October 1st, 2008
09:48 PM ET
13 years ago

Palin has difficulty naming court case she disagrees with

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[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/01/art.cbs.cnn.jpg caption="Couric interviewed Palin last week."](CNN) - Republican Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin had difficulty naming a specific Supreme Court case she disagreed with besides Roe v. Wade in a long-awaited clip CBS News aired Wednesday night.

The comments, first reported by Politico, came in an interview with CBS News anchor Katie Couric taped last week.

"Well, let's see. There's –of course –in the great history of American rulings there have been rulings, that's never going to be absolute consensus by every American," Palin said. "And there are–those issues, again, like Roe v Wade, where I believe are best held on a state level and addressed there. So you know–going through the history of America, there would be others but–"

"Can you think of any?" Couric interjected.

"Well, I could think of–of any again, that could be best dealt with on a more local level, maybe I would take issue with," Palin responded. "But you know, as mayor, and then as governor and even as a vice president, if I'm so privileged to serve, wouldn't be in a position of changing those things but in supporting the law of the land as it reads today."

Palin's comments came in the same interview during which she gave a widely-panned answer on the economic bailout bill and had trouble describing John McCain's record on regulation of the financial industry.

The interview later became the subject of Saturday Night Live's opening sketch last weekend.

Cafferty Blog: Are Palin’s interviews with Couric helping her?

When Couric posed the same question to Joe Biden, the Democratic VP candidate and longtime member of the Senate Judiciary Committee said he disagreed with a ruling that invalidated a portion of the Violence Against Women Act.

"You know, I’m the guy who wrote the Violence Against Women act. And I said that every woman in America if they are beaten and abused by a man should be able to take that person to court. Meaning you should be able to go to federal court and sue in federal court the man who abused you if you can prove that abuse," Biden said. "But they said no that a woman, there’s no federal jurisdiction and I held, they acknowledged, I held about 1,000 hours of hearings proving that there’s an effect in interstate commerce."

"Women who are abused and beaten and beaten are women who are not able to be in the work force. And the Supreme Court said there is an impact on commerce but this is federalizing a private crime and we’re not going to allow it. I think the Supreme Court was wrong about that decision," he continued.


Filed under: Extra • Sarah Palin
soundoff (623 Responses)
  1. Paul

    What really disturbed me is that Palin opposes Roe v Wade while paradoxically agreeing in a constitutional right to privacy, the foundation of the Supreme Court's Roe decision. So which is it, Governor Palin? Does the 14th Amendment guarantee women a right privacy or is privacy something that each state should individually decide to provide or deny?

    October 1, 2008 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  2. I can see Russia

    WOW, that could be the leader of the free world if this country can't get over Obama being black

    October 1, 2008 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  3. Eileen

    Anyone who reads the above two paragraphs can only conclude that Sarah Palin can't put together a coherent sentence, let alone express a well-thought out reply.

    It is utterly terrifying to think of her as President, let alone Vice-President, let alone county dogcatcher.

    Whatever was John McCain thinking–or not–when he vetted this person for one day, and chose her to be Vice-President of the United States?

    October 1, 2008 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  4. jason, tx

    This woman is an anchor around McCain's neck and I hope he keeps it until after November 4th.

    October 1, 2008 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  5. Pretending to be an Independent

    People quit starting off your comment with "I'm an independent and I think Barrack Obama is the greatest" We aren't stupid, true independents and true Republicans won't fall for it. You are a Democrat, you want Barrack to win, Palin can say anything to make you happy. If I read another CNN Ticker about Palin not being able to name what magazine she reads, where she eats, what McCain had for dinner last Thursday or whatever they wanna play "Gotcha" on I'm going to puke. This is pathetic, 99% of you don't know a Supreme Court Case or don't care, the ONLY one Biden can come up with is one that he wrote? Seriously thats much better? Keep playing "gotcha" politics, I'll keep ignoring your liberal comments.

    October 1, 2008 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  6. Grandma for O

    ....
    Doug, how is the "liberal media elite" making Sarah Palin incapable of answering questions that a VP should be able to?

    Simple, they're not. Her inability to answer the same type of questions that has been asked of EVERY other candidate is a reflection on her not a result of media bias.

    It has gotten to a point where I pity this woman because McCain simply used her for the female vote.

    Now that is the clearest and most insulting case of SEXISM that has occurred during this entire political process!

    October 1, 2008 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  7. Joe

    Let's see: Palin can't name a Supreme Court case, likely because she's never read one including Roe v. Wade. Obama teaches Constitutional Law at the University of Chicago School of Law and was editor of Harvard Law Review. This is such a tough decision, I just can't make up my mind.

    October 1, 2008 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  8. Richard Larson

    Isn't it interesting that John McCain can't speak about anything without his 3×5 cards and that Sarah can't remember anything from a basic american history or civics course without prompting. Palin exhibits the typical beauty pagent bimbo thought pattern and responds accordingly; meaning, talk long enough and maybe you will stumble over a partially correct answer.

    I'll tell you this, she hasn't even been asked a question about american government that is more difficult than the new questions asked of prospective citizenship candidates. McCain should be ashamed of foisting such an uncompetent person for the second most powerful position in the world on the American people. I ask all americans who value their freedoms and future to vote against this ticket forged in hell.

    October 1, 2008 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  9. d-man

    Hey Sarah Palin, if you got anything else to say, please raise your hand and put it over your mouth!!!!!!

    October 1, 2008 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  10. Scott

    Does she have an answer for anything? God, I never thought someone would make George Bush look smart.

    October 1, 2008 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  11. Paul

    Not being able to name a Supreme Court case is one thing, but not even understanding the case you want to overturn is another. What really disturbed me is that Palin opposes Roe v Wade while paradoxically agreeing in a constitutional right to privacy, the foundation of the Supreme Court's Roe decision. So which is it, Governor Palin? Does the 14th Amendment guarantee women a right privacy or is privacy something that each state should individually decide to provide or deny?

    October 1, 2008 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  12. Tulsa

    WoW, is this what the Republicans want as a VP? If McCain and Palin do get the White House (which I don't think they will) the Republicans won't see another President/VP in a long time........and forget the Senate and House........this woman will take you all down.

    October 1, 2008 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  13. popeye

    Good grief Charlie Brown! This woman can come up with more non sequiturs than George W!
    Nice to see the Republicans are continuing their tradition.
    She'll fit in just fine I'll betcha.

    October 1, 2008 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  14. David in New York

    The media is being to hard on Sarah. Questions should be geared to things she might have knowledge about...Like does a snowmobile have a gas engine or does it have pedals? She then could answer..."Like I think it has, well maybe like a gas engine" "Hey, I got a question right, I think. Make-up questions next please."

    October 1, 2008 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  15. Monica, Texas

    This has to be a head fake doesn't it?????? I am speechless

    October 1, 2008 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  16. tkpkmd

    it is not just that she couldn't name a single court case; it was the way in which she answered the question. If she didn't know the specific name of a court case, she could have said so and instead referred to the substance of the case. Instead, her answer evades, digresses, flounders, and just doesn't make any sense. My teenager could answer that question more clearly and coherently than Gov. Palin did.

    October 1, 2008 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  17. My State Is Blue! Yours Can Be Too!

    I don't understand Sarah Palin. I don't understand her supporters.
    If you don't like the Obama/Biden ticket then just don't vote. Please don't put this woman in the 2nd highest office in the land just because you don't like Obama. Voting for the Republican ticket in this election is just irresponsible.

    October 1, 2008 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  18. Sexism at it's Worst

    How come no one asks Obama to explain derivatives or CDO's or to give us the details of Marbury vs. Madison, etc:?

    Why does he get to skate and she gets quizzed to death? Some day
    women will stop putting up with this but I guess not yet.

    Women are pathetic and that's why Ferrarao failed, that's why Hillary failed, and that's why Palin will fail. Women know who they are and are consequently afraid to have a woman in the White House.

    October 1, 2008 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  19. Lisa

    I can name some court cases. Can I be VP?

    October 1, 2008 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  20. Pete Collins

    Palin sounds like a teenage slacker who hasn't prepared for an essay exam and tries to bluster her way through it. She is dangerously stupid.

    October 1, 2008 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  21. Independent

    Come on guys. This is just another "gotcha question."

    If the Katie wanted to be fair, she would have asked Sarah to name her favorite justice.

    Then, Sarah would have said she likes "Justice For All."

    October 1, 2008 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  22. Dave - KCMO

    I truly think Sarah Palin is a smart, intelligent individual. I give her respect for eliminating the corrupt politicians in Alaska. I also think she has great charm and charisma. My concern is in regards to how quick she can think on her feet. I am in sales and silence is not a bad thing. Ingest the question, Think your answer, then Respond. It's not a race. I think she knows the answers, but can't conjour up the verbiage to speak what she may actually know. Even the lousiest politician knows how to navigate around a question enough to answer questions in such a manner as not to truly answer the question. She cannot .

    October 1, 2008 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  23. L.A.

    Are you republican people SERIOUSLY endorsing this moron? If you don't know say something to the affect of "You know, the name slips my mind right now." Be a little more creative, Palin. You're making yourself look even worse every time you open your mouth.

    October 1, 2008 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  24. She doesn't even understand the one case she could name

    CNN failed to mention it, but the really important part of this exchange was the fact that Gov. Palin said that she believed that there is a constitutional right to privacy – which is the legal underpinning of cases that the right hates such as Roe v. Wade, Lawrence v. Texas, etc. Conservative jurists categorically reject a constitutional right to privacy. As a liberal of course I'm all for the right to privacy, but it's pretty flabbergasting that Palin apparently has no concept of the political meaning of this crucial issue. It seemed like she'd never even heard of it before.

    October 1, 2008 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  25. drew

    she believes in jeebus, she must be VP!!!!

    October 1, 2008 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
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