Did Sarah Palin Hoax the Country About Trig's Birth?
By Brad Scharlott, PhD
While living in Washington, DC, in February 2010, the now-deceased British intellectual Christopher Hitchens wrote in The Spectator: “An astonishing number of well-informed people tell me that Sarah Palin is not in fact the mother of baby Trig, but that she is ‘covering up’ for another family member whose child he really is.” It took an Englishman writing in a British newspaper to openly say what many knowledgeable Americans have shared on the sly but never publicly: that Sarah Palin faked the birth of Trig, her purported fifth biological child.
If so many Americans with whom Hitchens rubbed shoulders including many of America’s top-tier journalists think Palin faked Trig’s birth, then why has the hoax rumor been virtually taboo in the nation’s media the last four-plus years? (It’s true that Andrew Sullivan, a lone voice among nationally prominent bloggers, repeatedly questioned Palin’s birth story, and was flayed for it; but even a popular blog like Sullivan’s The Dish reaches only a tiny portion of the public.) The mainstream media blackout has likely been due to various factors, but perhaps the No. 1 reason is that the hoax rumor seems so crazy on its face it’s stunning to think Palin, the sitting governor of Alaska at the time, might do such a thing. Journalists perhaps have felt they could not question her birth story without ironclad proof of a hoax.
This article raises questions about Sarah Palin’s incredible birth story that the nation’s mainstream press have largely ignored. The questions are important because if she lied about Trig's birth, then a claim central to her political identity and popularity that she personally "choose life" for a Down syndrome baby was a sham. And if that was true, then a person of astonishing dishonesty had a chance of ending up a heartbeat from the presidency.
The Hoax Rumor Hits the Fan
On August 29, 2008, the day John McCain named Sarah Palin his running mate, someone named ArcXIX wrote at the Daily Kos blog site: “Well, Sarah, I'm calling you a liar. And not even a good one. Trig Paxson Van Palin is not your son. He is your grandson.” [i] The author quoted an Anchorage Daily News article by Welsey Loy from March 6:
JUNEAU -- Gov. Sarah Palin shocked and awed just about everybody around the Capitol on Wednesday when she announced she's expecting her fifth child.…
Palin said she's already about seven months along, with the baby due to arrive in mid-May.
That the pregnancy is so advanced astonished all who heard the news. The governor … simply doesn't look pregnant. [Italics added]
Even close members of her staff said they only learned this week their boss was expecting.
Nearly six months later, on August 31, a Daily News columnist wrote:
OK - the Palin baby speculation is inescapable at this point. The left-leaning Daily Kos posted an item Friday … a version of a rumor – long simmering in Alaska – that Palin's daughter Bristol was pregnant and the governor somehow covered it up by pretending to have the baby (Trig) herself.
The columnist quoted a Democratic strategist as saying, "Guys, it’s a loser. Can we not do this?" the point being even if the rumor was true, Democrats might hurt themselves by pursuing it.
In late August, journalists must have heard the rumors and wondered where the truth lay. If any of them had read the ArcXIX post at the Daily Kos site a few days earlier, they would have seen this AP photo, which originally appeared on the Anchorage Daily News on March 14, 2008: