Palin’s Pregnant Daughter and the VP Vetting Process
After some unsavory rumors that Sarah Palin faking a pregnancy to protect her daughter surfaced, Palin revealed yesterday that her unmarried 17-year-old daughter, Bristol, was five months pregnant but scheduled to marry the 18-year-old hockey playing father, Levi Johnston. One hesitates to delve into the story of candidates’ minor children, who are not public figures. Now, though, the focus has turned to where it should: The vetting process that yielded the unexpected selection of the relative unknown Sarah Palin as John McCain’s running mate.
There had already been reports that McCain and his inner circle decided on Palin outside the normal process set up to ensure that there would be no surprises. This revelation — of what was apparently an open secret in Alaska would seem to vindicate that charge. ABC’s George Stephanopoulos and NBC’s Andrea Mitchell both report that a bunch of GOP lawyers are now heading to Alaska for “a deeper vet.” As Josh Marshall puts it, “Face It: They Didn’t Vet Her.”
Team McCain insists this is nonsense and that they were fully aware of the situation with Palin’s daughter. AP’s Liz Sidoti reports that,
Sarah Palin’s path to the Republican ticket started with her name on a list — and a team of some 25 people poring through public records searching for trouble spots without her knowledge. Then came the 70-question survey and a nearly three-hour interview.
Stoking the notion of a rushed examination, a timeline issued by the campaign indicated that McCain initially met Palin in February, then held one phone conversation with her last week before inviting her to Arizona, where he met with her a second time and offered her the job.
[Arthur B. Culvahouse Jr., the lawyer who conducted the review] said Palin’s review, like others, began with a team of two dozen people culling information from public sources. The team reviewed speeches, financial records, tax information, litigation, investigations, ethical charges, marriages and divorces, for a number of potential running mates.
For Palin specifically, the team studied online archives of the state’s largest newspapers, including the Anchorage Daily News, but didn’t request paper archives for Palin’s hometown newspaper for fear the secret review would become public. Among the findings: Palin had once received a citation for fishing without a license.
Culvahouse then conducted a nearly three-hour interview. He said the first thing Palin volunteered was that her daughter was pregnant, and she also quickly disclosed her husband’s two-decade-old DUI arrest. The public search also unearthed details of the Legislature’s investigation into the dismissal of Alaska’s public safety commissioner, allegedly because he would not fire Palin’s former brother-in-law as a state trooper.
It sounds like, at a minimum, Team McCain valued maximum surprise and buzz from the announcement more than thorough vetting. Similarly, they seemed determined to avoid further annoying social conservatives, given that pro-choicers Joe Lieberman and Tom Ridge were clearly McCain’s preferred running mates.
Drawing comparisons with George McGovern’s disastrous choice of Thomas Eagleton as his running mate, Jeralyn Merritt has started a pool: “What Day Will Sarah Palin Drop Out?” Given Palin’s popularity with the party’s conservative base and McCain’s own combativeness, I doubt it’ll come to that.
One wonders, though, why they chose Palin even with this story out there. ABC’s Jake Tapper asks the not unreasonable question, “What would the response be if Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, and his wife Michelle had a pregnant unmarried teenage daughter?”
Perhaps, Mr. Joyner, you would have preferred the McCain staff asked for YOUR opinion first (always first) before making the choice of Governor Sarah Palin? I don’t necessarily agree with Senator McCain on all things, but he IS the Republican candidate for President (and you’re not, thank the Lord).
Please explain how Governor Palin’s 17-year old daughter’s situation (or for that matter Governor Palin’s own Down Syndrome child) has ANY affect on her administration of this country’s largest State? Is there something about a woman of child-bearing years that does not make her a good choice for Vice-President? Please explain how and why her daughter’s choice prevents Governor Palin from being a good Vice-President. Does her daughter’s choice mean Governor Palin’s record is somehow tarnished?
Better yet, why not tell Governor Palin’s husband how much you disdain his daughter’s actions in person? I’m sure you’d enjoy the dialectic discussion that would ensue. Oh, I’d make sure you’re health insurance is paid up to date before you attempt something like that.
Dr. James Dobson set the correct tone in his comments. Dr.William Bennett and the Conservative side of the Blogosphere fully support Governor Palin and her daughter. I’d say you’re clearly in the minority on this (and other) issues.
Back to my original question – Senator McCain did not choose you for his running mate. He chose an exceptional woman.
Deal with it.
We wouldn’t know about it, because she would be getting an abortion given that babie are punishments to teenagers in the Obama family.
And what shall we say of the vetting process for Joe Biden?
And what connection did Biden have to the sub-prime melt-down?
Forgive me, James, I’m not jumping on you, here, but in my estimation Biden’s troubles sound just a bit more serous than a teen pregnancy, where the couple in question are getting married anyway.
Of course the left… (And the press) (But I repeat myself) …doesn’t seem to think so, but I guess I’d expect that.
Now, of course we’ll hear about how the Obama camp knew about all of this and shrugged it off during the vetting process…. and somehow we’re supposed to take it that this is more credible than MCCain’s camp making the same claim.
Dare we say “Double Standard”?
Other than being distractions for her, they’re distractions for the campaign. The teen pregnancy is especially problematic given that her main bonafides for VP is that she’s appealing to social conservatives. Yet her own daughter apparently has unprotected sex out of wedlock. That ain’t good.
This is survivable, of course. That she kept her Down’s Syndrome baby when abortion would have been easy and, especially, that her daughter is keeping her baby and marrying the father — despite the political consequences in the short run — is admirable. But one still doesn’t want this kind of story stepping on the VP bounce.
But these are grown people, not minor children for whom Biden is personally responsible for supervising. Nor are Biden’s credentials as a dad the main thing that people have touted as his qualification.
No, I wonder: “What the hell did the vetting process dig up on all the other choices, that made Palin, with all her troubles, the best pick?”
Give it a rest. James isn’t saying that these issues would make Palin a bad VP, he’s saying that they make her a bad running mate.
He’s making no moral judgment on Palin, her daughter, or anyone else in her family. Do you feel it is so necessary to vigorously defend McCain’s choice of Palin that you see any attempt to question it as a personal attack on her? Seriously, your post was worse than people who claimed racism every time someone questioned anything about Obama.
Leaves we waiting with anticipation for the this weeks episode of ‘Northern Expose Her‘
I don’t think that’s going to hurt her with social conservatives. Especially since her daughter didn’t get an abortion, and is going to marry the father, she seems a likely poster child for socially conservative rehabilitation. It’s rare that I’ve seen social conservatives blame the parents for a child’s pre-marital sex, they generally accept that children are immoral heathens due to the influence of our secular culture.
The difference is that Biden’s troubles were not a surprise, to Obama or the national media. Remember, a candidate having issues is not news, but a candidate having new issues is news.
Something tells me that McCain doesn’t care what you think, Mr. Joyner. These Palin people look a whole lot like average Americans where I live.
Could it actually be worse for the Eagleton idea to linger for a month or for her to go quickly, now? I suspect her leaving the ticket would probably be worse than the festering, if the worst stories are now already out. She’d better give a good speech.
Actually, I think Palin’s membership in a party with successionist aims is a far greater thing to have overlooked.
Not to mention the firing of the State’s Director of Public Safety for his refusal to fire her former brother-in-law. Or that her primary claims to being a maverick (having opposed earmarks, especially the “bridge to nowhere” and being at odds with Ted Stevens) are simply untrue.
Yes, James cut it out … I’m liking Palin more and more. First we find out that she is an income redistributer with her windfall tax scheme. No wonder Alaskans love her, free money from the producers !!!!!
Even better … now we find out that she is a supporter of privacy and non-governmental intrusion on reproductive decisions.
Any chance she has a gay relative, that would be the trifecta.
Seriously though people, James, though he in in great pains to say it, is right. If Palin was a Democrat she would be ripped to shreds on the more reactionary Right wing sites and treated with, at best, icy acceptance by the more thoughtful left of center types.
And that’s exactly what the rest of us are afraid of.
In context, I doubt it. Perhaps you’re too young to recall the Alaska of the 70’s mantra: “Let the bastards freeze in the dark”?
The flap about the vetting process has nothing to do with the vetting process. It is just the panicked left attacking the general competency of the McCain campaign. They are merely shooting at squirrels(McCain) by aiming at a nearby rock and hoping for a ricochet. What’s new.
The New york Times regularly fails to vet (check an article before printing) and buries the retraction near the pre-owned pet rock ads.
I’m still waiting for the glazed over, halo blinded, vetting of Obama – Wright – Ayers -Rensco – Alinsky connection.
The oldest vetter in history is probably one named Pontius Pilate who told the world that refused to listen – “I find nothing wrong with this Man.”
That Biden is Obama’s running mate would seem to disprove that.
If it’s just a left-wing panic attack, then why are moderate right wingers also questioning McCain’s vetting process? James was a McCain supporter back when everybody counted him out, so you can’t say he’s biased against him, and even he thinks this was a vetting disaster.
Yes, because the reactionary Right hasn’t been trying to rip Biden over his family’s legal issues. I think your evidence supports Rick’s claims more than it disproves them.
First, the insuation that Palin’s administration of Alaska is impressive because it’s geographically the largest is lost on me.
Second, it’s incumbant on her to protect her family. If she doesn’t want dirt to come out, then she can’t talk about the good, sappy stuff that resonates with voters. The mere use of her family by her in national media, opens this door. She’s smart, she understands that her photo on the cover of Time holding her baby is a calculated political move. Just as much as Obama’s amd McCain’s books are.
Obviously, we feel more comfortable that her family is used positively, by her. That they are used negatively doesn’t set well with most of us, but she could have placed them off limits by refusing to answer questions or release photos. Sure, all of it would have slipped out somehow -good and bad – but she would have made a respectable stand. But she didn’t. Which just tells us she’s more interested in winning than the consequences of political campaigning on her family. So, she’s just like every other politician out there. Big whoop.
James, every time somebody says this, it annoys me. In most pregnancies, by the time a person finds out the fetus has Downs syndrome, they’re pretty far along in their pregnancy–far enough that people would know about it, and also far enough along that a miscarriage would be unlikely.
In other words, there’s no way she could have kept the abortion hidden. As someone who made her name as a social conservative, the only choice for her, if she wanted to continue her political career, was to keep the baby.
Additionally, the only way to know if a child has Downs is through amnio, and many pregnant mothers opt not to have one because of the risk of miscarriage. Did Palin have one? I’ve never seen anything to suggest that she had. If she didn’t, she wouldn’t know the fetus had Downs until after birth.
Don’t get me wrong–I don’t mean to suggest that Palin isn’t a loving parent, and I hope that little child gets all the love in the world. But the idea that this was somehow a “brave choice” for her is just not so.
Actually, testing is available around the 13th week. Nuchal translucency testing can be done as early as the 11th week. There’s about a 90 percent abortion rate for those who test positive.
Oooh, I hope we are keeping a log of all comments. It’ll be fun after the election to see all of the hacks out there defending the Palin pick exclaiming how they were disappointed in McCain when they heard about it.
Let’s face it. McCain panicked when the Democratic convention did not turn into civil war between Obama and Clinton supporters. There is no other way to explain it. He had a decent theme going — experience and national security. But his gaffe over the houses plus the smooth dem convention threw him off balance. Instead of being cool and collected and counting on getting the advantage of going second in the convention order as well as trusting his own strategy, he lost his nerve.
Either he panicked or worse, he just threw a hissy-fit when the GOP bosses nixed his choice of Lieberman or Ridge. Either way, this isn’t pretty.
Correction: It evidently wasn’t Time who posted the image, and now I can’t find it. Regardless, there are plenty of other photos, and they are just as personal and attempt to accomplish the same purpose.
I daresay Biden’s issues are new on their face, certainly, and more certainly new to about half the electorate.
But are you really suggesting that longstanding issues involving criminality are of lesser import news in a VP candidate, than a teen pregancy?
Amazing that so many cannot understand why we think the Dmeocrats are so lightweight anymore.
“Perhaps you’re too young to recall the Alaska of the 70’s mantra: “Let the bastards freeze in the dark”?”
Since Governor Palin is only 44, I doubt she was a member of the Alaska Independence Party in the 1970’s. If you had bothered to actually read the link I provided, you might have seen her recording a message to their convention in 2008. Keep spinning, though.
So much, then, for the argument that the right is ‘desperate’.
Dr. Joyner wrote,
Why do you think this question is “not unreasonable”? Do you have an example to John McCain, for example (to pick a particularly pertinent one), ever using crises from the personal lives of his political opponents’ children as weapons in the politics of personal destruction, or in an attempt to drive such opponents from the race before he/she could even defend himself?
I’ll readily admit that there are some nasty people on the far Right. And I can only speak with certainty for myself.
But I am very, very, very certain that if Michelle and Barack Obama had an unmarried pregnant teenage daughter, I would not, for example, demand Michelle Obama’s medical records to prove that her other daughter wasn’t really the pregnant child’s daughter. I’m quite certain that I wouldn’t argue that Barack Obama ought to stay home to look after his children. I’m quite certain I wouldn’t extrapolate from their personal situation to make bold arguments about how the kind of sex education favored by candidate Obama obviously doesn’t work in his own home.
I’d do my best to be decent. Wouldn’t you? Wouldn’t your friends and colleagues who are conservatives?
You quote Tapper like his question is some kind of implicit justification for what the Hard Left is doing, or trying to do, to Sarah Palin’s family. Is that what you’re trying to say? Please tell me you’re not.
Beisde the point. I’m pointing out the political context in which the whole thing came up. Alaska’s a different place, and about as far removed form the politics of Washington as one can get.
Liar. Of course you would. You’re one of those nasty Rethuglicans, after all. ;-/
It’s true that the abortion rate is 90%–for those who get the testing. Not every mother does. The first step to attributing Palin’s choice as “brave” is to establish that she had a prenatal test for Downs syndrome. If she didn’t, the question goes away.
Also, NT and other first-trimesters tests aren’t as of yet widely available. Second Trimester Amnio is still the most common method of testing for Downs, as far as I am able to tell.
Again, I still question how a social conservative politician’s choice to not have an abortion is “brave” when it would mean career suicide to have one.
And again, let me reiterate that I wish Palin all the best in raising that child. I’ve no doubt that she will be a good mother. This line of reasoning is in no way a personal attack on her decision to have her son. I just don’t think her choice is something special–it’s the choice you would expect from someone in her position.
Re Gov. Palin’s finding out about Trig’s likely disability, she learned of it in December 2007, about half-way through the pregnancy, per this news story.
Michael wrote, sarcastically I think,
What’s under discussion in the case of Biden’s son has to do with his activities as an adult (indeed, as a lawyer and lobbyist), which activities may include influence peddling or at a minimum the appearance of same. I think it’s fairly easy to distinguish that from savaging a 17-year-old high school student over as intimate a matter as child-bearing. Can you honestly not draw that distinction yourself, or were you just trying to make a snarky rhetorical point for those who don’t have a clue what the issues are with respect to Biden’s son?
Well, we have the example of McCain telling jokes about why Chelsea Clinton (who was a young girl at the time) is so ugly. That tells us a lot about the man.
As for Palin’s daughter, I hope that Democrats take their lead from Obama himself. Families are off limits. Especially children.
Excuse me for living. While I am not running for any political office (thank the Good Lord for that!) I find it morally reprehensible for anyone (Repulicrat or Demouplican) to make any snide comment on anyone’s family. The Mafia had/has a code – families are out of bounds. Why can’t sensible people (and the various news readers and their sympathizers) leave well enough alone? Teen pregnancy is not a modern phenomenon.
To make the record unambiguously clear – I have three (3) daughters; each of whom gave birth out of wedlock. I have five (5) wonderful grandchildren, including the eldest Grandson who is seriously AD/HD and hyperactive. I do not blame my daughters for getting pregnant nor do I blame the fathers. Christians don’t hate the sinner, just the sin and I have forgiven my children a long, long time ago.
As for those of you expressing outrage at my comments, my e-mail address is public. I’ve found Mr. Joyner’s commentary very tendentious and specious in the past and still do today. Deal with it.
Lastly, I was planning on voting for Bob Barr as I do not agree with many of Senator McCain’s positions. However, I believe Governor Palin is the perfect choice for Vice President. Why? Simple, here is a woman who stands on her own, does not hide behind her husband (or in other well-known cases, is known for gobsmackingly poor memory when challenged with the truth) and brooks no sympathy with corrupt politicians.
If you don’t like the Republican ticket, vote for the Marxist or don’t vote at all.
Thanks for the info re: Palin’s knowledge.
Indeed. But you know, it makes me wonder what Tapper’s about, when Beldar places the question in that frame. That said, perhaps we already have an answer to Tapper’s question in terms of trend…one Micheal has already pointed up.
To which I responded;
But you know, Michael is correct in that we’ve not seen that level of attack from the right… and as I say the reason is a lack of desperation on the part of the right. Which would, in turn, seem to answer the question about how Obama’s daughters would be treated in a similar situation.
The point I’m making here, by way of this long setup is that perhaps what we’re seeing is a level of desperation on the part of the left to get something/anything to stick on Palin. The difference in treatment one side to the other is both striking, and telling.
Don’t forget Biden’s brother and his involvement, Beldar. Further, please remember that neither would be in a position of influence peddling if there wasn’t influence at Biden’s level to peddle. Clearly, criminality on Joe Biden’s part is at least suggested. To my mind that outweighs a pregnancy in a engaged teen couple by a factor of thousands.
Pretty lame. If Obama’s family had a similar issue the right would be consuming red meat by the ton. McCain’s record of behavior towards the children of political opponents speaks for itself..
The reality is no one really seems to give much of a crap what adult members of Biden’s family have or have not done. And, in a sad sidebar to the state of our culture, it is just not juicy enough to generate much interest.
Here’s a straw Bit, grasp it.
Well yes, but the fact that there exists a Senator named Biden is also new to about half the electorate. But CNN isn’t going to have breaking reports about a scandal that’s been in the public for years. Nobody is going to bring you up to the minute details that were known days ago, let alone years.
No, I’m just telling you what you already know, that the media is going to report on new, irrelevant, information much more than they will report on old, relevant information. It’s not about politics, it’s just a matter of what sells advertisements.
Neither, actually. I was undermining Bithead’s claim that the Right’s lack of reaction against Biden is proof that they wouldn’t react negatively to James’ rhetorical question, by pointing out that the assumption (that there was no reaction) was unfounded. I thought that would be easier than pointing out that it was a straw man.
I was being sarcastic, actually. Forgot the <sarcasm/> tags again, sorry.
Oh, I know. But I still find it shocking that implications of criminal behavior on the part of the VP nominee is of greater import to the Democrats than a teen pregnancy.
Then again, that’s desperation for ya.
I know. But as you’ve seen me mention previously, no humor works with some truth at the center of it. Like it or not, your comment did have truth in it that cuts both ways. I’ve no doubt that some have tried to bring Biden’s criminality to the fore previously. Of course, I’d not expect the press to go for it. And we’ve not seen the rightside blogs going spastic over it, like we did the leftsiders going for the pregnancy rumors, for the entire bloody weekend.
The “truth” in my comment was that there was an attempt by the reactionary right to rip Biden. The fact that my comment stated the opposite of that truth is what made it sarcasm. To I honestly need to explain this to you?
Show me where the left blogs have been going “spastic” over Palin’s daughter being pregnant, instead of questioning the vetting process like James did in this post. Show me one person on the Left that gets any kind of traffic that thinks Palin’s daughter being pregnant should disqualify her for the office she is seeking.
I’m assuming there is supposed to be a negative in there somewhere. Again, show me someone of any importance on the left implying that having a pregnant daughter is more significant than having family involved in influence peddling.
The core issue here is vetting, of which it would seem, there was not enough by Team McCain. Not only did McCain pick someone he did not know to be next in line for the Presidency, he did not make sure she was adequately vetted.
Now McCain’s campaign is completely off message. Not good judgment, not smart leadership, not even basic competence. We don’t need another President who prefers going with his gut to thinking things through.
Joe Scarborough said this morning that the media is aware of another story about another child that its not reporting. Anybody else hear this? The implication was one of Obama’s children.
And no, I don’t want to know much of anything about the children. Obama has taken the honorable position on this.
Of course not. But apparently someone needs to explain to you that your comment also brought up the idea that the attempt was not nearly as strident, nor did it get nearly the same press.
I dunno as you can seperate the two. Obama stated flatly taht families were off limits. So you tell ME…Why should the pregnancy have been any concern, from a political standopoint, to say nothing of why it would become THIS much of a concern.? the right never followed up on Biden with THAT kind of intensity.
You look at the link and tell us..Have the leftie blogs been going crazy on Biden’s problems like they did on this issue? No?
That the vettnig proccess was not sufficient by your lights seems established. But, since you were not the one running that process, your comments seem to me beside the point.
Jeez, anjin-san, I had sworn to myself that I was going to ignore any crap you spewed, but it seems I can’t help myself.
John McCain was a sailor, and his language is salty. He’s told a lot of off-color jokes, and he will be the first to admit that he’s exercised poor judgment about some of them and the company in which he’s told them. He’s also made some other extremely crude remarks from time to time. I will agree that it’s appropriate for prospective voters to hold him to higher standards of discipline during this campaign season, for if he can’t do better in avoiding such statements, that might suggest he’d create incidents as president.
As for the Chelsea Clinton joke in particular:
It was indeed a nasty joke, but it was emphatically not made to try to drive Bill Clinton from a political race (he was already in his second term), Chelsea was 18 at the time (which doesn’t make the joke any more tasteful), he apologized thoroughly, and most importantly, everyone knew it was a joke (albeit a nasty one).
And McCain isn’t running for comedian-in-chief.
Your friends at dKos aren’t joking now, are they? Do you find it funny?
So yuk it up. As far as I’m concerned, this is just ONE MORE in the never-ending series of anjin-san lies and distortions. I’m going to TRY to return to my policy of ignoring you outright.
“Yet her own daughter apparently has unprotected sexâ€
How does anyone know if they had protected sex or not? Talk about jumping to conclusion. My child was conceived while my wife and I were using protection. “Protected sexâ€ is by no means perfect, especially for athletic types that last more than 60 seconds.
The double standard for Dems and Reps has been shown many times. If this was the Obama the MSM wouldn’t be discussing it. Come to think of it, has Michelle ever been investigated in wither she ever had an abortion? Frankly I don’t care and think family’s personal lives on both side should be left alone. Looking at financial or power corruption dealing is legit to do on both sides.
From my limited personal feedback, the left attacking the teen pregnancy deal has had a backlash from females that I know, both liberals and conservatives.
It sickens me to see Democrats stating that Palin’s children are off limit then proceed to attack her daughter.
I agree that the rumormongering about Palin’s fake pregnancy was beyond the pale. Beyond that, though, I’m not sure the other issues are.
Conservatives, certainly, have argued that women have a primary responsibility to take care of their children and that putting their career first has negative consequences — including a greater likelihood of out-of-wedlock births — for said children.
And, certainly, it’s been fair game in the past to talk about abortion, birth control, guns, and other controversial issues in light of candidates’ personal experience. Goodness, a hypothetical rape of Michael Dakakis’ wife was a big issue in 1988.
“a hypothetical rape of Michael Dukakis’ wifeâ€
A hypothetical is very different than bringing up an actual experience. Of course there is a chance of accidently doing both but to purposely do both would be wrong. I personally am very weary of personalizing policies matters. One should look at all sides of an issue when making policy and not have a one perspective blinders on.
“Conservatives, certainly, have argued that women have a primary responsibility to take care of their children and that putting their career first has negative consequencesâ€
Conservatives are much more open today about wives having a career. A father or mother putting their career first can have negative consequences. That doesn’t mean that they can’t have a career just that they must compensate to insure they don’t forget to take care of family responsibilities.
“including a greater likelihood of out-of-wedlock birthsâ€
True, but that key word is “greaterâ€. The chances of any kid being perfect are slim. Kids from stable families may not be perfect but are “usuallyâ€ overall better.
Should we look at grades, what trouble candidates’ kids have been in, personal references, etc on candidates’ kids?
The fact that McCain’s campaign is now totally beside the point? Well, Ok, he is your guy…
What he said was not “salty” it was scummy. And it tells you something about the man, apology or no, joke or no.
Obama has made it very clear that Palin’s family is off limits in his campaign, and anyone who crosses him on that is gone. That tells you something about him as well.
I rarely visit Kos because I do not care for it’s tone. I never comment there. You are making a completely uninformed assumption about who my friends are. My message to any Democrats who make an issue of Palin’s children is shut up.
The fact that McCain’s campaign is now totally off-message is beside the point?
James is correct here. Reverse the political tags associated with the parties involved and almost all of the commenters here and elsewhere would switch roles. The commenters that are trying to make hay of this would for the most part be on the defensive and the commenters that are complaining about this being an issue would for the most part be on the attack. There are some few who would remain consistent, but that number is depressingly small.
The problem with the parallel you are attempting to make is that McCain’s comment was made by McCain rather than by anonymous commenters on the internet and the current comments about Palin are being made by anonymous blog commenters rather than by Obama. Obama has made his (correct) opinion on this clear in his statement on the matter. Palin’s children should be off limits as should Obama’s and as should have Clinton’s. The problem I have with this situation is the rampant hypocrisy by some on the right (not you) about the sanctity of political families. Far to many who are now declaring any discussion of this issue out of bounds were quick to publicly insult the appearance of a teenage girl because of her father’s politics. McCain was part of that chorus and to his credit did apologize when it became clear that it was necessary for him to.
Further, while it may not have been McCain’s intent to drive Clinton from office the intent of many making jokes at Chelsea’s expense (Rush et al) was to end the Clintons’ political careers and to generally make their lives less comfortable.
Besides, if it was Obama, Rush’s head would have exploded and that would be news too…
So how does that mesh with the idea that beacuse hse’s got a kid who’s preggers is supospedly indicative that Pali wasn’t vetted enough?
Off message? It’s the Democrat party talking about this… the ones you’re telling to shut up. Who is off message again?
Which way we going with this?
James: How much grief was Al Gore obliged to take over his son’s drug and driving problems? And that was a grown child.
Kitty Dukakis was certainly an adult, and no one suggested that she actually be raped to see what Michael would do.
I will say, however, that I’m generally not trying to discourage debate on matters relating to Sarah Palin (as opposed to her daughter Bristol). She is emphatically no fragile construct. She often refers to herself, only half-jokingly, by noting that the only difference between a hockey mom and a pit bull is the lipstick. The good ole boys in Alaska didn’t use the internet as creatively, but they were very aggressive in their attacks on her. Some of them are laughing now, if at all, from prison cells; others are under indictment awaiting trial; others have merely been driven from public office.
I am proud to be her volunteer advocate, but I expect that she will be her own best advocate overall.
As always, thanks for your courtesy and the opportunity to comment here.
Perhaps because the tabloid dominated media will inevitably discuss it regardless of what Obama or the DNC do.
Really? What representatives of the Democratic party are talking about it? DKos diarists and anonymous commenters do not count.
Were you this incensed about commentary by McCain, Rush, et al about Chelsea’s appearance when she was a teen? I somehow doubt it, but would welcome being proved wrong on this front.
BTW Democrat is a noun. Democratic is the adjective form.
Well for one thing, Palingate has a lot more angles than just that one story. For another, regardless of what Democrats do, the media is having a field day with this and McCain’s campaign is now totally off-message. And McCain should have foreseen this. A good leader considers consequences before taking action, “going with your gut” can easily lead to train wrecks…
Of all the links on that page you referenced, only one mentioned her daughter’s pregnancy in questioning Palin’s qualifications for VP, and even then it was used as one of many personal issues that may distract Palin, not saying that having a pregnant daughter disqualifies her. So you still haven’t shown anybody going “spastic”, or even greatly concerned, about Palin’s daughter being pregnant.
The links you referenced were all concerned with either the quality of McCain’s vetting, or the personal issues that may distract Palin. How exactly do you propose I compare those apples to the Biden oranges?
Do you have actual examples of Democrats attacking Palin’s daughter? Or are you, like Bit, running on what you’ve heard they’re doing, without actually verifying that they are doing it?
Really? Who? Dean? Pelosi? Can you back this up or is this just another unsubstituted attack?
Your fear reaction is showing dude…
Because it was a well-known issue that wasn’t initially revealed by either McCain or Palin in their speech bios of her. It wasn’t until some stupid internet rumor that the Down baby belonged to the daughter that they even saw fit to mention it.
It all gives the image that McCain’s camp wasn’t prepared to handle that issue when he made his pick, which, to those of us who give him credit for sanity, indicates that he didn’t know about it.
Ah, but so, too, are the leftie blogs, as I demonstarted earlier today.
Look above. And, look in the mirror.
Fear? No. Just cramps from laughing.
Perhaps they were wrong then to have trusted Obama when he suggested the subject of family was out of bounds?
No, they’re doing fine with it. The image projected is when Dmeocrats are trheatened, all rules of civility go out the window. Gee, big shock, huh?
No you didn’t.
Okay, I looked, I saw nobody attacking Palin or her daughter over her pregnancy.
Obama doesn’t dictate what everybody else on the internet does. Just because Obama said he wouldn’t, and that the media shouldn’t, doesn’t mean that the media won’t. Please stop trying to imply that Obama is attacking Palin because her daughter is pregnant unless you have some actual evidence that it happened. You wishing Obama was a terrible person doesn’t automatically make him one.
You call this fine?
Only it’s not Democrats, it’s Republicans that are attacking Palin and her daughter. I guess they shouldn’t have trusted McCain to not attack his own VP.
Well, by all means, keep laughing. Meanwhile Obama’s is surging in the polls, and McCain’s campaign is in disarray.
Also noted that you cannot show any officials of the Democratic party going after Palin’s family and that you are making a rather slimy accusation that it is somehow all Obama’s fault. Smacks of desperation.
Vetting. There is a reason you should do it before, not after.
There was a Democratic strategist on O’Reilly last night that said that the candidate’s children should be off limit then proceeded to attack Sara on her daughter pregnancy. Similar deal happened on hardball too. I think I saw it on CNN also but I was flipping though channels so it could have been some other channel. Many of the MSM personalities have been piling on as well.
You didn’t happen to catch the names of those guests, did you?
Must be video somewhere Wayne. Can you provide a link? If this is true I will call Obama HQ and DNC HQ and demand he be fired. I am sure plenty of Democrats will join me.
“You didn’t happen to catch the names of those guests, did you?â€
No, they were two democratic strategists, both females. One kept her distance from the subject. The other one didn’t. She went off about the daughter not practicing protected sex and such. Bill call her on not knowing if the daughter practice “protectedâ€ sex or not and people shouldn’t speculate on such things.
Not sure if Bill has past episodes posted on the web. If so it was last night’s episode (9/01/08) you look it up. I’m sure you would use some quantifier as an excuse anyway.
I saw something similar to what Wayne saw, I thought it was with Larry King, One of the Democrats was James Carville, and he did pull his punches somewhat on the personal level, but the woman did compare Palin’s life to a SNL skit, and was pretty rude about it. Two other women represented the Republican side.
This link covers part of the broadcast I saw unfortunately it only covers Carvilles tit for tat with someone I don’t recognize. It doesn’t cover the portion about Palin’s daughter. Perhaps it will jog someone’s memory. I was flipping between 3 different channels that had coverage and football.
Rodney your link showed nothing relevant to this conversation. I was interested in the pro-palin commentators comment that she had “rooted out evil”. So apparently she already has experience taking on “evil doers”…
This one has the coverage of making fun over Palin’s daughters pregnancy. Certainly not a Democrat heavy weight, and I doubt she’s part of Obama’s campaign. Most of the end of the clip is Carville making political hay.
I know the first one didn’t cover all the broadcast, The second one covers some of what I remember, but not really much of what I would call ‘damning’ evidence of democratic attacks on Palin’s daugther.
Waynes comments got me thinking I’d seen something similar, but from what I’ve found I can’t really corroborate what he saw.
That woman is a talk show host, not an official of the Democratic party or the Obama campain. Really, so what? Bottom feeders in the media will exploit anything at all. Has zero to do with Democrats or Obama.
Much more interesting is McCain’s ducking out of his interview with Larry King tonight. I mean King is the softball champ, the safest interviewer on TV. What’s up with that?
I wasn’t really trying to prove anything to you Anjin, I just followed the thread and tried to track back to what I partially caught on the air. If anything is supports that no major Democratic player was attacking Palin’s daughter. I found the transcripts at transcripts.cnn.com, but nothing further. Most of this coverage was Carville handling someones butt to them again. He’s pretty good at that.
If they are not officially with the Obama campaign then they are not Democrats. Give me a break.
As for Larry King, during the DNC convention he was the one that said “voting for someone base on the color of their skin is disgustingâ€ then said paraphrasing “someone voting for Obama because he is black is OK because he is a minority and that’s differentâ€.
What, do you think there is some sort of gag order on every single Democrat in the country? Give me a break.
If you can produce evidence that any Democratic party official or Obama campaign employee is trashing Palin’s family, bring it on. I suspect you won’t be doing that…
No, but it does mean they don’t represent Obama, his campaign, or in this case even the Democratic party. Heck, you don’t even know if they were a registered Democrat or not, you just know that they were identified as a Democrat.
Well it won’t surprise you that I’ve heard some radio talk-show Republicans make some pretty despicable comments about Palin and her daughter, but you don’t see me using that as evidence that the entire Republican party is involved.
Oh, but I did. Well over 100 such links off the one.
And you cannot separate the two issues.
But as Dill notes:
You don’t get to make up your own reality without the rubber walls accessory, Anjin.
I could produce 100 links saying that Obama is black, and that still wouldn’t prove that democrats are going “spastic” over Palin. But I’m not going to try and convince you that the sky isn’t green, if you believe it is then no amount of evidence I can provide will persuade you otherwise.
PRINCETON, NJ — Gallup Poll Daily tracking from Aug. 30 through Sept. 1, finds Barack Obama leading the race for president with his highest share of support to date. Fully half of national registered voters now favor Obama for president, while 42% back John McCain.
Of course the McCain campaign is not in disarray Bit, of course not. That is why they are rushing vetters to Alaska (think that horse is out of the barn) and Bush himself is furious with them…
That’s funy, Anjin, I’ve not seen such reports. I suppsoe it an act of futility to ask you to back your claim?
As for the polling, (Snicker) I’d not worry much about that. You’re still within the margin of error, for one thing, and for another we’re still dealing with the Convention. Obama didn’t get a bounce at all. I called it a dead cat bounce. You and I both know McCain will do far better.
True, But maybe you’ll be smart enough to look at the sources of those links, and the frothing at the mouth they’re doing?
Wait… Anjin and smart in the same line?
Never mind. What was I thinking?
I’ll give you this, Anjin, you look very much at home in the tank.
Ummm bit, that quote is not from me.
Dude, whatever you are drinking, give it a rest. Really. And please, if you are going to question the intelligence of others, at least try and be sure you know who you are talking too 🙂
And actually, 8 points is outside of the margin of error. Smart people know this.
McCain Campaign Sends A Dozen Communications Operatives, Lawyers To Alaska
Almost certainly, Bush had to cancel his planned speech while Gustav loomed. But the sources say he didn’t like the idea and felt pushed. Bush is described by sources as “furious” at McCain for being deprived of his last appearance before his party, which nominated him twice, as a sitting president. He believes he is being treated disrespectfully
>byline on that one is Sidney Blumenthal
Ummm, yea. Meanwhile, at RNC HQ, they have had to confiscate all sharp objects, belts, shoe laces and so on from from the political professionals that work there…
I read every link that fit on my screen without scrolling down, and I didn’t see any frothing. If there are specific links on that page that had frothing, please point them out specifically.
You were thinking that you forgot to read the “Posted by” label…..again.
And do smart people also know one poll out of how many doesn’t make a trend? Interesting how you picked the only one out taht day that had him leading outside the MOE.
Than I have no chocie but to question your objectivity.
Well, trhead scramble, of course. Or perhaps you sounded enougha like there, that it was hard to tell. ;-/
What’s interesting is that you knew of at least one poll outside the MOE, but neglected to consider it.
If that will make you feel better, go right ahead. But could you at least quote the phrases you consider “frothing”, so that I can at least see where we differ? Because it may just be that I just didn’t read the articles that had the froth in them, there were several dozen links on that page after all.
Obviously we didn’t, as you yourself were surprised by your response to what you attributed to anjin-san. Or are you just trying to cast the blame for your mistake onto me?
“Well, by all means, keep laughing. Meanwhile Obama’s is surging in the polls, and McCain’s campaign is in disarray.”
You’re right it’s not funny,in fact,Obama’s surge could have very serious consequences.
The “official party position” can stay above the fray as long as they have their “wet boys” in the media to do their bidding.
Worth noting that it is now very clear that Palin was not vetted properly.
One out of a few dozen, is an abberation and not worth noting, unless you’re trying to score flag waving points for yor team. As, by the way, we were advised when McCain was ahead in one two two polls a short while ago. If it’s insignificant, why bother mentioning it at all?
I shuldn’t have though I’d have needed to. Certainly, if one of Obama’s daughters was involved, for example, I’d be told in no uncertain terms that family is off limits, even when using questins about vetting as an excuse to hammer the subject home. If families are off limits, why would it even be discussed in realtion to vetting, after all? ON tha basis, every damned one of them is foaming.
Bit, you are welcome to take a look at comprehensive polling data, its pretty clear what the trend is:
“What, do you think there is some sort of gag order on every single Democrat in the country? Give me a breakâ€
Goes to show you two just make stuff up and read stuff that is not there. My original Statement that you both question was
“There was a Democratic strategist on O’Reilly last night that said that the candidate’s children should be off limit then proceeded to attack Sara on her daughter pregnancy. Similar deal happened on hardball too. I think I saw it on CNN alsoâ€
Nowhere in there did I say “every single Democratâ€ have been attacking Palin.
“you don’t even know if they were a registered Democrat or not, you just know that they were identified as a Democratâ€
Nice logic. By that standard I don’t know that Pelosi and Obama are Democrats. I’ve never seen their registration. My information that they are Democrats is because they were identified by the media.
Just to add on, it is not like they were just two people they pulled off the street which claim that they were Dems consultants.
Well, Obama said families are off limits. And his campaign and Democratic officials have honored that. (whining aside, no one here has produced a single example to the contrary)
But the media, as everyone with a pulse knows, honors nothing except ratings. And anyone could have told you there would be a media frenzy over this issue, which is not a good thing politically. McCain went with his gut, and he is now 100& off message and both he and Paling are canceling speeches and interviews.
Run along Wayne. No Obama officials or Democratic party officials are attacking Palin’s family. You know it, I know it, and everyone else knows it.
What a load of crap. McCain has put Palin in a position to be a 72 year old heartbeat away from the Presidency. He did not know her when he did it, and his campaign did not vet her adequately.
That is frigging scary.
And it says a hell of a lot about John McCain’s judgment, none of it good.
Country first? Nice slogan, try practicing it.
It was in Bit’s comment that you were defending.
Since you don’t like to follow links I will summarize for you.
6 polls listed by RCP have been conducted since the convention*:
Rasmussen tracking moved 6 pts in favor of Obama
Gallup moved 5 pts giving Obama an 8pt lead
Hotline/FD moved 5pts giving Obama a 9pt lead
CNN moved only 1 pt leaving it a dead heat
CBS News moved 5 pts giving Obama an 8 pt lead
It should be obvious to most what the trend is and which single poll is the aberration. 4 0f 6 polls moved out of the MOE to a clear Obama lead. This means little about the upcoming election, but says a lot about which orifice you were speaking from.
I also would be quite interested to see the specific posts you found to be frothing.
* Can you list the others since you claimed that dozens have been conducted in this time frame?
There is a difference between attacking the family, and questioning the vetting because of the revelation of a seemingly unknown family issue.
It’s the difference between attacking somebody because they have an illness, and attacking them for not revealing their illness. If Biden had cancer, it shouldn’t be used as an attack on him. If Biden knew he had cancer and Obama did not, then it’s fair game as a vetting question.
I think I see now where our disagreements begin.
Sorry Wayne, but you jumped into the conversation where we were asking for evidence that “the Democrats” and “Obama” were attacking Palin and her daughter. Your post, stating that you’ve seen “Democrats” doing just this, seemed like it was meant to be evidence of that proposition.
Oh? Who were they then?
We have probably reached the time when Bit will cut and run to another thread…
At 100+ comments, it’s probably time we all moved on.
Go back and read my posts and what part you pulled out. If you can’t read without blinders on, there is not much anyone can do to enlighten you.
If you want me to defend Bit statement, then fine he was correct. Many of the poster if not Dems which many probably are, are certainly liberals and they have been attacking Palin’s daughter. Many of the MSM which are liberal and Democrats have been attacking Palin’s daughter. Party candidates and leadership from both sides tend to let others in their party do the dirtiest work. Do I hold Obama directly responsible for attacks on Palin’s daughter. No, not until I see evidence that he was directly involved. However to say the dems and liberal MSM haven’t been attacking Palin’s daughter situation is asinine. You can put blinders on if you want but the facts are the facts.
“Oh? Who were they then?â€
Sorry Michael, I don’t remember every name of every quest on every show that I watch. I bet you don’t either. I did give the night, name of the show and some details of the quest. I will remember to hold you to your standard in the future.
Not usually, but if I’m going to use them as an example to shore up my argument, I certainly would.
Right, to which anjin-san gave us more details:
I would say that a talk show host who’s name nobody can remember, is equivalent to someone “pulled off the street” and labeled a “Democratic consultant”.
Wayne if you want anyone besides bit and zelsdorf to take you seriously, you need to drop the “liberal MSM” line. News flash, everyone thinks the media is biased against them, including Democrats.
Can you show us where the media (outside of complete bottom feeders) “attacked” Palin’s daughter? Called her names, questioned her morals, so forth? I doubt it. They are reporting a story, that’s what the media does.
As for individual Democrats, they can say whatever they please. I have yet to see anything that reached the “frothing at the mouth” threshold, which seems to exist in Bit’s imagination.
As for attacking people’s daughters, we still remember the slimy attack your candidate made on Chelsea Clinton. Not some moron on a blog. Your candidate.