It’s probably clear by now that Sarah Palin and I are somewhat different creatures. I broke my pinkie and immediately went to the nearest emergency room. She went into labor with a fifth child with special needs, and gave a speech eight hours later while experiencing contractions before embarking on a near day-long airplane trip from Texas to Alaska. Compared with her, I’m a total wimp. More amazing was her composure throughout this extraordinary ordeal which no reporter has ever asked her to clarify. We know what was her state of mind from her own work of art, “Going Rogue.” It was overwhelming desperation and fear for the safety and wellbeing of her unborn child. Palin had woken at 4 am April 17 with “a strange sensation” in her lower belly. This is how she described her feelings at the time – despite not wanting to call her doctor because it was 1 am in Alaska!:
Desperation for this baby overwhelmed me. Please don’t let anything happen to this baby. It occurred to me, once and for all, I’m so in love with this child, please God, protect him! After all my doubts and fears, I had fallen in love with this precious child. The worst thing in the world would be that I would lose him.
Palin’s italics. And yet this wonder woman didn’t go to the hospital to make sure her child was ok, and was able to keep it together with almost preternatural calm, gave a public speech while undergoing labor pains – money quote from Going Rogue: “Big laughs. More contractions.” – took two flights back to Wasilla, gave birth, and then dashed back to work as if nothing had happened, with her body as amazing as it always is. We also have some independent evidence of how she appeared April 17 – 18. On her flight to Seattle, when, according to her, she was leaking amniotic fluid and experiencing contractions, the flight attendants had no idea what was going on:
Alaska Airlines has no such rule [barring late-pregnant women from geting on airplanes] and leaves the decision to the woman and her doctor, said spokeswoman Caroline Boren. Palin was very pleasant to the gate agents and flight attendants, as always, Boren said. “The stage of her pregnancy was not apparent by observation. She did not show any signs of distress,” Boren said.
She didn’t look pregnant in any way that would have set off alarm bells. And remember she was in labor with a six pound premature baby. A stranger who spoke with her during the lay-over in Seattle emailed the following day to apologize for disturbing her in what must have been an extremely stressful time: He should not have worried. Despite Palin’s own account of desperation for the child’s safety overwhelming her, she was cool as a cucumber. We now also know she was busy conducting state business on the trip back home, even as contractions continued.
In one e-mail in the middle of the day on April 17, Palin writes a casual, brief note to her attorney general thanking him for letting her know about a local blogger’s unflattering assertions about the reasons for a state attorney’s departure from the staff. Palin mentions heading home but makes no mention of rushing or her condition. “What a goof he is .?.?. truly annoying,” she wrote about the blogger to Attorney General Talis Colberg. “Thanks for the info. I’m on my way home now from Dallas.” … In another e-mail the morning of April 17, Palin weighs in from Texas about a proposed communications strategy. She urges her staff not to proceed with a draft letter to the editor expressing the governor’s outrage at some Alaskan disc jockeys’ recent offensive on-air jokes about Alaskan Native women. “Don’t submit at this time, as there will be more thought put into this as it relates to a more positive message/event,” Palin wrote just after 8 a.m. “Thanks.”
This was written four hours after her water broke. Then this an hour and a half after we are told Trig was actually born:
In a series of e-mails around 8 a.m. on the morning of April 18, Palin’s communications and political staff shared strategies and important contacts with Palin that she could use to try to become chairperson of the National Governors Association’s natural resources committee. In e-mails sent to Palin and copied to her closest aides, including her chief of staff, there is no mention of a pending Palin family birth and there is no record that Palin responded.
Her staff had no idea, it seems, that she was giving birth at all. That’s how secretive she was about this whole thing, even during this remarkable labor. And am I alone in detecting a tiny bit of skepticism creeping into the Washington Post’s report here? I mean, even a MSM editor cannot keep a straight face all the time.
It seems to me we have two options. It’s possible that Palin simply made up her drama of labor, or exaggerated it for effect, when in fact it was a routine, if rare, pregnancy, and she had mild warnings that the birth may be premature, and she gussied that up into a tall tale of her pioneer spirit, guided by her doctor, who refused to take the NYT’s calls as soon as Palin hit the big time. I think that’s the likeliest explanation, given the sheer world-historical weirdness of the alternative.
But it’s also possible that she never had that baby at all. I mean, if you read the emails and independent reports above and were asked if this woman were in labor with a special needs child, and that her water had already broken, would you believe it? Just put all the facts in front of you and ask yourself that question.
So she is either a self-serving drama queen who didn’t realize her story would imply she put her child – and many others on the planes – at great risk and then winged it to make her story more plausible; or she is a fantastic hoaxer and liar at a world class meshugana level that, at some point, will make Weinergate look like a damp squib.
To my mind, either option makes her unfit for high office, which is all you need to know really. And the fact that she has never been asked about this by any MSM journalist tells you so so much about what motivates the DC press corps. It’s certainly not curiosity.