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. girl texas

    Sarah Palin has more guts, common sense, and connection with THE PEOPLE than either of your sorry Obama National Party candidates will ever have. This is why you're so afraid. PUMA.

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

    Heck, I had lunch in a Russian Tea Room last week, that makes me qualified to be John McCain's Foreign Policy Advisor.

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

    she is just there to talk for five minutes with each one,one photo and an autograph....mccain campaign looks so desperate to make up miss wasila

    September 23, 2008 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  4. Gidget Goes To The UN

    What a farce. She should be back in Alaska, and not pretending she has what it takes to run the country. She knows she's not ready, and the rest of the country knows it too.

    Obama/Biden 08

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

    Okay, and this is considered "foreign policy experience?" This country is in lots of trouble if we allow the Republicans back into the White House. Look at where we are - the financial system on the verge of collapsing; two wars; record number of foreclosures and job losses - the list goes on and on. And, by the way, Palin has instructed her staff to ignore subpoenas. What do you think would happen to you or me if we did such a thing? The word is "contempt." People, wake up - we cannot allow this election to be "stolen" again!

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

    This woman has no business in the political arena. Shame on McCain to select such a weak person to represent this country.

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

    More & more secrecy from the McCain campaign, just like Bush! Silence & stonewalling, same as the present adminstration. Is it any surprise since McCain voted with his party 90% of the time? And they try to sell "reform" as their platform? Please, step off.

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

    Of course McCain is keeping her away from the media.

    He is only allowing Palin to have photo-ops for the simple reason that he knows she has no experience and is perhaps the most unqualified poltician in America to be a nominee for VP.

    After her interview with Charlie Gibson of ABC, it is no wonder that they want to keep her from answering any tough questions. She knows nothing. Even in the photo-ops with these world leaders she looks more like she should be bringing them coffee than pretending to be taken seriously for the possibility of becoming VP, and perhpas even president.

    The saddest part of all is that the race is so close. The simple fact that Obama is not ahead by 20 points or more in every state, when the country is in such terrible shape, proves the ignorance and apathy of the American people.

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

    mclame campaign doesn't want any evidence of the mistakes she might make, so no reporters allowed!!

    Palin for president of the wasilla PTA!
    Mccain for president of panama!

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  10. Christina

    So if this is Palin's first time meeting these leaders, arent Obama and her tied??

    What a joke! At least she was PICKEd for VP, not actually RUNNING for President without experience...hysterical!

    I'll take McCain-Palin ticket any day compared to Obama/??? oh yeah Obama/Biden.

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  11. Bernie

    Thank you, television news organizations, for standing up and refusing to broadcast propaganda provided by the campaign!

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  12. Ryan

    Now Palin has as much foriegn policy experience as BO.

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  13. Gidget Goes To The UN !

    This woman is a joke.

    What a farce. She should be back in Alaska, and not pretending she has what it takes to run the country. She knows she's not ready, and the rest of the country knows it too.

    Obama/Biden 08

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  14. Alissa in Kansas

    Will the McCain campaign EVER let her stand on her own two feet? MY LORD! She could be the VP! Is there a precedent for this?

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  15. Lucie

    Never in the American history has a candidate be it presidential or the Vice ever ever been blocked from taking questions from the press. She is simply clueless. i cannot trust Mcsame and Palin.
    Obama/Biden '08
    YES WE CAN

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  16. Zaley

    SCRIPTED AND STAGED.

    Vote OBAMA the SANE choice.

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  17. Big 8

    The campaign didn't want reporters or cameras to witness Palin continually looking over shouler to ask her advisers, "Who's this, now?"

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  18. FL4OB

    More secrecy from the McCain campaign.

    Thanks, but no thanks.

    Eight is enough!

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  19. bob in L.A.

    Can you blame the McCain people for not wanting coverage of her saying NOTHING! What can she possibly say? She has no experience to relate, no authority to negotiate or deal, and can't even make promises for the future is McCain is elected because there own;t be anyone there to arbitrate the discussion.
    Palin is the non-story of the day- again.

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  20. Bruce

    let;s discuss our children...now that is foreign policy experince...this is a joke...she is a joke and McCain is joke....but the sad part is that they a pulling the woll over America's eyes.....
    WAKE UP AND SEE THEM FOR WHO THEY ARE.....

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  21. YOYOS

    yes the McCain camp wants to keep Palin as far away from reporters as possible.....only want her to speak from a prepared script. We all saw how utterly incompetent, unqualified and incapable she is during the ABC news Charlie Gibson interview. Can't blame them.

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  22. Eyckie

    Either the Republicans know that Palin is going to look really bad or they don't want Americans to see who she really is. Isn't it more than a little odd that she doesn't speak in front of cameras or media?

    The woman is meeting with heads of state as a representative of the USA. Why aren't people allowed to see and hear her speak?

    Obviously Republicans are afraid that Americans will find out just how incompetent she is. If they thought she could speak intelligibly they wouldn't ban the media.

    What's the point of these meetings anyway?

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  23. Doug

    We're supposed to be impressed by 49 seconds of her sitting down with leaders – WITH HER OWN ADVISORS THERE TO WHISPER IN HER EAR?!?! Wow, I can't believe the disdain these people have for the American electorate!

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  24. Palin Meeting

    "What is the name of your kid"?
    That was the only sentence Sarah Palin can comprehend. Karzai realized this fact too.

    Todd Palin for president.

    Because McCain is already over the hill. I guess the intelligent can figure it out.

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  25. Steve

    The greatest threat Palin faces, is just herself. Keep on talking Palin. Continue self destructing slowly but surely. I wonder what those leaders will be thinking of as they leave the U.S. "she confirmed to me that she can actually see Russia from Alaska". Self destruction continues........

    September 23, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
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