Dec. 1, 2009— -- It was billed as a bus tour, but Sarah Palin's travels across the country to promote her new book have included several flights on an expensive private jet, her publisher told ABC News.
The former Republican vice presidential candidate and Alaska governor, who sold off a private jet belonging to the state calling it "over the top," has been getting around the United States to promote her book aboard a Gulfstream 2 private jet -- at a cost of $4,000 per hour.
It's not unusual for politicians to regularly take planes on tours and then board a campaign bus to arrive at a stop, but in an era in which private jets carry a special sort of stigma, Palin may be vulnerable to criticism.
"Sarah Palin, I think, genuinely is a hockey mom, but every so often, she gets caught up in something a little more glamorous than that," said ABC News consultant Cokie Roberts.
During the presidential campaign, Palin was heavily criticized for the fancy designer clothes that she wore. The Republican Party had paid for the Palin's campaign.
HarperCollins, the publisher of Palin's best-selling "Going Rogue: An American Life," had no comment on the logistics for the book tour. But a company representative told "Good Morning America" that HarperCollins paid for the jet, and that Palin took it only for three legs of the journey and only when it was necessary.
Book Title Refers to Palin's Independent Streak
The memoir has topped best-seller lists, selling more than 2.7 million copies since its release Nov. 17.
The tour -- expected to end next week -- has made stops in largely Republican strongholds.
"Going Rogue" follows Palin from childhood to her departure last summer as Alaska governor. The title refers to her independent streak as a candidate, stemming from complaints within the campaign of GOP presidential nominee John McCain that she had gone "rogue" by disagreeing with the campaign's decision to pull out of Michigan last October.
McCain halted his campaign in the state after internal polls showed Obama approaching a double-digit lead. Palin publicly disagreed with the move and said she'd "sure love to get to run to Michigan" to make sure residents know the Republicans had not given up in the state.Before the pullout, Palin had campaigned with McCain in Grand Rapids and the Detroit suburb of Sterling Heights.
Palin's book tour has made stops in Washington, Pa., Rochester, N.Y., Roanoke, Va., Fayetteville, N.C. and Birmingham, Ala., among other destinations.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.
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