Now Sarah Palin is taking positions more liberal and less moral than John McCain. At best she's equivocating and supporting spending tax money on unconstitutional programs.
Palin appears to disagree with McCain on sex education
The Republican vice presidential candidate says students should be taught about condoms. Her running mate -- and the party platform -- disagree.
By Seema Mehta, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer September 6, 2008
Palin's running mate, John McCain, and the GOP platform say children should be taught that abstinence until marriage is the only safe way to avoid pregnancy and disease. Palin's position is less clear.
In a widely quoted 2006 survey she answered during her gubernatorial campaign, Palin said she supported abstinence-until-marriage programs. But weeks later, she proclaimed herself "pro-contraception" and said condoms ought to be discussed in schools alongside abstinence.
"I'm pro-contraception, and I think kids who may not hear about it at home should hear about it in other avenues," she said during a debate in Juneau.
Such statements could raise concerns among social conservatives who have been some of Palin's most enthusiastic supporters since she was tapped for the No. 2 spot on the GOP ticket last week.
Leslee Unruh, president of the National Abstinence Clearinghouse and campaign manager of the Vote Yes for Life effort, said children must be given a "clear and concise" message on the benefits of abstinence. Asked about Palin's statement, Unruh said, "I don't think it's clear. It seems disjointed to me.
McCain's campaign did not respond to questions about whether Palin's position is inconsistent with his. But earlier, a campaign spokesperson said McCain believes abstinence is "the only safe and responsible alternative.""To do otherwise is to send a mixed signal to children that, on the one hand they should not be sexually active, but on the other, here is the way to go about it," according to a statement provided by the campaign. "As any parent knows, ambiguity and equivocation leads to problems when it comes to teaching children right from wrong."
Palin's statements date to her 2006 gubernatorial run. In July of that year, she completed a candidate questionnaire that asked, would she support funding for abstinence-until-marriage programs instead of "explicit sex-education programs, school-based clinics and the distribution of contraceptives in schools?"Palin wrote, "Yes, the explicit sex-ed programs will not find my support."
But in August of that year, Palin was asked during a KTOO radio debate if "explicit" programs include those that discuss condoms. Palin said no and called discussions of condoms "relatively benign.""Explicit means explicit," she said. "No, I'm pro-contraception, and I think kids who may not hear about it at home should hear about it in other avenues. So I am not anti-contraception. But, yeah, abstinence is another alternative that should be discussed with kids. I don't have a problem with that. That doesn't scare me, so it's something I would support also."