September 23rd, 2008
02:45 PM ET
3 years ago

McCain camp tries to keep reporters out of Palin meetings

The media was allowed to observe Palin and Karzai for less than 30 seconds.
The media was allowed to observe Palin and Karzai for less than 30 seconds.

(CNN) - McCain-Palin campaign officials shifted course Tuesday after being informed by television news organizations that they would not broadcast footage of Sarah Palin’s meeting with Afghan leader Hamid Karzai Tuesday in New York - the Republican VP nominee’s first with a foreign leader - if a reporter was not allowed in to observe the pair.

CNN, which was the pool network for the event, informed the campaign of its decision. The network was then told a CNN producer would be allowed in the room to act as a media representative, just minutes before the photo op was scheduled to take place. However, print reporters and wire services were not allowed to observe the meeting, as they have been able to do at similar McCain events in the past.

The press only caught a brief glimpse of the vice presidential nominee. Palin was seated in a large chair a few feet from Karzai, with a table in between them. Seated slightly behind Palin were campaign foreign policy advisers Steve Biegun and Randy Scheunemann, who are accompanying the governor in her motorcade today.

As the pool entered, the Afghan president appeared to be telling Palin about his young son, who was born in January 2007.

Palin, her legs crossed and at one point patting her heart, was leaning in eagerly and smiling. Karzai, wearing his traditional clothes but without his trademark karakul hat, was also grinning while discussing the child. His remarks were mostly unintelligible as the noise from the clicking cameras drowned them out.

“What is his name?,” Palin asked.

“Mirwais,” Karzai responded. “Mirwais, which means, ‘The Light of the House.’”

“Oh nice,” Palin responded.

“He is the only one we have,” remarked Karzai.

After 29 seconds observing the meeting, CNN and other photographers covering the meeting were escorted out of the room.

Later, McCain-Palin press representatives chalked up the restrictions to a “mix-up, a miscommunication among staff.” The full pool — a print and wires reporter, along with a television producer — was then allowed in to observe Palin’s meeting with Colombian President Alvaro Uribe for 15-20 seconds.


Filed under: Sarah Palin
soundoff (261 Responses)
  1. Bill

    Now THAT'S foreign policy – Repub style!!!!
    Is it REALLY worth reporting on?

    September 23, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  2. Chantel

    Women want to be equal to men but do not want to be held to the same standards. Pallin, u suck. You are not the Woman I want to be the first female VP? McDonalds manager is better than you.

    September 23, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  3. julie

    Wow, The Republican's are trying to make this VP look like she has foreign policy experience by having her chat with heads of states, but did you notice that their foreign policy advisers are sitting right behind her while she chats.

    September 23, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  4. Sarah Palin and African Americans in Alaska

    This is such a joke. Obviously there is something to hide. McCain is speaking out of both sides of his mouth. She is ready to be President, but she can't take questions from the media? Hello, don't you have to do that in order to be President. I know she isn't running for President, but no one told McCain. He thinks they can both be President. No minority would be able to steer clear of the media, parade their preganant teenager on stage commenting "how proud we are as parents". Only in white America!!!!!!!!!!!

    September 23, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  5. Anonymous

    why am i not surprised? mccain himself haven't had a press conference in over a month, (though i hear he's planning one today), so why should we expect that palin, who's even less capable of facing the press without a teleprompter, would want to expose her first meetings with international leaders to reporters? the risk of her showing her total ignorance in front of the whole nation is too great, gibson interview notwithstanding...

    September 23, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  6. Cam

    It's funny how every time McCain and Palin censor the press it is later chalked up to a "mistake" or "miscommunication among staff". That's fine if they want to use that as an excuse, but do Americans really want an administration that is obviously so challenged in maintaining communications among even their own staff, lt alone the rest of the country?

    And anyone who thinks that talking to a world leader makes you have foreign policy experience is an idiot. Smoke and mirrors on the worst VP pick in U.S. history.

    September 23, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  7. chris

    So two days of meetings with foreign heads make her efficient in foreign policy? She is a joke and mccain shows his true colors for picking her.

    September 23, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  8. Raymond Duke

    Well ; Peter I see you delete anyones blogg that is not pro- Obama . That is alright , you cannot change my vote. You cannot also make me watch CNn.

    September 23, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  9. P Ling

    So sad, so comical, so superficial...these meetings are nothing more than playing doll with Palin. The more they think the voter can be fooled, the more the McCain/Palin campaign is floating further and deeper into la-la-land... My friends, it is bedtime for McBozo and pals.

    September 23, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  10. Francisco Anguiano

    unacceptable

    September 23, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  11. FemaleDemDisgustedbyMcPalin

    This is INSANITY!!!

    September 23, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  12. Vandy

    "Palin, her legs crossed and at one point patting her heart, was leaning in eagerly and smiling": Yay, she can seduce the heads of state of all them nasty A-rab countries! Way to report on this pointless meeting. No kidding, Gretchen.

    Obama/Biden 2008

    September 23, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  13. IWASP!-Intellgent Woman Against Sarah Palin!

    And this is supposed to give her foreign policy credentials? hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha hehe haw haw
    IF I were Republican, I would be highly insulted that mccain thought so low of my intelligence.

    mccain/palin = proven pathological liars

    September 23, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  14. Noah

    This brings to mind the time that Obama cancelled a trip to visit injured American soldiers in Iraq because no television cameras would be allowed to follow him around and use these brave men and women as photo opportunities. At least McCain was trying not to use this as a photo-op and treated it as a serious and important matter, which it is.

    September 23, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  15. Larry

    Just another photo op with no questions from the media again. I hope she had her cheat sheet with her.

    September 23, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  16. JohnOldMan

    This woman is an idiot she has nothing to report anyways, I bet all she all she said “Oh nice,” to everything the guy says.

    September 23, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  17. Swe

    She is a joke.

    September 23, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  18. Joe

    The media should not cover her or McCain until she stands in front of 50 reporters and does a press conference. They need to grow a spine and call there bluff and say on public tv that until the McCain campaign stops ducking the press they will not be covered. Not their foreign policy, economics, or anything else.

    September 23, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  19. Annette, Washington, DC

    This really is a joke.

    September 23, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  20. Jane

    She is a total joke !!!!....

    Don't let this woman into the White House..

    Obama/Biden '08

    September 23, 2008 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  21. Ryan, Florida

    Sarah Palin IS John McCain's Vanna White.
    The McCain-Palin complete and utter contempt for Democracy, Freedom, Transparency and the Truth is truly stunning. Its starting to make Bush look like a teenager.

    September 23, 2008 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  22. Former PUMA

    HAHAHA 15-20 seconds was all the reporters were allowed to observe? I wonder what these "world leaders" think of being used as pawns by the McCain camp in the American Presidential Race. What a shame.

    September 23, 2008 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  23. Jeffer65

    Are they actually talking about any issues or is it all fluff? Guess we will never know.

    September 23, 2008 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  24. Debra, Alton

    Anyone planning on voting for this ticket should really question their reasoning for not allowing the press to talk to this woman.

    People have to be crazy to vote for someone they don't know. What is it McCain campaign is afraid of. The American people are not stupid

    September 23, 2008 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  25. Ross

    Don't want to expose her to the media, but of course she will be ready to lead on day one. Does that mean she'll be ready to talk to the media on day one or lead the country? I seriously doubt she'll be ready for either. If she's found guilty of the allegations against her in Alaska, she may be sent to jail anyway. Wishful thinking, but anything is possible, I guess.

    September 23, 2008 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
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