Thoughts on the Biden-Palin debate

Now that I’ve had a couple of days to ruminate on last Thursday’s debate, a couple of thoughts:

(1.) Gov. Sarah Palin said, “And I may not answer the questions that either the moderator or you want to hear, but I’m going to talk straight to the American people and let them know my track record also.” To me, readers, it takes a lot of damned gall to show up for a nationally televised debate and then say up front that she intends to ignore the moderator’s questions if she doesn’t feel like answering them. For the record, the question she was flatly refusing to answer that particular moment was about John McCain’s long history of advocating the kind of Wall Street deregulation that has now brought us to the brink of national disaster.

(2.) Palin, asked about the role of the vice president, said, “No, no. Of course, we know what a vice president does. And that’s not only to preside over the Senate and will take that position very seriously also. I’m thankful the Constitution would allow a bit more authority given to the vice president if that vice president so chose to exert it in working with the Senate and making sure that we are supportive of the president’s policies and making sure too that our president understands what our strengths are.” … Say what?

(3.) Palin remarked, “Oh, yeah, it’s so obvious I’m a Washington outsider. And someone just not used to the way you guys operate… You’re one who says, as so many politicians do, I was for it before I was against it or vice-versa.” Um, just like you were for the “bridge to nowhere” and only turned against it once Congress had killed its funding, o Washington outsider… or shall I say, unfrozen caveman lawyer?

(4.) Palin, in closing, said “I like being able to answer these tough questions without the filter, even, of the mainstream media kind of telling viewers what they’ve just heard. I’d rather be able to just speak to the American people like we just did.” In her case, apparently, this means “without any accountability if I don’t answer the question.”

I certainly hope everyone in America was listening very carefully.

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.