Katie Couric told Page Six recently that Gov. Sarah Palin (R-AK) “should keep her head down, work really hard and learn about governing.” On Larry King Live last night, Palin responded to Couric’s remark by thanking her for the advice, claiming she wouldn’t offer Couric any advice in return because of her “respect” for the media. However, she then proceeded to trash the media as biased and unfair:
PALIN: Well, thank you, Katie Couric, for your advice. And I won’t reciprocate in giving her any advice, that’s for sure, because I have respect for her and the profession that she is in. I would have greater respect though for the entire profession called mainstream media if we could have great assurance that there is fairness, that there is objectivity throughout the reporting world.
If Palin has respect for the media, she has a funny way of showing it. As she introduced herself to the nation at the Republican National Convention, Palin made the media the target of several of her most popular applause lines. As the campaign progressed, Palin said the media, in asking substantive questions about policy, were engaging in “gotcha journalism.” She also accused reporters of failing to adhere to “journalistic ethics.”
Late last month, Palin went so far as to claim the media was trampling her right to free speech. As ABC News reported:
“If [the media] convince enough voters that that is negative campaigning, for me to call Barack Obama out on his associations,” Palin told host Chris Plante, “then I don’t know what the future of our country would be in terms of First Amendment rights and our ability to ask questions without fear of attacks by the mainstream media.”
KING: Katie Couric, by the way, said last night that she thinks you should keep your head down, work really hard and learn about governing before contemplating a presidential run.
PALIN: Well, thanks…
KING: What are your thoughts about her saying you should learn about governing?
PALIN: I’d say thank you, Katie Couric, for your advice. And I won’t reciprocate in giving her any advice, that’s for sure, because I have respect for her and the profession that she is in. I would have greater respect, though, for the entire profession called mainstream media if we could have great assurance that there’s fairness, that there’s objectivity throughout the reporting world.
And, you know, Larry, there, too, if there is anything that I can do in terms of assisting there and allowing the credence — the credibility that that great vocation — that cornerstone of our democracy called the press — if I can help build up that credibility in the press and allow the electorate to know that they can believe everything that is reported through the airwaves and through print, I want to be able to help.
I started out as a journalist. It’s that important to me that that cornerstone of our democracy is given the credence and credibility that it deserves.
But we have to have a two-way street here going, where reporters are fair, objective, non-biased; we get back to the who, what, where, when and why, and allow the viewers and the listeners and the readers to make up their own minds and not so much commentary, I think, being involved in mainstream media’s questioning and reporting on candidates.
I’d like to kind of help build back that credibility in that cornerstone of our democracy called our media…
KING: Don’t you also…
PALIN: …allowing for the checks and balances that government needs. KING: Don’t you think, Governor, that there’s also a right-wing media?
PALIN: There’s a right-wing, there’s a left-wing. I tend to believe that what we need is, again, back to the who, what, where, when and why, and allow the electorate — allow listeners, viewers to make up their own minds based on fair, objective, non-biased reporting. That’s what I’d like to see.
At the same time, though, it’s healthy, it’s interesting, it’s entertaining — entertaining to be able to hear the commentary on both sides. But when mainstream media, especially, is expected to be non- biased, without the commentary being involved, I think we really need to get back to giving the — some credence to the wisdom of the people, allowing them the ability to make up their own minds without hearing too much commentary infiltrated in the questions and the reporting.