Some have asked “What is the appropriate response of the news media to news of the pregnancy of Sarah Palin’s 17-year-old daughter?”
Barack Obama was correct to say that scrutiny of candidates’ children should be “off limits.”
But obviously there is newsworthiness to the story. Here’s how I think the story should have been handled by the cable news networks:
“The McCain campaign today released a statement confirming that the 17-year-old daughter of Gov. Sarah Palin is pregnant, planning to keep the baby and marry her boyfriend, the child’s father. Because she is a minor, and in keeping with the tradition of privacy extended to children of political candidates, we will have no further commentary or discussion of this issue.”
Instead we have so far had two days of “breaking news” headlines, hours of commentary and debate, multiple photos of the girl from angles designed to expose her “baby bump.” We have had debates about what this means about Sarah Palin’s fitness as a mother, and attacks on Palin’s views on sex education. All of this is way out of line.


  1. Can you imagine? A candidate for Vice President of the United States has a daughter that made a mistake! I find that extremely informative. I don’t believe that has ever happened before. We must do something to prevent children, of any candidate, of any office, from acting humanly and embarrassing their parents. Perhaps a surcharge on their income tax for every mistake their children make. Not on them though, only their children. We know public officials don’t make mistakes so we would be wasting our time on them. We, public officials, must teach our children not to humiliate us. However, we can’t impose this tax on anyone who can’t afford it; no matter how their children behave! This legislation should revolutionize world politics. I can’t wait. I don’t have to worry though, because my daughter doesn’t make mistakes. Something tells me that I shouldn’t have said that!
    Representative Ray Barnes
    Arizona District 7

  2. After my son’s wedding up in Utah this summer, I took the family to Yellowstone National Park.
    What an absolutely amazing place.
    One of the things we so wanted to experience was seeing a grizzly bear.
    Well, after a few days of seeing bison, elk, deer, a moose, wolves, black bears, and trout galore, we saw not just one grizzly, but three. The majesty and power of these animals is beyond words. The fear they conjure up is surreal.
    Shortly after arriving home from the trip, I couch potatoed on my sofa and switched on Animal Planet, one of my favorite TV shows.
    Lo and behold, there was a video of a mother grizzly bear with her two cubs peacefully feeding on salmon in a stream with her two cubs, when a much larger male bear malevolently approached them.
    Mom’s response was swift, decisive, and turned the male bear into a neutered teddy bear. She sent the male bear on his way with his tale between his legs. It wasn’t pretty.
    I suggest that Barack Obama and Joe Biden carefully study that video and stay away from that stream. Those fish in there, they ain’t theirs, and the cubs, well, hell hath not fury like a woman scorned……
    I’m sorry, I’ve gotta tell ya, it ain’t gonna be pretty tommorrow night when CNN and MSNBC show Barack Obama and Joe Biden licking each other wounds, in tears, drooling all over themselves, begging for the women’s vote, with Keith Olberman trying to console them and Hillary saying, “you should have listened to your mothers and me and Bill.”