Palin: Vice President Is in Charge of the Senate

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Tuesday, October 21, 2008 at 2:30 pm

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Think Progress has a great catch. At the end of an interview with a local TV station in Colorado, Gov. Sarah Palin said she thinks the vice president’s job is to be “in charge of the U.S. Senate.”

Third-grader Brandon Garcia asked what Palin thinks the vice president’s job entails. Palin replied:

[T]hey’re in charge of the U.S. Senate so if they want to they can really get in there with the senators and make a lot of good policy changes that will make life better for Brandon and his family and his classroom.

Palin first propounded her expansive views of the vice president’s office during the vice presidential debate with Sen. Joe Biden. When moderator Gwen Ifill asked her if she believes, as Dick Cheney does, that the vice president is not solely a member of the executive branch, Palin responded that there is “much flexibility” in the job.

Well, our founding fathers were very wise there in allowing through the Constitution much flexibility there in the office of the vice president. And we will do what is best for the American people in tapping into that position and ushering in an agenda that is supportive and cooperative with the president’s agenda in that position. Yeah, so I do agree with him that we have a lot of flexibility in there, and we’ll do what we have to do to administer very appropriately the plans that are needed for this nation.

The whole Colorado interview is worth watching. Palin talks taxes, energy and her views on funding programs for special-needs children. The comment about the role of the vice president is around the 7-minute mark.

Comments

23 Comments

Kristin Scott
Comment posted October 21, 2008 @ 12:23 pm

A fifth-grader can tell in which branch the office of the Vice President lies — in the Executive Branch.
It is very clear in the Constitution. Cheney is muddying the waters for his own gain. When he served under the first Bush, he made it clear to Dan Quayle what he thought of the vice presidency. But, nooooo, when he gets the office himself, all of a sudden the Constitution can be seen very differently(!)

Read a text version here:
http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc….


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Comment posted October 21, 2008 @ 12:39 pm

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jarhed
Comment posted October 21, 2008 @ 2:01 pm

Hilarious. Not her comment but yours. *She was talking to a third grader.* And her original comment about the constitutional role of the VP in the senate is spot on: the VP is the “president” of the Senate. He or she has as much power as he or she can negotiate with the SML and the rules commission. In fact, the VP could have quite a bit of power just by showing up every day. Once again, her answers were perfect, and you guys don't know what you are talking about.


Joe
Comment posted October 21, 2008 @ 4:54 pm

The only power a VP has is to break a tie vote. She is not the majority leader of the senate. If you read the constitution it states they are the president but serves no role other than to break a tie vote. She has “No Power” over the Senate. Lets clarify that.. She was not talking to a third grader. She was answering a 3rd graders question on television speaking to the public.


SRM
Comment posted October 21, 2008 @ 5:07 pm

Damn 3rd grade gotca questions.

Jarhead — read the Constitution.


Al
Comment posted October 21, 2008 @ 6:00 pm

check it out


Carolyn
Comment posted October 21, 2008 @ 8:33 pm

.

US Constitution | Article 1 | Section 3:The Vice President of the United States shall be President of the Senate, but shall have no vote, unless they be equally divided.

The Senate shall choose their other officers, and also a President pro tempore, in the absence of the Vice President, or when he shall exercise the office of President of the United States.


Will Keene
Comment posted October 21, 2008 @ 9:00 pm

The Constitution does not state that the VP has no role or authority as President of the Senate other than breaking a tie. It states that the only VOTE a VP has is to break a tie, but otherwise is President of the Senate with the details of the role being unspecified. The early VPs (Adams, Jefferson, Burr) presided over the Senate on a regular basis and made decisions about procedure. The President pro tempore does that now only because the VPs cant be bothered, not because the Constitution wouldnt allow a VP to do so.

I am hugely anti-Palin but my fellows on the left bungled this criticism.


kevin
Comment posted October 22, 2008 @ 1:20 pm

Holy Talking-Points batman! Is this an interview or stump!


steveo
Comment posted October 23, 2008 @ 7:55 pm

unbelievable . . . there's absolutely nothing there . . .


steveo
Comment posted October 24, 2008 @ 2:55 am

unbelievable . . . there's absolutely nothing there . . .


Csq101
Comment posted November 24, 2010 @ 2:27 am

I guess no one can know it all so you gota stay humble otherwise you just end up looking like a dick. It’s hard, especially in your area of expertise to admit you don’t know shit but as soon as you let down the ‘fixed’ mind set people and embrace new information/advice you suddenly start getting more respect. Weird but it happens!!Coach outlet Stores
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Comment posted March 29, 2011 @ 9:57 am

I’m still confused on what was said wrong here? Is it that she said she would make good policy changes when she doesn’t have a vote? The President doesn’t have a vote either but he works with the Senate to make policy changes too. The VP can also, if they choose, sit in the Senate and enforce rules if they so choose, which can have an impact since the VP could only be overruled on their interpretation of the rules but a 60 count vote.

If we wanted to post something about not understanding the vice presidents role maybe we should check with Biden in which article of the Constitution the role is defined under.


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Comment posted March 29, 2011 @ 10:14 am

“I haven’t detected that, haven’t detected that in the polls, haven’t detected that among the base,” he said, wishing “good luck” to any “Georgetown cocktail party person who calls himself a conservative and doesn’t like Palin.”


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