The "Duck Dynasty" reality program that focuses on the antics of a rural Southern family is a rare topic for inside-the-Beltway Sunday talk shows, but the roundtable discussion on ABC's "This Week" program got heated after a clip was played of Sarah Palin calling the A&E Channel "quacks" for its decision to suspend patriarch Phil Robertson
"This whole First Amendment rights argument to me is, if you want to talk about hypocrites, to me Sarah Palin is a hypocrite," said ABC News political analyst Matthew Dowd.
"I didn't see her defend the Dixie Chicks, I didn't see her defending Martin Bashir," said Dowd, referring to the MSNBC host who was fired after making degrading remarks about the former Alaska governor.
"And so each side uses the First Amendment like a club every time somebody says something stupid," Dowd said.
Former Treasury Secretary Steven Rattner agreed that the "Duck Dynasty" controversy wasn't about free speech, saying: "I think it is not a free speech question, A&E has the right to do what it wants."
Fox News anchor Greta Van Susteren said the network was hypercritical for suspending the star yet continuing with plans to air a marathon of shows Sunday and air new episodes in January.
Louisiana native and Democratic strategist Donna Brazile confessed that she watches the show "for the recipes, of course," and while she criticized Robertson's comments about gays, she argued that the situation was a free speech issue.
"As a Louisianan, I know people who will say things aloud that more sophisticated people will keep to themselves," Brazile said.
"He was wrong, what he said was insensitive, he's apologized. I don't know if anyone will accept his apology," Brazile said.
"He has a right to free speech, Sarah Palin has a right to defend him … and the rest of us have a right to turn the channel," Brazile said.
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