Media threatens not to run video of Palin UN trip due to lack of access

posted at 2:25 pm on September 23, 2008 by Allahpundit

A farce on all sides. If you take the logic here seriously, the difference between a “news” event whose footage is worth airing and a campaign photo op beneath the dignity of journalism is the presence of a single reporter observing the first few moments of pleasantries in Palin’s meetings with world leaders and maybe shouting a question or two which we all know she’ll ignore. Given those options, a thoughtful news org could go one of two ways: Decide that, in the absence of questioning, the whole thing’s nothing more than McCain propaganda and doesn’t warrant coverage even if the reporter’s allowed in, or decide that, whether or not the reporter’s allowed in, the video has some news value to at least some viewers and should therefore be aired but with a disclaimer noting that the McCain camp persists in conspicuously restricting access to their inexperienced would-be VP. Which option does our petulant media choose? Option three — threatening to suppress information unless meaningless editorial access to the photo op is granted. Good work.

The networks had arranged for a “pool” camera– one camera to cover the first few seconds of the meetings, whose video would be pooled or shared with all networks.

Such arrangements are standard when dealing with intimate high-level meetings between leaders and candidates.

But typically, along with cameras, there is an editorial presence– at least one print reporter, one television reporter, and one radio reporter is standard.

However today the McCain campaign told media covering Palin’s trip to New York that they would allow only one editorial person inside.

Then the campaign scaled back further, saying it will only allow a camera and no editorial presence.

The networks, including ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, and Fox fiercely objected to the McCain campaign’s apparent effort to try to shield Palin from questions. Networks voted today to not use any video coming out of Palin’s meeting as a protest.

The campaign eventually backed down and let a CNN pool producer into the room. And what monster scoop awaited her when she arrived? Quote:

According to the CNN producer who was let into Karzai’s hotel suite with the photographers just before noon, Karzai was talking about his son. Palin was nodding, and asked what his name is. Karzai replied his name was Mirwais and explained that it means light of the house.

The media were escorted out after about 40 seconds.

Campaign aides subsequently announced that reporters would be allowed to accompany photographers into the later sessions with Uribe and Kissinger.

But not for that momentous exchange, the video might not have aired. Whew! As I say, it’s a farce on all sides: Follow the ABC link up top and read down near the end for a description of Palin ducking in the side entrance to the hotel to avoid reporters waiting in front. The whole campaign’s famously scaled down its interactions with the press — McCain himself will be doing his first presser in more than a month this afternoon, so the bruised egos of the Deciders should be on the mend — but their insistence on preventing spontaneous exchanges between her and the media, even on her campaign plane, is bizarre. Whether that’s because they’re afraid she won’t know the answers to their questions, I don’t know, but the longer it drags on and the louder the media whines, the more that impression’s going to be reinforced with undecided voters already iffy on her experience. Presumably they’re going to keep her sequestered until the debate, which is how most voters will judge her, and then relax her interactions with the press a bit in October to kill the “Palin won’t talk” meme. Let’s hope.

Update: Here’s the crap the media was ready to revolt over if they didn’t get to watch it firsthand:

Play-by-play: After the conclusion of the Karzai meeting, your pooler departed the InterContinental shortly after 12:35 p.m. EST in the motorcade headed for 14 E. 76th St. We arrived 12 minutes later, and your pool held briefly in an unlit, musty hallway. We then climbed a white, carpeted staircase and were escorted into an ornate room with a large glass chandelier where the meeting was held.

Your pool was for half a minute. Palin was already seated on a pink stuffed chair, to the right of Uribe, with her legs crossed and her body titled forward. They exchanged pleasantries that your pooler could not hear over the loud clicks of the cameras. On a couch to her right (a few feet back but perpendicular to her chair) sat Scheunemann and Biegun.


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capitalist piglet on September 23, 2008 at 4:46 PM

I wont name my team, but they’ve been known to be very generous also!
;-)

csdeven on September 23, 2008 at 5:36 PM

What is going on with the McCain campaign anyway? Is this woman actually much dumber than I already thought she was?

This is a democracy and Palin isn’t running for a seat in the Politburo. She should be available to the press and answer questions just like everyone else who runs for nation-wide office.

foreverright on September 23, 2008 at 5:12 PM

Whatever you say, “foreverright”. Good grief. Why don’t you just buy fake plastic glasses with a nose and moustache attached?

capitalist piglet on September 23, 2008 at 5:38 PM

When will you nuts admit that Palin sucks?

She’s the wrong choice and a joke.
Say it. It won’t hurt to tell the truth.

Xolom on September 23, 2008 at 5:41 PM

When will you nuts admit that Palin sucks?

She’s the wrong choice and a joke.
Say it. It won’t hurt to tell the truth.

Xolom on September 23, 2008 at 5:41 PM

When will you haters admit that you’re really just liberal trolls, and not concerned conservatives who sincerely think McCain made a mistake?

She’s a great choice, and that’s what scares you.

capitalist piglet on September 23, 2008 at 5:44 PM

Whatever you say, “foreverright”. Good grief. Why don’t you just buy fake plastic glasses with a nose and moustache attached?

capitalist piglet on September 23, 2008 at 5:38 PM

What does that mean?
Are you one of the Palin fanboys or fangirls who believe that Palin is intelligent because she wears designer glasses?

I just don’t understand how anyone can be so excited about an unproven candidate, especially one who apparently can’t handle routine questions regarding national or foreign policy from the press. Who’s the clown in this scenario?

foreverright on September 23, 2008 at 6:14 PM

Who’s the clown in this scenario?

foreverright on September 23, 2008 at 6:14 PM

Joe Biden.

Karl on September 23, 2008 at 6:19 PM

I just don’t understand how anyone can be so excited about an unproven candidate, especially one who apparently can’t handle routine questions regarding national or foreign policy from the press. Who’s the clown in this scenario? -foreverright on September 23, 2008 at 6:14 PM

Okay, so what, exactly, has Sarah Palin accomplished?

Let’s see now…city councilwoman for 2 years; mayor for 6 years and president of Alaska Conference of Mayors; Chair of Alaska Conservation Commission; appointed Ethics Commissioner of the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission from which she soon resigned in order to expose corruption among members of her own party; governor of a state that produces 20% of our national energy during which time she has replaced the entire Board of Agriculture and Conservation because of conflict of interest, passed a landmark ethics reform bill, used her veto power to cut budgetary spending; C-in-C of the Alaskan National Guard; negotiated a pipeline contract with a foreign power.

Clearly not qualified enough to be president. Oh wait…she’s running for the office of vice-president.

Gosh…how can this ever stack up against the impressive resume Obama has acquired over the years?

Let’s see now…Saul Alinsky-inspired “community organizer” who worked closely with the demonstrably corrupt ACORN group; questionable ties to the corrupt Daley political machine and unrepentant domestic terrorist Bill Ayers; 20 year-long membership in the church of an America-hating racist; shady real estate transaction with a convicted felon; got elected state senator in 1996 by using technicalities to clear the ballot of opponents; served in the part-time state senator job for 7 years, voting ‘present’ over 140 times; U.S. senator since 2004 after his opponent dropped out of the race; since 2006 has been actively campaigning for the presidency of the U.S.

And you say the PALIN candidacy is a joke?! Obama isn’t even qualified to be the vice-president…but he’s running for president. Yikes.

ManlyRash on September 23, 2008 at 6:21 PM

There may be a good opportunity for Gov. Palin to hold a press conference between now and the election

It is indeed a good time. You can’t have the “Town Hall” and have someone who insists on sanitized foreign appearances as “foreign experience”.

If she did hold a press conference at the United
Nations, lots of foreign reporters would be listening and broadcasting her responses back home. She would have to be very careful to avoid saying anything that would upset diplomats and heads of state that McCain would have to deal with later as President, but then she would appear weak and waffling before the American press.

Is that an acknowledgment of provable deficiencies in their conduct(beyond normal human imperfection)?

This is Governor Palin’s opportunity to meet PRIVATELY with some of the international leaders she would have to deal with as Vice President, so she could learn about their issues, and they can get to know her, without the press getting in the way. There will be plenty of time to deal with the press, during the VP debate and beyond, when foreign ears won’t be listening.

So you want to have the press there when it doesn’t matter, but when it does matter, the press is forbidden? This would have been a good test if the usual were allowed.

sethstorm on September 23, 2008 at 6:21 PM

What is going on with the McCain campaign anyway? Is this woman actually much dumber than I already thought she was?

This is a democracy and Palin isn’t running for a seat in the Politburo. She should be available to the press and answer questions just like everyone else who runs for nation-wide office.

foreverright on September 23, 2008 at 5:12 PM

No it’s not. The United States is a Constitutional Republic, NOT a democracy.

dominigan on September 23, 2008 at 6:23 PM

When will you nuts admit that Palin sucks? She’s the wrong choice and a joke. Say it. It won’t hurt to tell the truth. – Xolom on September 23, 2008 at 5:41 PM

Then shouldn’t you be celebrating, troll? After all, if she’s a joke, then the McCain candidacy is doomed.

On the other hand, we are celebrating the Biden candidacy. He’s the best thing that happened to McCain since Obama.

ManlyRash on September 23, 2008 at 6:24 PM

Awww…the pwess got its feeling hurt…awwww.

SouthernGent on September 23, 2008 at 6:30 PM

There’s a difference between governance/relationship building and a photo-op. Give the sweeties their cameras for their 15 minutes at the end and keep them the heck out of everything else.

If I knew her personally and felt that she was capable of crushing in a debate ( especially one critically close to an election), I’d deliberately keep her away from the press. Let them play down expectations, then let her do her job with Joe. Joe looks and acts like a guy who is really easy to psych.

obladioblada on September 23, 2008 at 7:22 PM

The media has shown it’s hand clearly in the Gibson interrogation, the press tizzy over Palin’s pregnant daughter, “troopergate” and many more overt hostile actions. I know she wouldn’t do it but she should give them the bird and slap the dog squeeze out of the first report that pulls another gotcha.

wepeople on September 23, 2008 at 7:26 PM

I believe both Obama and Palin and so fatally underqualified for the positions they are running for, that arguing over which one has more experience is utterly pointless.

They are both empty suits, and both parties should be ashamed to put either one of them forward for one of the most high-powered positions in the world.

cyclosarin on September 23, 2008 at 8:28 PM

Maybe if Obama would have agreed to some ” Town Hall ” meetings with Jon McCain……

Sonosam on September 23, 2008 at 9:15 PM

Are you one of the Palin fanboys or fangirls who believe that Palin is intelligent?

foreverright on September 23, 2008 at 6:14 PM

Lets see, how could it be that we think she both has and uses her brain?

1)could it be her experience (somthing Obama does not have.

2) could it be that she is articulate (somthing Obama is not).

3) could it be that she can give a speech without a teleprompter (somthing Obama cannot).

4)can it be that she supports life (somthing Obama will not).

allrsn on September 23, 2008 at 10:15 PM

cyclosarin on September 23, 2008 at 8:28 PM

Dream on.

Governor Bush
Governor Clinton
Governor Reagan (peace be upon him)
Governor Carter
Governor Palin

If she’s unqualified so were all of them.

Mojave Mark on September 23, 2008 at 10:43 PM

Over at AoS, we were wondering where all the trolls had gone.

Now we know.

Merovign on September 23, 2008 at 11:09 PM

Governor Bush president
Governor Clinton president
Governor Reagan (peace be upon him)President
Governor Carter president
Governor Palin Vice President Nominee

If she’s unqualified so were all of them.

Mojave Mark on September 23, 2008 at 10:43 PM

wanted to clarify.

allrsn on September 23, 2008 at 11:33 PM

Say, what kind of access did the media get during Obambis world tour?

Captain America on September 24, 2008 at 2:19 AM

Now the media wants to barge in the meetings with the world leaders to deliver their mighty judgment? Diplomacy has to be conducted before cameras? The media heavens knows no bounds.

promachus on September 24, 2008 at 2:54 AM

Oops. I meant the media arrogance. My keyboard ate it up.

promachus on September 24, 2008 at 2:56 AM

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