Earlier this week, Gov. Sarah Palin (R-AK) sat down for an interview with KUSA, an NBC affiliate in Colorado. As ThinkProgress first reported, in response to a question about “[w]hat does the Vice President do,” Palin replied, “[T]hey’re in charge of the U.S. Senate so if they want to they can really get in there with the senators and make a lot of good policy changes.” (She’s wrong.)
Today on MSNBC, Chris Matthews challenged McCain campaign spokeswoman Nancy Pfotenhauer to defend Palin’s comments, saying that in all his time in Washington, he has “never heard anybody” give an answer like Palin did. “Where does she get her civics?” asked Matthews. Pfotenhauer became visibly angry by the questioning and tried to change the subject. Matthews, however, refused to let her get away:
I don’t know why Randy Scheunemann or one of the smart people around her — I don’t know who else, Nicolle Wallace, somebody — ought to go to the candidate for the Vice President and give them a copy of the Constitution to read. That’s all it takes. It doesn’t take a lot of penetrating thought. Read the job description. [...]
Somehow, in all these trips to Washington — through Neiman’s, and through Saks, and through everywhere else she stopped off, she never picked up a copy of the Constitution. It is a problem. It is a problem, Nancy, and you know it.
Whether Palin truly understands the role of the vice president has been repeatedly called into question. Right-wing members of the media, as well as conservatives such as Mitt Romney and former Bush strategist Matthew Dowd, have raised doubts about if Palin will be ready to step into the role of President. As recently as July, in fact, Palin dismissed the job, saying that it didn’t seem “productive.” “As for that VP talk all the time, I’ll tell you, I still can’t answer that question until somebody answers for me what is it exactly that the VP does every day?” she told CNBC.
Today, McCain insisted that Palin is “the most qualified of any that who has run recently for vice president, to tell you the truth.”