documents containing printouts of Palin’s correspondence, which they have uploaded online for public consumption. Some outlets have called on readers to help examine the emails and offer their views. Many of the emails are mundane, routine correspondence between Palin and her aides and Tim Crawford, who is the treasurer of her political action committee, SarahPAC, said they “detail a governor hard at work.” (Note: All emails are exactly how Palin wrote them—including spelling and grammatical errors.)

In an August 4, 2008, Palin gave a shout-out to then Sen. Barack Obama, who gave a speech on a proposed natural gas pipeline from Alaska to the lower 48 states.

“He gave a great speech this morn in Michigan—mentioned Alaska," she wrote in message to some of her aides and energy advisor Joe Balash. “Stole out Energy Rebate $1000 check idea, stole our TC-Alaska gasline talking points, etc. So.... we need to take advantage of this a write a statement saying he’s right on. (Glad he’s flipflopping on OCS, too.) Joe—could you help crank this quick statement out as our ‘reaction’ to some of Obama’s good points this morning?”

Later, she followed up with: “He did say ‘yay’ to our gasline. Pretty cool. Wrong candidate.”


In another email that month, she discussed a meeting with then-President George W. Bush, with whom she joked about a potential vice-presidential nomination.

“The Pres [George Bush] and I spoke about military. He also spoke about (and we joked about) VP buzz,” she wrote.

Remember that gotcha interview with CBS News anchor Katie Couric, when Palin struggled to name which news publications she reads? In a message written in February 2007, Palin admitted she was too busy to keep up with the news.

"Please let me know what everyone's solution is to this as I wade through a few other issues regarding time constraints that I'm under with the budget, personnel issues, etc. i will continue to try to carve out time in the day to more fully scan news clippings and try to catch some of the talk shows via internet, but so far I haven't found even an extra minute to be able to tune in to the shows unless I'm there in SouthCentral while driving in my car,” she wrote.

And in March 2008, Palin sought God’s advice on the budget.

“I've been praying for wisdom also on this- I am so glad to know you join me in this- God will have to show me what to do on the people's budget because I don't yet know the right path... He will show me though,” she wrote.

(Photo: AP Photo/Brian Wallace)

Written by Joyce Jones


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