Delegates say Palin daughter’s pregnancy will boost Palin’s pro-life image
September 1, 2008
Source: The Star Tribune
The news that vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin’s 17-year-old daughter is pregnant came as a surprise to GOP convention delegates Monday, but they said it will boost the Alaska governor’s conservative credibility.
Kay Ayres, a Hillsboro, Ohio, delegate and vice chair of her state’s party, raised her eyebrows and chuckled. “That’s Governor Palin’s interest, not mine,” she said. “Conservatives have family problems as well — unfortunately, we aren’t immune.”
Sen. John McCain’s campaign confirmed the pregnancy as delegates trickled into the convention, many of them hearing the news for the first time from a reporter. Their reaction was surprise, but generally positive. Most said the news only further demonstrated Palin’s commitment to a “pro-life” agenda. Many noted the governor herself recently carried to term her fifth child, a boy whom who she knew had Down Syndrome before he was born.
McCain’s campaign said Palin’s daughter Bristol is five months pregnant and will marry the father of her unborn child.
Asked for his reaction, Democratic candidate Sen. Barack Obama wouldn’t go there. “I’ve said before I think families are off-limits, children are off-limits. It has no relevance,” Obama said. “I would strongly urge people to back off these kinds of stories. My mom had me when she was 18. And how families deal with issues of children shouldn’t be part of our politics.”
At the Republican convention, Fayetteville, Ga., delegate Lane Watts said the teenager’s pregnancy shouldn’t affect the choice in the presidential race. “That is something that happens with teenage girls,” he said. “It’s refreshing to hear she’s going to carry it to term. She’s following the example of her mother and walking the walk.”
He doesn’t hold parents responsible for everything their children do. “You try to teach them right, but your kids are going to do what they’re going to do,” Watts said.