“David Letterman is making a full-throated apology for his controversial joke about Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's daughter,” TV Week reported a short while ago. “During a taping of tonight's [Monday 6/15] edition of his CBS Late Show, Letterman went much further than his last explanation of the joke, in which he quipped that a baseball player had 'knocked up' Palin's daughter,” Josef Adalian wrote.

Though Palin and conservatives were outraged and demanded an apology and retraction for a “joke” seemed aimed at the 14-year-old daughter though Letterman said he was referring to the 18-year-old daughter, it took the liberal columnist Mark Shields on PBS to convince Letterman he had a problem. Letterman will explain (video embedded below the fold with partial transcript):

Media Research Center Director of Communications Seton Motley appeared Sunday morning on Fox News Channel's "America's News Headquarters" to discuss comedian David Letterman's inappropriate joke about Gov. Sarah Palin's 14-year-old daughter Willow.

Motley noted a marked difference with the now infamous Don Imus joke about the Rutgers women's basketball team.

While both Letterman and Imus made crude and inappropriate jokes, conservatives like Gov. Palin do not have the benefit of the mainstream media's outrage as did the Rutgers basketball players [audio available here, see embedded video at right]:

I have had it with Letterman! I used to defend this guy to all of my friends who liked Leno better. I would say from a comic stand point that Jay was a great comic but Letterman was more original and had more style and class than Leno. Two recent events have changed my mind: Jay’s classy departure from the “Tonight Show” and Letterman’s classless left-wing attacks on the kids of politicians.

A comic needs to be an equal opportunity offender. We can’t pick sides in politics. We can have a point of view and a favorite but being a comic means when our guy drops the ball, you have to pick it up and smash it in his face. My friend and political opposite, Will Durst, said this a few years back about Mort Saul (I am paraphrasing here), “You can’t sit down to dinner with the Reagans and then pretend you’re still willing to sling mud at them.”

That is what is wrong with comedians like Letterman, Garofalo, and Stewart. They only see one side. Why do none of them at least give love taps to Obama? Why didn’t at least one of them make some comedic hay out of Obama gaffs like “57 states” and a reference to speaking “Austrian?”

The guy is the President and he can’t shake his mother-in-law and you can’t find a joke in that?

Should CBS fire "Late Show" host David Letterman over his disgusting remarks about Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and her daughter?

A couple of New York state lawmakers believe so.

As reported by MyFoxChattanooga.com Saturday:

New York State Assembleymen [sic] Gary D. Finch and Brian Kolb have called upon CBS executives to fire David Letterman after the late-night talk show host made jokes about the daughter of Alaska governor and former vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin, according to reports from Syracuse.com.

Here's what Finch sent to CBS president and CEO Leslie Moonves:

"Countdown" host Keith Olbermann Friday evening accused Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin of using her daughters, as well as the brouhaha surrounding jokes made about them by "Late Show" host David Letterman, to further her political career.

In a twelve minute segment about the former vice presidential candidate, Olbermann called her, "Sanctimonious, holier than thou, exploitative, undignified, pedantic, childish, self-inflicting, insipid, backwards, embarrassing, over-reactive, overreaching" as well as a "delusional lunatic."

Potentially even more disgraceful, in Olbermann's almost unimaginably perverted view, Letterman is actually "the victim" who has "continued to take the high road" in this sordid affair.

The video of this disgusting attack is embedded below the fold with a full transcript:

MRC President Brent Bozell appeared on FNC’s America’s Newsroom this morning to weigh in on CBS late night host David Letterman’s tasteless jokes about Sarah Palin’s teenage daughters. Bozell said Letterman’s explanation -- that he was really referring to Palin’s 18-year-old daughter, not the 14-year-old who actually went to Yankee Stadium with her mother -- was “worse than the joke.”

Bozell called the joke “disgusting,” and said “If David Letterman were a man — and he’s not a man, he is a coward — if David Letterman were a man, he would stand up and he would say, ‘We royally messed up on this one. I apologize to Sarah Palin, I apologize to Willow.’”

[UPDATE: Late this morning, Bozell issued a press release repeating his demand for an apology: "David Letterman needs to be a real man and apologize unequivocally, like a real man."]

Here’s some more of the segment, which aired shortly before 10:15am ET on June 12, and began with co-anchor Megyn Kelly playing a clip of Palin from earlier that day on NBC’s Today:

With Sarah Palin condemning David Letterman's joke about her daughter, a look back at some of Letterman's previous hostility toward Palin after she emerged as the GOP's VP nominee -- as documented, with video, in previous NewsBusters posts.

Last September, Letterman sarcastically complained that if a President McCain “drops dead...don't you want your President to have had the presence of mind to have chatted to her teenaged kids for five minutes about birth control?” He soon sneered: “They don't sell Trojans in Alaska? Come on.” In October, without recognizing any irony given Barack Obama's inexperience, Letterman wondered if the nation can risk “a beginner in the passenger seat” and, in a sexist cheap shot, imitated Palin adjusting her hair during a 9/11 crisis as he impersonated her voice: “How's my hair?”

On Monday's show, Letterman's monologue included: “One awkward moment for Sarah Palin at the Yankee game, during the seventh inning her daughter was knocked-up by Alex Rodriguez.”

After David Letterman made sexist attacks on the Palin family, the New York Times made sure to cover for him.

On “The Late Show” Monday, Letterman joked about Palin’s 14-year-old daughter Willow getting “knocked-up” by Alex Rodriguez, and the Times has scrubbed that joke from their transcript of the opening monologue.

The transcript, available here contains all the hilarious quips about Palin spending $150,000 on merchandise but not the joke about Willow. As Massbackwards states:

The proudest moment in his career, Late Show writer Bill Scheft boasted at a Friday comedy writer panel held at Washington, DC's Newseum, was when he got David Letterman to try to undermine guest John McCain's Bill Ayers talking point by raising McCain's relationship with G. Gordon Liddy -- as if a political dirty trickster were the equivalent of a terrorist involved with bombings which killed people, could have killed hundreds more if his attempts worked and remains unrepentant. At the event, organized by the Writers Guild of America, East, and shown Saturday night on C-SPAN, Scheft declared of his effort to discredit an anti-Obama point: “I'm more proud of that than any single joke that I've written.” That earned applause from the audience.

Later, to a chorus of “yeah” from other writers on the stage representing The Daily Show, The Colbert Report, Late Night, as well as another Late Show writer (Tom Ruprecht, who is in front of Scheft in the screen shot, the best I could get), Scheft insisted the only reason the comedy shows don't make fun of President Barack Obama is because he's “a little too damn competent and we ain't used to that.”

Earlier in the day, some of the participants delivered stand-up acts and DCRTV.com's “page 2" recounted this “joke” from Scheft: “Former Vice President Dick Cheney -- I actually don’t have a joke here, I just like to say former Vice President Dick Cheney.”

As NewsBusters reported Monday, comedians just can't bring themselves to poke fun at Barack Obama.

This problem apparently is troubling CBS "Late Show" host David Letterman:

The challenge for us here at the "Late Show": what are we going to do to make fun of the President, because that's what we do, we take cheap shots at the President. And, we didn't know what to do the first four years of Clinton. We thought, "Wow, what's going on there?" And BINGO, in comes the heavy set intern, and BOOM. That was great. And then Bush proved to be another mother lode, I mean, what a rich deep vein that was. But now we're, thank you, but we don't know what to do with Barack Obama because he comes in and he hits the ground running, and whether he's doing anything good, he's at least doing stuff. He's gone crazy, he's always doing stuff. And I said, "Oh, God, I'm going to have to go back to telling toothpaste jokes."

Realizing this wouldn't be good, Letterman got one of his writers to finally come up with some Obama jokes, but as you'll see from the embedded video below the fold, they all bashed -- wait for it!!! -- Bush (h/t Hot Air):

One would think it's bad host etiquette to call your guest a goon.

Yet, David Letterman on Tuesday's "Late Show" did exactly that to Fox News's Bill O'Reilly.

He also told the "Factor" host, "You're too smart to believe what you say." 

All in all, it was a friendlier encounter than we've seen in the past with the following notable lowlights (video part I embedded right, part II below the fold):

At the taping late Monday afternoon of CBS's Late Show, host David Letterman asked guest Katie Couric about “this bonehead Rush Limbaugh,” prompting Couric to plead: “Dave, don't do this to me, please! Don't do this to me.” But Letterman was just getting rolling with insults as he asserted Limbaugh's attire on Saturday at CPAC made him look “like an Eastern European gangster.” Focusing on Limbaugh's physical appearance, Letterman recited how Limbaugh's “got the black jacket on, the black silk shirt and it's unbuttoned, like, 'oh yeah, when you think Rush Limbaugh, you think ooh let's see a little flesh.'”

CBS posted the exchange as the “Big Show Highlight” preview for Monday's show. It's now the lead video in rotation on the Late Show's home page where it is displayed under the “Rush in the Flesh” heading. You can also view the Flash video clip from this interior page. [Update: video added to this post]

Audio: MP3 audio clip which matches the video clip (32 secs, 200 Kb).