With a tip of the Blogger’s Fedora ™ to PowerLine, Charlie Gibson dabbled in some out-of-context quoting to try to slip up Sarah Palin last night.

GIBSON: You said recently, in your old church, “Our national leaders are sending U.S. soldiers on a task that is from God.” Are we fighting a holy war?

PALIN: You know, I don’t know if that was my exact quote.

GIBSON: Exact words.

Yes, the exact words, but in the middle of a 3-sentence thought that put it in context.  From the video:

Pray for our military men and women who are striving to do what is right. Also, for this country, that our leaders, our national leaders, are sending [U.S. soldiers] out on a task that is from God. That’s what we have to make sure that we’re praying for, that there is a plan and that that plan is God’s plan.

To break it down linguistically, the "also" that begins the second sentence continues the "pray for" thought.  So to put the phrase that Gibson was referring to in its context, it would more correctly be "Pray that our national leaders are sending them out on a task that is from God."  That is a very different statement than the one Gibson infers; suggesting Palin was declaring it as such.  Fortunately, she had the presence of mind to catch that and clear it up.

PALIN: But the reference there is a repeat of Abraham Lincoln’s words when he said — first, he suggested never presume to know what God’s will is, and I would never presume to know God’s will or to speak God’s words.

But what Abraham Lincoln had said, and that’s a repeat in my comments, was let us not pray that God is on our side in a war or any other time, but let us pray that we are on God’s side.

That’s what that comment was all about, Charlie.

GIBSON: I take your point about Lincoln’s words, but you went on and said, “There is a plan and it is God’s plan.”

But apparently, Gibson’s deceit couldn’t help but try to pull more out of context.  And it simply had to be deceit, because if he read or heard enough of the quote to pull out those phrases, he couldn’t possibly have missed the very nearby context.

Gibson did apparently dry off quite well before the interview after being so long in the tank for Obama. 

Filed under: MediaPoliticsRepublicans

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