April 11th, 2009
01:36 PM ET
13 years ago

Kurtz: Should media steer clear of Palin-Johnston saga?

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/04/11/kurtz.johnston/art.johnston.gi.jpg caption="Levi Johnston and Bristol Palin appeared together at the Republican National Convention in September."]

(CNN) - On last Sunday's "Reliable Sources," I made a last-minute decision to add an item about Bristol Palin's ex-boyfriend - not because I'm particularly fascinated by the ex-boyfriend, mind you, but because Sarah Palin had just ripped Levi Johnston apart.

"We're disappointed that Levi and his family, in a quest for fame, attention, and fortune, are engaging in flat-out lies, gross exaggeration, and even distortion of their relationship," the Alaska governor declared.

Not since the last time she opened fire on a caribou has Palin used that kind of ammunition - which had the effect of boosting interest in the young man's appearance with Tyra Banks. And the Tyra sitdown got Levi an even bigger audience, with Maggie Rodriguez on CBS's "Early Show."

What a mess. But is it a highly personal mess involving two 18-year-olds that we in the media should avoid?

I put that question to Deborah Norville of "Inside Edition" and Washington Post gossip columnist Amy Argetsinger for a segment that will air Sunday morning at 10 ET on "Reliable."

Why would Levi Johnston, having just split up with the woman whose baby he fathered, seek out the TV spotlight?

Full story

Filed under: Levi Johnston • Sarah Palin • State of the Union
soundoff (63 Responses)
  1. 60's survivor

    Levi and Bristol don't have a snowballs chance Sarah has seen to that .... you betcha!!

    April 11, 2009 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  2. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Palin is saying she doesn't want Levi to have freedom of speech but yet when she campaigned it was all about freedoms. Palin has called Levi everything under the sun, but when she points her finger at Levi it points right back at her.

    April 11, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  3. Linda in MS

    I think that the media will go after any story or people they think will hook the the audience, and the more outrageous the people, the more attention they get. I am not defending the media, but obviously many people love this kind of crap. That being said, all the Palins and the Johnsons have to do is not appear on TV or give statements to the press weekly and perhaps they will be left alone. As for the comment by Frank, the Democrats/Obama supporters don't need to make Palin look bad, she does a great job all by herself, honey.

    April 11, 2009 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  4. Randy

    Why are we still taking about these people? they are a nobody, She wanted it he gave it to her now they are blaming him for everything. What else is there to do in Alaska? But I guess if CNN don't report on this they would have nothing to write about.

    April 11, 2009 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  5. Susan

    Palin continues to prove that she is not fit to hold any office by indulging in a spitting contest with an 18 year old. she should grow up and do what she is paid to do, not run around trying to be a media draling! I am sick of hearing about her. If ever there was a phoney, it is Sarah Palin!

    April 11, 2009 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  6. KR

    I say keep up, Sara Palin should be the one to talk about fame, fortune, lies and on and on. Those are all qualities that SP has exhibited since the election and is still seeking. To do this to her family and her first grandchild has shown me that this woman will stop at nothing to gain anything she wants. I do know we do not need hypocrites in the WH. Sara grow up be a mom and a grandmother quit lying. Oh the tangled web we weave when at first we try to deceive and it will come back to bite you and bite you hard.

    April 11, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  7. New Yorker

    Pat and all you others who blame Sarah Palin for this. Why, because she ran for V.P.? Why, then, were all the other candidates' children's lives off limits? Clearly, unbalanced, and all of the negative omments just attempts to discredit the Palins. My question to you: would you approve of this coverage if it were your children/adult children?

    April 11, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  8. Rick Roberts

    If I am not mistaken, wasn't it Sarah that trooped her white trash family around during the convention and the Presidential race? Well what did she think was going to happen?
    Just imagine her as President, visiting overseas. What an embarrassment that would have been. I hope the GOP does nominate her in the next election so we will all know the outcome before it happens.
    All of Alaska must have be smoking something when they elected her as Gov. of the state.

    April 11, 2009 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  9. Simmy

    How can the media steer clear when theyre the perpetrators, and enjoy controversy? FInd some nice people to talk about for a change.......Give the Democrats a break please!

    April 11, 2009 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  10. Karen

    I can only live in fear of her ever being in the White House
    If this is all the republicans have for 2012 Then they are in Big Trouble

    April 11, 2009 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  11. Fan of Common Sense

    It is sad that this question even has to be asked.

    (The media will latch onto any story in order to punish Sarah Palin for daring to stick her neck out in '08. She was after all the only REAL candidate of change in the whole race....so the status quo media feels obligated to try to destroy her and her family for the foreseeable future. What a country we live in.)

    April 11, 2009 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  12. Perusing-Through

    Should media steer clear? Absolutely not! Sarah "The Arrogant Airhead with an Attitude" Palin has no credibility and has proven on multiple occasions to be a liar. LOOK AT THIS MESS. It is idiotic for Sarah to be responding to accusations from her daughter’s boyfriend. Sarah, just how low can you go?!? And to think she wants to be the President in 2012?

    April 11, 2009 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  13. phoenix83

    Palin is doing it, the media is only taking her sound bites

    and I can't turn away, like a train wreck

    April 11, 2009 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
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