Dave: I Take ‘Full Responsibilty’ for ‘Beyond Flawed’ Palin Joke, and I’m Sorry

Jun 16, 2009  •  Post A Comment

David Letterman is making a full-throated apology for his controversial joke about Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin’s daughter.

During a taping of tonight’s edition of his CBS "Late Show," Letterman went much further than his last explanation of the joke, in which he quipped that a baseball player had "knocked up" Palin’s daughter.

"I told a bad joke," Letterman said. "I told a joke that was beyond flawed, and my intent is completely meaningless compared to the perception. And since it was a joke I told, I feel that I need to do the right thing here and apologize for having told that joke."

UPDATE: Watch Letterman’s apology

RELATED: Sarah…Plain and Pathetic

Letterman thought he was cracking wise about Palin’s 18-year-old, Bristol, who last year served as a campaign surrogate for her mom’s effort to become vice-president. But the Palins took it as a jab at their 14-year-old, and reacted with sharp criticism of Letterman.

Letterman offered a semi-apology last week, but that was greeted with even more criticism from Palin partisans. With word of an anti-Letterman protest scheduled for tomorrow, Letterman decided to try to clear the air once more and put the matter behind him.

–Josef Adalian

Below is a transcript of Letterman’s comments, as supplied by CBS publicity:

"All right, here – I’ve been thinking about this situation with Governor Palin and her family now for about a week – it was a week ago tonight, and maybe you know about it, maybe you don’t know about it. But there was a joke that I told, and I thought I was telling it about the older daughter being at Yankee Stadium. And it was kind of a coarse joke. There’s no getting around it, but I never thought it was anybody other than the older daughter, and before the show, I checked to make sure in fact that she is of legal age, 18. Yeah. But the joke really, in and of itself, can’t be defended. The next day, people are outraged. They’re angry at me because they said, ‘How could you make a lousy joke like that about the 14-year-old girl who was at the ball game?’ And I had, honestly, no idea that the 14-year-old girl, I had no idea that anybody was at the ball game except the Governor and I was told at the time she was there with Rudy Giuliani…And I really should have made the joke about Rudy…" (audience applauds) "But I didn’t, and now people are getting angry and they’re saying, ‘Well, how can you say something like that about a 14-year-old girl, and does that make you feel good to make those horrible jokes about a kid who’s completely innocent, minding her own business,’ and, turns out, she was at the ball game. I had no idea she was there. So she’s now at the ball game and people think that I made the joke about her. And, but still, I’m wondering, ‘Well, what can I do to help people understand that I would never make a joke like this?’ I’ve never made jokes like this as long as we’ve been on the air, 30 long years, and you can’t really be doing jokes like that. And I understand, of course, why people are upset. I would be upset myself.

"And then I was watching the Jim Lehrer ‘Newshour’ – this commentator, the columnist Mark Shields, was talking about how I had made this indefensible joke about the 14-year-old girl, and I thought, ‘Oh, boy, now I’m beginning to understand what the problem is here. It’s the perception rather than the intent.’ It doesn’t make any difference what my intent was, it’s the perception. And, as they say about jokes, if you have to explain the joke, it’s not a very good joke. And I’m certainly – " (audience applause) "- thank you. Well, my responsibility – I take full blame for that. I told a bad joke. I told a joke that was beyond flawed, and my intent is completely meaningless compared to the perception. And since it was a joke I told, I feel that I need to do the right thing here and apologize for having told that joke. It’s not your fault that it was misunderstood, it’s my fault. That it was misunderstood." (audience applauds) "Thank you. So I would like to apologize, especially to the two daughters involved, Bristol and Willow, and also to the Governor and her family and everybody else who was outraged by the joke. I’m sorry about it and I’ll try to do better in the future. Thank you very much." (audience applause)
 

131 Comments

  1. To me, Ms. Palin is a complete joke. Politically (in my opinion) she is a has been and it is obvious that Sean Hannity has some sort of crush on her. She in no way reflects effective motherhood as she has no problem marching her spawns out in to the public limelight in order to keep herself in the news. Do us a favor Governor Palin and go back to Alaska where your approval rating is sinking faster than the economy.

  2. If the governor has the grace to accept Dave’s words, then this is over.
    If she lacks the grace and continues to accuse Dave of imaginary offenses, then, I think, more will begin to see her agenda at play and see the controversy for what it is.

  3. I don’t think his apology is sincere for a minute, but if the Palin family accepts it, then I guess it’s over. Late night “entertainers” think they can get away with anything–it’s about time somebody called them on it. Had Letterman made the comment about one of the Obama girls, he would have been fired in a heartbeat!

  4. I agree with Donz.. Her reaction will say a lot about these series of events. I frankly don’t care for Mrs. Palin’s politics, but the joke was in bad taste and regardless of who it was subjected towards it was a mistake. Glad to see Mr. Letterman is coming clean and trying to get this put to bed. Because like you strussman, I’m tired of seeing her in the news as well. :)

  5. Yeah, well, Imus apologized ad nauseum, and we all remember what happened to him, and his remark was about college age women, not minor children, regardless of his “intent” was. Letterman deserves no less of a punishment and I hope he receives it.

  6. It’s perception? No Dave, It was intent, period. It doesn’t matter which kid it was about. Once again we get a non apology.
    Take Dave down and CBS with them.

  7. He is A MORON AND A COMPLETE IDIOT if he thinks women are going to accept this pathetic so called apology. He is going to do a whole lot better than that. He is not MAN enought to take responsibility. It took him 5 years to be man enough to marry the mother of his illegitimate child. By the looks of it, it is going to take him another 5 years to be man enough to apologize. I feel sad for his illegitimat child to have a father who promotes Violence against Women and Children.

  8. If Letterman is run off the air because of this self-serving presidential wanta-be from Alaska…I am going to be furious.
    Just crawl back in your cave Ms. Palin.

  9. Moron…It takes him a week to finally get ‘it’ and only after he watches the Jim Lehrer report.
    the truth is he found out that he was being perceived as a pervert…joke or no joke.
    I don’t watch his show…still will not waste my time and I hope the smart people out there don’t polute their home with bringing this filthy old man into their homes.

  10. Ah, but it is still okay to call a Conservative Woman a slutty Flight Attendant.
    Heck, it is wrong to call any woman “slutty”.
    Would he call Michelle Obama a Slutty Flight Attendant?
    Would he call Flight Attendants slutty?
    Letterman is an ass.
    I will never watch him again.

  11. In the grand scheme of things, does any of this really matter? Don’t we all face much bigger challenges than worrying about what Letterman said. The United States has just become a nation of people who look for a way to be offended and then whine incessantly about it.
    Everyone…grow up!

  12. Letterman deserves to be fired. Period. The only reason he’s apologozing now is that his career is on the line. His non-apology last week is the true Letterman – a nasty mean, spirited left wing tool.

  13. Know what, Strussman..YOUR the joke.
    You libs run scared and use filthy language and jokes when it is obvious you become alarmed that we have a good candidate in the running.
    You can’t pull her down for her policies and so you do the typical lib thing…used foul jokes and attack the family.
    Try reversing that and using Michelle and Barak as the butt of those thoughts and jokes…perhaps the light will go on..But, nevermide…the lib mind is too far rotted to really get it.

  14. It doesn’t matter whether you meant the 14 yr. old or the 18 yr old. It’s egregious and offensive either way. Bristol made a mistake, but she has behaved admirably and responsibly. Your remarks about Elliot Spitzer and “promiscuity” were equally offensive. I will NEVER watch your show again, and I will email all the shows sponsors to that effect.
    Too little, too late…

  15. It doesn’t matter whether you meant the 14 yr. old or the 18 yr old. It’s egregious and offensive either way. Bristol made a mistake, but she has behaved admirably and responsibly. Your remarks about Elliot Spitzer and “promiscuity” were equally offensive. I will NEVER watch your show again, and I will email all the shows sponsors to that effect.
    Too little, too late…

  16. I think this apology is much more reasonable.
    For anyone thinking Palin was overreacting, can you imagine the hue and cry were a similar joke made about the Obama kids?

  17. Let’s try it. Let’s have a few Obama’s daughters are so “….” jokes and see how well it goes over. And, let’s add to that some Michelle Obama has to have her own stylist with her so she can look even sluttier jokes! Yea, that would be fun.
    What? You Palin haters don’t like that idea? Why not? It’s just a joke! Lighten up! Grow up!

  18. Yes — keep believing that Palin was a “good candidate” and please get her nominated in 2012. It will be fun to watch.
    As to this feigned outrage; where were you all when Jay Leno said this last September:
    “Gov. Palin announced over the weekend that her 17-year-old unmarried daughter is five months pregnant. And you thought John Edwards was in trouble before! Now he has really done it.” — “The Tonight Show With Jay Leno,” 9/2/08
    The reaction then? Silence.
    As to “foul jokes” and “attacking the family,” where were you when McCain “joked”:
    “Why is Chelsea Clinton so ugly? Because her father is Janet Reno.”
    This is what’s called “selective outrage.”

  19. David Letterman has been breathing his own fumes for so long he truly doesn’t understand what all the fuss is about.
    His show’s sponsors need to decide if it makes sense for them to continue paying money to associate with someone who regularly offends a significant portion of their customers.

  20. To those of you on here who like to attack Palin and say she is a joke, well this “joke” did something this past week that no one else could do in several decades. Yet that accomplishment was overshadowed by your boy Letterman and his perverted rape joke. Bottomline, you all hate conservatives, period. There is more hate and vile with you Obamabots than there is with the KKK. Your guy won the election!! Why are you still filled with hate all of the time?

  21. This is so much worse than Imus’ jab at the African American college women athletes. This is a joke about raping the 14 year old daughters of your political opponents.
    CBS, for goodness sake, fire Letterman!

  22. A “joke” of that type is inappropriate regardless of whether it was intended to sting the 18 year old or the 14 year old.
    Neither of the Palin daughters are public figures. Neither deserve to be treated the way that they were treated on CBS last week regardless of who their mother is and regardless of the fact that one of them had an unplanned pregnancy.
    Children deserve better. Especially from a 60 plus year old man.
    Dave’s non-apology apology from last week was not much different than this word parsing non-apology.
    If he had wanted to be taken seriously he would not have equivocated. He would not have hemmed and hawed about who the joke was really aimed at yada, yada, yada.
    He should have simply offered a sincere, unconditional, look straight into their eyes type of apology without all the qualifiers.
    Sorry Dave.
    Too little. Too late.
    Not buying.

  23. “There’s no getting around it, but I never thought it was anybody other than the older daughter, and before the show, I checked to make sure in fact that she is of legal age, 18.”
    Wow, Dave, you really are an idiot. You thought to check Bristol’s age, but not who was at the game?
    C’mon, admit it… you didn’t care which daughter it was. You’re a partisan hack, who just wanted to attack Gov. Palin.
    CBS should fire you. After all, Don Imus lost his job for less (and at the urging of Barack Obama); those women were at least over 18, and his joke wasn’t researched and scripted. Maybe your replacement will have some class.

  24. A joke. He still defends it as a just a joke. The problem is ours, not his. We are too stupid to understand this joke. We misunderstood. This. Joke. Of. Dave’s. He takes full responsibility of our stupidity which doesn’t get his joke. He even checked her age, before he told the joke. He is a wonderful person to make double sure that the joke was about a girl who was legal. Why are we all so stupid? It was just a joke.

  25. Hey strussman, whatsa matta, run out of jokes? “effective motherhood”? What is that? A new liberal term for abortion?

  26. Right on, Sandra! The liberal loons have nothing better to do than denigrate people. They are incapable of having civil, constructive, intelligent discussion. Whenever one of their own falls flat on their face, we pushed them! It’s never, ever their own fault!
    Strussman – I seem to recall Obama’s “spawn” out there during his campaign!! Guess he’s a crappy father and Michelle in no way reflects effective motherhood! You’re an ass!

  27. Very interesting turn of events this week already. Lindy’s quote: “If Letterman is run off the air because of this self-serving presidential wanta-be from Alaska…I am going to be furious.
    Just crawl back in your cave Ms. Palin.”
    Translation: Liberal pukes like myself should be able to slander and attack people who don’t agree with me without any response.
    Strussman, We all know Palin approved sending Gitmo detainees to Bermuda-without first telling the British about it. Wait a minue, that was Obama team that did that brilliant move.
    “She in no way reflects effective motherhood as she has no problem marching her spawns out in to the public limelight in order to keep herself in the news.”
    I thought leftwingers like you say people need to be humanized and stuff, and guess only PEOPLE you AGREE with should be proud of their family.
    “Do us a favor Governor Palin and go back to Alaska where your approval rating is sinking faster than the economy.” If she runs for re-election she is a SOLID LOCK for that also. Put that in your pipe and smoke it.
    The only joke I see are liberal hypocrites like you who talk out of both sides of your mouth.

  28. Letterman thought he was being cute and with typical Libtard stupidity he felt he could get away with a cheap shot. Now that the advertisers are pulling out he wants to make nice.

  29. Roberta, Come on now people like you and me know ONLY liberal democrats can trot out and be PROUD of their family.

  30. The problem is that “it” wasn’t a joke. Letterman hasn’t been funny for 20 years or so. It was simply a line put together by the producer’s staff which Letterman read because he is too stupid to know any better. Evidently, the producer thinks it’s OK to refer to a Republican Governor and her family as a sluts but it’s not OK to refer to Michelle or her daughters as sluts because they’re Democrats.
    You cannot just fire Letterman because he’s a jerk and solve the problem … what is necessary is to tear apart the whole rat infected organization and get some people in there who are intelligent enough to be funny.

  31. Missouri Man,
    As a fellow Missourian I totally agree with your post about liberals. Without rhetoric, name-calling, etc liberals arguments fall flatter that soggy pancakes. The motto for liberals is: We can slander and attack people we disagree with and don’t like BUT they should not be able to respond to it at all.

  32. “Advertisers”? Try one online ad. Quite an impact.

  33. Yes an advertiser pulls an ad from the CBS website, no big deal. Gee whiz, aren’t online ads how websites can stay in business? Yet liberals say Sarah Palin is clueless

  34. When did “knocked up” come to mean raped? Knocked up is exactly what happened to Bristol Palin, crude but very applicable. And to say she is not a public figure, I saw her on cable news speaking on abstinence. Did anyone make her do that? Or did she as an adult choose to do it. Aside from hands-off treatment during the campaign, when you put yourself out there be prepared for the consequences, good or bad. Just like the Dixie Chicks, don’t cry afterwards if you aren’t willing to stand up for what you say or stand for in a public venue. It was a joke, already admitted to being one in poor taste. There is no one that wouldn’t take back something they said during their lifetime. If you can’t get passed his apology it says more about you than it does him.

  35. Palin partisans?? Excuse me?? How about people who are offended by this “joke”. Also, they took it as a jab at the 14 year old because SHE was at the game. Why don’t you try to report a story without all the spinning adjectives?

  36. Yes, indeed — one pulled online ad will certainly kill the site.
    What you (and others) don’t understand yet is that your continuing to attack Dave, after what he said tonight, will only result in the further marginalization of your feigned outrages.
    We’ll see if Alaska’s governor has the grace to accept Dave’s words, as it’s only to her benefit that she do so.
    If she doesn’t, then she will have successfully turned this onto herself. Well-played!

  37. Strussman, Donz, and the rest of you left wing apologists. His apology is the real “joke” and it’s clear what his intent was. What is it about Sarah Palin that keeps you Libs so rabid and fixated? She scares the HELL out of you because unlike Obonzo, she does HAVE experience in governance and she is quite popular and has the ability to galvanize people against the decadance that is liberalism (a terminal mental disorder). You people on the left are sanctimonious pinheads of the 1st order and I can assure you that if Limbaugh ever called the Obama girls little chimps who like banana’s (it’s a joke, get it? Ha,ha) you’d all be calling for his head. You make me ill, you have no ethics, no morals, and no values.

  38. There’s no evidence that’s yet been presented that Willow was actually _at_ the game. Every contemporary news report and published photos describe and show just the Palin and Giuliani spouses. No mention or sign of Willow whatsoever.

  39. When did “knocked up” come to mean raped?
    McDuffy…speak of sex with a 14 year old IS rape….FOOOL…No matter what he meant, he was referring to the 14 year old who accompanied her mother to the game.
    The pervert should have been sure of WHOM he was talking about before he aired that joke…but libs and pervs have talking points and rarely vet whether it is accurate or not.

  40. Remember that when someone makes a crack or comment about one of Obuma’s girls.

  41. What part of him saying he wasn’t referring to the 14 year old did you miss?

  42. Ouchies.
    Enjoy the fantasies, John, and keep them alternate realities alive and kicking.
    And, for goodness sake, keep making this personal, as attacking posters as directly as you have betrays an argument lost long ago.

  43. But she wasn’t at the game.

  44. “criticism from Palin partisans.”
    That is still a pathetic mousey apology.
    Josef, you’re embarrassing yourself kissing his ass.
    Re-read your post.
    “But the Palins took it as a jab at their 14-year-old,”
    The whole country did.
    Pathetic.
    As writer @BlairWarren says: “An apology that is not made with the same level of enthusiasm as was the transgression is not an apology at all; it’s an insult.”

  45. It is obvious Chris Mathews has a crush on Obama, what with that tingle running up his leg. Strussman, again, you libs confuse Tina Fey with Sarah Palin. An All American family should be able to attend a major league baseball game, without some half baked washed up, no more funny, comedian attacking a 14 year old girl with perverted slurs. It’s obvious that David Letterman is fixiated on Sarah Palin. Jails are full of guys who told the Judge that they thought the girl was 18.

  46. No, the whole country didn’t

  47. Not quite “the whole country”; more like a tiny number of vocal Palin boosters who welcomed the chance to elevate this into something more than it merited.
    And I see no one has offered a response to the Leno joke quoted above. I don’t recall any of you raising a finger in protest.

  48. It’s not a “full-throated apology” and it won’t “clear the air.”
    It’s a week late and obviously like pulling teeth. Letterman still dances around what was wrong and offensive about the “joke.” First, he says he “checked” before he told the joke to ensure that Bristol Palin was over 18. This is transparently a wink to the folks who think it’s OK to joke about knocking up Bristol and an attempt to gain sympathy from them.
    With a battalion of writers, CBS PR people and lawyers, couldn’t Dave manage to compose a simple, sincere-sounding apology? It’s not hard. He could have said: “I was wrong. It was wrong whether you thought the joke was aimed at Bristol or Willow Palin. It’s wrong to joke like that about young girls just because they have a relative who is a politician. I see that now and I’m sorry.” Period.

  49. Very nicely done, David. You went home for the weekend, thought about it, and came back to apologize for a stupid and slutty joke at the expense of some young woman.
    Sometimes you just have to admit that a joke or something else you said has gone terribly wrong.
    I admire you for the way you handled it. I worked with Johnny Carson’s brother, director Dick Carson, at NBC in the 1960s and later in the NBC News Dept. Barbara Walters was on the “Today” show, ten years older than I am. I met David Brinkley, Robert Russell Bennett, Skitch Henderson and many others. I don’t think I’ve ever met you personally. But we were the women on the production staff of the NYC “Tonight” show unit who had to bleep all the curse words from guests on behalf of “Standards and Practices Dept.” at NBC.
    Warm regards,
    Ellen Kimball
    Pioneer radio and TV professional for more than 50 years — Miami, NYC, Boston, now in Portland, OR.
    Thanks to Chuck Zink, Lloyd Gaines, Bob Weaver, Ralph Renick, Larry King, Steve Z. from WIOD, Paul Benzaquin, Len Lawrence, Bruce Lee at WEEI and Jerry Williams and Pat Whitley at WMEX. Also to others who help me and encouraged me along the way.

  50. Too Little, too late. Smacks of Damage Control. Especially considering Letterman’s rampant BDS and far-left outlook on life.

  51. In my opinion letterman meant every word he said. Why is the left so afraid of this women? We can see how sick and shameless our society has become by the sick shameless people who are sticking up this has been. You who agree with him need someone to talk about your daughters maybe you would not mind because it would probably be true. Sara Palins family is just every one elses. Trouble comes to all our families. Lets hope and pray when comes to yours you can be as strong as she is.

  52. People are losing their homes to foeclosure in this country and we are blogging and arguing about David Letterman jokes?
    Let’s get real!!!!

  53. People are losing their homes to foreclosure in this country and we are blogging and arguing about David Letterman jokes?
    Let’s get real!!!!

  54. mcstupid, sex with a 14 year old is satutory rape…

  55. oh my gosh! you all need to get over your bad selves. he is a comedian who made a very tasteless joke. it wasn’t funny, so don’t laugh. and get over it!

  56. It’s hard for you Palin worshipers to believe that many of us who have really seen Palin in action in our state and understand how pathetically unprepared she is to ever hold an office on the national level are conservative. You would like to say that we’re liberals and Obama lovers. Quite the contrary. I was a registered Republican for 35 years. When McCain chose Palin as his running mate, I changed to an Independent and voted for Obama. So….I’m not a liberal and can’t understand how any thinking person could support Palin.

  57. It’s hard for you Palin worshipers to believe that many of us who have really seen Palin in action in our state and understand how pathetically unprepared she is to ever hold an office on the national level are conservative. You would like to say that we’re liberals and Obama lovers. Quite the contrary. I was a registered Republican for 35 years. When McCain chose Palin as his running mate, I changed to an Independent and voted for Obama. So….I’m not a liberal and can’t understand how any thinking person could support Palin.

  58. How many times do you need to hear it wasn’t about the 14 year old?

  59. Hey Missouri man,
    Another Missouri man, Rush Limbaugh, joked about Chelsea Clinton being ugly back when she was about 14 and her dad was president. No controversy, no apology. Not the same as a sex joke but still in bad taste. I never understood how he got away with that—where was the outrage then!?

  60. I agree completely with Donz. I was a supporter of Palin’s, as the VP candidate, but am starting to have second thoughts about her. Letterman was wrong, and he apologized. If she doesn’t accept, it will really show us what she’s all about. I thought what Katie Couric did to her was despicable. Hopefully, the Gov isn’t trying to get back at CBS. Those who continue to castigate Letterman will also show as their lack of grace.

  61. My my, look at all these rightards not looking at the evidence right in front of their eyes.
    This is a manufactured controversy, and it shows complete desparation on the part of the right wing of this country. No ideas beyond tax cuts and neutered government, so they resort to blasting washed-up late-nite comedians.
    Truly sad.

  62. My my, look at all these rightards not looking at the evidence right in front of their eyes.
    This is a manufactured controversy, and it shows complete desparation on the part of the right wing of this country. No ideas beyond tax cuts and neutered government, so they resort to blasting washed-up late-nite comedians.
    Truly sad.

  63. “BDS and far-left outlook”
    Just WHEN are you living in? Bush is gone. Now it’s time for right-wingers to have BARACK Derangement Syndrome.
    (So-called BDS was just a projection of right-wing Bush Worship Syndrome, anyway)

  64. Every Parent in the USA should condem Letterman regardless of politics. He should be fired, no if’s and or butts! To degrade a child or adult in this fashion is completely unacceptable.It was a vindictive attack on an innocent child meant to demean Sarah Palin. His hypocrisy is is intolerable. Letterman is well known to be a mean old man. Past time for him to go!

  65. Letterman was over the top and beyond despicable! Who the hell in our society goes around calling our youth whores or their mother a c**t? WTH is wrong with you people? Do you not have any respect for your own mothers or daughters? Get a grip! Political does not mean “all gloves are off” We are still suppose to be a humanized society! Letterman should not have said what he did and it just shows him for his character just like it shows the character of each and every one else that does the same. Imus did loose his job over his slur that was meant to be a so called “joke” and apology. Why would Letterman be given a free pass after his “joke” and apology? Whats fair is fair! Anything else is just rhetoric and bias! Doesn’t matter if you like Palin or not! Its not about liking her or voting for her. This “joke” was not a political joke .. it was just mean and nasty just like Imus’ was!

  66. I love how she told old men to evolve…..didn’t think she believed in evolution…or human thought

  67. Sure the age became the focus, but did anyone ever think that maybe this joke was simply the one the deservedly ‘broke the camel’s back.” If this had been an isolated joke, I doubt the extent of the outrage. Badger someone with a one-sided politcal agenda for months on end, and you end up ripe with this situation. Double-standard is obvious no matter which way you cut it.

  68. Dont you already have Fox News for that?

  69. He still has refused to take responsibility for his scripted remarks. This second apology was not an apology at all, merely another excuse that the “joke” was misunderstood. He obviously is lying about the Bristol/Willow mix up. Just as Imus needed to go after his vicious and unscripted remark about the young adult women of the Rutgers basketball team, Letterman needs to go for the filthy pedophile joke that was scripted and intended. Any company that sponsors him deserves to lose business. My local Toyota dealer has been informed that they will not be selling me a third Toyota because their company advertises on a show that promotes child sexual abuse.

  70. What is all the flap about and who cares??? If it were Conan O’Brien cracking this joke everyone would be laughing their heads off. Letterman did not intend any harm to a yourn underage girl and anyone who beleives that is a moron. Besides, go on the internet and look at all the sluty pictures of Sarsh Palin in stiletos and short leather skirts.

  71. Not to add more criticism, but what was he apologizing for? Bad comedy? Come on! If you are going to go through the effort, as least make us believe you have feelings. “I apologize, especially to Bristol and Willow,” IMO I don’t feel any empathy in that. Here is where he is keeping his integrity, and has feelings attached (about the joke) “I’m sorry about it and I’ll try to do better in the future.”
    Lame.

  72. If this “joke” had occurred within a family or a school, it could be considered emotional abuse.
    But in the realm of today’s entertainment industry an adult man beating up on a teenage girl in this fashion is “edgy comedy” not the inexcusable cruelty which it clearly is.
    Yet, in the minds of the koolaid drinkers Dave is the victim of reactionary conservatives who just can’t see the humor he thought he was conveying.

  73. This is not a left versus right controversy. Simply, Palin has burned a lot of bridges in only one year. It’s mostly her handler’s fault but if you continously cancell interviews and speeches at the last minute, you will anger a lot of people. McCain will not even say her name out loud since the election.
    Dave has had good will with the press, not because of his political views, but because of what he has done in the last thirty years. When Letterman went to Iraq, he asked the press to play it low key and begged CBS not to show footage of him. Why? Because it’s not about him. Whereas, everything is about Palin and her family.
    If Palin hadn’t burned so many bridges in one short year, Letterman would probably have been fired by now. Not left vs. right but class vs crass.

  74. So, this is all Sarah Palin’s fault?
    Dave Letterman proved himself a partisan during the MSM’s full court press against GW Bush and in the run up to the ’08 elections.
    The campaign is over, his guy won. Why the cruelty? Beating up on kids is funny?
    Live by the sword, die by the sword.

  75. After reading his apology, I was glad he got around to apologizze to the both daughters. To me it didn’t matter which daughter he meant the so call joke for. It was disgusting and un-acceptable talk about young ladies.
    Strussman: The Obama have no problem spawning there young daughters in public too, but it doesn’t give the right to a Comedian to say such disgusting commments either.

  76. His apology is so disgustingly slimy as to be worse than none at all. The weasel slanders Governor Palin’s 18-year-old daughter and now absolves himself by claiming the outrage is because the audience thought he was slandering her 14-year-old daughter.
    Letterman is what he’s always been — a worthless slob.

  77. Letterman is no different than Bill (Big Head/nose)Maher, Susan Serandon, Joy Behar, Barbara Walters, Whoopy Goldpig, Sherri Shepherd, Rosie O’Donnell and the rest of the Hollywood yahoo D lister Jerks out there walking around like a bunch of jellyfish with absolutely no backbone. I wish these A/H’s would grow a pair. It makes me sick that we have degenerates like this spewing their pathetic pablum out like we give a damn. We should stick them all on the front lines of Iraq and see what big mouths they have then.
    The demoralization that’s going on in this great Country of ours should not be “Politically Correct” and stopped once and for all before we all go down the perverbial Crapper! Letterman is a Jerk. What he did was indeed intentional and the only reason he apologized was because he had to, otherwise they would have fired him…period! Here’s a guy who has a kid out of wedlock and he’s making Palin Family jokes?? Typical castrated left winger. On the “Jerk” scale, Letterman is a 10+

  78. I personally think no one’s kids should be joked about, whether it’s Bristol, her sister, the Bush twins, Chelsey Clinton, or Obama’s kids. Yes, the joke was tasteless and I was ready to back Sarah Palin until I read one of her comments. When talking about free speech and Letterman’s right to tell the joke and her right to publically disagree with it, she said, “This is all thanks to our U.S. military men and women putting their lives on the line for us to secure America’s right to free speech,” Why did she have to go and drag the military into what is a personal argument between her and Letterman.
    My father and brother are both Vets and when they read this, they were deeply disgusted. To them, it sounded like she was campaigning and thought it was totally insincere. I was saddened that she would take this tasteless joke about ther daughter and turn it into a political opportunity. I think there are no winners here, just two losers who need to both go away and keep quiet.
    Just for the record neither I nor my father are Liberals.

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  80. No matter what the perception, it was an amoral, insensitive, uncalled for joke, no matter whom or the age of the person at which it was aimed. No matter what Gov. Palin and her family did, during and after the campaign, she and her family became the most ridiculed, criticized and satirized family in the United States, especially by the liberal media and the liberal commedians. I often wondered how Tina Fey would have reacted had Gov. Palin ignored her at a public event. Can Americans say “manners” anymore?

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