Another Fair and Balanced Moderator

Gwen Ifill: Will She Be Fair?

Gwen Ifill: Will She Be Fair?

News first broke yesterday that the moderator for this evening’s vice-presidential debate, Gwen Ifill of PBS, is currently writing a book that is due to be published on inauguration day. The topic of the book is rising black politicians, and the primary one is of course Barack Obama.

The book is going to be a paean of praise for Obama as the fastest of the rising stars. My guess is she hopes by releasing it on inauguration day, she will reap a great financial reward as Obama is sworn in.

Is this the person who should be moderating this debate? Now, I’ve already said that most of the media is for Obama anyway, so what’s the difference? Well, Jim Lehrer, who moderated the first presidential debate, is liberal also, but he handled himself well, treating both candidates fairly.

It will be interesting to watch tonight to see how Ifill does. Perhaps the increased scrutiny (due entirely to Fox News and the Internet, not the mainstream media) will force her to be more careful. I hope against hope that she can put aside her political leanings and be fair. But at the very least, no one who is writing a book of the nature that she is currently writing should ever be allowed near a moderator’s chair.

Another point: she is already on record as questioning Palin’s ability to handle the VP post. Is this really someone who should be asking Palin questions? I am going to be alert to the “gotcha” type of question that is intended to trip up a candidate.

Why wasn’t Brit Hume considered as a possible moderator for this debate? Oh, that’s right, he’s not an objective journalist because he works for the “conservative” network, Fox News. We need “objective” journalists like Ifill who work at “objective” networks like PBS. Aren’t you glad there are journalists we can trust?