Sarah Palin, whose credibility and popularity were battered following the Arizona shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, is now facing another crisis. New rumors have surfaced that her husband Todd Palin cheated with a female massage therapist who has been arrested for prostitution.
Rumors of infidelity have dogged the Palins, since Sarah’s unsuccessful run as Republican John McCain’s vice presidential candidate in 2008. The rumors subsided, amid heated denials, but they have gained new traction recently.
Political bloggers, largely in Alaska, have been digging into the allegations, but now The National Enquirer claims it has “official documents” confirming the woman’s arrest.
The newspaper also reports that police have confiscated physical evidence that could tie Todd to an alleged extramarital affair.
The Enquirer famously exposed golfer Tiger Woods’ extramarital affairs in November 2009, when it publicized his relationship with New York party girl Rachel Uchitel.
But the magazine is known to miss on stories as much as it hits.
In any event, the paper, citing sources, claims the scandal has the potential to derail Palin’s possible 2012 White House bid and destroy her marriage. The couple has five children together, including unwed teen mother, Bristol Palin, who is carving out a political profile of her own.
The woman, identified by bloggers as Shailey Tripp, reportedly contributed free massages to one of Sarah Palin’s campaign staff when she ran for governor of Alaska.
The Enquirer said it received an anonymous email sent to various news outlets containing the allegations. The email identified Tripp and said her arrest in March 2010 was linked to her affair with Todd Palin.
“According to the tenants in the building of her offices, they saw Todd come and go often and heard noises that sounded like someone was having sex. It was the same tenants who called the police on her,” the email claimed.
Tripp, 36, was arrested on March 4, 2010 in Anchorage and charged with maintaining a house of prostitution, according to police documents.
Tripp pleaded no contest on June 13, 2010 with sentencing set for June 15, 2011.
She agreed to complete 80 hours of volunteer service, not post advertisements on CraigsList and pay a fine of $500. Tripp can withdraw her plea at the sentencing hearing and the case will be dismissed, records show.