AP's Kugler: Palin Meets Leaders 'in a Bubble'

Doubtless still seething over not being privy to Gov. Sarah Palin's private chats with world leaders, AP's Sara Kugler described the Republican vice presidential nominee as being wrapped "in a bubble" by the campaign, even though it's fairly common practice for politicians to chat with foreign dignitaries behind closed doors.

Here's how Kugler opened her September 23 evening article, "Palin in a bubble meets her first world leaders" (emphases mine):

NEW YORK - September 23, 2008 - -- Sarah Palin met her first world leaders Tuesday.

It was a tightly controlled crash course on foreign policy for the Republican vice presidential candidate, the mayor-turned-governor who has been outside North America just once.

Palin sat down with Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Colombian President Alvaro Uribe. The conversations were private, the pictures public, meant to build her resume for voters concerned about her lack of experience in world affairs.

Later Kugler parroted the usual anti-Palin talking points, all while suggesting Palin could put to rest media scrutiny by having let reporters into the private discussions:

Palin is studying foreign policy ahead of her one debate with Democratic vice presidential candidate Joe Biden, a senator with deep credentials on that front. More broadly, the Republican ticket is trying to counter questions exploited by Democrats about her qualifications to serve as vice president and step into the presidency at a moment's notice if necessary.

There was no chance of putting such questions to rest with photo opportunities Tuesday.

But Palin, who got a passport only last year, no longer has to own up to a blank slate when asked about heads of state she has met.

Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd is a writer living in New Carrollton, Md.