April 21, 2014

Transcript: Sarah Palin Interview with Charles Gibson, Part I

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News Transcript
SHOW: WORLD NEWS WITH CHARLES GIBSON 6:31 PM EST
September 11, 2008 Thursday
EXCLUSIVE; FIRST INTERVIEW
CHARLES GIBSON (FAIRBANKS, AK USA
CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) Good evening. We are in Fairbanks tonight, where we spent part of the day with Alaska’s governor, Sarah Palin, for her first extensive interview since being named John McCain’s running mate. We met with the governor shortly before she addressed a deployment ceremony for an army infantry division which includes her son, Track. He’ll be sent to Iraq later this month. The ceremony comes on this, the seventh anniversary of September 11th. We’re going to have further conversations with Governor Palin tonight and tomorrow that will be on this broadcast tomorrow. But on this day, when national security is on everyone’s mind, we wanted to talk about her view of the world. Governor, let me start by asking you a question that I asked John McCain about you. And it is really the central question. Can you look the country in the eye and say, I have the experience, and I have the ability to be not just vice president, but perhaps president of the United States of America? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

I do, Charlie, and on January 20th, when John McCain and I are sworn in, if we are so privileged to be elected to serve this country, we’ll be ready. I’m ready. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) When McCain asked you to take the number two spot on the ticket, for a moment, did you think no? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

I did not. I thought yes, right off the bat. When he offered me the position, as his running mate, the first thing I said to him was, if you really think that I can help the ticket, if you really think I can help this country, absolutely, I want to do this with you. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) And you didn’t say to yourself, am I experienced enough? Am I ready? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

I didn’t hesitate, no. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) Doesn’t that take some hubris? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

I answered him yes because I have the confidence in that readiness. And knowing that you can’t blink. You have to be wired in a way of being so committed to the mission, the mission that we’re on, reform of this country, and victory in the war. You can’t blink. So, I didn’t blink then even, when asked to run as his running mate. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) But this is not just reforming a government. This is also running a government on the huge international stage, in a very dangerous world. When I asked John McCain about your national security credentials, he cited the fact you have command of the Alaskan National Guard and that Alaska is close to Russia. Are those sufficient credentials? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

But it is about reform of government. And it’s about putting government back on the side of the people. And that has much to do with foreign policy and national security issues. Let me speak specifically about a credential that I do bring to this table, Charlie. And that’s with the energy independence that I’ve been working on for these years, as the governor of this state, that produces nearly 20% of the US domestic supply of energy. That I worked on as chairman of the Alaska Oil and Gas Conversation Commission, overseeing the oil and gas developments in our state, to produce more for the United States. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) National security is a lot more than energy. 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

It is. But I want you to not lose sight of the fact that energy is a foundation of national security. It’s that important. It’s that significant. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) Did you ever travel outside of the country prior to your trip to Kuwait and Germany last year? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

Canada. Mexico. And then, yeah, that trip that was a trip of a lifetime, to visit our troops in Kuwait and stop and visit our injured soldiers in Germany. That was a trip of a lifetime and it changed my life. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) Have you ever met a foreign head of state? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

I have not. And I think if you go back in history and if you ask that question of many vice presidents, they may have the same answer that I just gave you. But Charlie, again, we got to remember what the desire is in this nation, at this time. It is for no more politics as usual. And somebody’s big, fat resume maybe that shows decades and decades in that Washington establishment, where, yeah, they’ve had opportunity to meet heads of state. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) Let me ask you about specific national security situations. Let’s start, because we are near Russia. Let’s start with Russia and Georgia. The administration has said, we’ve got to maintain the territorial integrity of Georgia. Do you believe the United States should try to restore Georgian sovereignty over South Ossetia and Abkhazia? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

First off, we’re going to continue good relations with Saakashvili there. I was able to speak with him the other day and giving him my commitment, as John McCain’s running mate, that we will be committed to Georgia. And we’ve got to keep an eye on Russia. For Russia to have exerted such pressure in terms of invading a smaller democratic country, unprovoked, is unacceptable. And we have to keep… 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) You believe unprovoked? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

I do believe unprovoked. And we have got to keep our eyes on Russia. Under the leadership there. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) What insight into Russian actions particularly in the last couple of weeks, does the proximity of this state give you? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

They’re our next door neighbors. And you can actually see Russia from land here in Alaska. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) You in favor of putting Georgia and Ukraine into NATO? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

Ukraine, definitely, yes. Yes, and Georgia. Putin thinks otherwise. Obviously he thinks otherwise. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) And under the NATO treaty, wouldn’t we then have to go to war if Russia went into Georgia? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

Perhaps so. I mean that is the agreement. When you are a NATO ally, is, if another country is attacked, you are going to be expected to be called upon and help. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) Let me turn to Iran. Do you consider a nuclear Iran to be a threat to Israel? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

I believe that under the leadership of Ahmadinejad, nuclear weapons in the hands of his government are extremely dangerous to everyone on this globe, yes. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) So, what should we do about a nuclear Iran? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

We have got to make sure these weapons of mass destruction, that nuclear weapons are not given to those hands of Ahmadinejad, not that he would use them, but that he would allow terrorists to be able to use them. So we have got to put the pressure on Iran. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) What if Israel decided it felt threatened and needed to take out the Iranian nuclear facilities? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

Well, first, we are friends of Israel, and I don’t think that we should second guess the measures that Israel has to take to defend themselves, and for their security. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) So if we wouldn’t second guess it and they decided they needed to do it, because Iran was a threat, we would be cooperative or agree with that? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

I don’t think we can second guess what Israel has to do to secure its nation. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) So if it felt necessary, if it felt the need to defend itself by taking out Iranian nuclear facilities, that would be all right? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

We cannot second guess the steps that Israel has to take to defend itself. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) We talk on the anniversary of 9/11. Why do you think those hijackers attacked? Why did they want to hurt us? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

You know, there is a very small percentage of Islamic believers who are extreme, and they are violent, and they do not believe in American ideals. And they attacked us. And now we are at a point, here, seven years later, on the anniversary, in this post-9/11 world, where we are able to commit to never again. The only option for them is to become a suicide bomber, to get caught up in this evil, in this terror. They need to be provided the hope that all Americans have, instilled in us, because we’re a democratic, we are a free and we are a free-thinking society. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) Do you agree with the Bush Doctrine? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

In what respect, Charlie? 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) Well, what do you interpret it to be? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

His world view? 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) No, the Bush doctrine, enunciated in September 2002, before the Iraq war. 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

I believe that what President Bush has attempted to do is rid this world of Islamic extremism, terrorists who are hell-bent on destroying our nation. There have been blunders along the way, though. There have been mistakes made, and with new leadership, and that’s the beauty of American elections, of course, and democracy, is with new leadership comes opportunity to do things better. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) The Bush doctrine, as I understand it, is that we have the right of anticipatory self-defense, that we have the right to a preemptive strike against any other country we think is going to attack us. Do you agree with that? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

Charlie, if there is legitimate and enough intelligence that tells us that a strike is imminent against American people, we have every right to defend our country. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) Do we have the right to be making cross-border attacks into Pakistan, from Afghanistan, with or without the approval of the Pakistani government? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

As for our right to invade, we’re going to work with these countries, building new relationships, working with existing allies, but forging new also in order to, Charlie, get to a point in this world, where war is not going to be a first option. In fact, war has got to be, and military strike, a last option. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) But Governor, I’m asking you, do we have the right, in your mind, to go across the border, with or without the approval of the Pakastani government? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

In order to stop Islamic extremists, those terrorists who would seek to destroy America, and our allies, we must do whatever it takes, and we must not blink, Charlie, in making the tough decisions of where we go, and even who we target. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) And let me finish with this. I got lost in a blizzard of words there. Is that a yes, that you think we have the right to go across the border, with or without the approval of the Pakistani government to go after terrorists who are in the Waziristan area? 

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN (REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE) 

I believe that America has to exercise all options in order to stop the terrorists who are hell-bent on destroying America, and our allies. We have got to have all options out there on the table. 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Off-camera) We also talked about Iraq. Governor Palin made some provocative comments about the war in a recent appearance in an Alaskan church. We’ll have her comments on that at the end of the broadcast. 

GRAPHICS: NEXT 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Voiceover) Still ahead on “World News,” from Alaska, marking the anniversary of the September 11th attacks. In prayer, in silence, and in unity, at Ground Zero. 

GRAPHICS: AHEAD 

CHARLES GIBSON (ABC NEWS) 

(Voiceover) And, a dangerous Hurricane Ike roars toward Texas the Houston area is in its crosshairs, and people are scrambling for safety. 

GRAPHICS: WORLD NEWS WITH CHARLES GIBSON 

ANNOUNCER 

This is ‘World News” with Charles Gibson brought to you by… 

COMMERCIAL BREAK

Comments

  1. Just curious where one can get the entire transcript of the full interviews – not the excerpted transcript of the final edited interview that made it to air. I want to rely on a source that actually has the complete transcript – not a source where the edited out parts could have been made up.

  2. Rick says:

    I was looking for that myself, Connie. Found it at marklevinshow.com. Shows everything that ABC edited out.

  3. That ain’t no way to treat a lady; no way to treat your baby, your woman, your friend.

    The “Bush Doctrine” question, among others was unprofessional. Mr. Gibson didn’t know enough about the “Bush Doctrine” to field a question. Gibson had to answer Governor Palin’s question about the specifics, with yet another question. Either Charlie was unprepared, unwilling or unable to articulate the “Bush Doctrine,” or so intent was he on leading the interview, that when Ms. Palin asked for clarification he blew it. By tossing the erroneous question back into her lap, Charlie Gibson appeared at least a lazy journalist. Sarah Palin did an excellent job of articulating her take on the “Bush Doctrine.” Incidentally, all wars are holy wars. Our adversaries certainly believe they’re fighting one. And, I noticed the demeaning TV camera techniques. “That ain’t no way to treat a lady, no way to treat your baby.” One might expect a hint of impartiality; instead of having to do a double take, to see whether Gibson hadn’t in fact sawed the legs off Ms. Palin’s chair: http://theseedsof9-11.com

Trackbacks

  1. [...] land here in Alaska. I took this from the best transcript I could find in a few minutes, at: http://www.clipsandcomment.com/2008/…gibson-part-i/ __________________ Viator Pro Deus Et Patria – For God & [...]

  2. [...] that came to mind: I took this from the best transcript I could find in a few minutes, at: http://www.clipsandcomment.com/2008/…gibson-part-i/ …as mentioned, it is technically correct. I thought you were referring to the Saturday Night [...]

  3. [...] ally, is, if another country is attacked, you are going to be expected to be called upon and help. Transcript: Sarah Palin Interview with Charles Gibson, Part I I can see 2012 from my house Reply With [...]

  4. [...] statement about Russia and Alaska (“You can actually see Russia from land here in Alaska”) was an interview with Charles Gibson, who was questioning her foreign policy credentials and who specifically asked [...]

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