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Adding his voice to the chorus of disgusted Americans today, CNN World Affairs analyst and Editor of Newsweek International, non-partisan Fareed Zakaria called for Sarah Palin to step aside for the good of the country:

Sunday's Washington Post:

Will someone please put Sarah Palin out of her agony? Is it too much to ask that she come to realize that she wants, in that wonderful phrase in American politics, "to spend more time with her family"?

more below......

Zakaria continues:

Having stayed in purdah for weeks, she finally agreed to a third interview. CBS's Katie Couric questioned her in her trademark sympathetic style. It didn't help. When asked how living in the state closest to Russia gave her foreign-policy experience, Palin responded thus:

"It's very important when you consider even national-security issues with Russia as Putin rears his head and comes into the airspace of the United States of America. Where--where do they go? It's Alaska. It's just right over the border. It is from Alaska that we send those out to make sure that an eye is being kept on this very powerful nation, Russia, because they are right there. They are right next to--to our state."There is, of course, the sheer absurdity of the premise. Two weeks ago I flew to Tokyo, crossing over the North Pole. Does that make me an expert on Santa Claus? (Thanks, Jon Stewart.) But even beyond that, read the rest of her response. "It is from Alaska that we send out those ..." What does this mean? This is not an isolated example. Palin has been given a set of talking points by campaign advisers, simple ideological mantras that she repeats and repeats as long as she can. ("We mustn't blink.") But if forced off those rehearsed lines, what she has to say is often, quite frankly, gibberish.

Askiing Ms. Palin to step down is all the rage these days, with Zakaria following on the heels of conservative columnist Kathleen Parker:

Only Palin can save McCain, her party, and the country she loves. She can bow out for personal reasons, perhaps because she wants to spend more time with her newborn. No one would criticize a mother who puts her family first.

Do it for your country.

as well as a host of other conservatives and Republicans who are growing weary of having to cover for Grumpy McSame's Super-Extra-Mavericky VP Selection:

Politico:

Tony Fabrizio, a GOP strategist, says Palin’s recent CBS appearance isn’t disqualifying but is certainly alarming. “You can’t continue to have interviews like that and not take on water.”

“I have not been blown away by the interviews from her, but at the same time, I haven’t come away from them thinking she doesn’t know s—t,” said Chris Lacivita, a GOP strategist. “But she ain’t Dick Cheney, nor Joe Biden and definitely not Hillary Clinton.

But today. following up on his column, in what I believe to be yet another watershed moment in this election, Zakaria actually appeared on CNN to plead for Ms. Palin to step aside for the good of the country.

I think this is an astonishing piece of video. although Zakaria doesn't appear until about 3:30:

Some key quotes:

"I am really not looking at this as a game. I'm looking at this as a serious matter of governance"

"There is a fundamental test of governance that is going to have to be applied"

"It's not that she does not know the right answer, it's that she clearly does not understand the question"

"This is way beyond anything we have ever seen from a national candidate"

"This is a woman who is going to be a heartbeat away from a 72 year old man if McCain wins. The actuarial odds of her becoming president are very high, about a 1 in 5 chance"

Zakaria is not some screaming liberal lunatic. He's a very even keel, middle of the road kind of guy and for him to go out on a limb like this was very striking to me. There have been a few "watershed" moments in this election with regards to the media. The first for me was when Campbell Brown pushed back against Tucker Bounds when he claimed that Palin was in charge of the Alaskan National Guard. Brown had asked Bounds to name one order Palin had given and of course Bounds was flustered and could not reply. The next day, McCain canceled his interview with Larry King and started his little anti-MSM tirade that has lasted for most of his campaign. That was the day the straight-talk express became the no-talk express. The 2nd incident came on the heels of McCain's interview with the women from "The View". Not only with regards to Joy Behar and Barbara Walters et al, calling McCain out on his lies, but the corresponding reaction from CNN analysts, Jeffrey Toobin, Gloria Borger and Dana Milbank, who all began to hail that the emperor did in fact have no clothes. Zakaria's plea for Palin to step down today on CNN, represents a 3rd important MSM milestone. I think we're finally breaking through the looking glass.

Originally posted to atomicskunk on Mon Sep 29, 2008 at 05:21 PM PDT.

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