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Posted at 1:03 AM ET, 11/16/2010

Anti-Palin remarks get snipped from Tina Fey's Mark Twain Prize acceptance speech

By The Reliable Source

Tina Fey during her acceptance speech, 2010. (Marvin Joseph /TWP)

Tina Fey got a little political airbrushing from PBS on Sunday night during its annual broadcast of the Kennedy Center's Mark Twain Prize for American Humor.

Fey, this year's recipient of the prize, caused a few ripples during her acceptance speech at the ceremony on Tuesday when she mock-praised "conservative women" like Sarah Palin, whom Fey has so memorably impersonated on "Saturday Night Live." As reported in Wednesday's Post, Fey said the rise of conservative women in politics is good for all women, "unless you don't want to pay for your own rape kit ... unless you're a lesbian who wants to get married to your partner of 20 years ... [or] unless you believe in evolution."

But that's not what viewers heard when PBS and WETA (Channel 26) broadcast an edited version of Fey's speech on Sunday.

The part about rape kits and evolution was gone, leaving only Fey's more harmonious -- and blander -- comments about Palin and politics: "I would be a liar and an idiot if I didn't thank Sarah Palin for helping get me here tonight. My partial resemblance and her crazy voice are the two luckiest things that ever happened to me. All kidding aside, I'm so proud to represent American humor, I am proud to be an American, and I am proud to make my home in the 'not real' America. And I am most proud that during trying times, like an orange [terror] alert, a bad economy or a contentious election, that we as a nation retain our sense of humor."

Was PBS shielding its viewers from Fey's more pointed remarks?
"It was not a political decision," responded Peter Kaminsky, one of the broadcast's executive producers. "We had zero problems with anything she said."
But with the 90-minute show running about 19 minutes long after the taping Tuesday night, a few things had to give, Kaminsky said. "We took a lot out," he said. "We snipped from everyone."

This isn't the first time editors have stepped on a Twain recipient's bit. When George Carlin was posthumously awarded the prize in 2008, the show's producers spared the ears of the Kennedy Center audience by bleeping out the naughty parts from a video of Carlin doing his famous "Seven Dirty Words" routine. Thus, a monologue about words you couldn't say on television became one you couldn't say in the Kennedy Center, either.

-- Paul Farhi

By The Reliable Source  | November 16, 2010; 1:03 AM ET
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Tina Fey owes her career to Sarah Palin and should be more circumspect in bashing Palin.

She, as with other "entertainers" assumes that the audience was made up only of people with her political point of view ... surely that's a stretch in this day and age; and personal character assassination, for no reason other than to generate a laugh is unkind.

I guess it's our fault ... giving women the Vote wasn't such a smart idea after all, was it?

Posted by: Hazmat77 | November 16, 2010 8:55 AM | Report abuse

"Tina Fey owes her career to Sarah Palin and should be more circumspect in bashing Palin."

You have obviously never seen "30 Rock", SNL, "Mean Girls", or "Baby Mama".

Posted by: hdimig | November 16, 2010 9:30 AM | Report abuse

Yes, I suspect that the previous poster HAS seen 30 rock, Mean Girls and/or Baby Mama, and that's why he/she observed that Tina owes her current fame to her Sarah Palin resemblance. She was nobody until Sarah came along.

Posted by: gene4655 | November 16, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

"We snipped from everyone" is ludicrous.

You don't honor someone then *snip* their comments because the show ran long. You snip the he** out of everyone else and leave the honoree's words alone -- unless you're the political puddle known as Washington, DC, apparently.


Posted by: cfow1 | November 16, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Typical grandstanding by a liberal who uses the podium to spew personal views.

Posted by: bal503 | November 16, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

By the way, why was her hair done like the Bride of Frankenstein?

Posted by: bal503 | November 16, 2010 10:46 AM | Report abuse

David Koch did the "snipping" personally for PBS. It will be a cold day in Hades before PBS gets another penny from me or anyone in my family.

Posted by: clintt5 | November 16, 2010 11:36 AM | Report abuse

Because PBS is on thin ice as it is.


You're kidding.

There is no need for a publiclly subsidized, left leaning broadcast network in 2010.

Posted by: drjcarlucci | November 16, 2010 11:52 AM | Report abuse

I am kind of stunned by posters who think Tina Fey "owes Palin her career." Tina Fey was already famous and EXTREMELY successful years before anybody outside of Alaska ever even heard of the freakshow that is sarah palin.

Posted by: tommytunes | November 16, 2010 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Some people don't get out much if they never heard of Tina Fey before Sara Palin.

Posted by: mac7 | November 16, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

Oh yes, Goobers, the Kennedy Center gave Tina Fey the Mark Twain prize for American Humor ONLY for the Sarah Palin impersonation.
Her Palin impersonation is the only reason YOU have heard of Tina Fey.You don't watch "30 Rock", because ther are no laugh tracks to tell you when something funny was said. You didn't see "Baby Momma" because you were too busy helping your young baby momma study for her GED.
Keep voting for Bristol Palin on "Dancing With The Stars", even though she can't dance. It reminds me of your vote for national candidates that can't govern.

Posted by: cjbass55 | November 16, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Once again, censorship raises it's ugly head. I found Fey's remarks humorous. Mark Twain would probably not be so nice. Let's remember that it's Palin that has the white trash family....daughter pregnant at 17, a redneck husband, and Palin herself is as dumb as a rock when it comes to politics and life in general. If this isn't good material for comedians, I don't know what is.

Posted by: glasgowafb | November 16, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Tina Fey's entire persona is "snipped" and shrunken. Like a cockle-bur, she has ridden Gov. Sarah Palin's bootlaces for two years. Doesn't she have any other reason to exist?

Posted by: bubbasouth | November 16, 2010 1:57 PM | Report abuse

I swear I watched her make those remarks. Did PBS in NYC show it full length or was there another broadcast of her exceptance speech? The audience was so Washington, they mostly froze when she made those remarks.

Posted by: frenchtoast | November 16, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

She's right and all those bagging Tina here dont address what she actually said. "Riding the coatails of Palin"? seriously.... She has talent and may have saved us from having a total buffoon as a VP. Her true life impression of her still permeates.

Go Tina

Posted by: Chops2 | November 16, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

I guess Sarah Palin fans want to pay for their own rape kits if they get raped.

Posted by: solsticebelle | November 16, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Paul Farhi's closing line was more a reflection of our times than a history lesson. My first visit to the Kennedy Center's Concert Hall in the 1970s was for a George Carlin live appearance, which included, yes, the "Seven Dirty Words" routine - performed to thunderous applause.

Posted by: JHLibby | November 16, 2010 5:36 PM | Report abuse

First, Tina Fey was the SNL head writer and cast member before Sarah Palin was a blip on the national scene. Second, how is it character assassination to list the things Sarah Palin has said ON RECORD or has supported ON RECORD? So now its slanderous to cite somebody's words or actions? Sarah and her followers sure like to wrap themselves in the cloak of victimization.

Posted by: eagoldb | November 16, 2010 6:35 PM | Report abuse

"There is no need for a publiclly subsidized, left leaning broadcast network in 2010."

You betcha. Partiality is sooo awful.
So whaddaya say we get rid of Fox News?

Posted by: kim4 | November 16, 2010 8:44 PM | Report abuse

Tina Fey's rape kit joke is ugly because it is a debunked lie promoted by Palin haters at the Huffington Post and Daily Kos.

Fey's Lesbian joke ?

For any who care to read Palin's biography... they'll note Gov. Palin vetoed a bipartisan Alaskan bill that denies benefits to same-sex couples... and that one of Palin's best friends is a Lesbian.

Who knew ? Palin was pro-marriage and pro-gay ?

Posted by: pvilso24 | November 16, 2010 10:14 PM | Report abuse

@pvilso24: Granted the rape kit joke is not in direct relation to Sarah Palin, it's related to candidates SHE BACKED AND WENT TO BAT FOR. Now if you're going to tell us that the great and wise Palin wouldn't have backed any candidate who attempted to make women pay for their own rape kits (hint: it's more than one candidate) had she known, well now you're acting just as ignorant as you're claim she is. And by the way, the bill she vetoed had less to do with denying benefits to same sex couples as it had to do with restrictions on benefits for state employees. Get your facts FROM the facts, not spoon fed by Palin's multimillion dollar quitting machine. And please, pro-gay? She has a best friend who is a lesbian??? Seriously, you're not trotting that out as proof. How does this best friend feel about Palin? What's her name? Where is she from? How does she know Palin? Guess what. Not even Palin's own website will answer any questions. It's called if we don't answer they can't prove we lied.

Posted by: ricochet252 | November 16, 2010 11:19 PM | Report abuse

This is such a black eye on PBS, normally considered beyond reproach. If we get an honest representation of a comic genius like Fey, the whole premise of public broadcasting is suspect.

If we can't trust PBS, thats it, all is finally lost.

Especially over something so funny, but still edgy, satirical and true. Its tragic to lose my trust in PBS. It'll be easy to turn of those pledge drives now.

Posted by: RillyKewl | November 17, 2010 11:13 PM | Report abuse

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