Archive for Thursday, October 23, 2008

Palin’s wardrobe, stylists cost $150,000

October 23, 2008


— Who knew looking like a hockey mom was this darned expensive?

Certainly not Wanda Routier, a proud hockey mom in Hewitt, Wis., who spends her time in sweatpants, turtlenecks, ankle boots and heavy coats.

She was dismayed to hear Wednesday that the Republican Party had spent $150,000 in two months on clothes, hair styling and accessories for Sarah Palin and her family from such upscale stores as Saks Fifth Avenue and Nieman Marcus.

"I was put off by it," Routier said. "I mean I know they have an image to project, but that's a lot of money when we're talking about the economy the way it is! And the burden on ordinary Americans."

But another hockey mom defended Palin. "I can certainly imagine her clothes would cost that much," said Page Growney, a mother of four in upscale New Canaan, Conn. "What did you want to see her in, a turtleneck from L.L. Bean?"

As much of the world knows, Palin introduced herself at the GOP convention - in what's been widely reported to be a $2,500 Valentino jacket - as a "regular hockey mom," and boasted of having saved Alaska's taxpayers "over-the-top" expenditures like her luxury jet, her personal chef, even the ride to work.

She has often talked of "real Americans" and "Joe Six-Pack" and projected a folksy demeanor in her vice presidential debate.

"Let's do what our parents told us before we probably even got that first credit card," she said in that debate. "Don't live outside of our means."

The average U.S. household spent $1,874 on clothes and services in 2006, the last year for which figures are available from the government's Bureau of Labor Statistics.

So her detractors were naturally having a field day with the revelations, first reported on They included 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.

The McCain campaign also reported paying $13,200 in September alone to celebrity makeup artist Amy Strozzi. The Washington Post first reported on its Web site that Strozzi had been placed on the campaign's payroll.

A session with a makeup artist at home or a hotel can start at around $125 for one application, said Alison Brod, a spokeswoman for the Laura Mercier brand.

To hire a top-tier hairstylist, like Oscar Blandi on Madison Avenue whose clients include Jennifer Garner and Katie Holmes, it would cost a minimum of $200 for the visit, and at least $150 for an updo like Palin's. A haircut could run $500.


yankeelady 9 years, 4 months ago

Beatrice nailed it. John McCain of 2000 would not recognize what he has become. He has completely sold out to the system he claims to be an "outsider" to. Or a maverick. He flip flops and flits from talking point to talking point so much you need a score card. It is sad.

crane13 9 years, 4 months ago

hi tom shewmon, i think that you are living in the wrong town, try johnson county. SERIOUSLY, do you think that the media has taken a side? FOX news doesn't reek of republican lies does it?

Stephen Roberts 9 years, 4 months ago

How much is the DNC or Obama's camp paying for his clothing?I just wish if I heard one thing about one side, I would hear the same reporting about the other. I guess not, I know who the media wants to elect.

meggers 9 years, 4 months ago

That Pit Bull sure wears some expensive lipstick....

Tony Kisner 9 years, 4 months ago

OK, we get it. Palin is easy to pick on. Can we just hand these journalist their Pulitzer so they can move on to the next big story. Maybe Madonna is up to something today?

shutnmdown 9 years, 4 months ago

She aint to average now is she. If she opened her mouth a little wider she can shove it all in there. Barrack is prepared as well as Mr.Lisp,.don't need to correct me on spelling, he can't even say his own words with out sssp. Moving on, I'm down for Obama while your pullin for Mr. Lisp.

Chris Ogle 9 years, 4 months ago

rrussell (Anonymous) says: You can dip a cat turd in gold:: but it don't make it jewelry.+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++That is a good one..... I am still laughing. By the way, I still haven't decided who to vote for. But thanks for the humor. We all need it.

jaywalker 9 years, 4 months ago

"but that's a lot of money when we're talking about the economy the way it is!"Sorry sugar, but that's alot of money all the time. And who gives a shiitake mushroom? It's not like Hillary was wearing pantsuits made from old curtains. Then again.......

Kyle Reed 9 years, 4 months ago

Way to focus on the issues. Am I supposed to care how much was spent on her wardrobe and stylist? Come on...really?

PapaB 9 years, 4 months ago

What did they think she was going to wear for all these public appearances, sweatpants and a tank top? I know that's an exaggeration, but they had to make her look elitely successful and professional in a hurry. The saying is true: "Dress for Success."

jaywalker 9 years, 4 months ago

Thanks for the mornin' chuckle, snap.

beawolf 9 years, 4 months ago

Considering how much she bilked Alaska taxpayers for her family expenses, she should be able to afford her own cloths.

appleaday 9 years, 4 months ago

Actually, communter, the story I read yesterday said that there was no similar expense in the Obama campaign.That said, all politicians are pretty much out of touch. What working class American can step away from their jobs and run a campaign? But $150,000 for clothes is out of the park.

Munsoned 9 years, 4 months ago

It is unfortunate that ANY female candidate probably has to spend a ridiculous amount on image compared to men. Can't look too old, young, conservative, prude, slutty, sexy, trendy, made up, under dressed, over dressed, etc. You can't just throw on any old thing-- we get it. What still chaps me is that she made rape victims pay for their evidence kits. What were they supposed to do-- donate the kits to charity once they were done with them?

JimmyJoeBob 9 years, 4 months ago

Logic Sound Thank you for proving my point. Now convince all the others out there.

Flap Doodle 9 years, 4 months ago

How much did Biden's forehead Botox cost?

acg 9 years, 4 months ago

It's only a small, insignificant and stupid article Tom because it was Palin caught spending over $2500 a day! on clothes and not Obama. If it had been Obama, you would've been up in arms about how he was a lying, thieving, terrorist that plans on turning the white house into a mosque. The problem with people like you is, you refuse to look at both sides with open eyes and mind. You party line voters are the bane of the democratic existence. You have neither enough brains or balls to think for yourselves and to me, regardless of which side one votes for, that's a dangerous and lazy way to live your life. Now, it is your life, true and you can screw it up however you see fit, but your stupidity affects the rest of us and people that aren't sheep are tired of it. I wish we could vote your a** off the island.

EasilyAmused 9 years, 4 months ago

Not to mention the crazy thought of possibly getting something dry cleaned and wearing it again in a month? (Dry cleaning bills may be outrageous - but not that outrageous) I know that sometimes I will, gasp, wash and wear something again in a couple of weeks...

meggers 9 years, 4 months ago

madmike,You're right, it isn't my money. It isn't Sarah Palin's money either and many in the RNC aren't too pleased to be paying for Sarah to play dress-up:Snip'There is already an attempt to blame the media -- as in, the liberal media would have looked askance at Palin if she wasn't clad in Neiman Marcus, but this won't wash. Republicans, RNC donors and at least one RNC staff member have e-mailed me tonight to share their utter (and not-for-attribution) disgust at the expenditures....'

craigers 9 years, 4 months ago

The bias in the past few days is obvious.

jaywalker 9 years, 4 months ago

"She's a twit and a fraud. I know this just as sure as I know you're an idiot and waste of skin and air."That's brilliant, acg. A governor with a solid family and an excellent upward moving career history, who has done little more than achieve with each step she's taken.... is a 'twit and a fraud'. And another poster is a 'waste of skin and air'. Would it be possible for you to be any more juvenile?

mom_of_three 9 years, 4 months ago

Other articles say how Palin is going to donate the clothes to charity after the campaign. But if she is elected (uhhum), wouldn't she need the clothes for the job? Or are they just going to spend more money for a new wardrobe?

acg 9 years, 4 months ago

That's what I was thinking jafs. No one expects this woman to bop off to Walmart and pick up some sweat pants for her speeches, but does she have to go to bergdorff's and niemen marcus? Are we honestly saying to ourselves that a woman can't dress for sucess at Kohl's, Penny's or the Dress Barn? If so, what does this tell our girls? A $250 suit is good but a $2500 suit is better? Get a grip. If this is the message joesixpack/hockeymom Palin has for our society, then she can stuff it up her moose head.

meggers 9 years, 4 months ago

Godot,We should all pay for our own clothing. The Obama's pay for their clothing, Senator and Jill Biden pay for their own clothing, and I presume that John and Cindy McCain do likewise. Sarah Palin is the candidate who constantly mentions giving "the people" their own money back. I doubt the donors to the RNC anticipated that their 'return' on their contribution would be little more than a dolled up Sarah repeating the same dumbed-down talking points ad nauseum. Call me crazy, but I'll bet they donated because they wanted to contribute to actual campaigns- you know, ads, events, campaign offices, etc. Oh, and long before this came up, Michelle and Barack spoke about where they shop. I believe it came up in the Access Hollywood interview with the entire family. If I recall correctly, Michelle shops mostly at the Gap and most of her dresses were in the $35.00 range. She even chided Barack because his shoes needed re-soled or replaced and his belt and pants were old and worn. It's pretty difficult to compare that to spending $150,000 on clothing in two months.

Jennifer Forth 9 years, 4 months ago

This makes Joe the Plumber's issue of not paying back taxes over $1000 now seem like chump change! Maybe the RNC can give him the money for an actual plumber's license while they're at it.

KEITHMILES05 9 years, 4 months ago

The PUBS should be embarassed over this fisaco.Where is the outrage since the PUBS claim to be "conservative on fiscal policy."A complete disgrace."DO AS I SAY AND NOT AS I DO!"

sdinges 9 years, 4 months ago

If McCain or Obama or Biden wear the same couple of expensive suits over and over again, no one cares. But if Palin (or Hillary Clinton) wore the same outfit twice, it would be splashed all over the news.Let's not forget that if McCain or Obama need to spend that much on clothes, they can put it on their own tab, because they're rich. It's doubtful that Palin can afford the image-making that the RNC is so obviously concerned with during this campaign.But the truth is, I seem to know an awful lot about how much Cindy McCain and Sarah Palin spend on clothes, when it's really a non-issue. It's not like they're billing taxpayers for it.Also - why is the make-up only on Palin's bill? It must take hours to make McCain look even moderately vibrant - and he still looks dead behind the eyes.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 9 years, 4 months ago

The problem for McCain is that back when is campaign was sucking air against all the other lousy Republican candidates (Ron Paul was the only good one they had, and he has some serious drawbacks) he took out a loan using public financing as collateral, so he was stuck with a decision he likely wouldn't have made otherwise.

shutnmdown 9 years, 4 months ago

You can dip a cat turd in gold:: but it don't make it jewelryYour awesome, some people think she doesn't have a backbone to say whether or not these clothing prices will reach the rest of the country and cause controversy. Fact is she does, and she hasn't said anything against it other than that won't fit. And she's trying to have a hand in what the country is going to do. . Figures she isn't ready for the role she wants so badly to play.

shutnmdown 9 years, 4 months ago

Well well well, maybe we shouldn't worry about them spending all that loot on Sarah, maybe we should direct our attention to other country that are starving. Yea that is what we should do, forget our economy and us having to pay all these taxes back. That is our money some way fashion or form we will have to payback. It's just those little white lies they keep feeding us. Well hate to say it, but it is our money.

tvc 9 years, 4 months ago

Unfortunately, it seems to matter more what women wear.

shutnmdown 9 years, 4 months ago

You can dip a cat turd in gold:: but it don't make it jewelrYour awesome, some people think she doesn't have a backbone to say whether or not these clothing prices will reach the rest of the country and cause controversy. Fact is she does, and she hasn't said anything against it other than that won't fit. And she's trying to have a hand in what the country is going to do. . Figures she isn't ready for the role she wants so badly to play.

jafs 9 years, 4 months ago

What's wrong with LL Bean turtlenecks?

beawolf 9 years, 4 months ago

It's not the clothes or how much she spent, it's the contrast of the persona she's trying to sell the public. The "aw,shucks, you betcha, I'm a regular gal, moose hunting, Josephine 6 pack, hockey mom" doesn't shop at Saks or Nieman Marcus. The choice of merchants speaks more about the candidate than the purchases. There seems to be huge disconnect here.

Godot 9 years, 4 months ago

The big surprise is that she had to pay for her clothing, hair and makeup. If she were a liberal, the designers would have begged her to wear their duds just for the publicity. Wonder if Michelle paid for her makeover?

jaywalker 9 years, 4 months ago

"Oh yeah, she's a solid family woman. I surely hope when my three year old daughter gets to her teen years, she gets knocked up by a high school drop out electrician wanna-be, too. That would be awesome!"Well, acg, considering you consider an opposing poster 'a waste of skin and air', I'll go ahead and start praying for your three year old now.

acg 9 years, 4 months ago

That's the typical response I'd expect from an uneducated d-bag offtotheright. Because I won't spend a ridiculous amount of money on clothes, I must be poor right? LOL! I'll have to remember that little comment next time I'm at Coach under Caesar's. (I have a bag habit I can't shake). But see, the difference between me and Ms. Palin is I'm not trying to sell myself to the American people as Ms. Everygal. She's a twit and a fraud. I know this just as sure as I know you're an idiot and waste of skin and air.

AjiDeGallina 9 years, 4 months ago

I think there are plenty of real issues that are sinking Palin, I would rather focus on the economy and the war and her inability to lead, please stick with substantive issues, not these unimportant ones.

craigers 9 years, 4 months ago

acg, I think that is what is being told to our kids all the time. More expensive is better. I can get pants at Kohls, JCP, etc. Even shopping for a suit can be done there for under $300. Some people think that the name on the jeans means more... I wonder if she chose to go there or if it was the campaign that said we are going here to shop? I know she should have said no, but it seems people in politics think they need the finest!! I bet we could find some of McCain's and Obama's suits that are over $2000.

rachaelisacancer 9 years, 4 months ago

"In early July the Obama family sat down for an interview with Maria Menounos of "Access Hollywood." One of the topics discussed was Barack's status as a style icon, which amused his wife and daughters because, as Michelle points out in the interview, his belt and shoes need replacing, and his pants are 10 years old ("I hate to shop," he explains). Michelle also reveals that the sundress she's wearing is from the Gap: "Fortunately now they make really pretty stuff at all price ranges... [Barack] will be happy to know that this is, like, a $30 dress." Her husband then high-fives her, and daughter Sasha announces "Mommy buys everything from Gap!" really don't care what Palin wears - I didn't give money to the RNC or their campaign. And she is applying for the second highest job in the nation - she does need some nice suits and whatnot. This is the second time she's been made over, though; first she was made presentable, second she was made fabulous. I can't find the picture now - but it exists. It shows Palin as governor in the supermarket in a matching pink velour track suit. So tacky. She needed a makeover. I'm not saying she needed a $150,000 makeover, but a makeover nonetheless.

Confrontation 9 years, 4 months ago

I can't believe she spent that much on clothing and makeup. Seriously, she still looks like a stupid bimbo. You can take Palin out of the Wasilla meth labs, but you can't take the Wasilla meth labs out of Palin.

beatrice 9 years, 4 months ago

$150,000 for clothing for a hockey mom!!! I mean, that is 30 episodes of buying women entire new wardrobes on "What Not to Wear." I can't help but to notice that she bought the clothes not in small towns, what she calls "real" America, but in New York City! Get a rope! Governor Palin praised "Joe Six-Pack" in her debate. Who knew that Dom Perignon came in a six-pack? Yep, John McCain doesn't know how many houses he owns, Cindy McCain wears a single outfit worth $300,000 at the RNC and thinks the only way to get around Arizona is in a private plane, and now we have Governor High Fashion talking about how much she loves (not to shop) in small towns. But of course, the Obamas are the elitists. Got it.

Rex Russell 9 years, 4 months ago

You can dip a cat turd in gold...... but it don't make it jewelry.

acg 9 years, 4 months ago

Oh yeah, she's a solid family woman. I surely hope when my three year old daughter gets to her teen years, she gets knocked up by a high school drop out electrician wanna-be, too. That would be awesome!

meggers 9 years, 4 months ago

offtotheright says: if she were a liberal she would have asked for a hand-out and for someone else to pay for her clothes/food/make-up/medical care/rentDo you have an example of a liberal candidate asking for such a hand-out?You do realize, I hope, that with the possible exception of medical care, Sarah Palin is getting her own 'hand-out' from the campaign for the items you listed. And it just so happens that maintaining a certain appearance required a "hand-out' to the tune of $150,000 in two months.

JimmyJoeBob 9 years, 4 months ago

Witchy PooDo you seriously think that the !50,000.00 spent on Palin's appearance was not advertising money well spent. Peope who live in glass houses should not be throwing stones.

denak 9 years, 4 months ago

I'm so jealous.I really wish I lived in the world that McCain and Palin live in.In McCain/Palin world, the middle class routinely spend 150,000 on clothes and own 7 houses. But unfortunately, I have to live in this world where people only spend about 1,500 a year on clothes and own (hopefully) only one house. But hey, it is a good thing that McCain and Palin speak for us average middle class Americans. You can just tell they feel our pain.Dena

EasilyAmused 9 years, 4 months ago

I'm not as concerned about the hypocrisy of Palin marauding around as an Everyday Jane in expensive clothing as I am concerned about Palin self-proclaiming her fiscal conservatism while spending huge amounts of someone else's money (the RNC) on frivolous items. This may not have been taxpayer money, but if she is elected, can I trust her not to use this same, faulty judgment on tax and budgeting issues? No.

mr_economy 9 years, 4 months ago

Hound John Edwards (rightly so) for his $400 haircut, saying it makes him "out of touch" with voters, but SP's $150,000 on clothes is frivolous news?How dare she wear those clothes and simultaneously call herself of the same kind as Joe Sixpack and Joe the Plumber. The only Joe Sixpack or Plumber you'll find in Saks is the guy doing construction work on the building it's in.It's almost as hilarious as watching Mitt "my dog rides on the roof" Romney attack members of "the elite political class."

Paul R Getto 9 years, 4 months ago

Caribou Barbie sure looks good these days.

beatrice 9 years, 4 months ago

A true, small-town, hockey-mom maverick would have said "Thanks, but no thanks" to those fancy-schmancy New York duds. Not our Sarah, though. Nosireebob. She said, "Goodbye Green Tundra Acres," and "Hello Neiman Marcus" as soon as she could. This is like Mr. Smith stopping off at Ralph Lauren before going to Washington. What an embarrasment. I'm beginning to actually feel sorry for what has become of John McCain during this election. He might have been a fine choice in 2000, but it is obvious he has become that which he used to despise. Sad. If he loses, and all signs point in that direction, I'll bet he doesn't get re-elected to the Senate after this.

tvc 9 years, 4 months ago

I used to be proud to wear the title of liberal. I thought democrats were above this kind of crap, but Caribou Barbie proves they are not. It is sexist and demeaning to all women.

temperance 9 years, 4 months ago

"Small, insignificant and stupid article. "I'm sure that's exactly what you said after learning John Edwards spent $400 on a haircut. Now that we know Palin's wardrobe is the equivalent of about 345 John Edwards hair cuts, Palin is looking less and less like a Jane-6-pack regular working-class hockey-mom, and is becoming more and more of a problem for the GOP & RNC.

Jaylee 9 years, 4 months ago

meh... it sucks and is wrong, we're really looking for things though. and the dude didnt have to put down the turtlenecks jafs.... that was wrong.

Deja Coffin 9 years, 4 months ago

Okay, I saw some floral number she was wearing in a older shot and yeah, that girl needed a wardrobe upgrade!

JimmyJoeBob 9 years, 4 months ago

Here is a real waste of money. Obama/Biden are spending 3 to 1 over McCain Palin. This is from the Washington PostFrom Sept. 30 to Oct. 6, Obama spent more than $20 million on television ads in 17 states including more than $3 million in Pennsylvania and more than $2 million each in Florida, Michigan and Ohio. McCain in that same time frame spent just $7.2 million in 15 states. Even when the Republican National Committee's independent expenditure spending in Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin is factored in (a total of $5.3 million), Obama still outspent the combined GOP forces by roughly $8 million in the last week alone. (See full distribution after the jump.)

monkeywrench1969 9 years, 4 months ago

An interesting article, somewhat related...look at what I have in this hand so I can hide what I have in that hand

shutnmdown 9 years, 4 months ago

Gotta love the first amendment damn you. However, she is just that and probaly a couple other things too. .

Mixolydian 9 years, 4 months ago

It's already been said before but long before this non-controversy "controversy" erupted on the left, it was already a given that she would donate all of the clothing to charity. Given the research verified fact that red state conservatives far out spend blue state liberals in charitable giving (witness Biden's miserly <1% charitable giving) it must be hard to understand the point about donating the clothing.What's far far more disturbing is Obama's gift of over $800,000 to an ACORN shadow group for voter registration "get out the vote campaigns." Obama either supports registration fraud or incompetence. And people are talking about donated clothing?

Jennifer Forth 9 years, 4 months ago

Obama either supports registration fraud or incompetence - again we see the logic skills of LJW bloggers - a loaded sentence to be sure. Will McCain lose the election because of arrogance or stupidity?

BrianR 9 years, 4 months ago

rrussell (Anonymous) says:"You can dip a cat turd in gold:: but it don't make it jewelry."Uh oh.

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