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Sarah Palin: What she said at Gridiron dinner

Sarah Palin spoke to the mainstream media at a Gridiron dinner Saturday.

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One other comment about the media: “It is good to be here though, really, in front of this audience of leading journalists and intellectuals or, as I like to call it, a death panel,” she said.

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Palin’s book notes the sometimes troubled relationship she had with McCain campaign staffers. Talking about her bus tour for her book, “Going Rogue,” she said, “the view is so much better inside the bus than under the bus.”

In a reference to the rocky relations she had with Steve Schmidt, McCain’s bald campaign manager, Palin said that if she needed a bald campaign manager, “all that I am left with is James Carville.” Carville is a Democratic strategist.

Poking fun at herself

The ritual at these dinners calls for self-deprecatory humor and Palin obliged. Being at the dinner meant “at least now I can put a face to the newspapers I do read,” she said, referencing her lack of response to Katie Couric's question about what newspapers or magazines she liked to read. Palin also noted that she was “feeling right at home” since she could come down from her room and “could see the Russian embassy” – poking fun at her "you can actually see Russia" from Alaska campaign comment.

And the former Alaska Governor recounted being on a flight and reading a magazine with President Obama and Chinese President Hu Jintao on the cover. Another passenger said “Hu’s the Communist.” Palin said, “I thought he was asking a question."

The evening ended with what members sarcastically refer to as “the mighty Gridiron chorus” singing a humorous rendition of the Twelve Days of Christmas. There, standing with the journalists and vocalists from the United States Marine Band, was a smiling Sarah Palin. The song recounted gifts given by Rush Limbaugh.

“On the twelfth day of Christmas, Rush Limbaugh gave to me: 12 flaming liberals, hunted down in the wild and field dressed, medium well-done, seared on the fatty edges.” At which point Palin chimed in, “right next to the mashed potatoes.”

Correction: An earlier version of this blog entry contained an incorrect attendance figure for the Gridiron dinner and overstated the percentage by which attendance increased.

See also:

Why Sarah Palin’s ‘Going Rogue’ tour looks like a campaign

The ‘Going Rogue’ code: text reveals logic of Sarah Palin’s tour

Sarah Palin on Oprah Winfrey Show: Five best outtakes


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