Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina's gift of glib gab backfired on her Tuesday when she became too candid for her own political good.
Fiorina, an economic adviser to Sen. John McCain, was asked on KTRS Radio whether she thinks Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has the experience "to run a major company like Hewlett-Packard."
"No, I don't," Fiorina said. "But you know what? That's not what she's running for."
So she doesn't have the chops to run a company but can handle the role of president of the United States? I wonder what Palin's handlers think about that one.
Back in the day, when Fiorina was running HP, her PR meisters would have blanched at some such unscripted response. I've interviewed Fiorina several times over the years and found her to be on message all of the time--sometimes unnervingly so.
But now that she's on a different stage, Fiorina finds herself the object of intense media scrutiny over her inability to stop flapping her gums. Asked to clarify her remarks later, during an appearance with MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell, Fiorina had this to say:
"Well, I don't think John McCain could run a major corporation. I don't think Barack Obama could run a major corporation. I don't think that Joe Biden could run a major corporation. But on the other hand, a major corporation is not the same as being the president or the vice president of the United States. It is a fallacy to suggest that the country is like a company."
She would know," quipped MSNBC's Keith Olbermann. "She got fired for running that company."