Hugh Hewitt

Sarah Palin keeps collecting admirers. Her interview with ABC News Charles Gibson has added another legion, and that number is growing as the recognition spreads that the editing done to the interview was deeply deceptive of its overall impression --even stronger than what came through on the broadcast version--and that Gibson unfairly mangled a quote of hers. Media elites are clucking that Palin didn't instantly define the "Bush Doctrine" to the level of detail demanded by (their) judges, but another vast audience watched another attempt to diminish her and has responded with an even greater enthusiasm for the Alaska governor.

Manhattan-Beltway media elites are very slow to recognize anything completely new. This is why prior to 9/11 they were in the dark about Islamist extremism. It is why prior to $4 a gallon gas, they had never anticipated a huge majority of Americans would demand offshore drilling.

And it is why they still don't understand the Palin Breakout.

Since the day John McCain selected Palin as his running mate, I have spoken with only women callers to my radio show. For the past week I have limited callers to those who are calling a radio show for the very first time. All the lines have been filled every hour of every day. Caller after caller wants to discuss their affection for Sarah, their willingness to work for her and contribute to the RNC and to share stories of like-minded women in their families and among their friends.

Each new attack on Palin brings increased enthusiasm for her. Take, for example, the astonishing report from by Los Angeles Times reporter Andrew Malcolm that a "senior Canadian doctor is now expressing concerns that such a prominent public role model as the governor of Alaska and potential vice president of the United States completing a down syndrome pregnancy may prompt other women to make the same decision against abortion because of that genetic abnormality. And thereby reduce the number of abortions." This is just one of many brazen attacks on the decisions of Sarah and Todd Palin on how to raise and care for their family. Nothing remotely like it has ever been seen in modern politics, and the disgust level is growing as a result.

One battalion in the Army of Sarahs that is gathering are the parents of special needs children, and this is a large group. Add to it all the people whose lives have been touched by such children and their families and you have the sort of hidden force in politics that can shape outcomes. Recently, for example, I received an e-mail from a pediatric anesthesiologist, reacting to attention focused on Trig Palin:

I was not going to bother you but yesterday, I was at our supermarket where my bags were packed by a Downs young man. He is pleasant, makes you feel welcome, does a great job packing the groceries and is proud of what he is doing. He is earning a wage, a helpful member of society and makes us all better for being there. I commend Genuardi (our supermarket) for employing him.

If you have a minute I would like tell you a little story. For whatever reason, I had a fair number of parents with Downs children who would ask me to anesthetize their children, one in particular is still deep in my memory: a little darling and sweet little Downs boy (I can't remember the age) was anesthetized by me for a minor surgical procedure everything went very well and after taking to the PACU (post-anesthesia care unit) I went to speak the parents. After all the question were answered, the mother asked if there was any way his older brother could see him. He had purposely come from college to see his brother and had to go back. (At the time parents or family members were not allowed to go into PACU. I went back to the all powerful and wonderful nurses, and to make a long story shorter, the brother was allowed to come in. As the nurses and I looked back there was big brother on the stretcher with little brother in his arms. No more pain medication was needed for a child that was now comforted by the love of his brother. It made our day, For those of us who may not think Downs are special think again.All children are special. Children with disabilities are remarkably so, and their parents are greatly admired by all decent Americans.

Except, it seems, by sneering media and medical elites.

The Great Snarl that has arisen and is directed at Sarah Palin has registered at a very deep level outside of the coastal elites. I know because I talk with people in the midwest and south every day, as well as in the suburbs of Atlanta, near the Rockies, in the smaller towns of Minnesota. They love Sarah Palin, and now they are increasingly angry with the MSM and especially with Obama and his campaign operatives.

These people hear the attacks on Palin and understand them --rightly-- to be attacks on themselves and their families. The dismissal they hear from studio talking heads are directed not just at Sarah Palin's life experiences, but at theirs. The contempt American media elites feel for their viewers has never been so sharply on display.

This is not an objection to asking Palin tough questions. I don't think there is a serious objection to Charlie Gibson's tone or subject matter when he sat down with Palin. She answered all of his many questions with hardly a stumble, as opposed to Obumble's repeated pratfalls in debates past.

But there is resentment that after a year-and-a-half there is not one interview of Obama --who wants the top job not the understudy role-- remotely as tough, with sustained lines of questions on sensitive issues of foreign affairs peppered with probing interruptions. Not one. Obama has always been allowed to filibuster, and every interviewer has retreated from attacks that have put Obama on the defensive. The cowing of the MSM by the left-wing bloggers is complete, and they know better than to push The One very hard.

That's just the way it is with a deeply-biased, almost openly partisan MSM, but a very, very media-savvy American public knows exactly what is going on. The voters' distaste for the great prop-up of Obama showed itself first in the late primaries where Hillary racked up win after win and now in the sudden shift of independents towards McCain-Palin.

Last week I wrote about Palin's appeal across the anti-freeze states. That appeal has since deepened, and the rallies are huge and growing wherever she travels. Americans like her, and dismiss the idea that she's not ready to be vice-president when the obviously unprepared whisp of a resume that is Obama is the nominee of the Democrats.

The MSM is clueless, and the Army of Sarahs is growing.


Hugh Hewitt

Hugh Hewitt is host of a nationally syndicated radio talk show. Hugh Hewitt's new book is The War On The West.