October 23rd, 2008
09:32 PM ET
11 years ago

Palin changes tune on 'feminist' label

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/03/art.palin.gi.jpg caption="Palin told Katie Couric last month she considers herself a feminist."]BEAVER, Pennsylvania (CNN) - Does Sarah Palin consider herself a feminist? It depends on which network anchor is asking.

In an interview on NBC Nightly News that aired Thursday, host Brian Williams asked Palin: "Governor, are you a feminist?"

"I'm not gonna label myself anything, Brian," she responded. "And I think that's what annoys a lot of Americans, especially in a political campaign, is to start trying to label different parts of America different, different backgrounds, different … I'm not going to put a label on myself. "

The vice presidential nominee said she believes in women's rights and equal rights. Palin went on to say that when she was growing up in Alaska, she "was expected to do the same thing that the guys were doing."

"I'm not going label myself feminist or not," she concluded, "but I do believe that American women can recognize in me an advocate and a friend. And I want to be in the White House for them."

But Palin gave a different answer in September when Katie Couric of CBS News asked her, "Do you consider yourself a feminist?"

"I do," Palin answered. "I'm a feminist who believes in equal rights and I believe that women certainly today have every opportunity that a man has to succeed, and to try to do it all, anyway."

In that sit-down, Palin told Couric she defines a feminist as "someone who believes in equal rights. Someone who would not stand for oppression against women."

Filed under: Sarah Palin
soundoff (551 Responses)
  1. Joseph Adewole

    One of the qualities of a Palin feminism is for guys to buy you a whole wardrope to say that? This woman should not appear on CNN again please!

    October 23, 2008 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm |
  2. Lisa

    I wish this woman would tell the truth ONE time! Give us a little strait talk PLEASE! Correct answer ala Palin: "I personally consider myself a femminist, but I've been told by the GOP handlers that I should back off from that position because it may offend some of the Evangelicals...so I guess I have to say I don't want to label myself.
    Please ask me a question that I can turn against Obama".

    October 23, 2008 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm |
  3. L



    October 23, 2008 10:50 pm at 10:50 pm |
  4. Truth In Politics

    Gov. Sarah Palin has finally realized that people, Dem, Rep, and Ind are seeing through the false images she is attempting to present.
    Gov. Sarah Palin is corrupt and Senator John McCain knew she was the wrong individual to have as a running mate. Governor Palin desires the United States to pay for her children. It is clear that the direction she is leading the state of Alaska is troubling. She may not win re-election in Alaska as Governor as her favorable rating has drop to 60% from 80%.
    She is a feminist and will say anything to win an election. She is a socialist and desire to collect paychecks for her family for the rest of their lives.

    October 23, 2008 10:50 pm at 10:50 pm |
  5. j

    How about social conservative, Christian right theocrat for a label. Even members of her own party have to watch out, Support her or she'll turn on you. I can't account for her popularity but then I didn't understand why people would vote for Bush.

    October 23, 2008 10:50 pm at 10:50 pm |
  6. san

    My scariest nightmare is any little girl looking up to that women!What on earth is she talking about? Did anyone see tonight interview with Brian!She is embarrasing!

    October 23, 2008 10:50 pm at 10:50 pm |
  7. sandee in Portland

    Flip, flop...flip, flop. One day she is and the next day she's isn't. Considering she doesn't want to label herself, then what the heck is "maverick", "reformer", etc.

    I am so ashamed that this is the type and caliber of the woman running for the 2nd highest office in our land. She gives a bad name to women everywhere.

    October 23, 2008 10:51 pm at 10:51 pm |
  8. Sandy

    She's probably thinks a feminist is someone who sells Mary Kay products.

    October 23, 2008 10:51 pm at 10:51 pm |
  9. "Julian the Student" in Seattle

    Apparently Palin is just all around confused. She doesn't even know the role of the vice President, and belives that the VP is in charge of the senate, too.

    October 23, 2008 10:51 pm at 10:51 pm |
  10. Michael

    FLIP FLOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Nothing more to say!

    October 23, 2008 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  11. MJL, Fl

    What else is new? She's a two face, no good repub.

    Vote smart. Vote Obama/Biden

    October 23, 2008 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  12. Chris in Va.

    My Aunt told me that everything her generation fought for regarding women's rights over the last 55 years Sarah Palin has destroyed in 55 days. I think that says it all.

    October 23, 2008 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  13. Jo from Dallas

    What a surprise! Sarah changed her mind. Did anyone notice how she took over the interview with Brian Williams today and said she wanted to be there for women in the White House? She's planning for her future and believe me we all need to take notice and run for the hills.

    October 23, 2008 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  14. Jill

    Well a feminist, Ms Palin, would allow women to decide for themselves what to do about a pregnancy. they would also support a candidate who voted for equal pay for women. I also love the comment about not labeling people. Was she not the same Sarah Palin who labeled small town america as the "real america" and those of us in cities, and not republican as not real americans. Hopefully america, and especially women who actually believe in women rights, will show her the exit door on election day. And All I have to say don't let hit you on the butt on your way OUT!!!.

    October 23, 2008 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  15. guida curtis

    Sara Palin seems to be a woman free of tabus and prejudices. She understands her role in history. It just happens that she was born a female and the players at this time in history are not developed to understand her importance. John McCain is the only one who recognizes this phenomena.

    October 23, 2008 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  16. Anthony

    She is an evil, ugly type of woman.
    I would love nothing more than to see her and Hillary in a debate. But then again, is it really fair to drag Hillary ALL THE WAY DOWN to this womans level, and put them on equal footing?

    I think not...

    October 23, 2008 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  17. No Hillary = No Obama

    Changing one's tune – I would say that comment drips of sacrasm – oh wait, let's see who wrote it – oh yea, the neanderthal man. Feminist is so last decade. The woman runs a state government. Leave it to CNN to undermine woman with legitimized power – you know like CNN did with Hillary Clinton. All woman are feminists – it's known as evolution – but neanderthal thinking hasn't caught up.

    October 23, 2008 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  18. Glen

    Another flip-flop from Palin, what a surprise.

    The woman will say anything to be elected. I wonder how much the outfit she was wearing today was worth as she tries to make voters believe that she is "Jane 6 pack".

    October 23, 2008 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  19. Jak

    Give Sarah a break. Considering the confusion she has over the role of Vice President, she may simply not know what a feminist is.

    October 23, 2008 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  20. Walt

    OK, I am confused. Did she not just label part of the country late last week or last weekend? Didn't she say that there were pro-America parts of the country. Is this woman real?

    Are her supporters really, really naive or are they just ignoring all of this information?

    October 23, 2008 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  21. Kris K in RM,CA

    Isn't pro-life oppression against women? I think it is.Pro choice gives every women to make up her own mind.I would not have an abortion but I will not speak for all women.They deserve the right to choose their own path.
    Palin is not a feminist. She is an ego bound human that is out of control and very dangerous.She justifies everything she does as her"right". I wonder how McCain feels about her "taking over" from him and canpaigning for 2012? There is no limit to her nerve.

    October 23, 2008 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  22. Jake from BOSTON

    I'm sick of this monster. So she must not want the "Maverick" label anymore, either?

    October 23, 2008 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  23. Straight Shooter

    How is this news? Palin has two good qualities: looks and big talk. She's perfect for Miss Alaska or a sportscaster, because of those two qualities. Those two qualities also will win her party some votes.

    Bottom line: she doesn't have the intellect, experience, or social skills to run our government.

    October 23, 2008 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  24. what do you expect

    After 2 months of the Carl Rove school of don't tell'em anything politics. She has earned her diploma in the school of deceptive politics.

    October 23, 2008 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  25. Ian K

    Funny how she has spent so much time labeling parts of the country "pro-America" and Labeling Obama as a "Socialist". But when asked if she is a feminist she balks that labels have been annoying Americans.

    Similar to her attacks on Obama for supporting the different hometown sports teams, then doing the EXACT same thing herself. If i saw these things happening with a child, I would sit them down and explain that they need to treat others as they would like to be treated. You know, that old "Golden Rule".

    If this is any indication of how she conducts herself, she has no business "Running the Senate", aka being the VP. Please, someone get us a REAL feminist so we can compare and contrast.

    October 23, 2008 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
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