Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The shun-the-media strategy

After three pro-Palin posts today, I feel duty-bound to admit a serious qualification that could undo the generally rosy future that is unfolding in front of her. See, since being handed the VP nomination ten days ago, Gov. Palin has yet to give an interview to the press. Or even give an on-the-record answer to a reporter. This shun-the-media strategy can't last forever. How will she hold up to the coming scrutiny?

Perhaps a more immediate question is: Will the media hold the bubble around the VP nominee against her?

Well, here is a write-up I just noticed on Yahoo News, and the writer does not disguise a mocking tone. The headline? "No questions, please; Palin sticks to her script":

By SARA KUGLER, Associated Press Writer 2 minutes ago

LEBANON, Ohio - John McCain took a risk in picking little-known Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as a running mate, but now the campaign's playing it safer. She's sticking to a greatest hits version of her convention speech on the campaign trail and steering clear of questions until she's comfortable enough for a hand-picked interviewer later this week.

More than 40 million people tuned in last week to listen to the speech from Palin, the 44-year-old first-term governor whom McCain announced as his surprise vice presidential pick just days before. Since then, that basic script is all anyone has heard from her publicly, and her only interaction with the media was a brief conversation with a small group of reporters on her plane Monday — off the record at her handlers' insistence.

A "greatest hits version of her convention speech"?

If I were running the McCain campaign (and I am not) I would get Palin interviews all over the media. And if I knew she wasn't up to that task, I wouldn't have chosen her.

That said, the pick has worked out perfectly so far. So far. Now comes the hard part.

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