Liberal, Irreverent

Sunday, July 5, 2009

POLITICO's Mike Allen's Playbook Sunday 7/5/09: BAILIN’ PALIN:

Mike Allen's Playbook Sunday 7/5/09:


--“Palin attorney warns press on 'defamatory material,’” by POLITICO’s Jonathan Martin: “Gov. Sarah Palin’s attorney threatened Saturday to sue mainstream news organizations if they publish ‘defamatory’ stories relating to whether Palin is under federal investigation. In an extraordinary four-page letter, Alaska-based attorney Thomas Van Flein warns of severe consequences should speculation that until now has largely been confined to blogs about whether Palin embezzled funds in the construction of a Wasilla, Alaska, sports arena find its way into print. ‘This is to provide notice to Ms. Moore, and those who re-publish the defamation, such as Huffington Post, MSNBC, the New York Times and The Washington Post, that the Palins will not allow them to propagate defamatory material without answering to this in a court of law,’ Van Flein warned, citing Alaska liberal blogger Shannyn Moore. … ‘Just as power abhors a vacuum, modern journalism apparently abhors any type of due diligence and fact checking before scurrilous allegations are repeated as fact’ … Neither The Times nor The Post made any mention of the embezzlement rumors in their Saturday editions, but sources close to Palin consider the letter a warning shot to stay away from the topic. …

“Scores of left-leaning blogs posted speculation in the wake of Palin’s surprise announcement Friday and among the most common theories was that she was on the verge of federal indictment over the 2002 construction of the sports arena. Making the case for his client, Van Flein writes that Palin, then the Mayor of Wasilla, did not oversee the Steering Committee tasked with running the project. … The attorney also addressed another of the bloggers’ claims: that Palin purchased building materials to build her own home from the same supply store as was used by those who built the arena. … As for how the Palin’s financed their home on Wasilla’s Lake Lucille, Van Flein says they ‘used a combination of personal savings, equity from the sale of their prior home, and conventional bank financing to build the house— like millions of American families. The deeds of trust are recordable public records. Basic journalism and fact checking would confirm this.’”


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