Daily Revolt

November 10, 2007

Clinton Campaign Admits to Planting Town Hall Question

This revelation comes at the worst possible time, when Hillary Clinton's poll numbers are plunging. Slick Billary got caught in one of their classic dirty tricks. It's backfiring:
Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Clinton’s campaign admitted Friday that it planted a global warming question in Newton, Iowa, Tuesday during a town hall meeting to discuss clean energy.

Clinton campaign spokesman Mo Elliethee admitted that the campaign had planted the question and said it would not happen again.

[...]"After her speech, Clinton accepted questions. But according to Grinnell College student Muriel Gallo-Chasanoff ’10, some of the questions from the audience were planned in advance. 'They were canned,' she said. Before the event began, a Clinton staff member approached Gallo-Chasanoff to ask a specific question after Clinton’s speech. 'One of the senior staffers told me what [to ask],' she said.

"Clinton called on Gallo-Chasanoff after her speech to ask a question: what Clinton would do to stop the effects of global warming. Clinton began her response by noting that young people often pose this question to her before delving into the benefits of her plan.

"But the source of the question was no coincidence — at this event 'they wanted a question from a college student,' Gallo-Chasanoff said."

The question planting stunt is in keeping with the perception of Hillary as dishonest. This from the Dodd campaign:
A Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll released today shows that only 34% of Americans view Senator Clinton as honest, while a plurality of Americans, 43%, rate Senator Clinton negatively for "honesty." [Wall Street Journal, 11/8/07]

Simply put, voters tell us clearly that Senator Clinton is perceived to have least what they say they want most: honesty. As such, these findings pose a significant hurdle for Senator Clinton to overcome in a general election and are telling to the issue of "electability."

Even Daily Kos is chiming in on Hillary's tendency to obfuscate. This critique involved the tipgate scandal:
[...]the staffer who called on Esterday to give her the tip still claimed the campaign paid a tip via credit card, at the same time as other parts of the campaign were claiming it had been a cash tip.

A silly issue? Sure. But a mistake all around -- from the initial screwup to the efforts to make good. And kind of ironic since this was one of the maiden stories of the Clinton campaign's much heralded new fact-checking website -- the "Fact Hub".

As of now, they haven't updated their "Fact Hub" to reflect this new information.

At least Hillary can say she is the queen of earmarks[i.e., pork]:
Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (N.Y.) has won tens of millions of dollars more in federal earmarks this year than her rivals for the Democratic presidential nomination, even though two of them have significantly more Senate seniority.

A review of the first three appropriations conference reports finished by Senate and House negotiators shows that Clinton has successfully requested at least $530 million worth of projects.

If you don't know what earmarking is, lets just say it has nothing to do with the general welfare:
here corruption can easily occur and where profligate spending is presently out of control is when a lobbyist, knowing the rules of the game, receives special treatment for his or her client, irrespective of the public interest, simply by enjoying a relationship with a member of Congress who can, by this process we call earmarking, provide their clients a benefit that is seldom scrutinized by Congress as a whole.

Update: FOX is reporting on a second incident involving the planting of questions by the Hillary people:
For the second time in as many days, Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign has had to deal with accusations of planting questions during public appearances, FOX News has learned.

In a telephone interview Saturday, Geoffrey Mitchell, 32, said he was approached by Clinton campaign worker Chris Hayler to ask a question about how she was standing up to President Bush on the question on funding the Iraq war and a troop withdrawal timeline.

The encounter happened before an event hosted by Iowa State Sen. Gene Frais on a farm outside Fort Madison, Iowa.

Clinton's Iowa campaign confirmed to Fox News that one of its staff discussed questions with Mitchell before her April 2 event, but denied attempting to plant a pro-Clinton question.

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