Palin reports gifts: Gun case, statue

Ex-Alaska Gov. gets loads of free stuff

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has reported receiving more than a dozen gifts last year, including a gun case, a glass elephant and a statue of the Virgin Mary.

In a filing Monday with the Alaska Public Offices Commission by her attorney, Thomas V. Van Flein, Palin listed 15 gifts worth more than $250. Under state law, the former Republican governor and 2008 vice presidential candidate is not required to disclose the many gifts that she received — often at political events — that are appraised at less than $250.

The 15 gifts came from a dozen different states. None were from Alaska, though a Canadian woman from Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, sent some prints.

Only one gift came from Washington, D.C. — 10 copies of the book “The Audacity of Deceit: Barack Obama’s War on American Values,” from Associated Television News.

The gun case, with “Sarah” embroidered on it, was given by a man from Tennessee. Other gifts included a goatskin-bound Bible, an embroidered cross-stitched blanket, a hand-painted plate featuring Palin, two handmade Army flags and assorted jewelry.

Palin also received 19 books and three CDs, many with Christian themes, from a woman in Indiana.

“Although there are relatively few gifts that exceed [$250], there were many gifts that were valued under $50 (mainly books and CDs, T-shirts and the like),” Van Flein noted in the filing. “It took many hours to winnow this list to its present form.”

“Because it can be intrinsically difficult to place a monetary value on some gifts, particularly unique gifts that may be handmade, Gov. Palin’s disclosure errs on the side of disclosure,” he said.

The filing does not list any gifts that she or her husband, Todd, might have received from his snow machine sponsorship with Arctic Cat because of a confidentiality clause in his contract with the company.

Van Flein noted, though, that he was “informed that Gov. Palin has not read the contract and does not know the specific terms of the contract.”

But the attorney said the nature of the contract is such that the company only pays sponsorship fees for races, outfits the team with “Team Arctic Wear” and gives Todd Palin and his teammates a 50 percent discount on merchandise.

“Gov. Palin has no direct contact or communication with Arctic Cat,” Van Flein said. “She has not read, and under the terms of the contract is not entitled to read, the specific sponsorship provisions, but she is generally aware that Todd Palin is entitled to the discounts and fee as part of being a sponsored team.”

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