They're saying Sarah Palin stumbled, struggled, sidestepped, misstepped and was caught off guard in an interview with ABC's Charles Gibson that was aired in part last night. It should however be noted that none of the reports failed to note her confidence and poise on camera despite what her interviewer exasperatedly called her "blizzard of words."
From the New York Times:
Ms. Palin was clearly caught off guard when Mr. Gibson asked, “Do you agree with the Bush doctrine?” Seeking direction, and perhaps time to formulate an answer, Ms. Palin leaned back, smiled stiffly and said, “In what respect, Charlie?”
Initially unwilling to define the doctrine, Mr. Gibson said, “What do you interpret it to be?”
Ms. Palin asked, “His world view?”
Mr. Gibson said, “No, the Bush doctrine, enunciated September 2002, before the Iraq war.”
Ms. Palin responded: “I believe that what President Bush has attempted to do is rid this world of Islamic extremism, terrorists who are hell bent on destroying our nation.”
Mr. Gibson, finally defining the doctrine as “the right of anticipatory self-defense,” still struggled for a direct answer, asking twice more if she agreed with it before Ms. Palin answered: “Charlie, if there is a legitimate and enough intelligence that tells us that a strike is imminent against American people, we have every right to defend our country.”
From the Los Angeles Times:
By turns tense and combative, Palin, 44, used two interviews with ABC anchor Charles Gibson to display her grasp of issues central to the vice presidency.
She acknowledged that, other than a trip last year to see troops in Iraq, Kuwait and Germany, her only visits abroad were to Mexico and Canada. And she said that she had never met a head of state but that she did speak last week with President Mikheil Saakashvili of Georgia.
On the issues, Palin said that "we (as Americans) do not have to stand for" Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons, Georgia and the Ukraine should be welcomed into a NATO alliance and "man's activities certainly can be contributing to the issue of global warming."
What do you think? Was Palin a bumbling boob, a confident rock, a candidate to be proud of or one to be feared? Where do you think she will go from here?
UPDATE (by Howard): Here's the interview: