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Thursday, September 04, 2008

[Political theatre]

The NATIONAL ENQUIRER is running a story that says that Sarah Palin only announced her daughter's pregnancy because they were going to break the news. They are apparently also running a story that says Sarah Palin had an affair with a business partner of her husband.

The McCain campaign is responding with a stout defense of Sarah Palin and an attack on the ENQUIRER for its "vicious smears."

Oh, fer chrissake. You do not win a pissing match with the NATIONAL ENQUIRER. They have the best libel lawyers in the world, and superb fact checkers, and a willingness to pay people for their stories. And they looooooove controversy. You are just making them look respectable by giving them standing to say this:
The National Enquirer's coverage of a vicious war within Sarah Palin's extended family includes several newsworthy revelations, including the resulting incredible charge of an affair plus details of family strife when the Governor's daughter revealed her pregnancy. Following our John Edwards' exclusives, our political reporting has obviously proven to be more detail-oriented than the McCain campaign's vetting process. Despite the McCain camp's attempts to control press coverage they find unfavorable, The Enquirer will continue to pursue news on both sides of the political spectrum.
What is Mark Twain's old aphorism -- never get in a fight with a man who buys his ink by the barrel?

I think the McCain campaign is so angry about the media vetting Palin that they've temporarily lost their media media savvy. Foolishly, Steve Schmidt is denying the allegations -- which instantly makes it a legitimate MSM story if it turns out to be the least bit true. You don't respond to allegations of an affair, for heaven's sake! By denying it, you make it real!

The correct response to a NATIONAL ENQUIRER article about your candidate is: "Oh, please. Seriously? The NATIONAL ENQUIRER??? Okay, moving on..."

That works. At least until they catch you in a motel room with your love child.



My fear is that people will start to feel sorry for Sarah Palin and she will gain ground for McCain/Palin on sympathy.

I don't like the woman's politics or her stance on most issues, but I hope the media back off just a touch or the tide will turn in her favour. She'll be an underdog and God knows your average folks love to root for the underdog.

By Blogger Kevin Lehane, at 8:01 AM  

After her speech last night, I don't think anyone's going to see her as an underdog.

By Blogger Alex Epstein, at 8:15 AM  

Howard Kurtz wrote about this for the Washington Post:

"Why would Schmidt put this out there instead of ignoring the story? Well, he did add that "The efforts of the media and tabloids to destroy this fine and accomplished public servant are a disgrace"--as if 'media' and 'tabloids' were one indistinguishable mass."

The goal isn't to discredit the National Enquirer, but rather to paint all the negative coverage on Palin as 'tabloid journalism.'

By Blogger Michael, at 10:53 AM  

Well, National Enquirer did break the John Edwards story that turned out to be true, so the party may be concerned that the rag has earned itself some legitimate credits in certain circles.

By Blogger Emily Blake, at 2:06 PM  

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