The Republican National Committee has launched into a new business – that of clothing Sarah Palin. McCain’s surprise pick apparently didn’t have the panache required to be seen on the campaign trail and left the powers-that-be wondering how to snazz up the Wasilla hockey mom.

In several high-powered and high-priced shopping sprees, the RNC whipped out over $150,000 to doll up the former Alaska beauty queen with dashing duds including a whopping $75,062 shopping spree at Neiman Marcus in Minneapolis, one for $49,425 from Saks Fifth Avenue, $4,902 at Atelier, a stylish men’s store, and even a $92 romper and matching hat with ears for baby Trig at Pacifier, a Minneapolis baby store.

Of course, the RNC justifies the expenditures by alleging that Palin has to look vice presidential and that look requires shedding the hockey mom, Joe six-pack image and replacing it with the suave, polished image of a politician.

Didn’t take the hockey mom long to morph into the haute couture mom. Of course the other candidates spend tons of money on their appearance, but Palin has made it a crusade to project that down-home, folksy, just-your-average, hockey “mom” image.  Yep, nothing like Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue to shout main street USA.


About Charlotte A. Weybright

I own a home in the historical West Central Neighborhood of Fort Wayne, Indiana. I have four grown sons and nine grandchildren - four grandsons and five granddaughters. I love to work on my home, and I enjoy crafts of all types. But, most of all, I enjoy being involved in political and community issues.
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  1. J. Q. Taxpayer says:

    You know what is real sad…. That you have a fit over $150K yet you don’t say a word about Warren Buffet making 3.5 billion dollars off a 500 million dollar investment into a China Oil Company.

    You set quit while Buffet purchases a 10% share in a China automaker that will be marketing a car here in the US in 2009.

    You set quit and feel great over Colin Powell endorsement. However, he sets on a Venture Capitol company board that stands to make billions off a couple of Obama’s strange tax give-a-ways.

    So your crying over $150K spent without a single tax payer dollar falls far short.

    Then again reading and rehashing the same talking points the Obama group emails out is nearly funny. Because once you read one blog you have read them all…

  2. J.Q.

    It isn’t the fact that taxpayers haven’t paid for anything. The difference is that Warren Buffett and Colin Powell haven’t tried to act cutesy with the “you betcha”, “dog gone it” sayings and winking and acting like a school child on the campaign trail. They haven’t, that I recall, tried to sell themselves as just the average American trying to convince people they are just like you and me.

    McCain and Palin have tried to sell Palin as a bill of goods she isn’t. That is the irony behind the $150,000 in clothes. Spending that much money on clothes is obscene.

    And, by the way, I didn’t get an email. If you follow the link it was a news story picked up by Associated Press – hardly an Obama lackey.

  3. TiredoldTrooper says:

    Gosh! 150K to try and get rid of “Joe Sixpack”‘ the Hockey Mom” and looking at Russia from the front porch.
    Now it’s slapping high dollar swag on the “average American gal” and getting her set to expect this kind of excess for the rest of her political career. Another case of the “best politician money can buy”. I can’t wait to see those clothes on the Salvation Army racks in Nome!

  4. TiredoldTrooper says:

    Oh, and maybe a $10 copy of the Constitution of the United States????

  5. Kenny says:

    No doubt, there is a lot of money in politics. I’m still perplexed how Hilliary Clinton even had $5 million to “loan” to her campaign. [I think my net worth is around $50,000]

    Another thought: Palin obviously didn’t have the wardrobe before being picked for veep. Many critics still don’t think it matches up to Michelle Obama’s. Who’s more “Main Street,” someone who has to buy a wardrobe suitable for the national scene, or someone who already owns a wardrobe suitable for the national scene?

    From the Washington Post well after this $150,000 purchase:
    Sarah Palin’s Unassertive Fashion Statement
    “Her clothes don’t have the aura of sophistication like that of Michelle Obama’s sheaths and pearls. They do not have a patina of glamour like Cindy McCain’s heiress wardrobe. And they do not announce themselves with the confidence, assertiveness and listen-to-me-ness of Sen. Hillary Clinton’s bold pantsuits. Palin’s clothes are common. Everyone knows someone who dresses like her, which is partly why so many folks seem to think that they know her…

    …Palin’s style serves as evidence that a woman can step onto the national political stage without having to manipulate her wardrobe into some torturous costume calibrated to make her look authoritative but not threatening, feminine but not sexy, serious but not dour. Palin proves that a woman can wear red patent-leather shoes and still take questions on foreign policy and the economy.

    The test, of course, is whether this particular gal knows the answers.”

  6. mark says:

    Women will never be treated as truly equal in the workplace so long as they continue to spend inordinate amounts of time worrying about what other women wear.

  7. Ice ironman says:

    Our country is going to hell and you are worried about 150,000 dollars in clothes. Thats the problem!

    I guess we at least know the 150,00 isnt from overseas terrorists. The 1 billion that obama will raise brings up flags to me. But you keep worrying about her clothes.

  8. Clint:

    Really? And it was okay to spend hours and hours worrying about why Obama wasn’t wearing a flag pin? Oh my God – he’s not wearing a flag pin. Oh my God – the country will fall apart if he doesn’t wear a flag pin. Come on – and that’s okay? Just another example of Republican hypocrisy.

    By the way, look at McCain now – he hasn’t worn a flag in quite a while. And he certainly didn’t wear one for the debates. But you sure don’t hear the media – that terrible liberal media – jumping up and down on McCain’s hypocritical actions.

  9. Mark:

    You are absolutely right on the clothes and equality. When Katie Couric debuted, more time and energy was spent on speculating on what she would wear than on whether she was qualified and how she would handle the news show.

    How many male anchors generate tons of publicity and speculation about what they will wear?

    My point with the post is that Palin has held herself out as “just an average hockey mom.” Well, I’ve got news for everyone, average hockey moms don’t spend $150,000 on clothes. Sure, the Republicans are going to say, “Well you can’t be in the spotlight and wear rags.”

    Please, I am sure she could have found much less expensive and attractive clothes that would have gone much farther to cement her image as an average hockey mom.

  10. Paul says:

    This story really falls into the so what file. With so many substantive things to question Gov. Palin on why bring up her participation in a beauty contest 20 years ago and what the RNC spent on clothing for her to use? $150,000 is a pittance compared to what the major parties are spending on producing and broadcasting ads. If there is any story of interest here it is the degree to which both the Democrats and Republicans will go to manipulate our emotional buttons.

  11. Paul:

    The story only falls into the “so what” category for those who do not see a contradiction. Palin came onto the scene touting herself as a good old “hockey mom” and a regular old “joe six-pack.” Hockey moms and joe six-packs don’t spend $150,000 on clothes just so they can prance around on the national stage.

    Palin keeps bragging about the thrift shops she frequents and how frugal they are. I bet she could have found decent clothes at a Macy’s or some other store without going to Saks Fifth Avenue or Neiman Marcus. It is the contradiction in image that is important.

    Personally, I think the amount of money spent on campaigns should be limited – period. But that would lead to First Amendment issues.

  12. Paul says:


    I’m afraid we see this item very differently.

    First, Palin didn’t spend $150,000 on the clothes, the RNC did. And if what I’ve read on this story is correct the RNC is collecting the clothes after the election to “donate” to some charity. I simply don’t see the clothes in a different light than I see the Greek columns the Democrats put up in Denver for Obama’s acceptance speech. It just another prop the image consultants (who are crawling over both campaigns) push on the candidates in order to send “signals” to the electorate. It is unfortunate, but clothing consultants are probably much more important for women than for men running for office. I worry that making a big deal about the clothes the RNC is putting Palin into “legitimizes” this as an issue that will be thrown at the next woman to run for high office.

    As for Palin’s frugality, didn’t she demonstrate that by billing the Alaska state government for her kid’s travel? See:


  13. Paul:

    Yes, she billed the Alaska state government, which she shouldn’t have done. Right back at you with the CNN article:

    She had to reimburse some of the expenses.

    Here’s the other thing, Todd Palin is the “First Dude.” If Palin is in office shouldn’t or couldn’t the kids stay home with him? How many fathers in Congress or as state governors take their children with them at state expense? I bet if you research it, you won’t find men who have been given the same “privilege” of taking their kids at state or federal expense to different functions.

    Is Palin to be treated as an equal or not? I believe in equal treatment for women. I believe women should have to register just like men do. Palin did more disservice to women in general when she played the “mommy” card, asking to be treated differently than her male counterparts whose children stay home with the wives when the fathers are away on Congressional missions.

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