Palin Sorts Clothes To See What Belongs To The RNC

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin spent part of the weekend going through her clothing to determine what belongs to the Republican Party after it spent $150,000-plus on a wardrobe for the vice presidential nominee, according to Palin's father.

Palin and John McCain's campaign faced a storm of criticism over the tens of thousands of dollars spent at such high-end stores as Saks Fifth Avenue and Neiman Marcus to dress the nominee. Republican National Committee lawyers are still trying to determine exactly what clothing was bought for Palin, what was returned and what has become of the rest.

Palin's father, Chuck Heath, said his daughter spent Saturday trying to figure out what belongs to the RNC.

"She was just frantically ... trying to sort stuff out," Heath said. "That's the problem, you know, the kids lose underwear, and everything has to be accounted for.

"Nothing goes right back to normal," he said.

Heath dismissed the clothes controversy as "ridiculous" and said his daughter told him the only clothing or accessories she personally had purchased in the last four months was a pair of shoes.

RNC lawyers have been discussing with Palin whether what's left of the clothing and accessories purchased for her on the campaign trail will go to charity, back to stores or be paid for by Palin, a McCain-Palin campaign official said Friday, speaking on condition of anonymity because the campaign hadn't authorized comment.

The McCain-Palin campaign said about a third of the clothing was returned immediately because it was the wrong size, or for other reasons. However, other purchases apparently were made after that, the campaign official said.

On Friday, Palin told reporters: "Those are the RNC's clothes. They're not my clothes. I never forced anybody to buy anything."

In an interview with the Anchorage Daily News, Palin faulted the policies of the Bush administration for the defeat of the GOP ticket, and said, "it's amazing that we did as well as we did."

"I think the Republican ticket represented too much of the status quo, too much of what had gone on in these last eight years, that Americans were kind of shaking their heads like going, wait a minute, how did we run up a $10 trillion debt in a Republican administration? How have there been blunders with war strategy under a Republican administration? If we're talking change, we want to get far away from what it was that the present administration represented and that is to a great degree what the Republican Party at the time had been representing," Palin said in a story published Sunday.

Amid speculation in Alaska and nationwide about Palin's political future, the governor has scheduled a series of national interviews on Fox News Channel on Monday night, NBC's "Today" show on Tuesday and CNN on Wednesday. She also plans to attend the Republican Governors Association conference in Florida this week.

Palin has been mentioned as a possible presidential candidate in 2012. She also could seek re-election in 2010 or challenge Sen. Lisa Murkowski. Still uncertain is the fate of Sen. Ted Stevens, who is leading in his bid for another term but could be ousted by the Senate for his conviction on seven felony counts of failing to report more than $250,000 in gifts, mostly renovations on his home. If Stevens loses his seat, Palin could run for it in a special election.

In Wasilla, her hometown backers welcomed her, putting aside their disappointment over her unsuccessful bid.

Jessica Steele can't wait to see what Sarah Palin does next — not with her political career, but with her hair.

"That's something I want to talk to her about: What's our vision for her hair?" says Steele, proprietor of the Beehive Beauty Shop and keeper of the governor's up-do since 2002. "I can't wait to see her and say, 'OK, I've got you alone for three hours. Just relax, and how are you, really?'"

While Palin remains popular, the reality of defeat is evident.

Bags of fan mail, as many as 400 letters a day, partially fill a room at her parent's house. But parents no longer meet Secret Service agents when they pick up their children at Cottonwood Creek Elementary, where Palin's youngest daughter, Piper, is a student. The reporters and camera crews are gone from the Palin home on Lake Lucille, once patrolled by Coast Guard boats. Now a thick sheet of ice covers the lake.

Four state troopers still guard the governor 24 hours a day, Heath said — something Palin never had before.

And in a bit of familiarity, Heath said he brought a pot of moose chili to Palin's house this past weekend.

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  • by LL Location: NC on Nov 13, 2008 at 05:52 AM
    Who cares about the clothes, let her keep them. The RNC made that choice to buy her all that stuff. As far as Obama's clothes and his wife's...they were probably bought by the same shady characters who funded his campaign!
  • by Tad Location: Jamesville on Nov 12, 2008 at 11:19 PM
    billybob, what a simple minded flunky you are trying to fool someone with a silly name and acronym. Just a racist, slinging racial slurs! You are the definition of your accusation.
  • by billybob? on Nov 12, 2008 at 06:02 PM
    Tell me you didn't mean that comment---Michelle Obama wasn't on any ticket for VP.
  • by lori Location: jax on Nov 12, 2008 at 01:08 PM
    I just think it is bad that someone had to buy her clothes. So the RNC had to buy her clothes to look better or to fit the part?? She announced she had a $35 wedding band, and most of her clothes were from second hand stores. IS ANYTHING WRONG WITH THAT??? There are lots of women out there Im sure that would rather be simple than fancy.
  • by billybob on Nov 12, 2008 at 09:07 AM
    It's a sad state of affairs to know that this pwt didn't have her own clothing that were appropriate for the occasion. Michelle didn't need any
  • by To Bill on Nov 12, 2008 at 08:03 AM
    Bill, maybe no one cares about Obama's clothes because possibly he bought them with his own money??? And not from campaign funds??? Just a thought there! Investigate and get back to us.
  • by Bill Location: Ernul on Nov 12, 2008 at 07:57 AM
    Where is WITN's story about how much Obama spent on his clothes. so much for objectivity.
  • by Dwayne Location: Greenville on Nov 12, 2008 at 07:45 AM
    Double standard. Gov. Palin was and is drilled by the media even though it's clear there were no ethical rules broken. Now Michelle Obama wants a $100,000 dollar White House renovation and it is applauded by the same media. Michelle Obama bragged about wearing a cheap dress during the campaign but now that the election is over, her last dress was an expensive designer. Why not spread the wealth and give some of those clothes to the down and out?
  • by v Location: kinston on Nov 12, 2008 at 07:07 AM
    What a shame!!!! I think Sarah Palin conducted herself as a real lady considering all the bashing that she had coming at her....Let's face it, if Obama had of been bashed like that it would have been called "racist" and we bash Sarah Palin because she is a "woman". I just hope in 6 months those that voted for Obama can still admit to voting for him.
  • by Alex Location: Vanceboro on Nov 12, 2008 at 06:10 AM
    Looks like another hack job piece by WITN. We hear nothing of Obama's $5000.00 suits, nor how much money was spent on his wife who is finally proud of her nation. Guess WITN has more important things to do than cover the shopping habits of both sides.
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