The “Today” show’s co-anchors made Sarah Palin squirm by asking her to explain why she appeared to blame President Barack Obama for her son’s domestic violence arrest.
Palin appeared Monday morning on the NBC News program to discuss the Iowa caucuses, where she batted down questions about Donald Trump’s religious sincerity and political flip-flopping by comparing the Republican frontrunner to Ronald Reagan.
“Who are we to judge one another’s level of faith — our Christian quotient, if you will?” Palin said. “Hopefully people are looking for he who has that record of success that proves he will be able to get the job done for us, finally.”
Then co-anchor Savannah Guthrie appeared to blindside the former half-term governor of Alaska and failed vice presidential candidate by asking about her suggestion that Obama caused her son to allegedly punch his girlfriend in the head.
“I never said that,” Palin said, pursing her lips in anger. “No, I never said that.”
Guthrie pressed on, and Palin argued the anchors had tricked her.
“You guys brought me to talk about Iowa politics and the caucus tonight, not to talk about my kids — and that was a promise,” Palin said. “But as things go in the world of media, you guys don’t always keep your promises, evidently.”
“I never blamed President Obama,” Palin continued. “What I have blamed President Obama in doing, though, is this level of disrespect for the United States military that is made manifest in gutting budgets and not trying to beef it up and let our military do the job that they are trained to do. And in specific issues that we’re talking about that are so hot today — specifically, let’s get there and let’s utterly destroy ISIS as we know our United States military can do, yet we have a commander-in-chief who seems to kind of want to kowtow and allow the enemy to be poking at us — and that’s unacceptable to most Americans, certainly to me.”
Palin said Jan. 20 that her eldest son, Track Palin, had come back “hardened” and suffering from PTSD after serving in Iraq, and she said Obama had made the situation worse because he had not shown sufficient respect to military service members and veterans.
“I don’t regret any comment that I made, because I didn’t lay PTSD at the foot of the president,” Palin said. “I did say, though, that there is — and suggested very adamantly that there is much more that our commander-in-chief can do to prove that he respects our troops and will let them do their job. But no, if you guys have a specific quote — it allows the media to be more credible if you guys will tell me exactly what you’re talking about, and then I can address the specifics.”
Co-anchor Matt Lauer seemed more interested in proving his credibility to viewers, rather than address Palin’s complaint, because he insisted that no specific promises had been made about the content of the interview.
Palin disagreed, saying she had been led to believe she would be permitted to cheerlead for her favorite candidates without challenge.
“I was told that this interview was about the caucus (Monday) in Iowa, and right on, who will it be to put America back on the right track and restore constitutional government that we are lacking today and that we so need, and I said, right on, let me go talk about that,” she said.
Watch the entire interview posted online by Today: