POLITICS
03/18/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Palin Plane Tour: Using Private Jet, Forcing Staff To Take Bus

UPDATE: A Palin aide downplayed the former governor's use of a private plane on her book tour Tuesday, saying she was using both the jet and the bus. Palin's publisher backs the aide up; HarperCollins says there was plenty of driving too.

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Sarah Palin's "Going Rogue" bus has logged thousands of miles as it crosses the country, promoting her memoir. But Palin herself has been traveling by private jet, using the bus only for brief stops and media appearances.

The blog Palingates was the first to highlight the disconnect, pointing out that Palin arrived in Tri-Cities, Washington on Thanksgiving via private jet, not bus.

The flight log for the plane, a Gulfstream II, can be found here -- it tracks Palin's own movements. The Daily Beast's Joe McGinniss reported that Palin's staff apparently was riding the bus while their boss took to the skies:

Last week I was in The Villages, the fantastical Back to the Future-style retirement enclave north of Orlando, when Palin popped out the front door of the bus to greet the thousand or so worshipers gathered outside Barnes & Noble. I thought she sure looked good for someone who had been riding a bus for a week, changing diapers--as she said--all the way. Publicist Andreadis, by contrast, had the worn and harried look of someone who had been earning an honest living by riding a bus for a week. [...]

What's wrong in this instance is the apparent fakery created and sustained for the sake of building pseudo-populist appeal--and selling books. Sarah Palin and HarperCollins have consciously tried to give the impression that she is doing her book tour by bus when the evidence suggests she is not. At every stop, she's been filmed getting off Big Blue looking rested and radiant. She dazzles onlookers and interviewers with her seemingly bottomless reserves of energy. And no one suspects she may secretly be hopping on and off her main means of transport, UJT750, and resting up in hotels.

Check out some pictures of the Gulfstream II:

Palin's Private jet

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