Just watched the first segment of the Palin-Gibson ABC News interview.

An Aside: I predict it will be the highest rated network news show in ten years.

Quick reaction:

Not very good. Palin struck me as too strident, breathless, and unsteady. She was talking way too fast, which I took as a sign of nervousness. Gibson was smug and patronizing (but understated enough that he will probably get by without too much grief). But all the "are you sure you are ready" questions seemed a bit gratuitous. Asked and answered. Move on counselor.

She was a bit too scattered (sort of a like a shotgun). And a bit too staccato (like an M-16).

Sometimes she was non-responsive and visibly rattled.

However, for a first time out, I am not sure she gave any mortal answers. She was a bit too anxious to give Israel unqualified support (which will not go over well with the MSM--but pro-Israel positions always make sense to the heartland). She was also a bit too ready to court war with Russia over Georgia and/or the Ukraine. Again, this will draw some snickers and gasps from the striped-pants crowd, but potentially okay with hardhats, farmers, and hunters.

She didn't remember the "Bush Doctrine of 2002" (which, honestly, I couldn't quite get my mind around either on the spur of the moment). It was preemption. I am not sure if Gibson made her look bad on that one--or if he just looked like a pompous know-it-all, pulling out obscure questions to trip up the candidate.

But, as I say, if there is nothing there that plays as a lethal YouTube soundbite, she is probably okay. Even if it was highly watched (relative to the normal viewing audience for the evening news), the vast majority of voters did not tune in--and will not really care.

Not good--but, hopefully, not devastating.

But this probably signals the end of our glorious thirteen-day run and the beginning of a rough patch. This campaign is going to be nip and tuck, up and down, and down to the wire.