Palin’s $150,000 wardrobe: She’s a one-woman earmark!

The Obama campaign has generally avoided “turn around is fair play” because they play fair. They’ve objected to personal attacks against Obama but haven’t responded tit for tat.

In this wardrobe case the chickens have come home to roost in the Republican hen house and it is all their own doing. They tried to paint a picture of Sarah Palin as a blue collar every woman, Joe the plumber’s counterpart with breasts instead of a butt crack, a hockey mom shopping for her brood at Walmart. (Public domain photo of a typical Neiman Marcus, click to enlarge)

Instead they painted Palin with $13,000 worth of make-up.

What cheese in his ears bungler thought it was a wise political decision to dress her in a $150,000 wardrobe that screams cognitive dissonance?

If Palin’s coaching team has any sense they’d have her announce she is keeping the cloths and will pay the taxes. Taxes couldn’t be more than about $40,000 and she probably could make that much back selling them as memorabilia to the likes of Pat Buchanan, Rush Limbaugh and George Will on eBay.

In fact, Rudy Guiliani might buy them all for his next cross-dressing party.

See transvestic fetishism.

By the way, I think two stores aren’t being characterized accurately. They enjoy their upscale image, but someone on a limited budget can shop at either store.

I’ve walked through Saks and Neiman’s in Boston’s Copley Plaza mall and there are lots of cloths both on sale and on the regular racks that while not Target-level prices, aren’t outrageous.

My wife tells me that both stores have sky’s the limit designer sections, but you can also shop the sales and not break the bank.

The best quote on wardrobegate that I’ve seen comes from the comments section of Politico, the website that broke the story “RNC shells out $150K for Palin fashion” By Jeanne Cummings comes from someone in the comments section:

My goodness! Palin is a one-woman earmark!!

At least she looks a lot better than she did addressing the loonies from the Alaska Succession Party. Check this out:

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  1. woody188

    I only get new suits when they have the $99 for 2 suit sales. I have no idea how these people live.

    Love that geezer/dingbat sign! Where can I get one?

    This stuff kind of reminds me of flag pins though. It really does not matter in the end.

  2. acf

    Sure, you can find things on sale and competitively priced at Saks and Niemans, but you don’t run up $150,000 in wardrobe costs for about 60 days by buying moderately priced clothes.

  3. Hal Brown

    On the sign, a friend got it from another friend in email. I don’t know if it’s real. The lettering looks photoshopped.

  4. Hal Brown

    Moderately priced, hell, you can’t even run that much up buying the expensive brands full price. They bought her the kinds of clothes movie stars wear to the Oscars and you’d expect a new first lady to wear to an inaugural ball.

    The latest revelation that the highest paid person in the entire campaign for the first two weeks this month was her make-up artist at some $21,000.

    This would all be trivial if she wasn’t such a hypocrite. If Carly Fiorina was running for V.P. and wearing her own expensive clothes what she wears would be relegated to the style sections, but nobody would be making an issue of this.

  5. barak

    Oh come on. Pay taxes on clothes someone gave her? That’s as silly as asking her to pay for her kids when she goes on a fact-finding (read “shopping”) trip. Its just bizness as usual in the oval orifice. Monkey see, monkey do. Bush/Cheney steal, so why not everyone in Washington jump on the bandwagon–Dems included. Nancy P set the example when she tried to get a private jumbo jet to ferry her lazy ass back and forth from CA to DC. After that it was more-open season for everyone! The feed trough was open to all congressmen, executive branch pigs, and judges who took whatever perks they could be invited on…
    Now they have wiped out the surplus, the banking system (benign neglect is NOT oversight!), and the stock market. Why should they care? They have free everything including postage, and a retirement plan to rival that of Nero. Would that it were Julius Caesar’s!
    But politicians are honorable men and women. They just don’t give a care about the American people.

  6. Hal Brown

    Going out on a limb, I’d venture a guess that women are more upset about the wardrobe-make-up-gate than men. This may be reflected in the following:

    The declines in Palin’s ratings have been even more substantial among the very voters Republicans aimed to woo. The percentage of white women viewing her favorably dropped 21 points since early September; among independent women, it fell 24 points.

    More broadly, the intensity of negative feelings about Palin is also notable: Forty percent of voters have “strongly unfavorable” views, more than double the post-convention number. Nearly half of independent women now see her in a very negative light, a nearly threefold increase. from “Perceptions of Palin Grow Increasingly Negative, Poll Says” Washington Post Oct. 25, 2008.

  7. claypigeonbx

    Freedom and Justice for All!

    Guess we know why when Obama made a reference to “Putting lipstick on a pig,” the G.O.P. just naturally assumed that he had to be talking about Palin.

  8. pollchecker

    Turns out, Palin’s wardrobe is not the only thing that is questionable. Check this out!

    AP INVESTIGATION: Palin pipeline terms curbed bids

    Gov. Sarah Palin’s signature accomplishment _ a contract to build a 1,715-mile pipeline to bring natural gas from Alaska to the Lower 48 _ emerged from a flawed bidding process that narrowed the field to a company with ties to her administration, an Associated Press investigation shows.

    Beginning at the Republican National Convention in August, the McCain-Palin ticket has touted the pipeline as an example of how it would help America achieve energy independence.

    One more controversy for Palin, less that two weeks before the election. Of course the Bushies will claim it’s just more of the Liberal Media. But it’s AP for crying out loud, the one news source that has been the nicest to the McCain/Palin ticket.

  9. Hal Brown

    Horrors! You mean this was kind of rigged in advance, sort of like a no-bid contract process? Where have we heard that before?

    Hmmm… did I hear B USH

    Let’s see what the AP discovered:

  10. Despite promises and legal guidance not to talk directly with potential bidders, Palin had meetings or phone calls with nearly every major candidate, including TransCanada.
  11. The leader of Palin’s pipeline team had been a partner at a lobbying firm where she worked on behalf of a TransCanada subsidiary.
  12. A former TransCanada executive served as an outside consultant to Palin’s pipeline team.
  13. Could it be that Palin is as ethics challenged as her predecessor? Dare we think she isn’t the reformer she claims to be?

    “I’m not saying someone’s getting paid off for a sweetheart contract, but it’s very hard to ignore that this is your former partner and your former client standing there before you. Every time it was mentioned to the governor or to the commission, it was like, ‘How could you question such a wonderful person?'” from ,” said Republican Sen. Lyda Green, a Palin critic who in August was among the handful of lawmakers who voted against awarding TransCanada the license. (AP article)

    Halloween horrors from Her Hockey-puck Highness.

  14. Hal Brown

    Maureen Dowd on the Palin makeover:

    “A Makeover With an Ugly Gloss” link here

    …with the economy cratering and the McCain campaign running on an “average Joe” theme, dunderheaded aides, led by the former Bushies Nicolle Wallace and Tracey Schmitt, costumed their Eliza Doolittle for a ball when she should have been dressing for a bailout.

    The Republicans’ attempt to make the case that Barack Obama is hoity-toity and they’re hoi polloi has fallen under the sheer weight of the stunning numbers…

    information I hadn’t known about: $10,000 for Palin’s hair stylist for the first two weeks of October and putting expense of her pre-convention voice coach under Operating Expenditures and Get-Out-The-Vote consulting in the finance report.

    This is starting to read more and more like the script of a movie about the manufacturing of a president, how to mold a hunk of plastic into a candidate.

    If you have some time, read this, an excellent three page profile of McCain. It verifies what we already know about McCain’s temper. What I found interesting is that McCain is the most unlike Bush and Palin in a way that has not come out in the campaign. He is both very well read and intellectually curious. He encourages advisers with opposing views to argue things out so he can hear both sides and make a more informed decision.

    The insanity of this is that he then goes and chooses Palin. Now that he has gotten to know her I can’t imagine him not having buyers remorse, which was evident in his body language in the Brian Williams interviews.

  15. pollchecker

    Personally, I think Cindy McCain is probably more involved in this than John is. After all, it is Cindy who wore the $300,000 dress when she addressed the Republican National Convention.

    And it was Cindy who according to John buys the houses and the cars which is probably why John McCain doesn’t know how many he has.

    And is Cindy McCain who is a rich heiress to the Coors beer fortune so I’m sure she is very familar with stores like Niemans and Saks.

    Yes these stores have sales, but my guess is that only an ELITE number of people shope at these stores. Certainly, Michelle Obama doesn’t. She shops at stores like The Gap where everyday people go to shop.

    There is a good reason why John McCain doesn’t understand economics. He doesn’t understand money. Never has, never will. This was pointed out constantly during the Republican debates. He just doesn’t have a clue which is why he keeps changing when it comes to the subject of the economy.

    It is also why his only way of competing with Obama is to fight dirty because he is not smart enough to compete with the Honors Harvard Grad on the subject of the economy or anything else other than WAR!

    We have had 8 years of a dumbo in the White House and in these difficult times, the last thing we need is another dumbo who doesn’t have a clue about money.

    UPDATE: I thought this was interesting. I wonder if this was purchased with some of the $150,000.00.

    Palin Fashion Includes Scarf That Encourages Voting…For Democrats

  16. Artbuster

    BRAVO, well said.
    John McCain doesn’t understand MUCH in WHERE he’s going, WHY he’s going, WHEN to do it, WHAT to do or WHO he is WORKING FOR……………….period. His “supporters” don’t know much about him or his “policies” either. Scary.

  17. pollchecker

    HuffPo reported the following today:

    Sarah Palin On SNL: Costume Designer Says She Wanted Nicer Clothes

    The “Saturday Night Live” costume designer Wednesday night revealed the struggle he had in dressing Sarah Palin: she wanted to wear nicer clothes than they had picked out for her, reflecting the new image she has carefully constructed on the campaign trail.

    While Palin’s transformation from hockey mom to fashion plate has raised eyebrows, her “SNL” character, played by Tina Fey, has remained firmly in the red jacket. And according to Women’s Wear Daily’s Irin Carmon, “SNL” costume designer Tom Broecker said Wednesday night that dressing Palin for last Saturday’s cameo required a compromise:

    McCain has apparently created a monster.

  18. Hal Brown

    She’s had a taste of honey and now she wants the hive.

    You can dress an airhead like a Fortune Five Hundred CEO, but that doesn’t make her articulate.


    [James DOBSON] In your private conversations with Senator McCain is it your impression that he also strongly supports those views (prolife and anti-gay marriage)? I know that he did not oppose that platform when it was written. Do you think he will implement it?

    [PALIN] I do, from the bottom of my heart. I am such a strong believer that McCain believes in those strong planks and we do have good conversations about some of the details too, about the different planks and what they represent. And I’m very heartened that John McCain, he doesn’t want a vice-president who will check the opinions of me at the door and we talk about some of these. And they are very important. It’s most important though, as you are suggesting that Americans know that John McCain is solidly there on those solid planks in our platform that build the right agenda for America. LINK

    Where’s Henry Higgins when they need him? Eliza Doolittle was never supposed to be that smart anyway, just a truly nice person and certainly not a barracuda, but for selling herself as presidential Palin needs to at least learn to speak like she may have an IQ over 100.

    Without the winks and the pretty face and the Valentino Garavani blouses to distract you, just reading the text, it’s obviously she’s mangling the language worse than Bush.

  19. Hal Brown

    At least she looks a lot better than she did when she addressed the loonies from the Alaska Succession Party.You have to watch this!

  20. almandine

    Yeah, and you can dress Al Greenspan like the King of England…

    but that doesn’t make him any less culpable for the financial mess we’re in.

    Where is the substance in all this crap? Put her in a rucksack for God’s sake. Does it matter?

  21. Timr

    It matters because the RNC used money given to the party by donars-who BTW are not happy- to help elect republicians, not to give Palin $150,000 in clothes and have a traveling make up person-who is BTW the highest paid person in the McCain campaign. It also matters that she also spent $750 for 1 article of clothing for her baby. $750. And leave us not forget the $10,000 spent on her husbands wardrobe or the $7,500 spent on her kids clothing. What this all tells me(and don’t forget everything that she billed to the state of Alaska, like $700 a nite hotel rooms) is that this is just a family of grifters.

  22. Hal Brown

    Timr, I’d add to your statement that donors give money to candidates to help get them elected and expect the money to be spent in ways that will achieve that goal.

    When I give money I expect that it to be spent ethically and effectively. Not all people care. But put that aside.

    To state the opposite, donors definitely don’t want their money used in counter-productive ways.

    Whoever decided that dressing Palin in high fashion designer clothes had a tin ear, was tone deaf (choose your cliche) to how it would come across as a symbolic example of hypocrisy.

    This was a counter-productive expenditure of donated money.

    Some Republicans bring up Obama’s suits as if that excuses the expensive of the Palin wardrobe. If his five off the rack $1,200 suits (paid for I think by himself) are all Obama needs, I doubt there would be a furor if Palin outfitted herself for a similar cost out of her own pocket. I think she could have done so for about $10,000. Instead one of her jackets alone cost $2,500.

    It doesn’t surprise me that they screwed the pooch on this one because the symbols this campaign choose like Bill Ayers, Joe the plumber and Palin the reformer have rung about as true as a bad case of tinnitus.

  23. gazelle1929

    And to top it off she says the clothes weren’t worth that! She’ll fit right in in DC, won’t she? The $500 toilet seat has been replaced by the $150,000 toilette (the act of dressing and preparing yourself.)

  24. Hal Brown

    Gazelle, You mean the flushing $500 toilet in which the
    eau de toilette* is taking their campaign down the drain?

    *it pays to increase your word power department: “French, literally, water for washing and dressing, also called toilet water. Damn are we good

  25. Hal Brown

    You probably haven’t heard of Charles Fried, but his endorsement is a big deal to those who know who he is. Why is this relevant to this column? Read the last sentence.

    This is from Huffington Post. Fried is:

    a professor at Harvard Law School, has long been one of the most important conservative thinkers in the United States. Under President Reagan, he served, with great distinction, as Solicitor General of the United States. Since then, he has been prominently associated with several Republican leaders and candidates, most recently John McCain, for whom he expressed his enthusiastic support in January.

    This week, Fried announced that he has voted for Obama-Biden by absentee ballot. In his letter to Trevor Potter, the General Counsel to the McCain-Palin campaign, he asked that his name be removed from the several campaign-related committees on which he serves. In that letter, he said that chief among the reasons for his decision “is the choice of Sarah Palin at a time of deep national crisis.” LINK

  26. Hal Brown

    Nothing wrong with being a geezer as long as your have the wisdom and wits to be president. But a dingbat a heartbeat away from the presidency when were, as Charles Fried says, in a time of deep national crisis?

    What he didn’t say and what I suspect he is thinking, like a lot of Republicans of like mind, is that even if McCain was 45 years old and in perfect health, his picking Miss Average Alaska, the beauty queen with the ambition of Attila, would represent the worst possible judgment in the best of times.