Wondering how Bristol Palin beat out Brandy to remain on "Dancing with the Stars"? So were the audience members who booed Tuesday night as she moved into the top three.
Palin's phenomenal success — in spite of occasionally stilted dancing — has raised complaints about a concentrated campaign by Sarah Palin supporters to help her daughter thrive. (And reportedly spurred one angry viewer to shoot his TV.)
But Bristol Palin says her success isn't because of her mom.
"I work my butt off," she said in an interview with E!, dismissing speculation that conservatives are plotting to prevent her elimination.
She says her mother could even be a liability: "Think about all the people who hate my mom!"
The interview took place before Brandy's shock elimination from the ABC show.
Of course, fans of Palin the elder are coordinating efforts to help Bristol make it to the final rounds — which is well within the rules of the show. It doesn't pretend to be anything but a popularity contest.
Bristol Palin will also appear on more episodes of her mother's new show, "Sarah Palin's Alaska," which on Sunday had TLC's best-ever debut ratings.
"We are competing for ratings!" she laughed.
And she hopes "Dancing" and "Alaska" won't be the end of her TV career.
"Hosting!" she told interviewer Giuliana Rancic when asked what she might want to do in the future. "Your job would be fun!"
Watch Palin's new abstinence/safe-sex PSA with The Situation, her former "Dancing" competitor: