Sarah Palin Stays True to Form With Threat to Sue 'Rogue' Author

Sarah Palin has threatened to sue "Rogue" author Joe McGinnis and Crown Publishing Group for knowingly publishing "false statements." The former Alaska governor has often threatened to use the courts to challenge claims made about her.

On July 4, 2009, shortly after Palin resigned from her role as governor of Alaska, she threatened to sue liberal Alaska blogger Shannyn Moore for defamation after Moore reported on rumors circulating that Palin quit her post because of corruption investigations.

"People have been trying to guess why she really quit, and everyone in Alaska has been playing the guessing game," Moore said in a public statement in 2009. "They're rumors. There are a lot of rumors. And with all the corruption we've had here in Alaska, of course we wonder what's really behind her resignation."

Moore added: "The governor's massive overreaction – on the Fourth of July no less – should make any reasonable person wonder what's wrong with her. The Lady protests way too much … Sarah Palin is a coward and a bully…The First Amendment was designed to protect people like me from the likes of people like her. Our American Revolution got rid of kings. And queens, too. Am I jacked-up? You betcha."

Nothing ever came of the threatened lawsuit and, in order to quell rumors, the FBI publicly announced that it was not conducting an investigation on Palin.

"We are not investigating her," FBI spokesman Eric Gonzalez told the Anchorage Daily News in 2009. "Normally we don't confirm or deny those kind of allegations out there, but by not doing so, it just casts her in a very bad light. There is just no truth to those rumors out there in the blogosphere."

According to, Palin had better luck when news site Gawker published excerpts of her 2010 book, America By Heart: Reflections on Family, Faith, and Flag, several days before it hit bookstores.

"Well, look what popped up five days early: leaks from Sarah Palin's forthcoming memoir/manifesto, America By Heart, in which the reality TV matriarch rants against 'talent deprived' reality TV stars, lauds daughter Bristol's chastity and celebrates not aborting Trig," Gawker wrote on its website.

"The book is currently in distribution centers, awaiting its official release on Tuesday. We got our hands on some of the pages … Here's an annotated guide to our favorite parts, featuring rants against the media and new material about Bristol and Levi."

Palin tweeted her response: "The publishing world is LEAKING out-of-context excerpts of my book w/out my permission? Isn't that illegal?" But the politician then took more formal action when she, along with her book's publisher, HarperCollins, successfully sued Gawker for copyright infringement and a federal judge ordered the website to take down the book excerpts.

Gawker then responded in its trademark cheeky fashion with a blog post entitled: "Sarah Palin Is Mad at Us for Leaking Pages From Her Book."

So how might Palin's latest lawsuit effort fare against author Joe McGinnis and the Crown Publishing Group over "The Rogue: Searching for the Real Sarah Palin?"

David Magee of the International Business Times said: "Don't hold your breath."

Even though McGinnis accused Palin of sleeping with basketball stars and snorting cocaine on snowmobiles while attributing those claims to anonymous sources, Magee said Palin's very public status makes it all the more difficult to prove libel.

"Here's the problem with suing McGinnis and the publisher: Palin would have to prove that the allegations in the book are all lies if she proceeded with a lawsuit," Magee wrote. "She's a public figure – considerably so – and it's hard to prove libel when you are in the public eye in the first place."

"Nobody ever said being a celebrity in this country is fair, however. But one thing we do know is that celebrity lawsuits claiming libel for such accusations typically do more damage to the celebrity than to the author and publisher," he added.

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