Katie Couric discussed her infamous interview with Sarah Palin Wednesday night on the "Late Show with David Letterman." Couric took Letterman inside the process of scheduling Palin's interviews — the campaign actually rushed an interview because "they didn't want a week to go by without hearing anything from Governor Palin," as Couric put it — and said the campaign was "very generous" and gave her "tremendous access" to Palin.
Couric said that Palin may have gotten tripped up because she was not prepared to answer more general questions during their interview following her visit to the UN.
"I started by asking her who most impressed her as Vice President and why, what was the best and worst things Dick Cheney had done as Vice President, why was Roe v. Wade an ill-conceived or a bad Supreme Court decision," Couric told Letterman. "And I think she really hadn't anticipated those kinds of questions, so I think it might've thrown her off a bit. And then we got into foreign policy — because, after all, she was at the UN meeting with world leaders — and clearly she was struggling with some of those answers."
While Couric did note that, in Palin's defense, they were not easy questions to answer, Letterman reminded her that the "What newspapers and magazines do you read?" question was an easy one that Palin blew. Couric explained how it came about and said that she disagrees with the way Palin is characterizing the question in post-election interviews.
"We we doing one of these walk-and-talks, it was a casual part of the interview, and I just said, 'I'm curious, what do you read? What has helped you shape your worldview? What do you read to stay informed?'" Couric explained.
"A good question but an easy question," Letterman said.
"It was just really something I was curious about," Couric said, "and I'm not sure whether she was afraid to offend certain people, if she would offend conservatives by saying she read the New York Times....Even in the post-election interviews, Dave, that she's done, nobody's really asked her, 'Why didn't you answer that question?' She claims that I said, 'What do you read up there in Alaska?' as if people in Alaska don't read or don't have access to reading materials. I never said that. I'm aware people in Alaska have access."
Couric also shared one question she asked both Palin and Biden that didn't air — what they missed most on the campaign trail. Palin missed running every day, while Biden missed being Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
During Palin's sit-down with Couric's former-co-host Matt Lauer on the "Today" show, she said that she was annoyed by Couric's "What do you read?" question because it was insulting to Alaskans:
LAUER: But you didn't think the (Katie Couric) interview was unfair? I mean, the questions were fairly straightforward, weren't they?
PALIN: Sure. Yeah. But, you know, questions about, well, you know, "What do you read up there in Alaska?" To me that was a little bit annoying. Because I'm like, what do you mean, what do I read in Alaska? I read the same things that you guys read in New York -- and there in LA and in Washington state. What do you mean what I read up there? But anyway, just-- just some annoyance, that certainly I'm sure showed through.