September 15th, 2008
06:54 PM ET

Erica’s News Note: Checking In

Erica Hill
AC360° Correspondent

A little over a year after the Crandall Canyon mine collapsed, the faces of the nine miners killed in the tragedy now grace a public memorial. Six miners were trapped when the Crandall Canyon mine collapsed on Aug 6, 2007. Ten days later, three of their colleagues who were trying to save the trapped men were killed when the mine rumbled again.

Miner’s Memorial Park was dedicated on Sunday. The monument – featuring the faces of the nine men lost in the mine – Is cast in bronze.


Oprah – an open supporter of Barack Obama for President – said recently she would not have Sarah Palin on her show until after the election. In a statement released earlier this month, Winfrey said she thinks Sarah Palin would be a “fantastic interview”, but reiterated her decision not to use her show “as a platform for any of the candidates”. Obama has been on the show twice to promote his books. The statement on Oprah’s website points out both appearances occurred before she endorsed his candidacy.

But Oprah’s decision to keep the show politics-free has some women organizing boycotts of her media empire.

What do you think, should Oprah have Palin on simply because she’s a woman? Or are you as a viewer better off with the show as it is?


We knew Tina Fey would make a perfect Sarah Palin, but it was even better than I imagined. In case you missed SNL this week – or didn’t get the YouTube link yet – enjoy!

Filed under: Erica Hill • Erica's News Note
soundoff (29 Responses)
  1. Don, WA

    I hate to admit it – but I've never seen "The Oprah Winfrey Show". I've glanced it but never seen the whole show – no where near the whole show. Not that I don't like her, just did'nt interest me – I would have watched a Palin interview though, especially since Palin does'nt seem to be too talkative outside of speeches. It's Oprah's show though. WOW – a celebrity that does'nt want to have a political impact! I've never seen that before either. Nice she squeezed Obama in before the revelation though.

    And thanks for the SNL link – I missed it saturday. Very good and very funny!

    September 15, 2008 at 11:25 pm |
  2. Mark Mosco

    That SNL skit was hilarious. Unfortunately, it was painfully downhill from there. Better writing people!-or overhaul the players!

    September 15, 2008 at 11:22 pm |
  3. Mark Mosco

    Erica, What a touching video regarding the memorial. That was an excellent idea on how to remember the those courageous men.

    September 15, 2008 at 11:20 pm |
  4. lampe

    I wonder, What people would be saying, if the shoe was on the other foot? What if she supported,McCain\Palin, and had Palin on? Wonder what Blacks would be saying about her not allowing the first Black candidate, to not be on her show.? Funny how some people only see things one way.

    September 15, 2008 at 10:09 pm |
  5. Tracy Kennedy, Colonial Heights, VA

    Those boycotts against Oprah are ridiculous. Oprah is perfectly capable of deciding her show's agenda, and she has chosen not be divisive by bringing politics into it. Why can't they respect that?

    Thank you for bringing an update on the miners. I'm glad their families can have something more than just a headstone to remember their loved ones by.

    And yes, Tina Fey is my hero now. ;D

    September 15, 2008 at 10:03 pm |
  6. Renee

    We all knew Tina Fey looked like Sarah Palin, but man she nailed the voice, didn't she? Hilarious!

    They did a nice job with that memorial. I can't believe how long it takes to do them sometimes (like the 9/11 memorial), and this one seems to have been done professionally in a timely matter to memorialize those that risked their lives.

    September 15, 2008 at 9:20 pm |
  7. Megan Dresslar

    Hellooo Erica,
    I agree with bloggers........ Tina Fey made me laugh on Saturday night Live!!!!! she was so great job look-like Sarah Palin....... I love that show Saturday Night Live......... she is so funny one!!!! she is best actress that show!!! I will see you soon on program and Live blog!!!
    See you there!!!!
    Megan D.
    Shoreline, Wa

    September 15, 2008 at 9:20 pm |
  8. Heather

    Its sad that these men had to die to begin with. The owner lied to everyone about the type of mining he was doing.

    Oprah had Pres Bush on her show before he won. Oprah used to be like Ellen in that it was a show to talk about things and to help people. Now that she owns her own show and has pretty much focused on herself the show is about her and what she likes. I stopped watching her when she built that school in Africa and named it after herself. Even her magazine has only her face on it. Everything seems to be about her. Ellen is smart in that she knows many people watch her so she doesnt endorse anyone and has all the candidates on. Oprah will lose alot of viewers because she is endorsing Obama. Oprah has a huge audience that is not being served because of this. They will watch other programs to see their candidate. I think these Palin supporters have a valid point and have the right to do what they are doing. Its never a good idea to endorse a political candidate, you end up losing part of your viewing audience. I dont know why Oprah doesnt want to be open and inclusive to all the candidates its fair and allows everyone a chance to be seen and heard.

    I thought Tina Fey was wonderful and so so so funny!! I loved it. It was perfect with Amy doing Hillary.

    September 15, 2008 at 9:18 pm |
  9. Annie Kate

    Oprah can have on her show whoever she wants whenever she wants – I think she is right though to wait until after the election. Oprah's show isn't a political platform and its good that she is going to keep it from being one. I probably still won't watch her though!

    Annie Kate
    Birmingham AL

    September 15, 2008 at 9:17 pm |
  10. Shane

    Even though I am a democrat voting for republican, I'm neutral on the decision from Oprah not to inteview Palin at least until after the election.

    September 15, 2008 at 9:07 pm |
  11. AJ

    As a midwestern white woman who's supposed to love Palin, I believe Oprah can have whomever she wants on the show. We don't disagree w/Palin personally just some of her (Palins) views aren't as women friendly as they could be.

    September 15, 2008 at 9:03 pm |
  12. Anthony Taylor

    It would seem to me a tough maverick such as Sarah Palin , would
    want to be on hard core political show where the interviewer cuts you
    off on every answer of questions they themselves asked .come on ,
    the" Oprah Winphrey show " sounds more like a "power puff girl " than a maverick. I'm sure Keith Olberman would open a spot for her on his show.

    September 15, 2008 at 8:58 pm |
  13. Kathy, Chicago

    Hi Erica! I missed SNL, but have seen the skit on the morning shows. I also saw you on the Sat morning show again. Great job! I only watch Oprah when AC is on, so my view doesn't count. I don't watch a lot of daytime. Oprah can put anyone on she wants. Please tell AC to stop swimming with water moccasins! CNN did a great job covering IKE.

    September 15, 2008 at 8:43 pm |
  14. Betty Ann, Nacgdoches,TX

    Hey Erica!
    I am one of the few who now has power in Nac. 2 hrs. north of Houston.( because I live close to an evacuation shelter.
    Most here are in devestation. Since my power has been out I have not even heard any reports from Houston or Galveston. I have evacuees in my house!
    What happened? My son is in Katy and can not get into Houston to work or help.
    I hope we have some news from Ike's damage tonight.
    This was really BAD Erica!
    Personally we were blessed.
    Blessings to all who have suffered from Ike.

    September 15, 2008 at 8:43 pm |
  15. Renee

    Love her or hate her - that's Oprah! One of the most powerful WOMEN in television. When Oprah determined that she would support Obama she knew what she was doing. Oprah is smart and powerful.

    Women from all walks of life - young, middle-aged and retired, rich and poor, Democrats, Republicans, Independents, single, married, divorced and re-married have helped fuel her tremendous success.

    Oprah just has just (temporarily) forgot where she came from and who made her a success WOMEN. By snubbing Governor Palin, she said Palin was not good enough for her show. She discounted her before she met Palin just because she was a Republican. I wonder how many producers and owners discounted Oprah when she started her career because she was African American and maybe too large for television.

    Maybe soon Oprah will re-consider her decision. It may be one of the best decisions she will ever make.

    September 15, 2008 at 8:35 pm |
  16. Lilibeth

    It's Oprah's show, so it's her prerogative. But I'm glad she decided not to have her on. I'd have done the same thing if it were my show. However at this point, I'm looking forward to seeing them in debates, where they talk about real issues, as opposed to appearances in talk shows.

    Edmonds, Washington

    September 15, 2008 at 8:09 pm |
  17. Hannah Storm

    I hope Tina Fey as Sarah Palin is the Shot tonight. The opening skit will go down as a SNL classic and Tina was perfect. She was so spot on as Sarah Palin it is amazing

    September 15, 2008 at 7:52 pm |
  18. Marie

    Oprah shedding tears at the DNC apparently did not count. Who is she fooling?

    September 15, 2008 at 7:52 pm |
  19. Michael, NC

    I hate Oprah Winfrey. She is so fake. IMO

    September 15, 2008 at 7:40 pm |
  20. Jon - Melbourne, FL

    Tina Fey is a GENIUS! She nailed that accent and the crazy gestures Palin does. Amy Poehler totally rocks as Hilary Clinton too! They are the best team!

    September 15, 2008 at 7:31 pm |
  21. GF, Los Angeles

    Since Oprah had Obama on twice only to promote his book then no she does not have to have Palin on her show. It'd be a different story if Obama came on to promote his Presidency then Palin should be offered the same.

    Tina Fey's impression of Palin was classic! I almost want McCain and her to win just to see what other parodies come about on Palin.

    September 15, 2008 at 7:31 pm |
  22. Tammy, Berwick, LA

    The SNL skit was hilarious. Actually, the whole show was hilarious. It was great to see Tina Fey back on, though.

    As for Oprah and Palin, who cares? I respect both women's life stories. I respect what they have done professionally. Oprah has the right to invite on her show whomever she wants, though. And honestly, nothing against Sarah Palin, but Oprah has over the years had women (and men) of a lot more substance, grit, inspiration, endurance and courage than Palin will ever be. Oprah's show. Oprah's call.

    I'm glad there is a memorial for those involved in that mining accident. It won't bring them back, but at least there's healing in having a place to go and remember the good.

    September 15, 2008 at 7:27 pm |
  23. Alheli Picazo, ("Ala-Lee Picasso"), Calgary, Alberta, Canada

    Hey Erica!!
    The SNL skit was phenominal!!! I can't wait to see what's in store for next week!!

    As for boycotting Oprah, do these republican women have nothing better to do?? Why on earth should Oprah be forced to have ANYONE on her show simply because they happen to be a woman?? Plus, Oprah is on record at stating that she will not allow her show to be a political platform!!! She has NOT had Obama on since he announced he was going to run for the presidency, nor has she hosted Biden or McCain! Also, she has made it very clear that Palin is welcome to appear after the election is over!!

    On second thought, maybe she SHOULD invite Palin on the show. It's not likely Palin would accpet the invitation and put herself in the position of having to answer *gulp* QUESTIONS!! Haha!

    September 15, 2008 at 7:20 pm |
  24. Pam Prudil

    Hi Erica,
    My condolence again to the families of the miners killied in the mining tragedy. I still remember the frustration , and eventual sadness or the search.
    As for Oprah, she has made it clear that she's for Obama. If she interviews Sarah Palin after the election, there's nothing wrong with that. Its her show, and she should be able to do as she wants. We don't have to agree with her, but we have no right to judge her too.

    September 15, 2008 at 7:20 pm |
  25. Dee from CT

    Folks love to make something out of nothing!
    Oparah never said she would not interview Palin, she'll just book her after the election. In fact Oprah has gone on record stating that at the start of this presidential campaign she made the decision to not use her show as a platform for ANY candidates (this was WAY before Palin was in the picture – but Hillary already was (if we're going to use the woman card here)). If people are this upset that Oprah is not interviewing Palin, why weren't they upset that she also did not interviewed McCain, Biden, Clinton, Romney, etc? Besides, are we to assume that Oprah is an approved media person for Palin to face? After all it's not like every media person can have access to this VP candidate. Did the rules change?

    September 15, 2008 at 7:15 pm |
  26. Fay, CA

    Most people are well aware that Oprah backs Obama and if she has recently decided to keep all politics off of her show, there is no reason that she should feel obligated to have Palin on now. I'd have to disagree with Oprah's statement about Palin being a "fantastic interview" - the McCain campaign doesn't seem to want her to go off script and she doesn't seem to be able to offer up much in the way of details about her qualifications or record as governor other than your standard talking points.

    September 15, 2008 at 7:12 pm |
  27. Alexander

    Hey there, Erica. Ready for the big week ahead?: ) I see that Oprah is sticking to her original decision. Since when was commitment to a decision a bad thing? Last time I checked, double-standards was not considered 'polite' so I don't see why people would complain about Oprah, seeing as how she has honored her decision. Apparently, people want things both ways. Anyway, hope your evening is going well, Erica.: ) I did see clips of the SLN run, and I did think it was such a good impression- I was impressed.: ) No pun intended.; )

    September 15, 2008 at 7:04 pm |
  28. Tracey - Boston


    Tina Fey was excellent!!!! Almost too good.

    September 15, 2008 at 7:02 pm |
  29. pati mc., camp hill, pa

    Hey Erica,

    Thank you for the update on the Crandall Canyon Miners and the memorial. The whole thing still makes me sad/angry, but thankfully they have been memorialzied. Small thanks, but still.....

    Oprah is right in not turning her show into a political arena. There are many other forums for this and I admire her decision.

    I saw Tina Fey's rendition of Palin and honest to God, at first I thought it was really Sarah!!!! Tina is one amazingly talented lady. Love her!

    September 15, 2008 at 7:00 pm |