Have The Wheels Come Off For Hillary?
For a candidate whom everyone expected to march confidently to her party's nomination, Hillary Clinton has begun stumbling and cannot seem to right herself. First came a disaster of an answer at the last presidential debate, and the breathtaking attack on Tim Russert for having the temerity to question her about an immigration issue in her home state. Next came the revelations of question planting at campaign events.
The question-planting business is the latest upheaval in Hillary's Week That Has Not Gone Well.
Muriel Gallo-Chasanoff is a Grinnell University student who threw some softballs for Hillary to spontaneously hit out of the park at a "Town Hall Meeting".....
Today, CNN also notes that the (Clinton campaign's) explanation given for the Grinnell University incident doesn't quite wash, either:
Gallo-Chasanoff, whose story was first reported in the campus newspaper, said what happened was really pretty simple: She says a senior Clinton staffer asked if she'd like to ask the senator a question after an energy speech the Democratic presidential hopeful gave in Newton, Iowa, on November 6.
"I sort of thought about it, and I said 'Yeah, can I ask how her energy plan compares to the other candidates' energy plans?'" Gallo-Chasanoff said Monday night.
"'I don't think that's a good idea," the staffer said, according to Gallo-Chasanoff, "because I don't know how familiar she is with their plans."
He then opened a binder to a page that, according to Gallo-Chasanoff, had about eight questions on it.
"The top one was planned specifically for a college student," she added. " It said 'college student' in brackets and then the question."
(Perhaps the next question was to be asked by "Elderly Nun", and was about The Glory of Hillary's Medicare Plan. With another question about college loans, to be asked by "African American Youth". "Wounded Veteran" to ask "How Evil Is Bush?" Naw....that's all just speculation on my part.)
How many decades has it been since White House Press Conferences weren't as scripted as The Taming of The Shrew? Hasn't it been widely acknowledged that one of the ways to reward loyalty in the White House press corps is to allow a reporter to fully participate in the scripted Q & A with the President with the cameras rolling? It goes back to Kennedy, doesn't it? I haven't had time to find out, but if you put SCRIPTED PRESIDENTIAL PRESS CONFERENCE into Google, you'll get 1.7 million hits....
I don't mean to be a Killjoy, but when Leno or Letterman do a side-splitting, spontaneous interview with some actor plugging his new movie? It's scripted. There's at least an outline, and some incredibly talented people are paid a lot of money to write it. (Those writers have gone on strike, BTW.)
When the tribunal of ex-jock TV commentators come out with wonderful pre-game analysis of each player, coach, and team, but seem to struggle to be as articulate at halftime? It's because more of the pre-game can be scripted. (Notice how they all hold and wave their pens and pencils at all times, but nobody seems to be writing anything....)
Have you ever seen the "behind-the-scenes" look at a new movie? Where they're filming a scene, and there's a director, and a cameraman, and a sound woman, and two or three people doing lighting? Have you ever wondered how they do that with "reality" TV, and not fall all over each other as the participants run through the jungle or the streets of Paris?
There's a script.
We're coming out of a year when FEMA employees posed as reporters in a fake news conference, to explain that FEMA was doing a hell of a job.
So does anyone think The Candidates or their handlers are going to leave anything to chance at one of these Town Hall events? Hillary's opponents would be lining up to ask about Gennifer, Whitewater, Vince Foster, Cattle Futures, Monica and The White House Travel Staff.
Give Hillary a break.
That's why the genuine debates, as opposed to The Town Hall Campaign Events, are worth watching. Who knows what Tim Russert or some crazed YouTuber is going to toss out there.
So then the game become a matter of psyching out the debate moderators....Here's more from Captain's Quarters....
They're going to be going at it again Thursday night. 7:00. CNN. It's one of the only things on TV not impacted by a Hollywood Writer's Strike.
Now Drudge reports that the Clinton campaign warned Wolf Blitzer not to get tough in this week's debate, or else:
CNN's Wolf Blitzer has been warned not to focus Thursday's Dem debate on Hillary. 'This campaign is about issues, not on who we can bring down and destroy,' top Clinton insider explains. 'Blitzer should not go down to the levels of character attack and pull 'a Russert.'' Blitzer is set to moderate debate from Vegas, with questions also being posed by Suzanne Malveaux...