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The 20/20 Interview

[Update: If you agree with that Charlie Gibson should have informed viewers of his misquote and mischaracterization of Palin's words, let someone at ABC know.]

I just watched the 20/20 interview Charlie Gibson did with Sarah Palin. In my opinion, the biggest news to come out of it is that Charlie Gibson did not apologize to Sarah Palin for misquoting her "exact words" in the first part of the interview, and even worse did not apologize to his viewers for giving them incorrect information and misleading them to believe that Palin was a nutty Christian bent on Holy War. He did not issue a correction when he had the perfect opportunity. The huge mistake he made was in the first day of interviewing. He has since had a chance to realize his mistake, since many have pointed it out. He had an interview with Palin the following day, and an hour of network television, with more to come on Nightline tonight so he had the perfect opening to set the record straight. For all the fact checking Gibson and ABC did of Palin (probably more than they have done of Obama the past two years), he didn't think to check his own facts and then when he realized they were wrong, did nothing to correct the information for his viewers. No wonder people trust used car salesmen more than journalists these days. At least the people I know do. If you are not yet aware of the "exact words" Gibson misquoted, there is a great post containing transcript and video at Dartblog.

As for the setup piece Kate Snow did -- it was almost entirely devoted to countering things Palin has said, rather than serving as a brief biographical overview. She started by showing clips of Palin repeating the same lines over and over again on the stump. The exact same segment could have been done with any presidential candidate. Stump speeches are pretty uniform. That's why they are known as stump speeches, not policy speeches or major addresses. Believe it or not candidates do not craft completely different speeches for every single town they visit on the campaign trail -- they even tell the same jokes more than once. I have not looked back on all the pieces they have done on Obama to make sure they didn't also do the same for him, but I doubt it very seriously.

Snow showed the line about selling the jet and then attempted a "gotcha" by saying that Palin did get rid of the jet, but then spent 40, 000 to fly she and her family all over the place. Snow forgot to mention that selling the jet brought the state 2.1 million dollars. Instead of saying Palin saved the state of Alaska $2,960,000 by selling the jet, she presented only that she got rid of the jet, but still charged the people of Alaska over $40,000.

Another thing in the Snow piece that was glaringly incomplete and misleading -- she said Palin is being investigated for firing someone who would not fire a state trooper that was going through a messy divorce with her sister. Not that she had voiced concern over a trooper with a badge and a gun that drank in his patrol car, tasered his eleven-year-old stepson and threatened to kill Palin's family members. But why bother the viewers with insignificant details like that? I know this will be hard to believe, but I really did expect more from ABC. I guess I just thought that with all the atttention on this interview they would try to play it straight down the middle. I guess they just don't care about what people think of their journalistic integrity -- at this point it's all about making sure their guy wins.

Not all was bad. The interview did elicit some information from Palin that I found of value and she looked and sounded confident and at ease unlike in the first day's interview. The roundtable at the end was fair and interesting. And best of all, the scenery from Alaska was absolutely breathtaking.

Update: Must read Krauthammer on the Bush Doctrine.

Update II: John in Carolina has posted a video that shows past Presidents discussing God and America. Maybe Charlie Gibson missed these rather insignificant, obscure presidents' remarks -- FDR, Truman, JKF, Reagan and some guy named after the hurricane that is hitting Texas today.

Update III: Newsbusters posts excerpts from the interview and highlights the portions that we left on the cutting room floor. After Gibson went on and on saying Palin didn't present the country with her whole record, look at the way ABC presented Palin's interview. Note how many of the statements best showing Palin's knowledge of foreign affairs were cut.

Update IV: Take this quiz and guess which of these difficult questions were asked of Democrats and which of Republicans.


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Comments (53)

This ABC vs Sara Palin R-AK... (Below threshold)

This ABC vs Sara Palin R-AK interview is a complete joke!
A comparison of tonights World News and the subsequent 20/20 version is illustrative of complete re-manufacturing of Sara's response to Gibson's question. No wonder she occasionally looked a bit coached with clipped answers. They were indeed clipped, paragraphs re-ordered, alternate responses were inserted.
I would hope someone with more resources and skill than I would post both interviews side by side so the reality would be quite clear as to what was done here.
This is way worse than the Bush fake documents. The fakery is in the open, right before our very eyes.

not to panic--gibson's fake... (Below threshold)

not to panic--gibson's fakery with the god quote is being well-publicized outside of abc. this only reinforces the b.s. and absolute slime the msm is trying to pull. it will backfire just like the cbs thing did with bush.

I personally think the McCa... (Below threshold)

I personally think the McCain campaign was foolish to agree to this kind of interview. Either make it live, or taped with no editing allowed. And don't give the network a week to come up with questions. Give them the interview on short notice.

My main worry, though, is t... (Below threshold)

My main worry, though, is this. Just how many people are going to rely soley on this interview to form their opinion of Palin, and not go to the nets to do any fact checking? Yeah, I know most homes have computers in this day and age... but it's still something that's going to bother me.

I agree with George. I was... (Below threshold)

I agree with George. I was watching the 20/20 'version' of the interview and noticed that in one of the reworked questions from the night before, the answer that Gov. Palin gave was different than the response they played the night before. This was the worst editing job that I've ever seen! Is this what journalism has come to? Also, both my husband and I were thoroughly disgusted with Snow's 'setup' piece. We do not normally watch ABC. . .now I know why.

Didn't most of the Tasergat... (Below threshold)

Didn't most of the Tasergate stuff happen before she was elected governor?

After the election, didn't she and her staff bring it up because State Troopers are her "Secret Service" guys?

I don't remember where I read about all that.

Xaix said,<blockquot... (Below threshold)

Xaix said,

I personally think the McCain campaign was foolish to agree to this kind of interview. Either make it live, or taped with no editing allowed. And don't give the network a week to come up with questions. Give them the interview on short notice.

Veins have been popping in my brain for years because Republicans don't use common sense like that desrcibed above. Blood is now shooting from my eyes and I haven't even seen the interview yet. I don't know if I can bare it. I still think good will win out in November, but, if they weren't so danged pliable to the whims of those attempting to destroy them, conservatives would be on the verge of eviscerating the left.

Sarah Palin doesn't know wh... (Below threshold)

Sarah Palin doesn't know what the "Bush Doctrine" is. WTF?

Love how he nailed her to the wall on her full flop on the bridge to nowhere.

I don't have the exact quote but it was something like "Well, of course I did support it at first, but once the whole country was up in arms about it, I changed my mind,"

Folks, that was not the question, that was HER RESPONSE.

If this is what she looks like in a pre-taped, edited interview, I can't wait to see how stupid she looks live.

If this is what he... (Below threshold)
If this is what he looks like in a pre-taped, edited interview, I can't wait to see how stupid (Biden) looks live.

My words...approximately.

"Sarah Palin doesn't know w... (Below threshold)

"Sarah Palin doesn't know what the "Bush Doctrine" is. WTF?"

No, Sarah Palin did not know what Charlie Gibson thought the Bush Doctrine entailed. I've seen too many suposedly "educated" people who have come up with all sorts of silly variations on what it is (or is supposed to be).

Note Gibson's screwup with the misquotation (and incorrect insistence that she was wrong) of her "God" comment, and you have to wonder why she should make a charitable assumption of what he meant his question to actually mean.

Ok Ryan, what is the "Bush ... (Below threshold)
ed davis:

Ok Ryan, what is the "Bush Doctrine"? Let's hear your take on it.

The question should be -to ... (Below threshold)

The question should be -to chuckles gibson and the American Barackasting Company, "Do you adhere to any kind of journalistic integrity 'doctrine' ?"

Ok Ryan, what is t... (Below threshold)
Ok Ryan, what is the "Bush Doctrine"? Let's hear your take on it.

YOOHOO! Ryan! We're waiting.

What a crock. Charlie let h... (Below threshold)

What a crock. Charlie let her get away with too much. my question is when will someone on the press actually turn up the heat on Palin.

What a crock? I must have m... (Below threshold)
ed davt is:

What a crock? I must have missed the Biden interview.

I would not say ABC is a bu... (Below threshold)

I would not say ABC is a bunch of Aholes. You can quote me with my 'exact words.' Just leave off the "I would not say" part.

Jesus was a persecuted cons... (Below threshold)

Jesus was a persecuted conservative.

Pontius Pilate was his persecutor.

A persecutor is like an elitist news reader, accept he gets his target executed.

Must read Charles Krauthamm... (Below threshold)
Lorie Byrd:

Must read Charles Krauthammer on the Bush Doctrine.

Yes Lorie Byrd, or <a href=... (Below threshold)

Yes Lorie Byrd, or here at Townhall. It confirms what a meshugeneh old charly boy really is, oy!

So, you guys are all callin... (Below threshold)

So, you guys are all calling me out on what I know about the "Bush Doctrine", and I'm scrolling down to the bottom to respond. And then I see this:

"Jesus was a persecuted conservative."

It really makes sick to my stomach if that is what you people believe. If any of you think, for one moment, that the son of our lord Jesus Christ supported subsidies for oil companies that hold the American economy in a stranglehold, millions of children with no health insurance, torture, preemptive war (ooh that's in the Bush Doctrine), and holding people in prison for years without any hope of some kind of hearing or trial, than I can't wait until you meet Him and have to explain yourself.

I don't know what Bible they pass out at Westboro or the Church of Rush, but the one I own is against every single thing that the Republican party still clings to.

Now, the Bush Doctrine, as published in a National Security Council document entitled: "National Security Strategy of the United States" dated 9/20/02 can be described thusly:

"The phrase "Bush Doctrine" initially described the policy that the United States had the right to treat countries that harbor or give aid to terrorist groups as terrorists themselves, which was used to justify the invasion of Afghanistan.[1] Later it came to include additional elements, including the controversial policy of preventive war, which held that the United States should depose foreign regimes that represented a supposed threat to the security of the United States, even if that threat was not immediate (used to justify the invasion of Iraq),"

"which held that the United States should depose foreign regimes that represented a supposed threat to the security of the United States, even if that threat was not immediate (used to justify the invasion of Iraq)",

We all know how that went.

"Gee where are those darn weapons of mass destruction?" -- George W. Bush, flippantly, to a group of supporters, probably as a Humvee full of 20-year olds struck a fucking IED and died.

Ryan, as per your last abov... (Below threshold)

Ryan, as per your last above:

Congrats, you can use google or some such (inclusing the link in comment #18) and found it... but only part of it.

Now where are the other three parts AND do you know who named it the Bush Doctrine: (Hint: it was Bush of anyone whin his admin)

Additionally, for those not suffering under some grand illusion like yourself realize because there are three parts to the "Bush" doctrine Palin's answer was spot on, and to paraphrase her: "What the hell friggin' part are you referring to nitwit?!".

Sarah used a Lincoln quote ... (Below threshold)

Sarah used a Lincoln quote to slap Charlie. We have that very quote on the wall of our new GOP HQ here in Woodstock, Georgia. Come see.
Charlie & the democratic leadership are helping us elect Sarah. You should see the lines of volunteers coming through the door.
Thanks dumbocrats.

Ryan, lovely ignorance - an... (Below threshold)

Ryan, lovely ignorance - and intolerance - you are spewing there.

Since you don't seem to know, the remark about Jesus and Pontius Pilate was in response to and making fun of the subject being raised by Obama supporters. Do try to keep up.

Your damning a whole group of people for the remarks of one was sadly intolerant and not how a good liberal/Democrat claims one should behave.

I haven't watched ABC or fo... (Below threshold)

I haven't watched ABC or for years and years. The intro was typical by Snow. They had a chance at a for a new viewer, but, alas it was more of the same. Fox is still for me.

The Kate Snow piece was so ... (Below threshold)

The Kate Snow piece was so out of line that I was amazed that ABC had the audacity to even run such a one-sided piece. You can think Palin is not qualified to be VP but you certainly don't have to tell half truths to do so.

And the editing looked like something out of Jr. High. Apparently on the West Coast, they took out her reference to being a product of Title IX. What a bullsh*t job all the way around.

"We[Gibson's fellow leftard... (Below threshold)

"We[Gibson's fellow leftards] all know how that went."

The "Bush Doctrine" is not written down anywhere. This is a trope from the left wing fever swamps and by bringing it up, Gibson shows he is a member in good standing.

It is almost as if he resea... (Below threshold)

It is almost as if he researched his questions at KOS.

For me, Krauthammer's piece... (Below threshold)

For me, Krauthammer's piece raised an interesting question.

Suppose Brit Hume asked Obama if he agreed with the Clinton Doctrine.

Wait ... that's silly. When would Obama ever hold a one-on-one interview with someone perceived as working for the enemy?


Palin did well enough last ... (Below threshold)

Palin did well enough last night while Gibson demonstrated yet again that the legacy media is, in general, incredibly bad at their craft and shows no signs of getting better.

To repeat, how is it that an ABC anchor, interviewing a Vice Presidential candidate, stumbles on a flawed wire service report (AP) to use as the basis a question. This kind of mistake gets a person canned in most industries, to say nothing of the lesser consequences (can you say F on the term paper?).

Gibson's performance speaks volumes about the condition of the legacy media, which some of thought could sink no lower after the Rathergate debacle.

I now understand the timing of the Obama interview with O'Reilly. That done, he can now go back to the friendly confines of the MSM.

Lori, glad you linked the Krauthammer article on the Bush Doctrine...it makes the condescending trolls here look like the idiots they are.

Charlie is dumber than his ... (Below threshold)
Pat Kennedy:

Charlie is dumber than his namesake- Charlie the tuna- he is not interviewing he is simply trying to assassinate a woman- and poor Charlie is not able to do it. Charlie says she has spent 40,000 dollars after she sold the jet commuting- maybe Charlie didn't say it- but it's out there- here's my question Charlie- can we look at your expense accounts?
What pray tell did it cost ABC to send you to Alaska for your mining of dirt expedition? Ciao Charlie- next time don't eat the bait!

Charlie Gibson interview wi... (Below threshold)

Charlie Gibson interview with that fake, Sarah Palin was excellent. He gave me a chance to see who little ms.soccer mom, palin is. Her only title should be soccer mom only. I'm undecided on which way i may vote, but i want to know the intelligent level of all the candidates running. Ms. Palin, need to stay in AK with the moose and continue to live that kind of life. She's just a pretty face who can read a prompt and abuse her office there. People are stupid to vote for McCain with Palin on the ticket. I sure wish Palin would do some serious thinking(if she can think) and resign from being the vp candidate, so McCain can see he needs more than a pig with

bigguns47, <blockquo... (Below threshold)


I'm undecided on which way i may vote,

if you have anyone that believes that after reading your dribble, I've got oceanfront property in Arizona that I'm selling, going pretty cheap too.

This is a great piece of wr... (Below threshold)
R.J. Johnson:

This is a great piece of writing! It really summed things up well!


Charlie Gibson makes $22,00... (Below threshold)
Raoul Bloodworth:

Charlie Gibson makes $22,000 a DAY. Who is he to question the travel expenses of the elected governor of the largest state in the Union?

I watched about 10 minutes of this hatchet job and quit - more of the same.

Oh, and on the definition of the "Bush Doctrine" Karl Rove gave FOUR different definitions:

1) Countries that harbor terrorists will be treated like the terrorists.

2) The right of preemptive strike to prevent a terrorist attack

3) The right to invade a country encompassing the prior two situations.

4) The promotion of democracy as an antidote to Islamic Terrorism.

Which one did Charlie mean? Which one do you mean, Ryan?

Palin's answer was correct and Charlie owes her and the nation an apology.

Just got an email from "Tow... (Below threshold)

Just got an email from "Townhall" trying to get me to sign a petition pressuring "the oprah" into having Sarah on its show. Listen, you can put a beautiful, America loving, God fearing dedicated mother and public servant on a big fat pig leftist talk show, but it's still gonna be a big fat pigs leftist talk show.

And don't anyone dare say I was just talking about Oprah above. WATCH IT! ENOUGH! I am tired of this sick and fony outrage that I just manipulated into happening! We will only be engaging in a, uh, serious, uh, engagement, uh, oh no wait, I haven't gotten my nappy by on in a couple of days, uh, so , uh, let us only talk about sub, uh, substant, er, substantive, doy, ishus heya tuda.

Well, time for me to go face mecca and, uh, that is ta say, uh, thank thu Lawd Jesus, uh, fa blessin' me with, uh, the somthin' or utha ta transgress all you all typica wot fokes. Ba! And dont faget ta vote fa ma in Novemba.

Did I mention I hope she tells the oprah to shove it? ie; "Yeah uh, so anyway Oprah, I was thinking we could do this after the election when things calm down and I can have you over to the Whitehouse for a whole day. Okay?"

If I were a politician goin... (Below threshold)

If I were a politician going into one of these "gotcha" interviews, I would either bring my own film crew, or require a copy of the raw footage as a pre-condition for doing the interview.

I wonder why Republicans don't do this?

Sarah's first reaction to C... (Below threshold)
Idiot#3 Author Profile Page:

Sarah's first reaction to Charlie Gibson's Bush Doctrine ambush was to ask, "In regard to what, Charlie"? Whereupon, the Sidwell Friends Prepschool grad cum news anchor's mind went blank. He hadn't expected for her to want more specifics to a question like, "So, what's your opinion about the weather, little lady"?

Little Lord Charlie got caught being ignorant while pompous (IWP), and she easily and sweetly whacked him across the butt as if he was some lazy caribou trying to eat her front yard flowers.

Later on, prepschool grad Charlie misquoted her, was questioned again, but claimed, "exact words" (little lady). So she put her actual quote into context for him, again taking the broom to his pampered ass.

Charlie needs to retire to the warm fire with brandy snifter in hand and write his memoirs.

Regarding the Plane Sarah s... (Below threshold)

Regarding the Plane Sarah sold and the flight expenses, what the news media, and , I guess, most of those in the lower 48 don't realize is that the plane she sold was unsuitable for travel in Alaska. Alaskan runways in the cities and towns outside the main big three, are shorter. Sometimes the only 'runway' requires a hydroplane. The plane she sold was mainly for flying to the lower 48, not within the state. She kept the state's hydroplane.
It would be interesting to compare the per diem and travel expenses of her predecessors.

This is an editing comment ... (Below threshold)
katherine Klyce:

This is an editing comment about a grammatical error. You wrote "...but then spent $40,000 to fly SHE and her family..." You should have written "...but then spent $40,000 to fly HER and her family..." The pronoun is the object of the the very "to fly" and so must be in the objective case not the nominative case that you used.

As a guy, I'm wondering how... (Below threshold)

As a guy, I'm wondering how many women picked up on Gibson'
s body language. He hardly ever looked Palin in the eye. He was usually staring over her head or to one side. The few times he did make eye contact, it was down the bridge of his nose through his half glasses.

I interpret that as contemptuous and dismissive behavior. Gibson has so little respect for her humanity that he wouldn't even look her in the eye during his hit job. Gibson's behavior was that of a sociopathic professional assassain.

"When would Obama ever hold... (Below threshold)

"When would Obama ever hold a one-on-one interview with someone perceived as working for the enemy?"

Yeah, Oyster, we all know what a commie pinko Billo is.

Are you really that dimwitted, or are you just propagandizing?

What about ass-hat's "blizz... (Below threshold)
Son of a Pig and a Monkey:

What about ass-hat's "blizzard of words" insult. When Palin's VeeP, I hope she will totally freeze out ABC, and NBC are at least as bad. And CBS, Murrow comes to mind, but, oh yeah, so does "Fake but Accurate" Rather. Looks like Fox (the highest-ratings shop) will have a lock.

ABC is trash. <a href="htt... (Below threshold)
There is a great rebuttal o... (Below threshold)

There is a great rebuttal of the "holy war" distortion here:


Are you really tha... (Below threshold)
Are you really that dimwitted, or are you just propagandizing?

Knock it off, max. Disingenuous bloviating is not productive, and nsults aren't a way to pretend to understand what another commenter said.

oops, *insults... (Below threshold)

oops, *insults

Contact World News with Cha... (Below threshold)

Contact World News with Charlle Gibson direct here.

When Charlie gave his "bliz... (Below threshold)
E. Pharquartt:

When Charlie gave his "blizzard of words" comment, Sarah should have answered with this:

"I'm sorry, Charlie. Would you like me to peak slower so you can understand it?"

that would have brought the house down.....heh!

I forgot Charlie Gibson int... (Below threshold)
Rob S.:

I forgot Charlie Gibson interviewed Obama a little while ago. There were a couple of questions almost exactly the same. To see a great comparison go here.

Ok, LaMedusa, what's dising... (Below threshold)

Ok, LaMedusa, what's disingenuous about what I said, and what don't I understand about Oysters ignorant comment? I genuinely don't know if she's stupid or lying.

This is an editing comme... (Below threshold)
Lorie Byrd:

This is an editing comment about a grammatical error. You wrote "...but then spent $40,000 to fly SHE and her family..." You should have written "...but then spent $40,000 to fly HER and her family..." The pronoun is the object of the the very "to fly" and so must be in the objective case not the nominative case that you used.

Thanks Katharine. I am sorry for the mistake. I make plenty of grammar errors, some knowingly by being stubborn, but that one was unintentional. I got fired up when I was writing and got sloppy.

I genuinely don't ... (Below threshold)
I genuinely don't know if she's stupid or lying.

Yes you do. Take her words and substitute Obama for McCain, then Clinton for Bush. Maybe then you can use the word "propaganda", unless you still want to play ignorant. If you still don't understand, never mind. Believe what you want.

I just commented to ABC New... (Below threshold)

I just commented to ABC News, especially on Snow's introduction (which was very bothersome). I have never commented so much to news stations and newspapers before, but the biased treatment favoring Obama/Biden and disrespecting McCain/Palin has me infuriated and actively campaining.






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