Appearing as a guest on Monday's CNN Tonight, former CBS anchor Katie Couric blamed former Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin for stoking animosity against the "lamestream media" and President Barack Obama as she also repeated a disputed claim that an audience member at a 2008 Republican rally shouted a death threat against then-candidate Obama.
As she and CNN host Don Lemon fretted over President Donald Trump's anti-press rhetoric at his rallies, Couric brought up Palin and recalled: "She really started instigating a lot of that stuff with the 'lamestream media.'"
A bit later, after Lemon brought up the time when 2008 GOP presidential nominee John McCain defended Obama at one of his campaign events in response to an audience member, he complained that Palin "did the opposite," leading Couric to respond:
Yeah, she -- people would yell, "Treason!" at these rallies. She would say, "I don't believe Barack Obama sees America the way we see America." There would be all kinds of things yelled, and she would never -- unlike John McCain -- try to lower the temperature at these rallies.
And so many people kind of think the atmosphere she created and the kind of way she connected and riled up the base ... that that really, the genesis of President Trump's kind of interaction with his crowds at his rallies really, the seed was planted by Sarah Palin.
Lemon then read from an article by Couric in which she recalled, "Palin's anti-Obama diatribe led a man to yell out, 'Kill him!' Palin did not push back against her often angry crowds." And then, "Palin not only refused to lower the temperature -- she seemed to basque in that kind of heat."
Couric injected: "And was a harbinger of things to come."
Not mentioned was that the Secret Service denied that the "Kill him!" incident happened.