Former McCain staffers angry over Palin prayer remark

Aides who traveled with the Alaska governor during the fall campaign are upset after Palin said recently she hadn't wanted to pray with any of them.


Alex Koppelman
March 27, 2009 3:00AM (UTC)

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin really doesn't like many of the people who staffed John McCain's presidential campaign last year, and the feeling seems to be mutual.

In a speech she gave to the Alaska GOP last week, Palin told the story of the lead-up to her debate with Joe Biden, saying, "So I'm looking around for somebody to pray with, I just need maybe a little help, maybe a little extra. And the McCain campaign, love 'em, you know, they're a lot of people around me, but nobody I could find that I wanted to hold hands with and pray." According to CNN's Political Ticker blog, when the audience started laughing, Palin said she meant no disrespect to the McCain campaign. She added that she just prayed with her daughter Piper instead.

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Some of the campaign aides -- ones who traveled with her and worked directly with her, not those who were in closer contact with McCain -- were offended when they heard of this remark, they told CNN.

"This set off a nerve for sure with a lot of people," one unnamed former staffer said. "It's yet another example of the few staff still loyal to Palin questioning their loyalty and ardent defense of her over the several months since the campaign."

Another former aide reportedly said, "It's about us people who were on the plane, who showed extreme loyalty to Palin, continually getting thrown under the bus or slapped in the face by her comments, whether she means it or not." This same aide added that Palin's comments "cause you to question not only your loyalty but her judgment as a leader."


Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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