Former NBC and CBS star Katie Couric sat for an interview with Brian Stelter on CNN’s Reliable Sources on Sunday, and celebrated the tenth anniversary of her Sarah Palin interview. This reminded conservatives that there are Republicans, and then there are the “even Republicans,” as in the phrase “even Republicans think Katie Couric was exceedingly fair to Palin.” Check this piece of the interview:
STELTER: And your critics said this was gotcha journalism, was did -- it make your brand more polarizing --
COURIC: Well, you know --
STELTER: -- because asking a really simple question there.
COURIC: You know, it's interesting, I think even Republicans thought all the questions I asked were exceedingly fair [!], and so I think it was after it sort of set in and Governor Palin knew that she had not performed well that that became sort of the typical trope that it was gotcha questions. But even Senator McCain, when I sat down with them for a joint interview, praised the interview I had done with Governor Palin. He had a very different campaign style and obviously, hers is diverged from his. Remember, he would calm down people who said inappropriate things, and she seemed to egg them on, and certainly not temper that.
STELTER: Very Trumpian.
Many, many Republicans thought the Palin interview was a gotcha interview. Our Brent Baker made the point ten years ago that Couric was far nicer to her Democrat opponent, Joe Biden, than she was to Palin. (For instance, Palin was asked about a rape exception to abortion, but Biden wasn't asked about partial-birth abortions.) Then there's Couric's Obama puffery!
Stelter played the clip of Couric badgering Palin about what news sources she read in Alaska to stay in touch with the world. I've always said the obvious reply was "I watch you on CBS, because I root for the underdog in last place." This question was apparently heroic and historic:
STELTER: Unforgettable moment with Sarah Palin, and there were many in that interview you say, was the most important interview you've ever done.
COURIC: I think it was one of the most pivotal and one of the most impactful because as you remember, when that interview was done, it was the third interview that Governor Palin did. But I think it had a big repercussion because I think people saw that she was out of her depth and could not answer public policy questions in a very satisfying or satisfactory way. [As if Katie Couric was a TV star because of her massive intellect. When has she ever submitted herself for a hardball interview?]
You know, we really wanted to look at through the lens of these interviews. The rise and fall of one of the most captivating candidates in recent memories, how she was selected....how her kind of anti-intellectual red meat populism, anti-media rhetoric did pave the way for Donald Trump and his anti- media sensibilities if you will.
Isn't it funny how liberal journalists always think conservative politicians created "anti-media sensibilities" and it had absolutely nothing to do with their own performance?