Palin says she didn't expect her children would be such a popular topic in her campaign. "I would hope that my children would be kind of excluded from the controversy and any of the tabloidization of what's going to go on a campaign, but I knew right off the bat then with the episode that the kids were going to be part of it—good, bad or ugly, it was going to be quite taxing on them."
Sen. McCain did warn Palin that the campaign would be hard on the family, Palin says. "I said: 'You know what? No doubt it is, because I've been in elected office for a decade and a half. The kids have grown up with that.' Of course, though, not knowing how intriguing it would be for some of the haters, for some of the critics, to really delve into our personal life and make more of some of the issues than actually were there."
Palin says she was glad when then-Sen. Barack Obama spoke out to say their kids were off-limits. Still, she says she doesn't think her family got the same treatment as the Obamas. "I wasn't given that privilege of being able to protect my kids, my family. I think there was a little bit of a double...not a little bit, there was a double standard," she says. "There were some times that [Obama] was asked about the treatment of the Palin kids and, yes, he came to our defense and I so respect that."