Video: Letterman’s shocking interview with a tea-party leader

posted at 6:37 pm on March 31, 2010 by Allahpundit

No joke; this is a near-jawdropper. Even an apolitical mag like Entertainment Weekly calls it “quietly remarkable.” I don’t know what Letterman had in mind by booking her. Maybe he thought he was going to lure her into some sort of gotcha that would prove tea partiers are freaks, or maybe he was just interested in engaging someone from the other side’s grassroots — although he’s never done that before, to my knowledge. Whatever the reason, this ends up being one of the most efficient (if possibly inadvertent) debunkings of tea-party craziness to ever hit big media. Like Ace says, this woman comes off as a kindly aunt, soft-spoken and, per her own description, pacifistic. Even her one flirtation with fringiness, in what she says about Obama’s birth certificate, doesn’t go very far. She’s virtually the antithesis of the media narrative about tea partiers; imagine the surprise of the casual news watcher who’s been told the tea party is some kind of militia tuning into this. How on earth did she end up on this show?


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He’s fishing for a Palin interview.

PappyD61 on March 31, 2010 at 6:54 PM

Bingo!

(Won’t work… but it’s fun to see him slither.)

profitsbeard on March 31, 2010 at 7:57 PM

How on earth did she end up on this show?

Letterman’s flunkys screwed up.

Oh, please. Don’t you think that if he wanted to interview a crazy, conspiracy minded Tea Party’er, he could have found one? His bookers aren’t stupid.

Clearly, he wanted to have a civil discussion with a representative of the movement. Why? I don’t know.

YYZ on March 31, 2010 at 7:59 PM

This was actually an attempted “gotcha moment” that didn’t go Lettermens way. His complaints of the Bush 8 years forget that the Dems controlled Congress for six of those years and the Pres doesn’t spend money, the Congress does. Also, he calls Glen Beck a bonehead and he blames the fiscal crisis on the banking industry while ignoring the mandated loans to people who could not afford them.

rjoco1 on March 31, 2010 at 8:04 PM

thanks for posting. good interview.

ted c on March 31, 2010 at 8:09 PM

Bravo Pam!!!

yoda on March 31, 2010 at 8:09 PM

I am surprised that it was aired.

The leftards must have lost their collective mind.

1IDVET on March 31, 2010 at 8:11 PM

That was one of the most sleaziest attempt at divide and conquer that I have ever seen. Letterman’s plan was to smother her with “kindness” and establish a “friendship” so when it came time for him to go after his real target, Glen Beck, she would be so taken with him she couldn’t help but go along.
He could see the headline. Tea Party Head Agrees with Letterman: “Glen Beck is a Bonehead”! Didn’t work out that way huh Dave? HA!

RMR on March 31, 2010 at 8:15 PM

Wow, that was really well done. Kudos to Pam Stout. Who’s name you didn’t mention in your intro.

DaMav on March 31, 2010 at 8:24 PM

This was awesome. I believe Letterman thought the lady would be a nut. She handled things perfectly.

Southernblogger on March 31, 2010 at 8:25 PM

I believe she was invited because Dave is losing to Leno in ratings, and Dave figured she would reveal her inner racist, homophobic lunatic hatred once interviewed.

Boy did he get that one wrong. She was awesome.

sarainitaly on March 31, 2010 at 8:26 PM

Clearly, he wanted to have a civil discussion with a representative of the movement. Why? I don’t know.

YYZ on March 31, 2010 at 7:59 PM

And I am Marie of Romania.

katy the mean old lady on March 31, 2010 at 8:34 PM

Real Americans love America and work hard. Leftist trolls like Lettermen try to smear them.

jawkneemusic on March 31, 2010 at 8:44 PM

Letterman’s having an affair with her niece and this was a personal favor.

angryed on March 31, 2010 at 8:47 PM

also, she pretty much says through the entire interview that there is no single Tea Party leader, which is what has been discussed endlessly here on HA for the past…three months? at least? so AP’s headline is just pretty much a massive fail all around, no?

das411 on March 31, 2010 at 8:48 PM

I love it. Know wonder Ace is on this one. She literally spells out the method to GOP success. Tea Partiers taking over local GOP precincts. Go back to the old ideals!

Sultry Beauty on March 31, 2010 at 8:51 PM

“I think he was born in this country”.

He has no effing idea how ridiculous that souunds. As if it should be something less than a certainty.

Basilsbest on March 31, 2010 at 8:55 PM

Good news. It is clear that even by the end of the interview that Letterman didn’t get it. Clueless Dave.

R Square on March 31, 2010 at 8:58 PM

They have folks that understand demographics and possible want to make nice with folks which they well know are a majority of the good money spending demo.

TheSitRep on March 31, 2010 at 9:01 PM

What I think Letterman was expecting was a fire-breathing angry revolutionary. What he got was a soft-spoken and articulate woman whom every one of us can relate to as a normal American. Letterman wanted to see the fringe and found out that the tea-party was not really all that nutty.

I base this notion on several of the questions Letterman asked. He hit the birthers, the Iraq War, deregulation and a couple other things that would have been hot button topics for a nut and set them off on a blather.

I bet that Letterman never met this woman before she showed up for the show. I think he fully expected a lot more fire and brimstone from a Tea Party leader. I think Letterman was stuck in a problem once it started. She comes across as a very nice lady and if he would have attacked her it would have been like attacking mom. So he had to go softball with her. He did what he could to tweak her a but but she just is not a fiery person. She is a gentile, thoughtful person. By the time Letterman realized that it was too late the damage was done.

Hawthorne on March 31, 2010 at 9:20 PM

SisterToldjah on March 31, 2010 at 6:53 PM

Ditto!

Letterman must prepare his interviews by checking in with Axelrod, Gibbs, and Talking Points Memo. The premises of his questions have been debunked a long time ago.

onlineanalyst on March 31, 2010 at 9:27 PM

My computer won’t allow me to install what is needed so I can watch videos so I couldn’t watch the clip, which is too bad. It sounds like it was reasonable.

And that’s really what we need. Well-thought-out, rational dialog.

Would it have sounded too “nut-case” if she had mentioned that the Hawaii Department of Health has confirmed that the COLB Obama posted is a forgery? A quiet little fact that most of the media is busy ignoring.

See
http://butterdezillion.wordpress.com/2010/01/11/red-flags-in-hawaii-2/

justincase on March 31, 2010 at 9:41 PM

Proud Rino, its a good thing you took back your diss on housewives.

This housewife was steaming mad. I know more about economics and business than the community organizer-in-chief does.

juliesa on March 31, 2010 at 9:54 PM

Her background in working with people in subsidized housing and teaching them to be self-sufficient was a plus in her message. She emphasized the importance of being self-determining and not relying on a government.

Mrs. Stout also turned the “birther” question into one that wondered why so many of ObaMao’s documents are sealed. She planted enough doubt with that remark to sink into the consciousness of the braindead.

Letterman’s cheap shot about Beck being a “bonehead” may have been red meat for some in the audience, but Mrs. Stout managed to turn that silliness around by pointing out that Beck has given her material to think about.

The Left wants so badly to have a “leader” for the TEA party movement so that it can apply the Alinsky method to demoralize the grass roots and to collapse the momentum. It is not going to work. The network of shared ideas sprang from the people, not a charismatic leader.

onlineanalyst on March 31, 2010 at 9:58 PM

How on earth did she end up on this show?

It’s the money. CBS just announced layoffs a month ago and their employees were angry over Katie Couric’s huge salary. That and the fact that the Tea Party movement is big. Really, REALLY big.

TN Mom on March 31, 2010 at 10:11 PM

This interview proved one thing (again). Letterman is a Ja&*a@#s.

Alfresco on March 31, 2010 at 10:41 PM

He just doesn’t get it.

Indian Outlaw on March 31, 2010 at 11:14 PM

Top 10 reasons Letterman stepped out on the ledge of reality…

LoneStarGal on March 31, 2010 at 11:26 PM

How on earth did she end up on this show?

Letterman’s flunkys screwed up.
———————————————-
Oh, please. Don’t you think that if he wanted to interview a crazy, conspiracy minded Tea Party’er, he could have found one? His bookers aren’t stupid.

Clearly, he wanted to have a civil discussion with a representative of the movement. Why? I don’t know.

YYZ on March 31, 2010 at 7:59 PM

Maybe. But the fact that she’s from Sand Point, ID, is perhaps telling given Sand Point’s reputation among liberals as a radical right militia enclave. I’m afraid I find it hard to ascribe sincere motives to Letterman. Not about this. If his motives were insincere, however, things didn’t work out for him as planned, so good. Brava, Mrs. Stout!

SukieTawdry on March 31, 2010 at 11:40 PM

It is even more interesting that CBS has blocked the replay of this. Someone needs to get this video up on YouTube to see how fast it gets blocked.

See, this is one advantage that we have. The principle is that it would be easier for those of us who are sane to imitate the crazy, than it is for the mentally ill crazies to act like sane men! (Or Women for that matter…)

They just don’t understand that the more they lie, and try to trap us in a box, the more that their “over the top” transparent lies become visible. Add to that the recursive feedback loop that the typical liberal uses when evaluating the lies of the left, and you are left with a gigantic reality distortion zone that is invisible to all those who think that they see the emperor’s clothes!

I find it really hard to evaluate our President, or the other libs in leadership, because I don’t know how much of their own lies they actually believe! Once the foundation stones get out of alignment, the whole structure becomes twisted, meanwhile the architects don’t see the problems or the danger.

I do know one thing for sure.
Feedback loops don’t work out well in SciFi, and they don’t work out well in reality either!

Medbob on March 31, 2010 at 11:48 PM

Letterman is still a jerk. Classless, clueless, dope.

Texyank on March 31, 2010 at 11:50 PM

Sorry. My Bad. Ignore the first 2 sentences above. My OpenDNS was blocking Doubleclick.net, which prevented the CBS commercial at the beginning of the videos to load.

If you don’t open the shell, you can’t get the nut!

Medbob on April 1, 2010 at 12:10 AM

Proud Rino, its a good thing you took back your diss on housewives.

This housewife was steaming mad. I know more about economics and business than the community organizer-in-chief does.

juliesa on March 31, 2010 at 9:54 PM

Well, I’m not sure if that’s true, but I definitely did not mean that a housewife (or a comedian) can’t be well-educated, and you can certainly edify yourself outside the traditional educational structure – although that’s much more difficult for several reasons.

My main complaint was that they were both glib (if not outright wrong) regarding their economic opinions.

I’m pretty sure my mom is smarter than me, and she was a housewife until my Dad left. My wife is a housewife and she reminds me of how much smarter she is than me every day.

No disrespect intended to housewives.

Proud Rino on April 1, 2010 at 12:27 AM

And I am Marie of Romania.

Then that makes two of us.

YYZ on April 1, 2010 at 1:27 AM

Pam Stout was awesome…and God bless her!

What’s truly shocking is that she knew more about the economy, what to do to make it productive and articulated it better than ZeroBama!

Jenfidel on April 1, 2010 at 1:55 AM

Who is this guy and what have they done with David Letterman?

Seriously, the interview was fair, pleasant and friendly. I would actually consider watching David Letterman regularly if he takes this kind of a tack on a permanent basis.

Stout was great as well. I am currently hoping for a Jim DeMint/Paul Ryan ticket myself in 2012, so I am glad to see that others are on the same page that I am. :) :) :)

Theophile on April 1, 2010 at 2:06 AM

It is even more interesting that CBS has blocked the replay of this. Someone needs to get this video up on YouTube to see how fast it gets blocked.

Medbob on March 31, 2010 at 11:48 PM

I checked CBS and the Pam Stout interview is still available to view there. I also checked Youtube and the interview is already there in both standard resolutions and HD.

Hawthorne on April 1, 2010 at 2:32 AM

Who is this guy and what have they done with David Letterman?

Seriously, the interview was fair, pleasant and friendly. I would actually consider watching David Letterman regularly if he takes this kind of a tack on a permanent basis.

Stout was great as well. I am currently hoping for a Jim DeMint/Paul Ryan ticket myself in 2012, so I am glad to see that others are on the same page that I am. :) :) :)

Theophile on April 1, 2010 at 2:06 AM

I think the clue of how this came to be is at the very beginning. Letterman says he learned about Pam Stout from a Time Magazine article on Sand Point, Idaho and the people there. Pam Stout goes on to say that after the article people accused her of being a racist and a wacko. So obviously what she said in the article made people think she is a fire and brimstone, hard right wingnut. I think Letterman got taken in by the Time Magazine piece and was not prepared for the reality that the authors of the Time article portrayed her in the worst possible light.

Hawthorne on April 1, 2010 at 2:37 AM

I never watch him anymore so thanks for that AP.

Letterman really did try to push all the talking points but her manner was so cordial and grandmotherly it just didn’t fly. He couldn’t go full bore without making an ass of himself.

John on April 1, 2010 at 2:41 AM

Correction…

It was not Time magazine, but the New York Times. Imagine that, the New York Times lied about her and painted Pam Stout as a right wing nutcase. Who woulda thought it!

Hawthorne on April 1, 2010 at 2:43 AM

Here is the NY Times article about Pam Stout…

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/16/us/politics/16teaparty.html

Hawthorne on April 1, 2010 at 2:46 AM

How on earth did she end up on this show?

Leno must be killing him.

drjohn on April 1, 2010 at 3:07 AM

Thanks for the link, Hawthorne!

Looks as if that East Coast élite (like Letterman) are having a hard time getting their pointed heads around what the Tea Party’s all about.
Pam Stout just set a whole lot of people, including Dave, straight.

Jenfidel on April 1, 2010 at 3:07 AM

Looks as if that East Coast élite (like Letterman) are having a hard time getting their pointed heads around what the Tea Party’s all about.
Pam Stout just set a whole lot of people, including Dave, straight.

Jenfidel on April 1, 2010 at 3:07 AM

I think about a million heads exploded in New England over that interview.

Hawthorne on April 1, 2010 at 3:28 AM

I don’t know about respect, however, I think there was alot of phishing and condescention.

bklyn04 on April 1, 2010 at 8:29 AM

Wow… she did great. She even got Letterman to admit that Glen Beck might be a “good thing”!

therambler on April 1, 2010 at 9:42 AM

Don’t fall for it. We may begin see a lot of “positive” strokes about the tea party as the Dems hope to see them siphon enough votes from the republicans to keep the dems in charge just as Ross Perot helped get Clinton elected.

mgt on April 1, 2010 at 9:48 AM

A tea party candidate to siphon votes from a Republican I meant to say, sorry

mgt on April 1, 2010 at 9:51 AM

This is definitely a Susan Boyle moment!

DJ from MA on April 1, 2010 at 10:02 AM

I particularly like the moment she called people trapped on welfare and stuck in public housing “very sad”, the audience applauded, and that took Letterman back. Where was teh anger? Where was teh hate?

No anger, no hatred; rather, sadness that people have been stripped of hope and corralled like cattle into hopeless existence, and determination that it has to change. That is what the current D liberal statist leadership doesn’t get: help via opportunity, not dependence via largess.

MarkT on April 1, 2010 at 10:34 AM

the Dems hope to see them siphon enough votes from the republicans to keep the dems in charge just as Ross Perot helped get Clinton elected.

mgt on April 1, 2010 at 9:48 AM

If the Dems are able to siphon off votes from the Tea Parties, I really may begin to believe the NObama is the Messiah because it would be a true miracle.

Jenfidel on April 1, 2010 at 12:41 PM

Isn’t Sandpoint, Idaho also where Sarah Palin was born?

hrh40 on April 1, 2010 at 1:48 PM

No anger, no hatred; rather, sadness that people have been stripped of hope and corralled like cattle into hopeless existence, and determination that it has to change. That is what the current D liberal statist leadership doesn’t get: help via opportunity, not dependence via largess.

MarkT on April 1, 2010 at 10:34 AM

I suspect they get it.I think the democrats have come to a misguided realization that the welfare class is what it is, and they must deal with what they think is a reality. In essence, they have no confidence that the welfare class has any capacity to improve their lives.

I think it is the greatest flaw in the liberal dogma.

saiga on April 1, 2010 at 2:02 PM

The liberals say they want everyone equal, and that is why everyone gets a trophy in the liberal soccer game, and they dont keep score.

In their confused minds, income is the only factor needed to create equality. The old saying that it is better to have loved and lost than it is not to have tried is juxtopposed to their beliefs. Like the lady said, being religated to public housing and a slot at the public trough makes for a pi$$ poor quality of life even though you have a roof over your head and food to eat.

What kind of character does that build, and is that the character that serves this country best?

saiga on April 1, 2010 at 2:09 PM

She probably reminds Dave of his mother.

fleiter on April 1, 2010 at 2:09 PM

Robert Duvall was asked one time why all the Hollywood types were liberals. His answer was guilt. Deep down, they feel extremely guilty because they make big money for doing so little. Their internal psycological defense for it is to make themselves feel better by being pseudo-champions of the underclass.

In reality, they are some of the most self centered and selfish people in the world. How many of them have donated their way into the poor house? Usually, when they become destitute, it is from drugs with money they spent on themselves.

saiga on April 1, 2010 at 2:17 PM

Not really too concerned with the motives because all we can do is speculate. He threw a couple of typical cracks, that’s what he does, but he really didn’t catch her off guard, for the most part she rolled with them well, and all in all you have to admit he was pretty respectful and with the most part treated her with kid gloves compared to some of the other people he has interviewed in the past.
He asked questions that the left would normally ask but he didn’t talk over her, didn’t put her down, and didn’t shout her down which is what we usually get. Hate to say it but c’mon give the guy a break, even a broke clock is right twice a day…

@ntif@n on April 1, 2010 at 8:04 PM

or maybe he was just interested in engaging someone from the other side’s grassroots — although he’s never done that before, to my knowledge

Letterman isn’t a liberal.

You people never watch Letterman. You know nothing about Letterman except soundbites. Just admit it already.

He has done this lots of times over the years.

Moesart on April 3, 2010 at 1:04 PM

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