RSS
Bristol Palin: Political consultant
Is Sarah Palin's daughter serious about her new consulting firm, BSMP — or is it just a front for financial funny business?
Bristol Palin.
Bristol Palin.
Corbis
B

ristol Palin has reportedly set up her own political consultancy. As Rachel Maddow revealed on MSNBC, Sarah Palin's daughter, 19, is the sole employee of BSMP LLC, a new company that will provide “lobbying, public relations, and political consulting services"—and whose first client is the pro-abstinence group Candie's Foundation. Although Maddow quipped that BSMP's teenage sage — best known for getting pregnant out of wedlock — might be well equipped to advise her mother on a 2012 presidential campaign, other observers are taking Bristol Palin's apparent ambitions quite seriously. What's going on?

Sounds like another Palin family plan to outwit the IRS: BSMP sounds strangely similar to the LLC set up by Bristol's mother not too long ago, says Ryan Tate in Gawker. Pie Spy LLC nominally provided “shadowy” services for the “elderly and persons with disabilities,” but actually existed mainly to help the Palins “patriotically shield their income from taxes.” Seems like “Bristol's new whatever” will do the same thing.?
"The Latest Bizarre Palin Company is Here: Bristol's Lobbying Firm"

Tax-related or not, Bristol's venture seems fishy: I smell a conspiracy, says archivist in the Palin watchdog blog And So It Goes. Sarah will try to “keep it in the family” by paying Bristol's firm for its services with funds donated to her political action committee. This could be just a “front” to “absorb the PAC funds.”
"SarahPAC and Keeping it All in the Family!?"

This is legimate: Bristol's sole responsibility is as an "ambassador for the Candie's Foundation," reports Rachel Maddow on MSNBC, interpreting an email from BSMP's lawyer, Thomas Van Flein. Essentially, it seems, "Bristol Palin has set herself up to be paid as an incorporated entity, as opposed to being paid an an individual" — a "common" practice for people who "have money coming in from various sources." So, it's certainly arguable that BSMP is just a "pretty smart financial decision by an astute 19-year-old," if not an actual PR firm.
"The Rachel Maddow Show," Jan. 4, 2010

Never underestimate a Palin: Once again, "the mainstream media" is "grossly underestimat[ing]" a Palin, says conservative blogger Beth at Blue Star Chronicles. They're attempting to "belittle, demean, and slander" Bristol by "going out of their way to point out that [she] is an unwed mother." It's understandable to "wonder if she knows anything at all about public relations." But "I'm guessing that, having been raised in the family she was raised in, she knows a lot about it." Her parents certainly do.
"Bristol Palin PR firm"

EDITORS' PICKS

THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER

Subscribe to the Week