Why Sarah Palin Will Win Tomorrow’s Debate



When Jack Cafferty cornered poor Wolf Blitzer on CNN recently and showed the clip of the Katie Couric-Sarah Palin interview and then launched into his panicky, now famous, oxygen deprived rant – “Have you ever seen anything like it, ever?  Have you?  Wolf? You there Wolf? Isn’t this unprecedented ditziness? Imagine?  A heartbeat away?  Wolf?  You home in there Wolf?” –  Most Americans could identify with the Wolf Blitzer freeze.

It is stunning to see the emotionally charged hatred of the media toward Sarah Palin.  Of course, Wolf had seen such moments of ditziness.  Ted Kennedy cannot do interviews well.  His handling of handpicked, family friend, Roger Mudd’s softball question in November, 1979 cost him the presidency.   It was a moment far more deadly than Cafferty’s desperately hyped vignette of Palin and Couric.

When I interviewed Ted Kennedy several years ago, all my questions had to be submitted in advance.  When after the scripted interview he showed me around his office I asked him something about his children’s drawings on the wall and the whole room froze in horror.  An unscripted question.  I can still see the daggers in the eyes of the staffers.  I almost blurted out, “I withdraw the question, I withdraw the question.”  But we all lingered while he painfully groped for an answer.   And I felt very, shamefully, guilty.

Yet Kennedy, now struggling with his health, can claim one of the most stellar careers in the U. S. Senate.  He will rank with Henry Clay, Daniel Webster and John C. Calhoun.

This is all about envy.  “I am good on television, so why don’t I get to run the country?”  It is the same sort of thing that comes out of Hollywood.  “People want my autograph, they love me, I could have been president if I had chosen to go into politics. Sigh.  And the country would have been so blessed for it.”

The fact is that Sarah Palin was elected governor of a state and has an 80 % approval rating.  She can learn how to give good interviews in 30 days.  But no one can teach Jack Cafferty how to get elected to anything.  Not in a year, not in ten years.

If Bill O’Reilly had been asked Cafferty’s softball question he would have knocked it out of the park.

“What do you mean? Do you think that the American people are morons, Jack? Do you think they can’t see how you edited this segment?  How you cut out the part of Katie’s question that equated the bailout to job creation and then showed the Governor later talking about jobs, as if it were made up out of whole cloth, unrelated?  What is this?”

In the end, the stunned Wolf Blitzer looked dumber than Sarah Palin.  He was just frozen.  “Wolf, Wolf, isn’t this something?  Did you see the segment I just showed you Wolf?  Ever see anything like it? Wolf?  We’ll be right back folks.  I gotta get some coffee into the kid.  He is really very bright.  Knows a lot about Russia.”

But Wolf was stunned dumb because of the crassness of Jack Cafferty’s partisanship.  Poor Wolf, brilliant, once one of the nation’s most respected Sovietologists, but still clinging to the idea that journalists should operate with professionalism and not be reduced to editorial room, ideological, rowdiness in public.  Wolf was answering in his silence.  “Unbelievable, Jack.  How could you out me like this?  Shouldn’t this be my decision?  No yours?  My timing, not yours?  My issue, not yours?  If you have no respect for our profession, Jack, have a little respect for me, personally, as your friend.”

The predictable gut reaction of the media toward Sarah is much as it was against Ronald Reagan, whom they typecast as a warmonger and racist.  The public knew better and the more shrill and desperate the media became, the more the country saw through it and warmed to him.

Sarah will win tomorrow night and much of the blame in TV land could be laid at the feet of well intentioned propagandists like Cafferty, each trying to outdo the other in their contempt for her.  Because Sarah is not good at their profession, they are assuming that she can’t be any good at her own either.  Her 80% approval rating in Alaska should suggest that something a little more complicated will emerge from the Palin-Biden debates.

The media will be watching. Sarah, not Biden.  He will be given a pass with the excuse that they already know about him.  On the other hand, if there is the slightest Sarah slip we will see it endlessly looped.  If it is not fair (and the media is too involved in this to know when they are fair or not,) then Sarah will win, not the media arrayed against her.


Published by Doug Wead

Doug Wead is a New York Times bestselling author whose latest book, Game of Thorns, is about the Trump-Clinton 2016 election. He served as an adviser to two American presidents and was a special assistant to the president in the George H.W. Bush White House.

7 thoughts on “Why Sarah Palin Will Win Tomorrow’s Debate

  1. thats a lovely sentiment you have here, but you failed to mention that sarah Palin can’t debate. The media is not going to turn a blind eye to anything she says — they are going to pound her like they have in the past few weeks — ruthlessly. Its a great background story and you have quite a history, but the problem is that you have no supporting arguments to the fact that Palin isn’t smart on her toes and at times in general.

    Yes, the press is going to stare at her rather than her words, but she still can’t get by like she did with Katie Kouric. Here is my take on the debate: http://culturedecoded.wordpress.com/2008/09/30/analysis-why-the-republicans-cant-replace-sarah-palin/

    pacer521, author of culture decoded

  2. pacer521:

    Go back and watch the Katie Couric interview. Have you ever tried to talk while you’re walking. It’s not easy to develop a thought, position or argument while walking and answering questions. That to me was one of the most incoherent moments for Palin.

    In the few segments I’ve went back to watch, she defends most of her positions quite well. If people think she is incoherent then they haven’t spent much time in or around folks from Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota and Alaska. Just as we in the south have a country slang, those in the north speak a little choppier.

    Not to mention having Katie Couric interview Palin would be like Churchill interviewing Obama. A liberal interviewing Palin and an arch conservative interviewing Obama.

    Yes she can win the debate. She is debating Joe … yawn …… Biden. I like what Mike Huckabee said. Palin got more votes for mayor in her small Alaska town than Joe Biden got for President.

    The guy who has it right on the economy and liberty isn’t in the debate anyway- that’s Ron Paul.

  3. October 2nd’s debate was excellent!

    I was extremely impressed with Sara Palin. McCain made the wisest choice ever in choosing Palin. The mudsling about being a woman, about her religious beliefs, ect…everything the media is attempting to destroy her with was all for naught. She answered questions, gave her views on important issues, let the country know who she is and where she comes from, and more importantly…supports America not just McCain.

    Throughout the debate I notice Biden could accomplish very little (including answering questions) outside bashing McCain and our present president. Infact, sixty-four times Biden mentioned McCain within a short time span of fourty minutes. Yet, Sara…with great class spoke truth and fact without degrading or demeaning a single person (very unpolitician like) which was VERY refreshing and a nice change and gave a new hope to this race. Joe Biden could only critisize without any sign of even answering the questions asked. To her benifit, I believe it is the constant bashing Biden did made Palin shine even more than her straight forward honesty, her views, and adgenda did.

    Sara Palin has a great resume & is qualified for VP. She will be a great benifit to this country. The experience from her successful leadership in Alaska will improve the country as a whole and not just in the state she led. Palin gave solutions – Biden gave nothing of real positive value pertaining to the possibilities of a brighter America and offered only elementary school name calling. I absolutely loved it when she pointed out that both Obma and Biden had once had very different views (and mentioned the debates) and yet changed their minds/views once in the race for Presidancy & VP.
    Her views, opions, and track record speak louder than the rambling of the critisim of the opposing that will reset the tone to this race for presidancy.
    Thank God!

    (forgive the spelling in this, I’m chasing a two year old today – 🙂 LOL)

  4. “Have you ever tried to talk while you’re walking. It’s not easy to develop a thought, position or argument while walking and answering questions.”

    To a subliterate and undereducated moron, yes, it might tough to walk and chew gum at the same time.

    But not everyone is YOU, raleyb.

    I’ve always found it very strange and overly informal for people to address others they don’t know personally just by their first name.

    I like Sarah Palin. Personally, I think she’s quite a looker. However, she can only at this point rehash prescripted talking points.

    If anyone thinks she did something else at the debate, they’re fooling themselves.

    Debates are ridiculous anyway. If it were a real debate, Palin would have asked Biden how someone can be construed as being honest while wearing a hair piece.

    THAT’S a real question.

  5. “(forgive the spelling in this, I’m chasing a two year old today – LOL)”

    Stop using your children as an excuse to hide the fact you are an illiterate cracker.

    “LOL”? What the hell is that? Netspeak? Netspeak is for illiterate morons who can’t be bothered to articulate properly in the way that was acceptable prior to the introduction of computers and the internet.

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