Old friends of Sarah Palin think her new, inexperienced advisers are doing the governor harm, Politico reported Sunday.
Interviews with Alaska and Washington-based GOP political professionals who are familiar with the Palin operation describe the governor's team as a gang that couldn't shoot straight, a staff whose failure to execute basic political maneuvers too often entangles the governor in awkward and embarrassing situations that could have easily been avoided.
Fox News host Greta van Susteren and her husband, John Coale, came in for particular scrutiny. Coale helped Palin put together a Political Action Committee, and Politico quoted a "former Palin ally still in touch with the governor" saying that one of Palin's key missteps since the election was "Taking advice from Greta and her husband."
On Sunday, Van Susteren responded on her blog, calling the article false and "silly" and calling out Politico reporter Jonathan Martin: "What is even more bizarre is that it is co-authored by Jonathan Martin who has been ON THE RECORD at 10pm and he never even called me to check one fact with me. Here is a picture of Jonathan Martin in case you have forgotten him from his many appearances on our show. ... Fact checking seems to be a lost art."
Greta denied she has ever offered Palin political advice:
Advice from me? huh? I am flattered someone would think people take advice from me but this is fanciful.
Note that it is from a "source" -- is that code for phoney? In this instance yes. This is why I hate "sources" and where journalism can be grossly unfair -- in the law you have to step up on the witness stand and identify yourself and take an oath to tell the truth. You can't do a "hit and run!"
I have never given Governor Palin advice - she does not need it from me. I don't even have her phone number or her email address. I don't think I have ever had a conversation with her off camera and if I have, it was 45 seconds! The goal is to get tape so you run the camera every second. When you do interviews with politicians, you interview and the politician runs to the next event or interview. Even when we did the interview at her home in Alaska post election, we did the interview in the home with her in her kitchen, another news organization was standing by and followed with their interview (I think it was the Anchorage Daily News) while we went outside to interview her husband on his snow machine.
Van Susteren also defended her husband's work, saying he merely "helped with the PAC ... big deal."