Former CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric still doesn’t get why former Gov. Sarah Palin answered the infamous “What do you read?” question in a deer in headlights manner.
This morning at The Atlantic/Aspen Institute Ideas Forum her interviewer, The Week’s Washington Editor Margaret Carlson, asked Couric to reflect on that interview with Palin. “It does kind of bug me when people only remember that question,” she said. (Carlson chimed in, saying she didn’t mean to “bug” her.) Couric went on, “I spent 45 minutes talking to Palin about foreign policy issues. We talked about nation building, Iran, a surge and how it might be effective. It was at the height of the fiscal crisis. It’s funny to me that that one question got so much attention. She was so annoyed with me at that point and just wanted me to be gone. What can I say?”
Couric reasoned at that point Palin hadn’t done much press. “Charles Gibson got to go to Wasilla,” she said. “I was terribly jealous.” FNC’s Sean Hannity snagged the second interview and Couric the third. “When I asked the question about what do you read, I was curious. It was just kind of a spontaneous question. I thought, gee I’m interested. She has such strong political views. Her ideology is so [dramatic pregnant pause] specific. I wanted to know what she read on a regular basis that helped shape her world view.”
Later in the interview, Couric recalled, Palin told her that “People in Alaska read. I was quite aware that people in Alaska read. I still, to this day, don’t understand why she wouldn’t answer that question straight on. I think she was just done with me at that point.”
Read the infamous Couric-Palin exchange after the jump…
COURIC: And when it comes to establishing your world view, I was curious, what newspapers and magazines did you regularly read before you were tapped for this — to stay informed and to understand the world?
PALIN: I’ve read most of them again with a great appreciation for the press, for the media —
COURIC: But which ones specifically? I’m curious.
PALIN: Um, all of them, any of them that have been in front of me over all these years.
COURIC: Can you name any of them?
PALIN: I have a vast variety of sources where we get our news. Alaska isn’t a foreign country, where, it’s kind of suggested and it seems like, ‘Wow, how could you keep in touch with what the rest of Washington, D.C. may be thinking and doing when you live up there in Alaska?’ Believe me, Alaska is like a microcosm of America.
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