Matthews on Palin book

MATTHEWS ON PALIN BOOK…. Now that Sarah Palin is “just” the chief executive of a state, she’ll apparently find the time to write a book about, well, it’s not quite clear what she wants to write about. The governor has, however, retained high-powered Washington super-attorney Robert Barnett, who’s negotiated some very lucrative book deals for some very high-profile clients, to help secure her a deal. Rumor has it Palin’s looking for about $11 million.

Chris Matthews, meanwhile, has a few impertinent questions about the governor’s skills.

MSNBC host Chris Matthews suggested Friday that Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) may not have the reading or writing ability needed to complete the book she is reportedly shopping.

The Los Angeles Times reported Friday that Palin is seeking an $11 million advance for her memoir and has hired high-powered Washington attorney Robert Barnett to broker the deal.

Teasing a segment on the book during his show “Hardball,” Matthews said: “If she can read, if she can write, she’ll make some money.”

Matthews repeated his suggestion that Palin could not write the book later in the show. “The question is who actually will write the Palin book,” he said. “The only politician I know who can write is Barack Obama.”

Putting Matthews’ questions aside, I do think Palin’s book — unlike George W. Bush’s or Karl Rove’s — would sell well. For many far-right activists, Palin is the future of the conservative movement, logic and reason notwithstanding. Plus, she wants to maintain a high profile in advance of 2012, and a book, whether she turns it over to a ghost-writer or not, would help.

That said, if Palin pursues this, I suspect Matthews’ questions, while obviously impolite, will be fairly common.

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Steve Benen

Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.