Palin criticized for avoiding questions

October 6th, 2008 - 6:27 pm ICT by ANI  

Sarah Palin

Washington, Oct.6 (ANI): Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin has been accused of attempting to dodge giving answers to questions that she is not familiar with.
According to the Washington Post, new research suggests that Palin has acquired the skill of dodging questions without seeming to.
When Democratic Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr. and debate moderator Gwen Ifill asked Palin to defend John McCain’’s stance on economic deregulation, she said, “I”m still on the tax thing because I want to correct you on that again. And I want to let you know what I did as a mayor and as a governor. And I may not answer the questions that either the moderator or you want to hear, but I”m going to talk straight to the American people and let them know my track record.”
She then spoke about her efforts to cut taxes in Alaska. Contrast that obvious dodge with Sen. Barack Obama’’s response to moderator Jim Lehrer’’s question about how the nation’’s financial meltdown would require him to scale back on his campaign promises.
“Well, there are a range of things that are probably going to have to be delayed,” Obama replied.
“We don”t yet know what our tax revenues are going to be. The economy is slowing down, so it’’s hard to anticipate right now what the budget is going to look like next year. But there’’s no doubt that we”re not going to be able to do everything that I think needs to be done. There are some things that I think have to be done.”
And with that, Obama spent the next 334 words talking about spending increases and new plans.
The paper quotes Daniel J. Simons, a cognitive psychologist at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign,as saying that “Palin was loosely on topic, but a couple of times she really bungled the pivot.”
A review of the debate transcripts shows Obama, McCain and Biden all repeatedly dodging questions, adroitly transitioning from questions they were asked to questions they wanted to answer.
Audiences seemed to notice dodges only when answers were completely unrelated to the question — such as responding to a question about illegal drugs by discussing terrorism.
The psychologists found that irrelevant answers delivered fluently and with poise scored higher with audiences than answers that were accurate, on-topic, but halting. And when they had actors deliver the same answers to audiences — once fluently and once with “ums” and “ahs” — audiences judged the hesitant responses as intellectually inferior to the fluent ones. (ANI)

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