Sarah Palin In A Nut Shell : Going Rogue: Book Review. LIFE WITH THE MEDIA AFTER THE CONVENTION INCLUDING KATIE COURIC. The GREAT DIVIDER.
Sarah Palin states she had a good relationship with the Media in Alaska before she became John McCain’s running mate. She frequently called into radio talk shows to make comments. In addition many reporters had her personal cell phone and they could get an immediate answer from her on any issue or fact they wished to report her views on.
Her relationship with the Alaska Media ended when she became a Vice Presidential candidate. Steve Schmidt and his staff guided by the campaign powers in Washington wanted to control all relations with the Media. Who the powers in Washington were is not mentioned. Thus she was prevented from making off the cuff remarks to the Alaska Media or the reporters travelling with her.
However she says she obtained the call in number of national talk show hosts like Rush Limbaugh, Laura Ingraham, Sean Hannity and others. However The campaign staff prevented her from playing up to the right probably because they were trying to make the average voter perceive her as more centrist , the vote they would have to capture in order to win the election. She alleges the campaign leaders never responded to an on air request from Bill O’Reilly for an interview on Fox. (This is probably because the campaign wanted to be perceived as centrists and chose the mainstream national broadcast networks for the interviews.)
Nicolle,” her stylist” who previously worked for Katie Couric, pushed her to grant an interview with Katie. She was told by Nicolle,” Katie likes you. She sees you as another working mom with teenage daughters. Katie wants you to like her.” (This dosen’t ring true. An unnamed stylist is influencing her to grant Couric one of her first nationally televised interviews the other being with Charles Gibson of ABC.) “ You know what we will do schedule a segment with her. If it doesn’t go well, if there is no chemistry, we won’t do any others.” The Nicolle she is referring to is presumably Nicolle Wallace a former White House Communications Director for George W. Bush and media strategist selected with her husband to work with Palin. Wallace denies the conversation ever took place. Palin, apparently also blames her for the goof with her expensive wardrobe when she was trying to establish herself as a middleclass hockey mom so we get the designation and denigration of Nicolle as a “stylist.”
Wallace says the strategy was to have her appear on the nightly news of the national broadcast networks. Palin make it sound like when Couric asked her to name what she read it was “like how often do you cheat on your husband.” Also she says she was duped into thinking that the interview with Couric would be friendly and only on one occasion. It turned out to be three separate interviews and then they were was edited down for broadcast. She indicates much of her answers ended up on the cutting room floor and only the most damaging material to her image was left in. She makes it sound like Couric was out to get her to improve her dismal ratings at the time. (First of all the producers at CBS would have edited the interview. Couric may have some say but not the only say as to the shape of what was aired on CBS. CBS is noted for its journalistic excellence being the network of Edward R. Murrow, Walter Cronkite and Dan Rather. So this sounds like sour grapes.) Palin also says her advisers didn’t prepare her for the interviews and things came out sounding wrong i.e. as Governor she conducted foreign affairs with Russia and the Pacific Rim countries as well as Canada that were twisted in the editing. ( Now you know why she calls this book Going Rogue. She just doesn’t get the fact that the McCain campaign strategy was to move to the center . Making loose statements and grandstanding to the right ( her modus operandi then and ever since) was not going to work in a national campaign.
Then her personal E-mail was hacked. It was more of a nuisance than damaging to her or the campaign. More of a nuisance since the networks broadcast the To and From addresses of her, her family and friends.
However when she appeared in Republican areas she drew
large crowds, even larger than McCain. (It was becoming evident she would be a superstar of the right and remains so to this day. With independents and Democrats she is an anathema.)
The McCain campaign wished to make the major issue the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan however as events turned out the economy was in a downward spiral and that became the dominant issue.
She ruefully concludes that Katie Couric was bent on getting gotcha moments in her interviews and she succeeded . Thus she let her team down. However she is still bitter about the interviews which she believes established her image with the public. (This was enhanced later by the Tina Fey takeoffs of her as an airhead.) She notes that Joe Biden was given better treatment when Couric interviewed him and did not pick up on his statement “When the stock market crashed . Franklin D. Roosevelt got on television and didn’t just talk about the prices of greed. He said here’s what happened.”
Of course Roosevelt wasn’t president at the time and there was no television.
In the end she felt she was badgered and selectively edited by Couric and should have spent her time on the campaign trail with the “people.” ( She means her people or people more conservative than the average American voter which she would have reached in the broadcast interviews if she had been better prepared and more experienced in handling a serious as opposed to a softball interviews.)
In the end it appears she was not a unifier of the electorate but a divisive personage.