Barbara Bush talks down Palin nomination
Barbara Bush, the former US first lady, has poured cold water on Sarah Palin's presidential aspirations in a demonstration of the Republican establishment's view that the former governor of Alaska is a dangerous upstart unworthy of national office.
Asked during an interview to share her thoughts about Mrs Palin, Mrs Bush replied: "I sat next to her once, thought she was beautiful." With pursed lips, she added: "And I think she's very happy in Alaska. And I hope she'll stay there."
Mrs Palin, John McCain's vice-presidential running mate in the 2008 election, has admitted that she is seriously considering a bid for the 2012 Republican nomination at a time when her national exposure has never been higher.
Her second book, 'America by Heart', is published tomorrow, the second episode of her TV show, 'Sarah Palin's Alaska' aired last night, while tonight her 20-year-old daughter Bristol will compete in the final of 'Dancing with the Stars'.
The book is billed as a tribute to conservative American values. It includes attacks on President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama, the first lady, as unpatriotic and criticises John F Kennedy for shunning his Catholic faith.
According to an early copy, Mrs Palin discusses at length Kennedy's noted speech on religion during the 1960 campaign, when he said: "I am the Democratic Party's candidate for president, who happens also to be a Catholic."
Mrs Palin said that Kennedy -- the first Catholic elected president -- "essentially declared religion to be such a private matter that it was irrelevant to the kind of country we are".
Ted Widmer, a historian and former speech writer for Bill Clinton, said: "It's putting a negative spin on what was interpreted at the time as a sensible and uplifting message. JFK was trying to protect his own right to be a Catholic and to run for president." (© Daily Telegraph, London)