Democracy Soup

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Campbell Brown calls out McCain campaign for being sexist toward Sarah Palin

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Originally published on on Wed, 09/24/2008 – 9:29am

Campbell Brown is an anchor with CNN, not a commentator. But Brown launched into a commentary that was spot-on in terms of how the McCain campaign has treated Sarah Palin.

The McCain campaign has treated her like a China doll (which does add to her foreign policy experience, relating to China and all that). Two interviews, even if one of those was with Sean Hannity, in almost a month in the spotlight. The final straw came yesterday when reporters were initially banned from covering Palin in New York City.

Here is the rant in its entirety and the video:

But, first, bear with me for a short rant on another subject, because, frankly, I have had it. And I know a lot of other women out there are with me on this. I have had enough of the sexist treatment of Sarah Palin. It has to end.

She was here in New York City today meeting with world leaders at the U.N. And what did the McCain campaign do? They tried to ban reporters from covering those meetings. And they did ban reporters from asking Governor Palin any questions.

Tonight, I call on the McCain campaign to stop treating Sarah Palin like she is a delicate flower that will wilt at any moment. This woman is from Alaska, for crying out loud. She is strong. She is tough. She is confident. And you claim she’s ready to be one heartbeat away from the presidency. If that is the case, then end this chauvinistic treatment of her now. Allow her to show her stuff. Allow her to face down those pesky reporters, just like Barack Obama did today, just like John McCain did today, just like Joe Biden has done on numerous occasions. Let her have a real news conference with real questions.

By treating Sarah Palin different from the other candidates in this race, you’re not showing her the respect she deserves. Free Sarah Palin. Free her from the chauvinistic chains you’re binding her with. Sexism in this campaign must come to an end. Sarah Palin has just as much a right to be a real candidate in this race as the men do. So, let her act like one.

Can’t say Brown has been one of my favorite anchors lately. Her take, along with Erica Hill, on the hearings looking into impeachment, was an embarrassment.

There is her marriage to Dan Senor, contributor to Fox News Channel and The Wall Street Journal and the former chief spokesperson for the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq.

And even when she “confronted” John McCain spokesperson Tucker Bounds on a story, she was so apologetic to him, something no one in the MSM has ever done to a Democratic candidate or spokesperson.

I appreciate you coming on and taking the time to have this debate. I think it’s important. People don’t know a lot about her. They want to understand her qualifications as much as possible. We’re not beating you up here. We’re not trying to. We’re just trying to educate ourselves and educate our viewers. So I really do appreciate your time and thank you for your time coming on.

And what Bounds received was flowers and greetings as liberators compared to what Democratic candidates and spokespeople get on a regular basis. The campaign’s response to the “outrage” was to cancel an interview with McCain and Larry King.

Given what happens when anchors become commentators, and say things the McCain campaign doesn’t like, Brown took a gamble. But Brown said something yesterday that was beautiful and needed to be said. I’ve been saying similar things about how badly the campaign is treating its own VP candidate.

You can argue cynically that perhaps Brown is frustrated since she wants more access to Palin, as is the consensus of most journalists these days. True, but this goes deeper.

Almost from the start, the McCain campaign has treated the idea of asking questions of Palin to be sexist. But the worst sexism — worse than Tina Fey, worse than Photoshopped pictures of her in a bikini shooting a gun – has come from the McCain campaign.

McCain was asked about Palin on “60 Minutes” on Sunday, noting that he “had watched her very carefully. I had followed her career” and that he based the decision “on what’s the best for the country. I looked at her record. I looked at her.”

But what we’ve seen since August 29 doesn’t reflect that reality at all.


Written by democracysoup

September 24, 2008 at 9:29 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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