I do not agree with John Fund that Charlie Gibson's questions were largely tough and fair. It seemed to me that he was rude and was doing his best to trip Sarah Palin up into making some gaffe. Could it be that Gibson is trying to become another Keith Olberman?
Passing Grades All Around
ABC's Charlie Gibson homed in early and hard on Sarah Palin's views on foreign policy last night.His focus perhaps wasn't surprising given Ms. Palin's relative inexperience in that area. She hadn't traveled outside North America until last year, or met a head of state other than President Bush -- being largely consumed instead with state issues in her job as Alaska governor.
Mr. Gibson's questions were tough but largely fair, with one exception. He couldn't resist playing "gotcha" to see if she was up to speed on foreign policy details. He brought up the "Bush Doctrine" without any explanation of its content and asked her what she thought of it. Like the vast majority of politicians, she didn't have a firm idea and parried back with: "What aspect of it?" When he explained it involved the right of the U.S. to make pre-emptive war, she responded largely with boilerplate -- since, after all, she's hoping to be in office next year pushing the foreign policy priorities of John McCain.
In the second half of the interview, Mr. Gibson tried to drive a wedge between her and Mr. McCain on the issue of global warming. Asked about previous statements in which she expressed skepticism about whether climate change was manmade, she replied: "I believe that man's activities certainly can be contributing to the issue of global warming, climate change. Regardless of that, John McCain and I agree that we gotta do something about it."
McCain advisers are relieved that Mrs. Palin passed the critical first hazing by a Bigfoot journalist. "I give her a grade of B -- but needs work," wrote one to me. The worst fear of some advisers -- that she would revert to stopgap phrases such as "you know" and "like" that she sometimes drops into her informal conversation -- proved unfounded. "She clearly has the discipline to distinguish between chitchat and formal speech," a Palin friend told me. "She looked a little nervous and intense, but I think it will get better over time."
-- John Fund
(REPRINTED FROM THE WALL STREET JOURNAL'S POLITICAL DIARY ONLIN)