ABC News’s Charles Gibson’s has landed the “first television interview” with Gov. Sarah Palin since Palin joined the Republican presidential ticket. Per the AP, “Palin will sit down for multiple interviews with Gibson in Alaska over two days, most likely Thursday and Friday.”
More from the AP:
The interview is a coup for Gibson, who also had the only sit-down with McCain during the Republican National Convention. During that interview, he did not question McCain about Palin’s family, a decision that he fretted about for hours, Gibson said in a Web log posted last week…
ABC News spokesman Jeffrey Schneider said he did not believe Gibson’s stated stance about family questions was key to securing the interview.
Josh Marshall has seen the future and it is “unwatchable:”
Political interviews are never done like this. Because it makes the questioning entirely at the discretion of the person being interviewed and their handlers. The interviewer has to be on their best behavior, at least until the last of the ‘multiple interviews’ because otherwise the subsequent sittings just won’t happen. For a political journalist to agree to such terms amounts to a form of self-gelding. The only interviews that are done this way are lifestyle and celebrity interviews. And it’s pretty clear that that is what this will be.
Can you have a “lifestyle” interview without “family” questions?
Kevin Drum expects Palin will do fine, adding “part of the reason she’ll be OK is that I expect Gibson to screw the pooch.” Drum offers “a tip” to Gibson:
[T]here are several questions that Palin is obviously going to be prepared for. “What makes you prepared to be vice president” tops the list, so don’t bother using up your time on that one. Ditto for questions about her daughter, her Christian faith, and moose hunting. Conversely, Troopergate, the Bridge to Nowhere, and earmarks are probably good subjects, but only if you really know your stuff. She’s not exactly going to be surprised by those topics either. And I’m sure you know this already, but idiotic gotcha questions (“Can you name of the president-for-life of Berserkistan?”) are also no-nos.
Also, I’d add: The follow-ups! Don’t forget the oft-forgotten follow-up questions!
Liz Cox Barrett is a freelance writer and graphic designer in Kalispell, Montana. She worked as a newspaper journalist in Denver and Kalispell for 20 years.