September 30, 2008
Palin speaks to Couric about global warming, abortion, evolution, and homosexuality
Sarah Palin sat down with Katie Couric for another interview to discuss her views on global warming, abortion, the morning-after pill, evolution, and homosexuality.
CBS has not posted the video yet, but in the transcript below, she seems to distinguish her personal views from John McCain's when Couric asked her about abortion and the morning-after pill.
Palin was widely criticized for earlier interviews with Couric. "Her halting interview with Katie Couric on CBS News alarmed many Republicans and gave fodder for a devastating parody on Saturday Night Live," The New York Times wrote today.
Couric: What's your position on global warming? Do you believe it's man-made or not?
Palin: Well, we're the only Arctic state, of course, Alaska. So we feel the impacts more than any other state, up there with the changes in climates. And certainly, it is apparent. We have erosion issues. And we have melting sea ice, of course. So, what I've done up there is form a sub-cabinet to focus solely on climate change. Understanding that it is real. And …
Couric: Is it man-made, though in your view?
Palin: You know there are - there are man's activities that can be contributed to the issues that we're dealing with now, these impacts. I'm not going to solely blame all of man's activities on changes in climate. Because the world's weather patterns are cyclical. And over history we have seen change there. But kind of doesn't matter at this point, as we debate what caused it. The point is: it's real; we need to do something about it.
Couric: If a 15-year-old is raped by her father, do you believe it should be illegal for her to get an abortion, and why?
Palin: I am pro-life. And I'm unapologetic in my position that I am pro-life. And I understand there are good people on both sides of the abortion debate. In fact, good people in my own family have differing views on abortion, and when it should be allowed. Do I respect people's opinions on this. Now, I would counsel to choose life. I would also like to see a culture of life in this country. But I would also like to take it one step further. Not just saying I am pro-life and I want fewer and fewer abortions in this country, but I want them, those women who find themselves in circumstances that are absolutely less than ideal, for them to be supported, and adoptions made easier.
Couric: But ideally, you think it should be illegal for a girl who was raped or the victim of incest to get an abortion?
Palin: I'm saying that, personally, I would counsel the person to choose life, despite horrific, horrific circumstances that this person would find themselves in. And, um, if you're asking, though, kind of foundationally here, should anyone end up in jail for having an … abortion, absolutely not. That's nothing I would ever support.
Couric: Some people have credited the morning-after pill for decreasing the number of abortions. How do you feel about the morning-after pill?
Palin: Well, I am all for contraception. And I am all for preventative measures that are legal and save, and should be taken, but Katie, again, I am one to believe that life starts at the moment of conception. And I would like to see …
Couric: And so you don't believe in the morning-after pill?
Palin: ... I would like to see fewer and fewer abortions in this world. And again, I haven't spoken with anyone who disagrees with my position on that.
Couric: I'm sorry, I just want to ask you again. Do you not support or do you condone or condemn the morning-after pill.
Palin: Personally, and this isn't McCain-Palin policy …
Couric: No, that's OK, I'm just asking you.
Palin: But personally, I would not choose to participate in that kind of contraception.
Couric: Do you believe evolution should be taught as an accepted scientific principle or as one of several theories?
Palin: Oh, I think it should be taught as an accepted principle. And, as you know, I say that also as the daughter of a school teacher, a science teacher, who has really instilled in me a respect for science. It should be taught in our schools. And I won't deny that I see the hand of God in this beautiful creation that is Earth. But that is not part of the state policy or a local curriculum in a school district. Science should be taught it science class.
The governor told us though she's not a member of any church, she visits a couple of them regularly when she's home. She took issue with news reports that one of them, The Wasilla Bible Church, sponsored a conference where gays could be made straight through prayer.
Palin: Well, it matters though, Katie, when the media gets it wrong. It frustrates Americans who are just trying to get the facts and … be able to make up their mind on, about a person's values. So it does matter.
But what you're talking about, I think, value here, what my position is on homosexuality and you can pray it away, because I think that was the title that was listed on that bulletin. And you know, I don't know what prayers are worthy of being prayed. I don't know what's prayers are going to be asked and answered. But as for homosexuality, I am not going to judge Americans and the decisions that they make in their adult personal relationships. I have one of my absolute best friends for the last 30 years happens to be gay, and I love her dearly. And she is not my "gay friend," she is one of my best friends, who happens to have made a choice that isn't a choice I would have made. But I am not going to judge people.