November 22nd, 2009
07:47 AM ET
4 years ago

You're as pretty as Palin, Carville tells Matalin


Washington (CNN) – Longtime Clinton ally and Democratic strategist James Carville had some rare words of praise for former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin Sunday on CNN’s State of the Union. But, ever the good husband, Carville made sure to heap equal praise on his wife, Republican strategist Mary Matalin.

The two were discussing the recent controversial cover of Newsweek magazine, in which Palin is shown in running shorts. Carville said Palin should not complain about the use of a photo which was not a candid shot but one she had originally posed for, even if it were for a publication other than Newsweek. Echoing recent comments by Palin, Matalin disagreed and said she thought the Newsweek cover was sexist.

“You can agree on this,” Matalin asked her husband, “she looked good in it, right?”

“She does,” Carville said without hesitation, “Ain’t no doubt about that. You and her are the two best-looking women in the Republican Party,” the Democrat told his wife.

Related: Carville, Matalin share rare tender moment

But Carville did not have much more positive to say about Palin.


While the Democratic strategist said Palin is “compelling” and connects with her supporters “in an unbelievable way,” Carville also said the former Alaska governor, believed by some political observers to be laying the groundwork for a 2012 White House bid, is not fit to be the nation’s chief executive.

“What I said about Sarah Palin on the day she was nominated [for the number two spot on the Republican presidential ticket last year], is still true. She’s uniquely and supremely unqualified to be president of the United States. But she’s got real presence about her. I find myself wanting to watch her more than I do most other politicians,” Carville told CNN Chief National Correspondent John King as Matalin looked on.

Matalin said Palin was good for the Republican Party as it begins to position itself for the 2010 midterms and the 2012 White House race.

“We’re ascendant in 2010,” Matalin said Sunday, “but we need people who can communicate the framework, the philosophy into which policy prescriptions can be put and [Palin] does that better than almost anybody.”


Filed under: Extra • James Carville • Mary Matalin • Popular Posts • Sarah Palin • State of the Union
soundoff (218 Responses)
  1. james

    Every day I wonder when will be the day the Comrade News Network gets over their extreme fear of Sarah Palin and actually doesn't post some story trying to damage her. And every day I find that it's not the day. It is truly hilarious, this woman the left-wing media like CNN has worked so hard to claim is stupid and ditzy, and they're so scared of her running for president that three years from the next election they are trying to hurt her every single day.

    November 22, 2009 07:18 pm at 7:18 pm |
  2. Fitz in Texas

    "James Carville had some rare words of praise for former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin "

    I'm running out to get my lucky lottery ticket right now.....James Carville actually had words of praise for Palin....that's an omen I'll win the lottery money for sure.

    November 22, 2009 07:18 pm at 7:18 pm |
  3. bassman

    If you go down the list of issues Sarah has talked about on her Facebook, Americans agree with all her positions. In fact her positions of smaller gov't, less taxes, stronger national defense, and individual freedom is not as extreme or dangerous as some Democrats would have us believe. She has the one thing Pres. Obama lacks: solid judgement and common sense.

    November 22, 2009 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  4. Keith in Austin

    What a lame story CNN. What is most important right now is that our Commander in Chief is vividly lacking leadership while our military needs him most, socialistic policies are running amuck, Liberals are spending money like drunken sailors and America may be handing another 20 percent of our economy over to progressive beaurocrats in state-run healthcare. I and many like me will be voting against any politician who has brought this disgusting situation upon our Country. The People Will Be Heard and Democrats will fall from their strangling power in our wake!

    November 22, 2009 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  5. Merv

    Wow, ground breaking news from CNN! It's bad enough that you let party hacks like these, along with far too many of your "commentators", substitute real debate with regurgitated GOP/Dem party party talking points. Taking extra time to relate their more inane exchanges is beyond embarrassing.

    November 22, 2009 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  6. T. Jo

    Yes, Sarah Palin is a very attractive lady and is "compelling". However, I have one issue that I can't get past.....she not only QUIT her job as Alaska's governor, she obviously did very little "governing" while she was on the campaign trail. Just how many months was she actually a governor? Besides simply not being qualified, assuming she is aiming for 2012, I doubt she can keep up the pace until then.

    November 22, 2009 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  7. kcl

    The key point is 'connects with her supporters'. Her groupies are not connected to the real world either.
    She gets confused when people come out just to get a glimpse of her etc., it doesn't mean they support her.

    November 22, 2009 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  8. Adalbert

    James was not telling the truth.

    November 22, 2009 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  9. The people of faith believe God made all creation, seen and unseen. We believe God chose to walk the earth as one of us named Jesus 'Jehovah, the Lord is Salvation' absorbed the Holy Sprit became the Christ, The Annointed ONe to tell of God's love and to

    It was nice he was kind.....

    November 22, 2009 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  10. Jen

    Wait, she posed for this shot then complained about it? Didn't she dress herself in those shorts for that pose? Yeah, I agree, the cover was sexist- but she of all people has no right to complain.

    November 22, 2009 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  11. bess

    it's these kind of rare moments when ole James is quite likeable.

    November 22, 2009 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  12. M in Boston

    Palin complains about "sexist" photos but fails to accept that her selection as VP nominee was based on her looks, not on her qualifications. There are better informed and better experienced women in the Republican party. Palin was picked for her conservative agenda, youth and looks. Live by it...suffer with it.

    November 22, 2009 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  13. bassman

    Only Sarah Palin goes through this kind of sexism. The election is over, Sarahhas moved on and is dealing with the issues that affect Americans. Because of her large following she is able to affect policy from her facebook. She has talked about every issue. Good Grief, CNN enough with her looks. I wonder how a female CNN reporter would feel if a male reporter posted a simular picture of them on a bulletan board at work?

    November 22, 2009 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  14. Randy

    No...if it was a horserace, Matalin would have to be "reigned in" in second place!

    November 22, 2009 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  15. Stu- SW Florida

    Palin is the Republicans Chiuaua... she bites the ankles of those among us that are intelligent. She spews whatever the GOP wants her to.
    They'll be done with her soon. As soon as they realize just how much more stupid she makes the party look. This is getting worse everyday!
    The GOP believes the Constitution reads... "for the PARTY" not "for the PEOPLE.
    Excuse me for a moment while I ...

    November 22, 2009 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  16. Jane

    Another sexist pig. Know it was suppose to be a compliment but it once again looks like looks are the issue. It's no wonder people hate Palin.

    November 22, 2009 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  17. Dave

    regardless of what you think of Palin – I actually thought it was nice to see he still has the hots for his wife after all these years.

    November 22, 2009 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  18. Barbara - Georgia

    Who is Sarah Palin? Why is she receiving free publicity? Why don't you write something about Lester Maddox, a former governor of Georgia?

    November 22, 2009 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  19. Thomas

    Come on James,
    your wife is not only more beautiful , she puts Palin in the trailer when it comes to brains !

    Palin " flavor of the month " .

    November 22, 2009 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  20. master

    Palin -
    question is could she have written this book – answer is it is next to impossible. If this almost retard is considered to represent average American, our country is a deep deep trouble.

    November 22, 2009 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  21. Michelle

    Yeah, she looks great...until she opens her mouth.

    November 22, 2009 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  22. FB Smith

    This is a woman who, not long ago as mayor of a small Alaska town, managed to cost her local taxpayers millions after pushing for a sports stadium to be built–half on a private owner's land! The millions were needed to settle a lawsuit by the landowner. It's inconceivable that a mayor could make a mistake like that.

    And that's just mayor. As Governor, she was a mass of self-contradiction, year after year. People really need to read the critiques of her and not just indulge in the usual junior-high level hero worship. This is not a popularity contest. The well-being of the Republic is at stake.

    She just doesn't have the credentials we ought to require for a President. I'm sorry. She's even more incompetent for the job than G.W. Bush was, and that's a stretch.

    November 22, 2009 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  23. Socrates

    I am LIBERAL and proud of it.. If being compassionate, kind, non-judgemental, unselfish and open minded makes me a Liberal then I rather to be one than to be a conservative.. Now,.. I tend to be unbiased and fair. James Carville was just a gentleman, democrat, but he can't compare his wife to Sarah Palin. Mary Matalin has brains and she is smart. Sarah Palin is using her position to make money. I dare someone to tell me which Governor, at any point, since 1776, quit the position to write his/her memoirs in 4 months? Sara Palin wrote her memoirs in 4 months because her memory retention last just 3 1/2 months. Her book should be published in the Enquire Magazine...

    November 22, 2009 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  24. dboogie

    I don't care how Sarah Palin looks, she is not someone I would be comfortable with leading this country. She's a hypocrite. She talked about the rock star following Obama had during the presidential campaign but look at her now, she loves all this attention. She QUIT the governorship of Alaska to GET PAID! Who's to say she wouldn't do the same thing if elected President? And she doesn't look that good. She's a nice looking woman to be in her mid-40's but I've seen far better looking women that are older than her. And why does everyone think Obama went into this thinking it would be easy? Obama knew he was stepping into a hot fire when he accepted the Democratic nomination much less when he took the Oath of Office. This notion that Obama went into this presidential administration blind is ridiculous. What we are seeing is that this particular President has far more domestic enemies than he does foreign ones. Gee I wonder why?

    November 22, 2009 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  25. scott

    It's a sad state of affairs when a hack like Palin can pass herself off as a creible leader of this country. You would've thought we learned something after 8 yrs of George Bush being a puppet president while the real cronies in the administration, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfolwitz, et al, were calling the shots. Guess what people, Palin is way over her head and she doesn't even know it...same thing happened with Bush.

    November 22, 2009 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
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