The quote came in an opinion piece Thursday by former Virginia Democratic Party chief Paul Goldman and George Mason University professor Mark J. Rozell. The piece speculated on whether Bachmann's possible presidential run might compel Palin to get in the race, and argued that her recent bus tour sent a message to Bachmann, R-Minn. -- a message they attributed directly to Palin.
The article said: "Palin's bus tour had some of the hallmarks of a primal scream: 'I built this constituency, not Bachmann, not anyone else,' she said. Looking at it through her eyes, she has a point."
However, Palin never said that. Her political action committee promptly issued a statement urging the media to "quit making stuff up."
"An absurd opinion piece in Politico includes a quote attributed to Governor Palin that is a total fabrication and yet is deliberately written to appear as if it is a legitimate direct quote. By any standard this is unacceptable even for an opinion piece," the statement said.
By Friday, Politico had stripped the quote marks and the attribution, and issued a formal correction.
"An editing error caused a false attribution in an earlier version of this column. A comment by the authors was transformed into a direct quote from Sarah Palin. She never said the words attributed to her. Those words were written by the authors," Politico.com wrote.
The flap comes as the state of Alaska prepares to release thousands of emails from her first two years as governor. Palin says she's not concerned about their contents.