“My personal opinion”
Here’s what Governor Palin said about abortion in her interview with Charlie Gibson:
GIBSON: In the time I have left, I want to talk about some social issues.
GIBSON: Roe v. Wade, do you think it should be reversed?
PALIN: I think it should and I think that states should be able to decide that issue… I am pro-life. I do respect other people’s opinion on this, also, and I think that a culture of life is best for America… What I want to do, when elected vice president, with John McCain, hopefully, be able to reach out and work with those who are on the other side of this issue, because I know that we can all agree on the need for and the desire for fewer abortions in America and greater support for adoption, for other alternatives that women can and should be empowered to embrace, to allow that culture of life. That’s my personal opinion on this, Charlie.
GIBSON: John McCain would allow abortion in cases of rape and incest. Do you believe in it only in the case where the life of the mother is in danger?
PALIN: That is my personal opinion.
GIBSON: Would you change and accept it in rape and incest?
PALIN: My personal opinion is that abortion allowed if the life of the mother is endangered. Please understand me on this. I do understand McCain’s position on this. I do understand others who are very passionate about this issue who have a differing.
GIBSON: Embryonic stem cell research, John McCain has been supportive of it.
PALIN: You know, when you’re running for office, your life is an open book and you do owe it to Americans to talk about your personal opinion, which may end up being different than what the policy in an administration would be. My personal opinion is we should not create human life, create an embryo and then destroy it for research, if there are other options out there… And thankfully, again, not only are there other options, but we’re getting closer and closer to finding a tremendous amount more of options, like, as I mentioned, the adult stem cell research.
Sarah Palin refers to her “personal opinion” five times in this brief segment. I think this rivals Joe Biden’s usage in his interview with Brokaw. She seems very anxious to drive home the point. It’s personal, not political. She also strongly hints that we should not expect her personal opinion to have any influence over the policies of a McCain administration.
TRANSLATION: “Don’t worry, pro-choicers, my personal opinions are no threat whatsoever to your cherished right to kill unborn children. Neither will my strictly personal opinions have any influence over the policies of John McCain. Please vote for John McCain despite my personal opinions, which don’t matter in this election, because they’re just personal.”