Palin Sexual Affair To Help Gain Votes?
September 4, 2008
ST PAUL, Minnesota (AFP) — Republicans have angrily attacked the US media for the feeding frenzy surrounding Sarah Palin as some observers say it may spark a wave of sympathy for the party’s vice presidential pick.
Since White House hopeful John McCain picked Palin in a surprise choice on Friday, the first time Alaska governor has found herself in a media maelstrom as daily revelations about her political and private life have emerged.
On Monday Palin and her husband, Todd, were forced to issue a statement acknowleging that their 17-year-old daughter was pregnant to dispel Internet rumors that Palin’s baby son, was in fact her grandson.
And then Thursday, the McCain campaign was on the offensive again issuing another press statement this time denying rumors in the gossip tabloid National Enquirer that Palin had had an affair with her husband’s business partner.
McCain senior advisor Steve Schmidt dismissed the allegations as “categorically false.” “It is a vicious lie,” Schmidt told CBS news.
“The smearing of the Palin family must end,” Schmidt added. “The efforts of the media and tabloids to destroy this fine and accomplished public servant are a disgrace. The American people will reject it.”
Palin herself hit back in her rousing speech to the convention late Wednesday, telling the gathered press corps that she had “a little news flash” of her own.
“I’ve learned quickly, these past few days, that if you’re not a member in good standing of the Washington elite, then some in the media consider a candidate unqualified for that reason alone.”
In a Mexican wave of wrath, a whole section of the convention floor jumped to its feet, booing and jabbing their fingers at the nearby press stands.
“But here’s a little news flash for all those reporters and commentators: I’m not going to Washington to seek their good opinion — I’m going to Washington to serve the people of this great country,” added Palin, winning huge cheers.
Earlier in the evening, former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney also laid into the press, castigating journalists as elitists.
“For decades, the Washington sun has been rising in the east — Washington has been looking to the eastern elites, to the editorial pages of the Times and the Post, and to the broadcasters from the coast,” Romney said.
“If America really wants change, it’s time to look for the sun in the west, cause it’s about to rise and shine from Arizona and Alaska,” he said, referring to home states of McCain and Palin.
Palin herself has given no interviews to the national political press since she was selected by McCain as his running-mate.
Once known for courting journalists, McCain also appears to have adopted a bunker mentality with his traveling press corps, despite calling his campaign bus and airplane the “Straight Talk Express.”
Reports have said the McCain campaign has been deluged with reporters asking questions rarely heard on the campaign trail such as whether Palin would have a DNA test to prove that baby, Trig, was her son.
In the corridors of the vast Xcel Center in St. Paul, Minnesota, delegates can be heard regularly spewing out invectives against what they contend is a biased, liberal American press.
And some observers say that the torrent of negative reports could in fact trigger a groundswell of support for Palin.
A Rasmussen Reports poll released on Thursday showed that 51 percent of people thought the press was out to hurt Palin, and 24 percent said the wall-to-wall coverage could prompt them to vote for McCain.
“Never underestimate the voters’ dislike of the press. For many voters, Palin will gain visceral sympathy simply because the press is feeding on her,” commented editorial director for National Public Radio’s digital media, Dick Meyer.
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“If we don’t devour her, she will emerge with more intangible support than the press can even imagine.”