Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Palin censors press

The news of the ongoing economic crisis, the return of Hurricane Ike evacuees to Galveston and even Clay Aiken's decision to come out of the closet continue to garner today's headlines, but Sarah Palin's decision to severely curtail media access to her meetings at the United Nations in New York yesterday certainly garnered this writer's attention.

The Associated Press and CNN were among the outlets that strongly objected to the campaign's decision to prohibit reporters from observing meetings between the Alaska governor and Afghan President Harmad Karzai and Colombian President Alvaro Uribe. Campaign officials reportedly told the news organizations their exclusion was "not subject to discussion." They finally relented after CNN pulled its crew from Palin's first meeting.

Politicians routinely seek strategic photo opportunities to shore up their credentials on a particular issue and to frankly score some PR points with a strategically identified constituency. The campaign's actions, which arguably amount to censorship, only fuel questions about Palin's qualifications as vice president. They only provide journalists, pundits and political observers with even more questions about this Republican wunderkind du jour to her arguable detriment.

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