Over the weekend numerous media reported that Republican vice-presidential nominee Sarah Palin did not plan to take questions from journalists before the election. Either those reports were inaccurate or John McCain’s campaign felt compelled to backpedal, because ABC’s Charlie Gibson will interview Palin later this week:
The McCain camp did not say why it chose Mr. Gibson, but it had selected him last week as the only major journalist to interview Mr. McCain himself during the Republican convention in St. Paul.
After his interview with Mr. McCain had aired, Mr. Gibson posted on his blog that he had “fretted” about how to approach the many personal issues that had come up about Ms. Palin and decided to ignore them.
“The major development in his campaign obviously is his surprise choice of Sarah Palin,” Mr. Gibson wrote. “It took some time in thinking about it, but I finally decided not to even bring up the issues with her family, for they are issues of family and should remain so. […]
“The relevant questions about Governor Palin, the questions that go to her suitability to serve as vice president, all relate to her experience, or lack thereof, and her policy positions as a mayor and governor in Alaska. Once I decided to restrict the Palin questions to those areas, the interview kind of formed itself,” Mr. Gibson wrote.
It’s not yet clear whether Palin will agree to a press conference, where she would have to face many reporters at the same time.
I have little sense of Gibson’s style as an interviewer, but I do think it’s right to focus on Palin’s inexperience and stands on the issues as opposed to her family matters.