Saturday, 10 April 2010

Shelly Mandell - Did she or did she not receive the $ 12,368 from SarahPAC? - UPDATE! Elaine Lafferty reappears!

+++Please note that Palingates published several posts about this topic which compliment each other! Read them HERE+++

Last Tuesday, we published the post "Current NOW President, Terry O’Neill, Bought and Paid For By SarahPAC? - PART I". In this post we reported that Shelly Mandell, former President of the L.A. chapter of NOW, received consulting fees in total amounting to $ 12,368 from SarahPAC.

This post (and the follow up: "The Elaine Lafferty Files") received a lot of attention. We were in contact afterwards with a number current and former officials of NOW who were enraged by this story.

Our report was picked up by Alaska Dispatch and also by Phil Munger from Progressive Alaska. Phil also cross posted his article under his pen name "Edward Teller" on the "Seminal Firedoglake blog". However, there was a problem with this post on Firedoglake. It was pulled.

EDIT: Phil Munger just explained in the comments that Firedoglake was faced with the accusation of defamation and therefore was forced to pull the post within 24 hours! This is outrageous, and we fully understand the reasons of Firedoglake to pull the post!

The original post could be found here. I managed to make a screenshot of the cached version yesterday, which today is also not accessible any more (click to enlarge - it's just the first part of Phil's post on Firedoglake):

Phil Munger yesterday explained the situation after the removal of his post on Firedoglake to the readers on his blog "Progressive Alaska", where the post is still online and said:

"Update - Friday 12:30 p.m: I have been informed that "the post on Palingates you reference makes a claim that SarahPAC paid Mandell, a claim that cannot be proven."

I take that to mean that Ms. Mandell is claiming the information published at Palingates and which is linked to and quoted here, is inaccurate. Progressive Alaska is not vouching for the accuracy of the information published at Palingates on this. Should the Palingates authors or Ms. Mandell wish to further clarify this issue, you are welcome to a guest post at Progressive Alaska."

So - somebody apparently complained to Firedoglake that our claim "cannot be proven"?

In order to set the record straight, I today faxed the following letter to Shelly Mandell's law firm
(there was no email address on her law firm website):

"Dear Shelly,

my name is Patrick from the blog Palingates ( As you will certainly be aware, we reported on Tuesday, April 6, 2010 that you received an amount of $12,368 of consulting fees from SarahPAC (

In addition, we reported that you received travel expenses of $ 2356.80 from the McCain campaign, which seem very generous, taken the fact into account that Sarah Palin's rallies in Carson and Henderson, where you appeared, were in fact quite close to your home.

Regarding our reporting on the consulting fees:

We deduced our statement that you were the recipient of the $ 12,368 from the fact that the mysterious company "Glebe Inc" which received the money from SarahPAC is located at your address, according to the records of SarahPAC: 3906 Tilden Avenue, Culver City, CA 90232.

The building at this address is not a commercial building, but a small private residential home - your home. We proved in our post that you own the building, and that you made a donation to Hillary Clinton from this address as well. We also looked up the building on Google street view, which fully confirmed the available written information.

Therefore we strongly believe that our reporting conforms with high standards of journalism and that there is solid "prima facie" evidence that you are the owner of "Glebe Inc" - especially taken the fact into account that you also campaigned for Sarah Palin.

However, we would be very happy to hear your version of the events and to publish it. Although NOBODY has contacted Palingates so far and asked us to correct our story, we assume from the behavior of the Firedoglake blog that there is apparently a disagreement about the validity of our claims (see Phil Munger's remarks after his blog post was pulled on Firedoglake:

Therefore we would be glad if you could tell us who the owner of "Glebe Inc" is, why this business is located at your private address and what the services were that SarahPAC paid for - supported by the appropriate written documentation.

We are more than happy to set the record straight and await your detailed response. We have published the content of this letter on Palingates.

Your Sincerely,

Please answer via email:"


We are now eagerly waiting for Shelly's answer.

I sent the fax online via three different providers and received confirmations that the fax was sent successfully from all three of them.

I also would like to add that we were unable so far to find any records for a "Glebe Inc" in Culver City, CA.

With the official CA Business search I can only find a "GLEBE DEVELOPMENT CORP." in San Diego which I don't believe has anything to do with the "Glebe Inc" in Culver City.

Shelly Mandell campaigning for Sarah Palin:


UPDATE (by Patrick):

There we have our first update! No, we haven't received an answer from Shelly Mandell yet, but thanks to our great reader aview999, we now come very, very close to the final solution of the puzzle!

From the newly found records, it now appears that the mysterious "Glebe Inc" which had Shelly Mandell's private address as a mailing address in the SarahPAC records is actually run by Elaine Lafferty! It appears to be her company "Glebe Financial Inc", which is registered in Las Vegas, Nevada!

Our reader aview999 had the brilliant idea to search in Nevada's company records, and here we are:

Glebe Financials Inc - screenshot 1

Glebe Financials Inc - screenshot 2

Glebe Financials Inc - screenshot 3

This new find ties in nicely with the fact that, as we already reported, Elaine Lafferty made a donation to Hillary Clinton on August 11, 2008 while also using Shelly Mandell's address:

Elaine Lafferty - donation Hillary Clinton

Therefore, the picture becomes much clearer now.

The "Democrat" Elaine Lafferty received not only $ 53,270 consulting fees from the McCain campaign and the McCain-Palin campaign, as is part of the public record, but she apparently also received $ 12,368 consulting fees directly from SarahPAC, using "Glebe Financials Inc" which is registered in Nevada.

So why did Elaine Lafferty use her real name and an address in New York for the payments from the McCain campaign and the McCain-Palin campaigns, but used her company name "Glebe Financial Inc" (without the word "Financial" in the SarahPAC records) and Shelly Mandell's address for the payments from SarahPAC?

This is a question only Elaine Lafferty herself could answer. It's your turn now, Elaine! ;-)


UPDATE 2 (by Patrick):

Here is an overview about what Elaine Lafferty received from the McCain campaign, the McCain-Palin campaign and SarahPAC:

Using her real name and the address „332 Bleeker Str, #H-83, 10014 New York“:

September 30, 2008:
Amount: $ 25,000
From: McCain-Palin 2008 Inc
Reason: GOTV Consulting


October 27, 2008: Elaine Lafferty publishes the article "Sarah Palin's a Brainiac" in the Daily Beast.


October 31, 2008:
Amount: $ 25,070
From: McCain-Palin 2008 Inc


December 4, 2008:
Amount: $ 2,976.73
From: John McCain 2008 Inc
Reason: Travel
Reason: Communications Consulting


December 10, 2008:
Amount: $ 3,200
From: McCain-Palin 2008 Inc
Reason: GOTV Consulting


Using the address PO Box 16118, 22215 Arlington, VA:

December 10, 2008:
Amount: $ 472
From: McCain-Palin 2008 Inc
Reason: Travel


Using her company „Glebe Financial Inc“ and Shelly Mandell’s address „3906 Tilden Ave., 90232 Culver City, CA:

March 3, 2009:
Amount: $6,325
From: SarahPAC
Reason: Consulting press and expenses


March 6, 2009: Elaine Lafferty publishes the article "Palin's Smart Move" in the Daily Beast.


April 19, 2009:
Amount: $ 6,043
From: SarahPAC
Reason: Consulting press and expenses


May 28, 2009: Elaine Lafferty publishes the article "Is Sotomayor Getting Palin-ed" in the Daily Beast.


Apart from that, we can be certain that the "Democrat" Elaine Lafferty also got paid by the "Daily Beast" for her ultimate puff-piece "Sarah Palin's a Brainiac"...

Elaine Lafferty - Sarah Brainiac well as for her other articles in the Daily Beast and for her TV appearances (for example with Greta Van Susteren):


Meanwhile, Elaine Lafferty and Shelly Mandell are still mentioned in Wikipedia in the section "Democratic and liberal support for John McCain in 2008".

I wonder how much some of the other people mentioned in this section got paid - it seems that John McCain paid well! After all, Elaine Lafferty received much more than Sarah Palin's hairdresser and her make-up artist, and that's something!


UPDATE 3 (by Patrick):

It should be noted that on March 6, 2009, just three days after Elaine Lafferty's company "Glebe Financial Inc" received the payment of $ 6,325 from SarahPAC for "consulting press and expenses", Elaine Lafferty managed to smuggle another Palin puff-piece into the Daily Beast, again cleverly posing as a feminist who reluctantly is drawn to Sarah Palin, addressing her "sister feminists". The article is called "Palin's Smart Move":

Elaine Lafferty - Daily Beast Screenshot - March 2009
Elaine wrote:

"So, of course Sarah Palin is not pro-choice. But she is now, as governor of Alaska, what she was before the presidential campaign: a pragmatic conservative politician who largely governs from the center. She is opposed to abortion, but it does not inform every decision she makes. Done with playing the good soldier for McCain’s right wing on the campaign trail, she is back to being who she is.

Here is the question then: Why do we demonize or worship certain charismatic female politicians, projecting either our most unrealistic hopes on them or our worst fears? Palin got caught in this, and the McCain campaign was clueless even as they watched it happen. This “love her or hate her” business isn’t good for women. It sidelines them as the now-familiar “polarizing figures.” If Hillary Clinton hadn’t had to focus so much on simply not being “polarizing” while she was trying to get her message out, she might be president today.

Gov. Sarah Palin appointed Morgan Christen to the Alaska Supreme Court because she believed Christen was the best person for the job. Feminists should be happy. Next month, Palin will probably do something we don’t like. Either way, she isn’t our nightmare any more than she is our dream come true."


Well, Elaine - your reluctant appreciation surely paid well!

In future, you won't fool nobody any more.

(h/t "Say NO to Palin in Politics")


UPDATE 4 (by Patrick):

We have another great find, thanks to our reader "so_many_unanswered_questions". In an article at the feminist blog "Girl w/ pen" in which Elaine Lafferty's support for Sarah Palin was discussed, Elaine Lafferty left a fascinating comment on October 28, 2008, one day after the publication of her "Brainiac" article in the Daily Beast.

These are the relevant comments:

Bob Lamm Says:
October 28th, 2008 at 11:36 am
I’ve just read Elaine Lafferty’s defense of Sarah Palin. Your readers should know that in this column Lafferty tells readers that she has been working as a consultant to the McCain campaign “since shortly after Palin’s nomination.” So I believe it’s fair to ask: isn’t defending Sarah Palin what Elaine Lafferty is being paid for? How do we separate Elaine Lafferty, the Democrat and feminist, from Elaine Lafferty, the paid staff member for John McCain AND Sarah Palin?

Kristen Says:
October 28th, 2008 at 11:40 am
Bob, you’re absolutely right–it should be pointed out that Elaine Lafferty is not just an observer, she’s on the team. Thanks for noting this important point.

Elaine Lafferty Says:
October 28th, 2008 at 11:46 am
It’s easy to seperate, Bob. I would not represent anything or voice an opinion I believed to be untrue no matter who was paying me, nor how much. (Does the fact that you get paid for a magazine article or op-ed mean you only have that opinion for the money? Of course not.) Simple transparency and integrity required that disclosure.


Elaine Lafferty - comment in Girl with a pen

Let's recap - Elaine Lafferty says:

"Simple transparency and integrity required that disclosure."

Well, Elaine - why didn't you disclose to the readers of the Daily Beast in your article on March 6, 2009 that you were paid the nice sum of $ 6,325 just three days before by SarahPAC? Instead your involvement with SarahPAC was hidden behind the name of a corporation.

This had nothing to do with being paid by a magazine for an article.

That's not transparency and integrity - it's classic deception, combined with grifting. Sarah Palin style, actually.


UPDATE 5 (by Patrick):

With stunning determination, or should I say in fulfilling her obligations after having received the second payment by SarahPAC about a month earlier, Elaine Lafferty lamented the persecution of Sarah Palin once again in the Daily Beast (apparently her favorite publication). In the clever piece "Is Sotomayor Getting Palin-ed?" from May 28, 2009, Elaine argues that Sarah Palin and Sonia Sotomayor are both being criticized for the same reason - just because they are women.

Elaine Lafferty - Sotomayor article - Daily Beast


"When Palin hit the national stage last year, she paid the price demanded by the intelligentsia; regardless of her politics and with no evidence that she’d ever set foot in any Cambridge anywhere, both the left and the elitists of the right concluded she was simply a ditz. The more Palin spoke of her life experience as the mother of a Down syndrome baby or as a small-town mayor, the dumber she was. The political culture that had previously demanded candidates know the price of a quart of milk ridiculed one who really knew the price of Pampers. Oh, her inexperience in the things that mattered! If she’d had chunky ankles and an even more unfortunate fashion sense, she might have been Maggie Thatcher. A man, she might have been Ronald Reagan."

(h/t MrsTarquinBiscuitbarrel)


In addition, it is also noteworthy that Lynn Forester de Rothschild, another woman and "Democrat" who openly supported Sarah Palin together with Shelly Mandell and Elaine Lafferty in 2008, also wrote in the Daily Beast. On October 13, 2008 she published the article "A Democrat In Defense of Sarah Palin" and boldly stated:

"Second, the attack on Palin's qualifications is sexist, a bias abetted by the media."

In February 2010, however, Rothschild showed her true colors. In another article in the Daily Beast called "I Told You So" the "Democrat" Rothschild claimed:

"The failures of the Obama presidency were clearly telegraphed by the Obama candidacy. I hate to say it, but I told you so."

She then goes on to say something like Obama being an evil left-wing politician: "His cynical use of centrist language as a tool to get elected does not change the fact of his true objectives for America." Add a few betchas, palm teleprompters and Trigs, and it could have been from Sarah's script which Sarah dutifully learned by heart and which she now presents to every audience at any given opportunity, whether they like it or not.


UPDATE 6 (by Patrick):

I would like to state for the record that I sent the fax mentioned in this post to Shelly Mandell's law firm yesterday via three different online providers and received a confirmation of delivery from all three of them.

We also finally got hold of Shelly Mandell's and Elaine Lafferty's email addresses, and I sent an email to Shelly Mandell yesterday and to Elaine Lafferty today, saying that Palingates would be very happy to publish their own accounts regarding the issues that are being discussed here.

So far, nobody has answered us.

I also received the information from the editors of Alaska Dispatch that up until now nobody contacted them and asked them to retract their story about the NOW controversy.

Accordingly, Palingates has never been contacted by ANYBODY asking us to retract this story - or to retract any other story we have published in the past. In fact, Palingates never ever has been contacted by ANY lawyer or anybody else who was unhappy with the facts of a story that we had published. The reason is that the reporting on Palingates is factual and accurate.

We were only contacted by the Vice-President of Harper Collins once who complained that we had posted screenshots from "Going Rogue" before the book had been published.

Special thanks to Phil Munger for defending us in the comments of his post on Progressive Alaska.


READ THE FOLLOW-UP: Shelly Mandell and Elaine Lafferty: Delegates at the last national NOW conference - An inside view

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