Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Palin Still Doesn't Know What Vice President Does

From our you-gotta-be-kidding-me department, we have Sarah Palin once again showing that she doesn’t even understand what the average 12-year-old is learning in school about what the Vice President of the United States does for a living.

On Monday, Palin was asked again about the Vice President's duties by a reporter reading a question submitted by a Colorado third-grader and Palin said this: "They’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…"

Have a look:

Wow. That's going to be news to a bunch of people on Capitol Hill -- not to mention making the framers of the Constitution spin in their graves.

She's blown this one in an embarrassing way before but evidently not enough to actually go to an elementary school encyclopedia and get the right answer, which is that the Vice President is indeed president of the Senate -- but hardly "in charge" of that body.

It's primarily a ceremonial role with the only real function being to cast the deciding vote in the event of any ties. Oh, and the VP also swears in new Senators every two years when a new Congress starts. That's about it. Nothing more. In real life -- you know, where the rest of us live -- the Democratic and Republican leaders in the Senate really run the legislative show.

Think Progress got a statement from Jim Manley, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's spokesman, who said this:

"This comment is all the more puzzling because this is at least the 2nd time she has said this. Gov Palin needs to re-read or perhaps read for the first time the Constitution. While the Vice President presides over the Senate, he or she is not in charge of it. Article 1 says 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 is part of a co-equal branch of the federal government."

Gee, it must have come as a surprise to Senator Reid that he and the minority leader take their orders from the Vice President.

Governor Palin, your sixth-grade civics class is calling.