>> Friday, September 5, 2008
Can a candidate who is running for the second highest office in the Republic, the back up to the number 1 really be unready to face tough questions? that is the contention of the McCain campaign as they have decided that Sarah Palin is too fragile to answer questions over her record or statements. Palin will instead be hidden away and then trotted out only to give speeches to selected audiences controlled wholly and fully by the McCain campaign. Matt Yglesias has post on it with transcript and video from an interview with McCain campaign manager Rick Davis this morning.
SCARBOROUGH: Yesterday Nicolle Wallace suggested that she was sitting right there and told Jay Carney of Time magazine ‘Sarah Palin doesn’t have to talk to you, she doesn’t’ have to talk to the press.’ … Can we expect Sarah Palin on Meet the Press and other one on one interviews throughout the course of this campaign?
DAVIS: We’re going to do whatever we think is the best to win. We have 60 days left and if we think it’s a good idea to go out there and do those shows, we’ll do them.
SCARBOROUGH: Can you avoid it? Meet the Press?
DAVIS: We can afford anything we want to do. … We’re going to do what we think is in our best interest. If that means access to the press, we’ll give it to you.
If you missed the impetus for this you must read it. It is a testimate to the contempt that the republicans have for the voters and the country as a whole that they refuse to allow Palin to respond to the press.
CARNEY: We don’t know yet and we won’t know until you guys allow her to take questions, you know, can she answer tough questions, you know, domestic policy, foreign policy–
WALLACE: But I mean like from who? From you? Who cares?!
CARNEY: Who cares? I think the American people care.
WALLACE: I think the American people want to see her — I mean who cares if she can talk to Time Magazine? She talked to the American people. The American people want to say, “How am I going to save my home?” She can answer that question. … She took the stage and talked to the American people about things they care about: How they’re gonna save their homes.
You will know only what we want you to know and only when we want you to know it. This way they can trot Plain out in front of crowds and have her lie over and over and over again about things like her role in troopergate or the supposed sale of Alaska's jet on ebay or her purported opposition to ted stevens or he claims about fiscal responsibility or any number of other issues that will come out about Palin.
The McCain campaign is betting that it can force the media into letting this go. They may even be right about that. the media is essentially cowardly. They crave access to candidates like a crack addict loves crack. It is the life blood of their industry. This means that we will start to see the different stages of grief (or withdrawal) coming from them as the time progresses. McCain thinks that the process to acceptance will be relatively short and that the media will ignore the additons to the troopergate scandal as the come out.
I do not mean to suggest that there will be no interviews but the ones conducted will almost surely be done with people willing to lob softballs to her and avoind any potentially indelicate subjects. The fact that these sbjects are paramount to the discussion taking place is irrelevant. The McCain camp knows that Palin cant function without a script in front of her or on a screen so they dont plan to allow it.
If the media does allow this to happen it would be a total disgrace. this makes it all the more likely that it does happen as the media has never been known for avoiding things that make them look weak and ineffective. Palin has real questions that need to be answered and if Dems allow the republicans to get away with this then we might see some big trouble. Palin will be the attack dog and unless they can make her accountable to questions regarding her attacks those attacks will have no basis in fact or reality.
Lets hope the media does their job and forces Palin to take questions and clear her record instead of acting like a spoiled princess unwilling to fill the role required of a candidate.