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Sarah Palin Goes Rogue On The Facts

by @ 9:00 am on November 14, 2009. Filed under 2008 Election, Books, Credit Crisis, Economics, Elections, Politicos & Pundits, Sarah Palin

It hasn’t even been officially released yet, and it’s already clear that Sarah Palin’s Going Rogue is playing fast and loose with the truth:

WASHINGTON (AP) — Sarah Palin’s new book reprises familiar claims from the 2008 presidential campaign that haven’t become any truer over time.

Ignoring substantial parts of her record if not the facts, she depicts herself as a frugal traveler on the taxpayer’s dime, a reformer without ties to powerful interests and a politician roguishly indifferent to high ambition.

Some expamples:

PALIN: Boasts that she ran her campaign for governor on small donations, mostly from first-time givers, and turned back large checks from big donors if her campaign perceived a conflict of interest.

THE FACTS: Of the roughly $1.3 million she raised for her primary and general election campaigns for governor, more than half came from people and political action committees giving at least $500, according to an AP analysis of her campaign finance reports. The maximum that individual donors could give was $1,000; $2,000 for a PAC.

Of the rest, about $76,000 came from Republican Party committees.

She accepted $1,000 each from a state senator and his wife in the weeks after the two Republican lawmakers’ offices were raided by the FBI as part of an investigation into a powerful Alaska oilfield services company.

I guess it depends on what your definition of a small donation is.

PALIN: Rails against taxpayer-financed bailouts, which she attributes to Obama. She recounts telling daughter Bristol that to succeed in business, ”you’ll have to be brave enough to fail.”

THE FACTS: Palin is blurring the lines between Obama’s stimulus plan — a $787 billion package of tax cuts, state aid, social programs and government contracts — and the federal bailout that Republican presidential candidate John McCain voted for and President George W. Bush signed.

Palin’s views on bailouts appeared to evolve as McCain’s vice presidential running mate. In September 2008, she said ”taxpayers cannot be looked to as the bailout, as the solution, to the problems on Wall Street.” A week later, she said ”ultimately what the bailout does is help those who are concerned about the health care reform that is needed to help shore up our economy.”

During the vice presidential debate in October, Palin praised McCain for being ”instrumental in bringing folks together” to pass the $700 billion bailout. After that, she said ”it is a time of crisis and government did have to step in.”

Yep, she did endorse TARP, although I will grant her the credit of saying that her response on the issue was incoherent to say the best so maybe she really didn’t mean it.

PALIN: Says Ronald Reagan faced an even worse recession than the one that appears to be ending now, and ”showed us how to get out of one. If you want real job growth, cut capital gains taxes and slay the death tax once and for all.”

THE FACTS: The estate tax, which some call the death tax, was not repealed under Reagan and capital gains taxes are lower now than when Reagan was president.

Economists overwhelmingly say the current recession is far worse. The recession Reagan faced lasted for 16 months; this one is in its 23rd month. The recession of the early 1980s did not have a financial meltdown. Unemployment peaked at 10.8 percent, worse than the October 2009 high of 10.2 percent, but the jobless rate is still expected to climb.

What, you expect Sarah to read a history book.

PALIN: Describing her resistance to federal stimulus money, Palin describes Alaska as a practical, libertarian haven of independent Americans who don’t want ”help” from government busybodies.

THE FACTS: Alaska is also one of the states most dependent on federal subsidies, receiving much more assistance from Washington than it pays in federal taxes. A study for the nonpartisan Tax Foundation found that in 2005, the state received $1.84 for every dollar it sent to Washington.

Of course, it’s worth remembering that we’re talking about the woman who was for the Bridge To Nowhere before she was against it.

Wow, and the book hasn’t even been released yet.

2 Responses to “Sarah Palin Goes Rogue On The Facts”

  1. Jamie Holts says:

    I just stopped by your blog and thought I would say hello. I like your site design. Looking forward to reading more down the road.

  2. Palin may actually have a point on the Reagan-era recession. That was a double dip recession: 1980; and 1981-1982. More importantly during Reagan’s time it happened six months INTO his term (the second, more severe dip). Obama’s started 13 months BEFORE he started office and looking back it may be that it was starting to turn around by January 2009. So there is a stronger argument that Reagan did more “to get us out” of the 1981-82 recession than Obama did to get us out of the current one. Also the statement that we are in the 23rd month of the recession may not be true. NBER will likely say we came out of recession some time this summer, although the announcement will not be until early to mid 2010. Finally, there were elements of a financial meltdown: Continental Illinois failed and that was a pretty scary event; literally thousands of banks failed as opposed to hundreds this time around; Fannie Mae and the Farm Credit System also went insolvent and needed bailouts/forbearance; and there were a number of severe regional banking crises, most importantly Texas where the system essentially collapsed; and finally the FDIC Fund went bust although this spilled over into Bush 41’s time.

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