A genealogist at the Utah-based Ancestry.com, Anastasia Tyler, said Obama and Palin are 10th cousins through a common ancestor named John Smith, a pastor and early settler in 17th-century Massachusetts. Obama is related to Smith through his mother, as is Palin, Tyler said.The article points out a few other celebrity relationships.
And one other thing from Ancestry.com: It also found that Palin is distant cousins with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and conservative author and pundit Ann Coulter, through John Lathrop, who was exiled to the United States from England for being a pastor of an illegal independent church.
Two major annoyances
1) Anastasia Tyler is NOT a genealogist. She is a PR manager.
There is a difference, and since every article seems to call her a genealogist, I suspect she refers to herself as one in her press release. (Unsure, as the press release doesn't appear to be online.)
2) Never do these stories explain *how* the individuals are related beyond their common ancestor. This makes the information completely useless to most people interested in family history. It only is of interest to those who care which celebrities are related to which other celebrities, and don't care how. Of course, it also means we can't check their work and prove them wrong. Which might be why Ancestry.com doesn't release that information.