Letterman Apologizes Again For 'Bad' Palin Joke

David Letterman said his joke about Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's daughter was a lousy joke, no matter how you cut it, and he's sorry. But the late-night host insisted that what's got people really riled is the misconception over which Palin daughter the joke was about.

On Monday's edition of "Late Show," Letterman explained that the risque joke thought by some to have targeted Palin's underage daughter, Willow, was actually referring to 18-year-old daughter Bristol. The name of the daughter wasn't mentioned in the joke, which was part of Letterman's monologue on last Monday's show.

It was "a coarse joke," "a bad joke," Letterman told viewers. "But I never thought it was (about) anybody other than the older daughter, and before the show, I checked to make sure, in fact, that she is of legal age, 18."

"The joke, really, in and of itself, can't be defended," he declared.

Even so, the ongoing outcry, led by Palin and her husband, Todd, has centered on Letterman intending to make a joke about the Palins' 14-year-old daughter having sex with a Yankees baseball player.

Todd Palin issued a statement last week that said "any 'jokes' about raping my 14-year-old are despicable."

And Sarah Palin charged Letterman with "sexually perverted comments made by a 62-year-old male celebrity."

On Monday's show, Letterman said, "I'm wondering, 'Well, what can I do to help people understand that I would never make a joke like this?' I've never made jokes like this, as long as we've been on the air, 30 long years."

If that's the misconception — that the joke was aimed at a 14-year-old — he understands why people are upset, he said. "I would be upset myself." Letterman has said from the beginning that he thought the Palin daughter who attended the Yankee game was Bristol.

"I feel that I need to do the right thing here and apologize for having told that joke," he said. "It's not your fault that it was misunderstood, it's my fault that it was misunderstood."

He apologized to both daughters, "and also to the Governor and her family and everybody else who was outraged by the joke," he said as the studio audience applauded. "I'm sorry about it, and I'll try to do better in the future."


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Neo Location: Not Acrapahoe on Jun 18, 2009 at 09:25 PM
    Alot of people say Arapahoe is the the white trash and crystal-meth capital of the United States. I have seen nothing to call the supposition into question.
  • by Hank Location: Arapahoe on Jun 18, 2009 at 08:39 AM
    People are still talking about this trailer trash from the crystal-meth capital of Alaska?
  • by Tad Location: Jamesville on Jun 17, 2009 at 10:02 PM
    Thank you Derek, you get your socialist party papers. You have proven that you can completely ignore the facts and stick to the party talking points. You hadn't come close to forgeting her. Your attempt at trying to convince people that you are not as immoral as Dave in your parting shot is duly noted, although a bit thin and obviously disingenuous. Keep following the phony sheppard, you'll eventually get sheared like the sheep that you are.
  • by Derek Location: Greenville on Jun 17, 2009 at 05:12 AM
    I all but forgot about her! I guess now she is getting the exposure she desperately needs in order to be a key figure in the GOP. but it still was a bad joke Dave.....
  • by Tad Location: Jamesville on Jun 17, 2009 at 02:05 AM
    givemeabreak, take a break, if you don't want to participate in the dabate, don't. If no boundaries are placed on "jokes", what will be next? Perhaps jokes about raping infants. Some idiots just don't get it. It is not just a joke when you start making references to the rape of a 14 yr old child by grown men. Dave Letterman is a perv but he obviously isn't the only one devoid of morals.
  • by Gator Location: NC on Jun 16, 2009 at 05:59 PM
    DLH: So a being a friend of the person of the bombing of a building is not a friend of a terrorist. Come on now, at least stop pretending that Bill Ayers was not a terrorist. Bill Ayers is probably still complaining about 9/11 not being his idea. Actually it is probably his idea, but being watched by the FBI, couldn't put a plan in place.
  • by givemeabreak on Jun 16, 2009 at 01:25 PM
    Give me a break. I personally like Sarah Palin, but all this hype over a joke from everyone is rediculous. It was just a freaking joke. Everybody knows that. Thats what David Letterman does, he tells jokes. Get over it all of you no matter who you are siding with. Dont you think there are more impt things going on in the world today to focus on?
  • by Tad Location: Jamesville on Jun 16, 2009 at 08:30 AM
    NotDave, your comment is summarily dismissed for lack of any factual information. Sarah Palin's outrage was immediate and well placed, directly on the turd who told the perverted joke and his supporters. http://im/blahblahblahblah.
  • by DLH Location: Goldsboro on Jun 16, 2009 at 08:17 AM
    I would not apoligize to that woman for anything as much dirt she threw in Barack Obama's face during the campaign. Calling him a friend of terrorist and a socialist. Sarah Palin looks like she's intelligent until she opens her fat mouth, then you realize how ignorant she is. What a loser!
  • by Anonymous Location: NC on Jun 16, 2009 at 07:57 AM
    He needs to get off the air. He is not funny at all.
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