Palin's Next Couric Gaffe May Be on Ignorance of Supreme Court Cases

Washington Monthly and Atrios have some (albeit not much)sympathy for Gov. Sarah Palin if, as rumored, her next gaffe in the upcoming airing of a new Katie Couric interview shows she couldn't name any Supreme Court cases.

Not me. Lawyers, Guns and Money has a better take.

Oh it's all morbidly fascinating, until somebody gets hurt.

Let's call it what it is: In combination with everything else we know about her, Terrifying.

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    When I read Palin could only (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by oculus on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:10:42 PM EST
    mame Roe v. Wade, I tried to remember how many SCOTUS opinions I could have mentioned before I went to law school.  Didn't come up with an impressive list, that's for sure.  

    Ditto (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by CST on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:12:58 PM EST
    Brown vs. board of education... that one should be a gimmie.


    I have never been to law school :)

    I am also not running for v.p.


    Every High School Student (none / 0) (#53)
    by Molly Bloom on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:13:30 PM EST
    can name Marbury v , Madison and McCulloch v. Maryland.

    She is running for VP. Is it too much to ask that she acquaint herself with some of the issues before the court or likely to come before the court?



    Well I graduated from H.S. not that long ago (none / 0) (#56)
    by CST on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:23:38 PM EST
    and I have no idea what you're talking about.

    That being said, I do know Brown vs. Board, Plessy vs. Ferg, someone else brought up Bush vs. Gore, Dred Scott, etc...

    And as I also said, I am not running for V.P.  I would hope they would know more than me.


    If they aren't teaching (5.00 / 1) (#62)
    by eric on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:46:49 PM EST
    Marbury v. Madison anymore, then I am really worried.

    After clicking the link (none / 0) (#108)
    by CST on Wed Oct 01, 2008 at 12:52:50 PM EST
    I did remember the case, just forgot the name.  So I guess schools aren't THAT bad.

    Marbury v Madison? (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by Nasarius on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:49:34 PM EST
    The case that pretty much defined the role of the courts in American government? I'd be shocked if that wasn't covered.

    I'm about six years out of high school now, but I guess I've been a politics geek since we studied the Constitution in seventh grade. Alas, I can't help it.

    Oh, and I thought of Griswold as well. But that's about it.


    I'm sure they teach it (none / 0) (#68)
    by CST on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:57:52 PM EST
    But I am also about 6 years out and don't really remember.

    I also didn't take a single history or law class in college (not by choice, but that's just how it works in engineering, if I took any of those classes, I'd be in school forever)


    well (none / 0) (#71)
    by Nasarius on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 04:06:40 PM EST
    I studied computer science and chemistry, and fulfilled any social sciences requirements with AP credit.

    I'm just sayin', as a somewhat intelligent and concerned citizen, very much not a politician or a lawyer, not even particularly engaged in activism, I seem to know more about the foundation of the US government than the GOP VP nominee. And I sure as hell can BS better than her. So that's kinda scary.


    I agree 100% (none / 0) (#76)
    by CST on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 04:19:00 PM EST
    And we had remarkably similar schooling experiences... except you remember more court cases, although I still know more than Sarah Palin.

    I was just arguing the "any highschool grad should know" not whether the person running for V.P. should know.


    you werent' running for VP (none / 0) (#6)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:16:54 PM EST
    before you went to law school. I took Con Law as an undergraduate and could have named many. I think most college students can.

    Brown vs. Board of Education? Miranda v. Arizona?

    She sure talked a good game (/sarcasm) at the Republican convention trashing Obama for wanting to read terror suspects their rights before interrogating them.


    Maybe she was a music major! (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by oculus on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:21:35 PM EST
    Poli-Sci (none / 0) (#9)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:27:27 PM EST
    So she really has no excuse at all.

    5 kids? (none / 0) (#10)
    by oculus on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:29:40 PM EST
    The woman has lots on her mind.  

    Just my own life experience (5.00 / 4) (#19)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:39:42 PM EST
    but having teenage children usually requires a parent to refresh almost all of their legal knowledge.

    my mom knows... (5.00 / 1) (#24)
    by kredwyn on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:45:39 PM EST
    maybe RvW and Brown v Board.

    However, she can quote you chapter and verse from Sarbanes-Oxley.



    She had 5 kids when she was in school? (none / 0) (#14)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:34:47 PM EST
    Now that's a feat!  Probably would have been hard to be in those beauty pageants with 5 kids too...

    I guess it was only a minor in Poli-sci though.


    The thing is. People forget stuff. (none / 0) (#17)
    by oculus on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:38:56 PM EST
    I doubt any of her political or personal roles required her to keep up with SCOTUS or to draw upon anything she learned about SCOTUS opinions during college.  Example, many years after college I took courses in accounting and statistics, then went to law school and practiced law.  No recall of those earlier courses, as they knowledge of accounting and statistics didn't come into play in the areas of law in which I worked.  

    I can see where that is true (5.00 / 1) (#26)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:47:15 PM EST
    Yet if you were holding a public office like say Governor of one of the fifty states and you had been previously been a mayor, don't you think your past study of constitutional law would sort of been retrieved from your memory tomes at some point or maybe several points and had the dust knocked off of them?  I'm not sure I understand how she could have come this far without ever finding a need to access that past learning unless she had never really learned it so there wasn't anything there to access?

    But (5.00 / 3) (#38)
    by eric on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:59:01 PM EST
    if one cannot name Brown v. Board, one cannot fully understand certain fundamental concepts of equal protection.  And she certainly, then, can't tell us anything about how Plessy was so wrong.

    What about Dred Scott?  Miranda?  Gideon?

    Heck, if one cannot name Marbury v. Madison, one cannot even understand the concept of judicial review itself.

    We're not expecting her to explain the Erie Doctrine here.  This is pretty simple stuff for someone running for VP.


    Loving v. Virginia (none / 0) (#69)
    by wystler on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:59:23 PM EST
    hell, maybe y'all aren't too familiar. but if not for that decision, Sarah couldn't get a room with her husband in many of the states

    I anticipate Palin will be (none / 0) (#23)
    by oculus on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:42:58 PM EST
    spit out a strong of SCOTUS cites in the debate.

    Are you saying her verbal salad will be (none / 0) (#28)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:49:29 PM EST
    festooned with them?

    Sure they do... (none / 0) (#55)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:18:48 PM EST
    ...but this is basic Intro to Poli-Sci stuff.  Heck, I haven't used it in 20+ years and I can still recall it when pressed.  I wasn't exactly a straight A student either.  

    Now calculus--that's a different story!


    "People" (none / 0) (#99)
    by coigue on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 11:20:02 PM EST
    shouldn't run for VP. Exceptional people should,

    I wonder how many (none / 0) (#103)
    by oculus on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 11:37:13 PM EST
    SCOTUS opinions The Governator could cite by case name when he won the recall election?  

    I would bet he could name (none / 0) (#105)
    by coigue on Wed Oct 01, 2008 at 12:03:02 AM EST
    some. At least Gore v Bush for Peet's Sake.

    If you have no interest in national LAW (none / 0) (#106)
    by coigue on Wed Oct 01, 2008 at 12:05:24 AM EST
    you have no business ruling the country.

    Hey, (none / 0) (#11)
    by JThomas on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:32:41 PM EST
    why should a possible president ...who is charged with adhering to the US Constituion ..be expected to actually know any SCOTUS decisions?

    C'mon, she can get back to ya on that,right? She will bring ya some later,doncha know?


    Oops, she really doesn't (none / 0) (#16)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:36:25 PM EST
    which now causes me to wonder about 5 schools in 4 years and all that jazz.

    my understanding is that a couple of them (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by kredwyn on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:42:52 PM EST
    are community colleges where...like many of my students, you can get core (aka transferable) courses out of the way in a much economical fashion with the chance of a better student:professor ratio.

    I did a good bit of that during my undergrad summers simply because it helped with the costs and student loans.


    Seeing as that's why she entered (none / 0) (#30)
    by nycstray on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:52:22 PM EST
    beauty pageants (to pay for school), makes sense.

    I took some JC classes (prior to art college while in HS) and some academics at a state college (while in art school). Since I didn't start the art school until I was out of HS a year or so, you could say it took me 6yrs and 3 schools to get a BFA.


    I did my 1st 2 years at the same (none / 0) (#46)
    by kredwyn on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:06:16 PM EST
    CC I'm now teaching at.

    Then I transferred to a 4 year university...but kept going back to the CC to get things like 102 and Comp Sci out of the way.

    My students like the idea that if you put your mind to it, you can go from the CC to a PhD.


    the nub therein (none / 0) (#61)
    by wystler on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:43:40 PM EST
    My students like the idea that if you put your mind to it, you can go from the CC to a PhD.

    one can

    but would Sarah?

    i try to avoid thinking about her much. makes my head hurt.


    I don't know... (none / 0) (#110)
    by kredwyn on Thu Oct 02, 2008 at 10:52:51 AM EST
    Heck...I probably wouldn't have when I first started at the CC much less after I graduated with my BA.

    It took me a very very long time to realise that it was possible for me to be more than a bartender/bookstore manager after I finally graduated with my BA. (I got a pretty hard hit to my ego from a pair of really bad professors...one who didn't think that women could write fiction unless it had to do with relationships--his female students never received anything higher than a C...another who stole my research idea and then slammed me for being stupid.)

    My parents had more faith in me than I did. They still do.

    Palin's not much older than I am. And frankly, she's gone pretty far on the path she's chosen w/o the leg up that W had re: money and TX connections.


    Okay (none / 0) (#31)
    by Militarytracy on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:53:32 PM EST
    she majored in.. (none / 0) (#52)
    by connecticut yankee on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:11:30 PM EST
    She minored in poly sci, her major was communications-journalism.  Which I guess was prepping for her tv sports work.  In the beauty pageant footage the announcer says she wants to work in teevee.

    And Reagan went to school to be a sportcaster (none / 0) (#78)
    by stefystef on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 04:22:35 PM EST
    And then an actor.  And then a governor and then a President.

    One of my sibs was a music major (none / 0) (#13)
    by scribe on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:34:20 PM EST
    (now a music professor) and could name a bunch of con law cases and had and has a good understanding of it.

    Better than "poli-sci and got a D in economics" Palin, anyway.


    hm (none / 0) (#43)
    by connecticut yankee on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:03:52 PM EST
    SHe was a communications major. Communications-journalism.  IIRC communications was a real blow-off major back in the 80s.  A sorority girl type of major that was possibly supplanted by the human resource degree.

    The funny thing is that she has a B.S in her major rather than a B.A.   A woman who has about as much use for science as she does for liberals.  Standards vary but it probably just means she had to take a statistics course and a semester of calculus.


    Depends on the school (none / 0) (#49)
    by kredwyn on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:08:24 PM EST
    I took a J-school class, and my professor was pretty serious about the discipline.

    It seemed like the students who were in it for the MRS degree tended to be in Elem. Ed...at least at my university.


    ya (none / 0) (#54)
    by connecticut yankee on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:15:37 PM EST
    ya, probably.

    I dont really know what communications-journalism is but I assume it has to do with TV and radio announcing.  I just imagine them working on their voice over skills and making zany sound effects. Like some 1930s radio workshop. lol


    Some are... (none / 0) (#109)
    by kredwyn on Thu Oct 02, 2008 at 10:41:48 AM EST
    others are very serious programs with professors who require a higher level of academic rigor.

    Ironically, I have to refer to my PhD in Rhetoric as a "form of communications" in order to get people who'd normally think "BS" to understand that Rhetoric is more than just "all style no substance."


    Any intro (none / 0) (#18)
    by eric on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:39:15 PM EST
    level government course would cover the fundamental SC opinions.  And I, for one, would certainly expect far more than just an into level understanding of government from a VP.  It is as if these people that knowledge of government, government theory, and history don't matter.

    the word (none / 0) (#21)
    by eric on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:41:03 PM EST
    "think" should have been in there after "people".

    DUH (none / 0) (#98)
    by coigue on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 11:18:01 PM EST
    Bush v Gore!!!!????

    Heck (5.00 / 4) (#7)
    by Steve M on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:17:25 PM EST
    Every time there's an opening on the Supreme Court, most of the country seems to forget there are decisions other than Roe v. Wade!

    Couric interview dribbles out (5.00 / 1) (#27)
    by wasabi on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:49:02 PM EST
    It is interesting how CBS is dribbling out the contents of the Couric interview.  If it had been released all at once, the damage would be much less severe and after a few days it would be forgotten except for on the blogs.

    As it is now, Sarah Palin: death by a thousand cuts.

    CBS is milking it for all it's worth since (none / 0) (#33)
    by stefystef on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:55:59 PM EST
    no one watches CBS for news anymore.

    Couric is trying to be a hard newsperson.  Yeah, right Katie.


    But, hey! (none / 0) (#45)
    by scribe on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:05:05 PM EST
    She's perky!

    Hahahahahahaha, perky, eh? (none / 0) (#79)
    by stefystef on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 04:23:55 PM EST
    I think Walter Cronkite would say perky is not what makes a good newsperson.

    She can take that "perk" somewhere else.


    bashing Katie (none / 0) (#97)
    by txpublicdefender on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 10:18:36 PM EST
    You can bash her all you want, but I think Katie Couric's interview of Palin has been more damaging than the Gibson interview.  I think Katie did a good job on this.

    Big deal (5.00 / 0) (#35)
    by progressiveinvolvement on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:57:25 PM EST
    If somebody stopped you on the street and asked you to rattle off some Supreme Court cases, how many could you come up with?

    Some of the criticisms of Palin are legit, but some are over-the-top, like that jackass, Charlie Gibson, who thought he had her with the so-called "Bush Doctrine."

    If he'd have asked me that question, I would have asked him to clarify what he meant, just as Palin did.

    If somebody wanted (5.00 / 2) (#50)
    by eric on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:09:04 PM EST
    to be the head of NASA, I would want him/her to know something about rockets.

    If somebody wanted to be the head of the treasury, I would want him/her to know something about monetary policy.

    These things matter.  The VP is part of the executive.  They execute laws.  She would be President of the Senate.  That means you are supposed to know about laws.


    Stop Me On The Street (none / 0) (#57)
    by daring grace on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:32:59 PM EST
    I'm not running for VP, and I'm about ten years older (I think) than Governor Palin, so maybe those ten years and having an orientation based on coming of age in the late 1960s/early 1970s gives me an advantage she lacks. (Coming from a hippie/subversive mindset may afford me more benefits in this area too, because, off the top of my head):

    Sure, Roe v. Wade, but also Griswold v. Connecticut.

    Also isn't there another one connected with Miranda called Escobedo (?) having to do with rights and arrest?

    How about the NY Times case involving the Pentagon Papers? And that recent case involving the practice of Eminent Domain and property seizure by gov't entities?

    How about Alan Bakke (sp?)? and the rulings down through the years since then about affirmative action?

    I can also think of other things I've heard over  recent years about expansions and contractions of employees' rights to sue over questions of discrimination or on the job harassment but that's more vague.

    And then there's that ruling earlier this year about Guantanamo prisoners and rights...that seems a relevant one for Palin to recall.

    In New York, our governors have often been asked their opinions when there are certain kinds of SC rulings. SC rulings often have ramifications at the local/regional level and are certainly relevant to chief executives of states. That Palin has no encyclopedic knowledge of specific cases is not a scandal. That she, apparently, draws a blank outside of Roe v. Wade really seems to be one for someone aspiring to VP (and who may end up as POTUS some day.)


    The "Bush Doctrine" (none / 0) (#89)
    by wasabi on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 05:19:32 PM EST
    Any pol who isn't aware of what the Bush Doctrine is has NO BUSINESS BEING IN THE WHITE HOUSE.  PERIOD.

    I assume you are not a pol, and that is fine.  You can be ignorant, but not someone who wants to govern the country.


    OK (none / 0) (#93)
    by progressiveinvolvement on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 07:32:10 PM EST
    What IS the Bush Doctrine?

    I always keep (none / 0) (#94)
    by Repack Rider on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 08:20:31 PM EST
    ...Terry v. Ohio handy.  You never know when a police officer might want to frisk you.

    kdog? (none / 0) (#104)
    by oculus on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 11:41:52 PM EST
    well (5.00 / 2) (#37)
    by connecticut yankee on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:58:17 PM EST
    At least she didnts say Kramer vs. Kramer.  Small mercies.

    It would have been (none / 0) (#83)
    by JWeidner on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 04:41:33 PM EST
    awesomely funny if she did though.  Kramer vs. Kramer...heh.

    heh (none / 0) (#91)
    by connecticut yankee on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 06:43:34 PM EST
    Another great answer, "The bush doctrine?".  With a kind of puzzled head tilt.

    Bush v Gore... n/t (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by rilkefan on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:03:20 PM EST

    Gee (5.00 / 1) (#44)
    by lilburro on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:04:41 PM EST
    she could be one step away from having the power to appoint judges to a court she knows almost nothing about.  That's GREAT.

    Politically, this may not be a winning battle-cry, but c'mon, this is a big deal.  

    Dred Scott? Marbury v Madison? (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by Doc Rock on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:06:51 PM EST
    Miranda v Arizona?  And of course, Alaska v Arctic Maid?  I am not now nor have I ever been a lawyer or law student, but I once played one in school.

    What about George W Bush? (5.00 / 0) (#67)
    by Fabian on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:55:39 PM EST
    I seem to remember that the American public didn't worry so much about his lack of knowledge!

    Sure Palin may terrify us, but that won't matter to some Pro-Lifer or Always Lower Taxes person.  You need better arguments for them.

    OTOH, my two retired neighbors were sweating the bailout package today.  I'm more worried about the people who have no financial cushion.  What happens to the working middle and lower classes when their paychecks stop?  If you think capital gains taxes stink, try getting hit with the penalties to dip into your 401k so you can pay bills!  That's if you have a 401k.

    And then there's the matter of the health care gap...  Whaddya do when you can't afford COBRA, but your income hasn't dropped to Medicaid levels yet or you are on your state's waiting list?

    Are we going to see just how tattered our safety nets are?  

    I freakin worried about it (none / 0) (#102)
    by coigue on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 11:26:06 PM EST
    me and Molly Ivins.

    what is Palin's resume? does it matter? (5.00 / 1) (#72)
    by Blowback on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 04:12:54 PM EST
    Why it is that a sense of legal history is an important qualification for becoming the vice-president or president of the United States?

    Try this: say, I ran a want-ad in the newspaper. i said I was for hire as a brain surgeon. You called me to ask for a lobotomy. Would you expect me to know what a "lobotomy' was? Would you expect me to know what to use on your head, a precise surgical tool or an axe? Get it?

    I know, "hire the handicapped" you say. In this case, I don't think so.

    Brown v. Board of education, Gore v. Bush, Buckley v. Valeo. Miranda. There is good reason to know the job you are hired to do.

    I couldn't tell you another SCOTUS case either (4.00 / 2) (#32)
    by stefystef on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:55:07 PM EST
    and neither could Katie Couric.  She's proven to be a talking head who is only trying to act relevant as CBS tries to figure out how to get rid of her.  Couric has been a HUGE disappointment for CBS.

    And about Saran.  Palin isn't a lawyer.  Hell, I can tell you Plessy v Ferguson and Brown v Board of Education, but that's about it.  If I wanted to know this, I'd go to law school.

    At this point, it's nick-picking... and I thought the Democratic Talking Point was to ignore Palin???  Yet, folks are still obsessing...

    Do you believe (5.00 / 2) (#59)
    by Steve M on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:34:55 PM EST
    that you are qualified to serve as Vice-President of the United States?  Not saying you aren't, just curious.

    your a better man than I (none / 0) (#63)
    by wystler on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:47:43 PM EST
    Not saying you aren't ...

    (nuff said?)


    Qualified to serve as VP? Me??? (none / 0) (#80)
    by stefystef on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 04:25:28 PM EST
    Hell, I'm qualified to be PRESIDENT after watching Bush for the last 8 years. Hahahahahahahahahaha

    And like Bush, I didn't know what the Bush Doctrine was either.


    Could we expect her to know (none / 0) (#58)
    by Lahdee on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:33:22 PM EST
    about the Exxon Valdez decision from June of this year? Link

    I have actually heard her talk (none / 0) (#73)
    by nycstray on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 04:12:57 PM EST
    on the Exxon Valdez decision.

    Well, that puts her in good company (none / 0) (#1)
    by scribe on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:06:41 PM EST
    seeing as how the current Administration knows nothing of ... Marbury v. Madison, Ex Parte Milligan, Miranda v. Arizona ... the list goes on ad nauseam.

    they know and ignore (none / 0) (#2)
    by Jeralyn on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:08:09 PM EST
    there's a difference.

    True. (none / 0) (#5)
    by scribe on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:13:39 PM EST
    I don't know which is worse - knowing and breaking, like the current folks do, or being an ignorant smallpox-laden blanket.

    Of course, if she gets her hands on power, she would inherit a bunch of knowing and breaking types all to willing to do her bidding and not tell her what she was having done in her name.


    How can you run for political office (none / 0) (#12)
    by samtaylor2 on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:33:35 PM EST
    Without at least a little academic interest in the constitution and the the cases that shaped it?

    I honestly feel that the current Republican party is at war with just any intellectual pursuits.  

    Most American have no academic interest (5.00 / 0) (#39)
    by stefystef on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:00:02 PM EST
    in the Constitution and really don't vote on that basis.

    Perhaps most of the wonks who post on this blog use that as a criteria, but it is not the radar of the average American.


    It isn't about what Americans (5.00 / 2) (#42)
    by eric on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:03:41 PM EST
    know or vote for, it is about the horrific truth of the matter.  Yes, most people here find this scary, but that is because these things matter!  They matter when you are trying to govern the nation.

    An average american (5.00 / 1) (#77)
    by samtaylor2 on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 04:19:05 PM EST
    Should NOT be president of the United states.  I don't understand how this little fact seems to be ignored by conservatives

    Most "average" Americans beg to differ (none / 0) (#81)
    by stefystef on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 04:28:29 PM EST
    One of the nice things about Americans is we have the hubris to think we can do and be anything with a minimum of talent or knowledge.

    What's the trick?  Surround yourself with people who do know what the hell they are doing and make you look good.  


    Sarah Palin certainly (5.00 / 1) (#90)
    by IndiDemGirl on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 06:31:08 PM EST
    qualifies with the minimum of talent or knowledge that you mentioned.  

    perhaps it's me who's a bit dim today (none / 0) (#65)
    by wystler on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:51:22 PM EST
    ... but have 7.5+ years of GWB really numbed you to believe that someone who is qualified only as a beer-buddy should be running for Veep?

    i just can't wrap my head around whatever point you're trying to make, stefystef


    My point is that most Americans do not (5.00 / 0) (#82)
    by stefystef on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 04:30:50 PM EST
    decide on who should be president based on that person's extensive knowledge of the Supreme Court.

    Emotions and person views/opinions  of the world shape the decision-making.


    I think it is clear that (none / 0) (#86)
    by eric on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 05:01:23 PM EST
    a good portion of Americans are just as dim as Palin, and that probably even more then that won't find her ignorance particularly troubling.

    However, those of us that do care - we care because these things do matter.  We are not arguing that this is a great thing to take out on the campaign trial, but it is a very important thing that educated voters should know.


    Because G-d talks to you and (none / 0) (#15)
    by scribe on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:35:44 PM EST
    reminds you of what you really need to do, Constitution and your oath to it notwithstanding.  

    Because that wasn't why she (none / 0) (#25)
    by nycstray on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:46:03 PM EST
    ran for office. That said, she did veto a bill that would have denied benefits to same sex partners because after studying it, she found it was unconstitutional.

    Gov. Sarah Palin vetoed a bill Thursday that sought to block the state from giving public employee benefits such as health insurance to same-sex couples.

    In the first veto of an administration that isn't yet a month old, Palin said she rejected the bill despite her disagreement with a state Supreme Court order earlier this month that directed the state to offer benefits to same-sex partners of state employees.

    Advice from her new attorney general said the bill passed by the Legislature was unconstitutional, she said.

    "Signing this bill would be in direct violation of my oath of office," Palin said in a prepared statement released by her administration Thursday night.


    she didn't "find it" (none / 0) (#29)
    by Jlvngstn on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:51:37 PM EST
    her lawyer did:

    Advice from her new attorney general said the bill passed by the Legislature was unconstitutional, she said.


    How about "it was found to be"? (none / 0) (#34)
    by nycstray on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 02:56:44 PM EST
    The fact that she looked into/sought council or whatever and then listened, is what's important, imo. Especially since it was against her personal beliefs on the issue. There's a few in our current admin that might want to take notes . . .

    no kidding (none / 0) (#100)
    by coigue on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 11:21:14 PM EST
    My wife says. . . (none / 0) (#51)
    by Doc Rock on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:11:21 PM EST
    OMG, Brown v Board of Education, Plessy v Ferguson!

    If it is true, (none / 0) (#60)
    by Lil on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:35:06 PM EST
    it seems the bigger problem is her silence. The most skilled politicians know how to answer questions even if it is a BS answer. I happen to think she should have been able to give one other example, even though I would have been stumped too (until all your comments reminded me), but she is aiming for the 2nd highest office in the land. Guns, death penalty, anything relevant to her? Something? Even if it wasn't a good answer, anything would have been better than a blank stare.

    I remember losing out on a grant that my agency was applying for. I know exactly the moment we lost it. We gave a brilliant presentaion and were flying along answering questions. One questione stumped us, and we were silent for 4 or 5 seconds until we tried to spin an answer and they knew we didn't have "the" answer; that is when we lost the money...those 4 or 5 seconds did us in.

    Jeez, she is a sitting Governor (none / 0) (#66)
    by befuddledvoter on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:55:29 PM EST
    and running for VP.  I don't care what her undergraduate degree is in.  There is no excuse.  

    the point is, she is not curious, at all. (none / 0) (#70)
    by Blowback on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 03:59:41 PM EST
    She is almost an exact copy of the guy, "W", we have as white house resident right now. he was a gov; she is a gov; she wants to ban books; how many does W read? Palin has no comprehension of what she reads. she thinks dinosaurs lived with her ancestors

    Palin said recently that she did not travel because when she graduated from college (Did she really graduate? We shoud check this out.) because she "did not have parents that gave her a back pack and a passport like many college grauates did and ship them off to Europe."  Palin said she "learned about the world from books & edumacation; hell, so did nmost of us. When my Father was lucky enough to have Kodak, his place of employment, send him to the University of Birmingham in England for one year, yes, Kodak did buy my brother & sister and I a ticket to England. But i brought my own back pack and was very curious to see what europe was like. I spent 4 months hitch hiking around france, scottland, wales, england germany an witerland. with only about $400. (1973) This also included a total of on month spent in Paris.

    i have also traveled to almost all of the continental USA & Canada in my life. i was so curious about alaska in 1973 that i learned  welding with the idea to work on the alaska pipeline. I ended up in aspen for a very long time instead. my curiosity alone let me see a large part of our world, to my advantage.  

    i also was so curious that i once was a tv producer for greenpeace and traveled all of the great lakes with the GP ship, The Beluga. We went everywhere on the Great Lakes from north of Monreal to Chicago. Got many clips on CNN. also ran for local city council, TWICE! Sarah was head of the PTA! I have a BA in English. Bottom line, vote for ME for VP, not Palin!!!

    Lawrence v. TX (none / 0) (#74)
    by txpolitico67 on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 04:14:29 PM EST
    is one I could name off the top of my head.  I worked with the HRC here in TX to lobby state legislators against 21.06.  That case was a big one for us in the GLBT community.

    The usuals should have been easy:
    Plessy v Ferguson
    Miranda v Arizona (which I think she p.o.'d JM on when Palin talked smack against Miranda rights)
    Marbury v Madison
    Brown v BOE of Topeka (which ironically the right winger/founder at Phelps churched in Topeka worked on)
    Bush v Gore

    This is all I can name without the help of google.

    Dred Scott decision (none / 0) (#101)
    by coigue on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 11:24:39 PM EST
    the SCOTUS decision that said the forced movement of native Americans east of the Mississippi was unconstitutional (that Jackson ignored and that led to the trail of tears)

    The SCOTUS decision that made corporations into persons.

    Palin should watch the PBS SCOTUS series. It's fab.


    Was this an interview or a (none / 0) (#75)
    by kenosharick on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 04:17:13 PM EST
    quiz show she was on?

    um, what's your point? (none / 0) (#84)
    by JWeidner on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 04:47:11 PM EST
    Are you suggesting that she shouldn't be questioned during an interview?

    i was just joking (none / 0) (#96)
    by kenosharick on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 09:01:23 PM EST
    that some of these "questions" are the type usually asked on a quiz show. sorry it upset you so.

    Just to throw a Devil's advocate out (none / 0) (#85)
    by patriotgames on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 05:00:22 PM EST
    How many SCOTUS decisions can Bush name now?

    You know, that guy that got elected PRESIDENT twice?

    Not that I don't think he Veeps and Preses should be the best posssible, most non lawyers would have a hard time with this. I was a History major in college, I can't name more than one or two (admittedly I was Euorpean hist, but still)

    Palin was not a lawyer, neither was Reagan or Bush or Bush I. We are electing a Pres and a Veep, not the Att. General.

    I am confident (5.00 / 1) (#87)
    by Steve M on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 05:06:51 PM EST
    that even Bush - not that we all think "as good as Bush" ought to be the standard for future candidates - could rattle off all of the key War on Terror decisions without missing a beat.

    doubt it. (5.00 / 0) (#88)
    by Blowback on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 05:19:07 PM EST
    the only Supreme decision W can remember was the one in 2000 that made him resident. I doubt if he even knows the name of that one, "Gore v. Bush"

    Then again, maybe he thinks that the Supremes were not even involved. he just got more votes than the other guy. hey!


    I don't really care if she didn't know the NAMES (none / 0) (#92)
    by steviez314 on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 06:50:08 PM EST
    of the decisions, as long as she can talk about the decisions themselves, especially the recent ones.

    Just like I don't care if she knows the name of the 3rd Vice Premier of Whogivesacrapstan as much as whether she'd like to bomb them or not.

    Hey, thanks (none / 0) (#95)
    by Peter G on Tue Sep 30, 2008 at 08:53:31 PM EST
    I can always use a dose of Sam Cooke.

    I think people are being unfair here (none / 0) (#107)
    by jar137 on Wed Oct 01, 2008 at 12:10:30 PM EST
    I am a lawyer and I would be thrown off by this question.  I am a con law buff, so it's not that I couldn't rattle off cases, but context would be required- are we talking about 4th amendment, admin agency law, etc?  To ask such a broad based question, clearly for the sole purpose of showing her up, was not fair.  What is the value of the question?  If Couric were interested in a specific area of con law, let her ask a more direct question.  I am bothered that people would jump on the bandwagon.  Isn't this the kind of meaningless journalism we on the left have been railing against?  Nail her on substance (if Couric had any), not these kinds of games.  Remember what they did to Al Gore in 2000 and the cost to the entire country.  Just because it bolsters our side this time doesn't make it right.