Home » News » Sarah Palin – Look, no Teleprompter!

Sarah Palin – Look, no Teleprompter!

Reports coming in Sarah Palin improvised part of her speech when the teleprompter had problems.

Halfway through Sarah Palin’s speech tonight at the RNC, people following the speech noticed she was deviating from the prepared text.

According to sources close to the McCain campaign, the teleprompter continued scrolling during applause breaks. As a result, half way through the speech, the speech had scrolled significantly from where Governor Palin was in the speech.

Unfazed, Governor Palin continued, from memory [and relying on her printed text, clearly looking down occasionally at the printed page], to deliver her speech without the teleprompter cued to the appropriate point in her speech.

Contrast this to Barack Obama who, when last his teleprompter malfunctioned, was left stuttering before a crowd unable to advance his speech until the problem was resolved.

BTW, I’ve gotten one more clarification from the McCain campaign: by the end of the speech the problem had been resolved. But you can clearly see during the middle Palin looked at her text often.

And again, don’t miss this key point: compare her teleprompter malfunctions to Obama’s.

People notice these things because it’s kind of a sport in political speeches for people to follow along with the previously handed out text (watch a State of the Union speech to see the game in action). If a person strays from the text, people notice.

In this case, it’s likely the full story will never be known as technical issues are an embarrassment nobody wants to admit, and it’s reasonable to assume (and require) a candidate has the ability to improvise and adapt to difficult situations, thinking on their feet — even if the teleprompter had problems, it shouldn’t cause a screeching halt to the speech as long as the person actually knows what they’re talking about.

In other words, nobody should notice if the teleprompter had problems — if somebody does notice (besides obviously deviating a bit from the released text), it says something about the speaker.

If you can think on your feet, the loss of a teleprompter just requires adaptation — people all over the world speak without such a device, instead using handwritten notes and a knowledge of the subject. Teleprompters are a good aid, but reliance on them as a replacement for improvised thinking demonstrates a lack of preparedness, and a lack of knowledge on the subject.

How does the Messiah perform without a Teleprompter? Look … ummmm … no further … let me say … ummm …. well … look beyond … ummm …. consider the Saddleback forum.

Teleprompters in the situation room anyone?

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1 Comment

  1. Jew says:

    I don’t think public speaking skills have anything to do with the kind of cool-under-fire decisions needed in the situation room.

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