The Washington Post, one of several news outlets that purchased a trove of 25,000 emails sent and received during Sarah Palin’s tenure as Alaska governor, reports that the Trig Palin “birther” rumors were started long before the 2008 presidential campaign.
During the election season, rumors started to swirl in the blogosphere that Palin was not in fact the mother of her son Trig Palin, who was born April 18, 2008. Instead, a number of bloggers (most notably Andrew Sullivan, then writing at The Atlantic) claimed Palin’s daughter Bristol was Trig’s mother, and that the Palin family had attempted to cover it up.
But emails from early April 2008 reveal that the rumors had started to spread even before Palin became the Republican vice presidential nominee. On April 6, Palin wrote in an email to staffers and her husband, Todd, “Sounds like the The Bristol rumor was started and continues via Lyda’s office.” Palin is talking about Lyda Green, then the president of the Alaska state senate and a fellow Republican with whom the Palin administration often butted heads.
Later that month, Palin again wrote to staffers about the rumors: “Hate to pick this one up again, but have heard three different times today the rumor again the [sic] Bristol is pregnant or had this baby. Even at Trig’s doc appt this morning his doc said that’s out there (hopefully NOT in their medical community-world, but it’s out there). Bristol called again this afternoon asking if there’s anything we can do to stop this as she receive [sic] two girlfriend-type calls today asking if it were true.”
The emails about her fifth pregnancy reveal that Palin was even hesitant to tell the media about the impending baby. “Kinda wish I hadnt had to tell anyone, but crazy to think it could have been hidden long,” she wrote. And on another occasion, in response to inquiries from reporters about baby gifts, she said, “I say, politely to questions like this, ummmmm, isn’t enough enough? We don’t want to exploit this — and I’m sure they have other things to write about. Is it any wonder I waited 7 mos to say anything :)”