The (Great?) Debate

2 10 2008

For the last few days I’ve heard on television and read from various sources that the interview that Sarah Palin did with Katie Couric showed Palin in a bad light. That she was weak and bumbled and stumbled through it. I didn’t get to see the interview, so I went to the transcript to see her “error’s”. I haven’t gotten to see or read the whole thing yet, and there might well be some, but a lot of her answers that were panned so came from this very part. This is what I’ve found so far –

COURIC: Governor Palin, it will take about ten years for domestic drilling to have an impact on consumers. So isn’t the notion of “drill, baby, drill” a little misleading to people who think this will automatically lower their gas prices, and quickly?

[STOP – I can’t let this one go. Who say’s that it will take any ten years? The people I know that are actually in the oil drilling business laugh about this, saying that if exploring, finding, leasing, drilling, pumping and shipping took ten years they’d all be out of business… ]
PALIN: We should have started ten years ago tapping into domestic supplies that America is so rich in. Alaska has billions of barrels of oil and hundreds of trillions of cubic feet of clean, green natural gas onshore and off-shore. Should have started doing it ten years ago, but better late than never. It’s gotta be an all-of-the-above approach to energy independence.

COURIC: I know you’d like to see drilling take place in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and Senator McCain, you oppose this. You call it, quote: “one of the most pristine and beautiful parts of the world.” Who’s right?
McCAIN: Did you expect two mavericks to agree on, to agree on everything? We just have, we’ll be talking more and more about this issue. But for us to agree on everything would make us, I think, a little bit boring and we’re anything — You can say a lot about us, but we’re anything but boring.
COURIC: Speaking of energy, Palin has brought plenty of it to the campaign trail, attracting huge, enthusiastic crowds, like this one at Capital University.
WOMAN IN CROWD: I strongly support McCain, but I love Governor Palin.
COURIC: Her trademark feistiness is on display as she delivers a punchy soundbite about her rival, Joe Biden.
PALIN, ON STAGE: I’ve been hearing about his Senate speeches since I was in, like, second grade.
COURIC TO PALIN: You have a 72-year-old running mate, is that kind of a risky thing to say, insinuating that Joe Biden’s been around a while?
PALIN: Oh no, it’s nothing negative at all. He’s got a lot of experience and just stating the fact there, that we’ve been hearing his speeches for all these years. So he’s got a tremendous amount of experience and, you know, I’m the new energy, the new face, the new ideas and he’s got the experience.
COURIC TO PALIN: And when it comes to establishing your world view, I was curious, what newspapers and magazines did you regularly read before you were tapped for this to stay informed and to understand the world?
PALIN: I’ve read most of them, again with a great appreciation for the press, for the media.
COURIC: Like what ones specifically, I’m curious that you-?
PALIN: Um, all of them, any of them that have been in front of me over all these years.
COURIC: Can you name a few?
PALIN: I have a vast variety of sources where we get our news, too. Alaska isn’t a foreign country, where it’s kind of suggested it seems like, “Wow, how could you keep in touch with what the rest of Washington, D.C., may be thinking and doing when you live up there in Alaska?” Believe me, Alaska is like a microcosm of America.
COURIC: Our conversation continued aboard the campaign bus.
COURIC TO PALIN: What’s your position on global warming? Do you believe it’s man-made or not?
PALIN: Well, we’re the only Arctic state, of course, Alaska. So we feel the impacts more than any other state up there with the changes in climate and certainly it is apparent. We have erosion issues and we have melting sea ice, of course. So, what I’ve done up there is form a sub-cabinet to focus solely on climate change. Understanding that it is real and-
COURIC: Is it man-made, though in your view?
PALIN: You know there are man’s activities that can be contributed to the issues that we’re dealing with now, with these impacts. I’m not going to solely blame all of man’s activities on changes in climate because the world’s weather patterns are cyclical and over history we have seen change there. But kind of doesn’t matter at this point, as we debate what caused it. The point is: it’s real; we need to do something about it.
COURIC: We also talked about her positions on a number of social issues.
COURIC TO PALIN: If a 15-year-old is raped by her father, do you believe it should be illegal for her to get an abortion? Why?
PALIN: I am pro-life and I’m unapologetic about my position there that I am pro-life. And I understand good people on both sides of the abortion debate. Now, I would counsel to choose life. I would like to see a culture of life in this country. But I would also like to see, taking it one step further, not just saying I am pro-life and I want fewer and fewer abortions in this country, but I want then those women who find themselves in circumstances that are absolutely less than ideal, for them to be supported, for adoptions to be made easier.
COURIC: But ideally, you think it should be illegal for a girl who was raped or the victim of incest to get an abortion?
PALIN: I’m saying that, personally, I would counsel that person to choose life, despite horrific, horrific circumstances that this person would find themselves in. And, if you’re asking, though, kind of foundationally here, should anyone end up in jail for having had an abortion, absolutely not. That’s nothing that I would ever support.
COURIC: Some people have credited the morning-after pill as, for decreasing the number of abortions. How do you feel about the morning-after pill?
PALIN: Well, I am all for contraception. And I’m all for any preventative measures that are legal and safe, and should be taken, but Katie, again, I am one to believe that life starts at the moment of conception. And I would like to see-
COURIC: Ergo, you don’t believe in the morning-after pill?
PALIN: I would like to see fewer and fewer abortions in this world. And again, I haven’t spoken with anyone who disagrees with my position on that.
COURIC: I’m sorry, I just want to ask you again. Do you condone or condemn the morning-after pill?
PALIN: Personally, and this isn’t McCain-Palin policy-
COURIC: No, that’s okay, I’m just asking you.
PALIN: But personally, I would not choose to participate in that kind of contraception.
COURIC: Do you believe evolution should be taught as an accepted scientific principle or one of several theories?
PALIN: Oh, I think it should be taught as an accepted principle. And, you know, I say that also as the daughter of a school teacher, a science teacher, who has really instilled in me a respect for science. It should be taught in our schools. And I won’t ever deny that I see the hand of God in this beautiful creation that is Earth. But that is not part of a policy or a local curriculum in a school district. Science should be taught in science class.
COURIC: The Governor told us, though she’s not a member of any church, she visits a couple of them regularly when she’s home. She took issue with news reports that one of them, the Wasilla Bible Church, sponsored a conference where gays could be made straight through prayer.
PALIN: When the media gets it wrong, it frustrates Americans who are just trying to get the facts and be able to make up their mind on, about a person’s values. And I don’t know what prayers are worthy of being prayed and I don’t know what prayers are going to be answered or not answered. But, as for homosexuality, I am not going to judge Americans and the decisions that they make in their adult personal relationships. I have one of my absolute best friends for the last 30 years who happens to be gay, and I love her dearly and she is not my “gay friend,” she is one of my best friends, who happens to have made a choice that isn’t a choice that I have made. But I’m not going to judge people.
COURIC: People may judge her after Thursday’s debate where she’ll be unfiltered and unedited — something reporters complain the campaign has resisted.
PALIN: The campaign knows that I am an open book. My record is out there and my life is out there.

Above transcript taken from MRC web posting and contains corrections to that transcript and also includes a few exchanges aired but not in the CBS transcript.

According to CNN’s Jack Cafferty the answers that Sarah Palin gave were wrong … very wrong. “When this is over they all write books. Hers will be titled, ‘How I Committed Political Suicide on the CBS Evening News.”


My question: What wrong with any of her answers here?

JR Dunn has a pretty good take on things in today’s American Thinker –

“…we have to ask what precisely is wrong with the progression, city council-mayor-governor-VP candidate. And the answer is — absolutely nothing. It’s as perfectly natural a progression as can be found in politics, the only remarkable element of it being the swiftness with which Palin has traversed it. This implies that she is very good at what she does. Which means, according the media and the Democrats, that we’re supposed to question her skill and abilities. Everybody got that?

Which brings us to …she wasn’t governor for long enough. Only eighteen months, according to the stopwatch. Barely a flicker of the eye, the way they judge time in Washington… Though it happens that Woodrow Wilson was elected governor of New Jersey in 1910, and went on to be elected president in 1912. Are we to take it that the extra six months make all the difference?

Experience is not simply a matter of duration, but what you do with the time you have. Palin accomplished more in that year-and-a-half than most governors do over full terms, including facing down a corrupt and entrenched old-boys network and bringing the oil companies — the state’s biggest business — to heel.

And finally, there’s the fact that she has no foreign policy experience. None. Zero. Why, no less than Charles Gibson clearly demonstrated that on the tube, with plenty in the way of sighs and head shakes, too.

…except for the easily demonstrated fact that Governor Palin, on August 27th of this year, completed a pipeline agreement with Canada, which is a foreign country. The agreement had been stymied for over two decades by various interests in Alaskan state government. Palin got it wrapped up in that busy eighteen months.

Now, anyone present who has ever successfully concluded an agreement with a foreign country please raise their hands. Uhh… not you, Sen. Obama? Or you either, Sen. Biden? Hmm… I see.”


The Vice-Presidential Debate is tonight. I don’t plan to miss it.





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