Taking Sarah Seriously

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Sarah Palin and White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs dueled it out this weekend:

Pointing to what she termed the White House’s relationship with “the oil companies who have so supported President Obama in his campaign and are supportive of him now,” Palin questioned whether “there’s any connection there to President Obama taking so doggone long to get in there, to dive in there, and grasp the complexity and the potential tragedy that we are seeing here in the Gulf of Mexico.”

Gibbs, on CBS News’ “Face the Nation,” suggested Palin do some homework….”My suggestion to Sarah Palin would be to get slightly more informed as to what’s going on in and around oil drilling in this country.”

OK, I guess that’s not bad. And since I read Jon Alter’s The Promise last week, I’m still sort of stuck in Alter’s universe, where Obama is the adult who insists on always taking the high road against his opponents and always turns out to be right about that. And hey, maybe so. Maybe he’s right to be exasperated with people who are endlessly advising him to get more partisan and more fiery. And maybe he’s right to insist that his staff act the same way he does.

Maybe, maybe, maybe. But honestly. Isn’t it time for guys like Gibbs to finally just say something like, “Bob, we’re not still treating anything Sarah Palin says as actual news, are we? Let’s move on.” After all, even Bob Schieffer can’t possibly take it seriously when Sarah Palin — Sarah Palin! — suggests that Barack Obama has failed to “grasp the complexity” of the oil spill.


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Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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