July 23rd, 2007
10:53 PM ET
4 years ago

Gravel goes for quirky...again

(CNN) - Former Sen. Mike Gravel's 30-second spot during the debate was, um, different . . . to put it mildly.

In black and white video footage, Gravel looked directly into the camera and said a series of sound bites that are separated by the ringing of a bell and the dissolving of Gravel's image.

The long-shot Democratic contender's spot covered the Iraq war, the global war on terror, universal health care, and Social Security.

It ended with an image of the ripples caused by a drop of water in a crystal blue pool of liquid with the web address for Gravel's campaign superimposed on top of the spot's final image.

Gravel's recent Internet videos garnered a lot of media attention for their randomness. Did you think these were similarly random in keeping with the image Gravel has cultivated for himself?

– CNN Associate Producer Martina Stewart


Filed under: Uncategorized
soundoff (32 Responses)
  1. Brian P., Dallas, TX

    Ummm – what can I say? Why is this guy even running for President? He contributed nothing to the debate tonight. If anything, it just showed how out of touch he really is...

    July 23, 2007 11:14 pm at 11:14 pm |
  2. Jacob New York, NY

    If you are unhappy with how Gravel handled himself, think you have real opinions, and want to realize how the media ignores you and relegates you to a "quirky" demeanor and not "Presidential", consider running for President. You'll get the same response from everybody.

    What a terrible situation in America.

    July 23, 2007 11:29 pm at 11:29 pm |
  3. rashid, dallas, tx

    what was he thinking?

    July 23, 2007 11:31 pm at 11:31 pm |
  4. Yuriy, New York, NY

    I think Gravel is great, and it makes me feel a little disillusioned to see that he is getting less than 1% in the polls. He seems "quirky" because he is actually honest and brings different ideas to the table that he really believes in. It will be a sad day once he is no longer in the presidential race, and we will have to put up with more Clinton/Obama and Giuliani/Romney nonsense.

    July 23, 2007 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  5. Michael, Cambridge, NY

    Gravel is a goon. Whenever he's asked what he'd do about an issue, he changes the subject to what his opponents won't do about it. He's disrespectful to the the other candidates. I've only heard him speak the truth once, when he said during the first debate that he felt "like a potted plant.", because he is nothing more than a potted plant. I can't wait for the news of his dropping out of the race.

    July 24, 2007 12:07 am at 12:07 am |
  6. Chris NY NY

    It amazes me how Americans love to be cheated by the cheaters. Once again we saw the media totally sabotage Mike Gravel. And you call this country fair and democratic? We can't even give equal and fair amount of time to all the candidates. Why is he running for President you may ask? Because it's his right, and it's his duty to tell us the TRUTH, not lip service. Why is he running for Pres. Give me a break Brian. This is a democracy not a popularity contest, to see who can raise the most money.

    July 24, 2007 12:11 am at 12:11 am |
  7. Sharon B. Sacramento, CA

    I have always admired the news I got from CNN and Anderson Cooper. The only news I would listen to was Anderson and Lou Dobbs. Now I am totally DISGUSTED. I feel you owe Mike Gravel a least a half-hour of prime time to answer all the questions especially those that were addressed to ALL THE CANDIDATES by YouTube and that he never got to answer. He does have a detailed tax plan that he never got to comment on along with all the other issues he never got to comment on. I am very disappointed with Anderson Cooper!! Even if I wasn’t voting for Mike Gravel...I as a American citizen consider this very unfair coverage of one the most important issues facing us right now!!! Sure sometimes he sounds like a nut job but the people we have in there right now do more than sound like nut jobs…they are nut jobs. If you would give Mike a chance to finish a sentence you would find out that he does make sense. I didn’t think Anderson Cooper/CNN would be like the others and choose our candidates for us. I think come this election we are going to get the same old corporate sponsored government. That is what Mike Gravel was trying to point out.

    July 24, 2007 12:12 am at 12:12 am |
  8. Debbie, Queens, NY

    Campaign ad aside, I for one appreciated his candor during the debate. He didn't contribute as much to the debate as he might have because they rarely gave him a chance to. i thought the fact that he wasn't hedging and waffling, but speaking honestly, was quite refreshing, even on points I didn't agree with.

    Why is it that every time a politician speaks with conviction rather than caution, that they're labelled "quirky" and unelectable?

    July 24, 2007 12:12 am at 12:12 am |
  9. Gary, Boston MA

    Gravel may be quirky, but he says exactly what he thinks. Not the pre-formulated engineered mix spewed by the so-called 'top tier' candidates. The likes of Obama and Clinton and individuals preened and funded for corporate stewardship. Stop the cycle of inherited presidency. We need to stick someone OUTSIDE. America doesn't choose a president. Choosing from a controlled pool of corporate elites (panderers), IS NOT CHOICE.

    July 24, 2007 12:20 am at 12:20 am |
  10. Ross, Denver, Colorado

    Mike Gravel is a fine, fine candidate and a true American patriot. Research him. I liked his 30 second spot too.

    July 24, 2007 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  11. Don - San Francisco, CA

    Gravel might actually have a message if we could get past his constant barrage of incoherent yelling at the other candidates.

    July 24, 2007 12:33 am at 12:33 am |
  12. Monique, Austin, TX

    Gravel is ridiculously random. Please keep him in every debate, including the general election. I laugh a great deal when he speaks.

    July 24, 2007 01:17 am at 1:17 am |
  13. sam marcus, chattanooga, tn.

    You sold out Anderson. Look at the time you gave on camera to the big three.. Add it up and cnn and you gave them 2 times on air time.
    Look at the unflattering photo you used on Gravel. Such little suttle things add up in a campaign. Why did not not address the big three on where they were getting their money. Big corporate America is picking all the leaders in America and the little person is made to think he has a choice and he does not. Its like 3 card monte card game.
    What ever choice you make will be decided for you by big business.

    July 24, 2007 01:46 am at 1:46 am |
  14. e. little, California

    "FOLLOW THE MONEY!!" & family tree. If American's would research things on their own instead of making decisions based on looks and who would be a fun guy to share a beer with, Bush never would have been elected president. Google Prescott Bush and Union Banking Corp. WAKE UP AMERICA!

    July 24, 2007 01:59 am at 1:59 am |
  15. Dan, Boston, MA

    Our nation is so used to two-faced politicians who can't answer a question straight, who can't take any action unless it benefits their campaign sponsors, and who can't hold any view that might make you mistake them for humans... that, yes, Mike Gravel appears "quirky" in comparison.

    Here's someone who actually calls us on the absurdity of our knee-jerk, special-interest wars. Here's someone who wants to fix problems rather than just spout vague, meaningless rhetoric like the other leaders.

    Mike Gravel is actually honest, and actually stands for something worthwhile. So what's the average American's impression of him? "Quirky."

    July 24, 2007 03:35 am at 3:35 am |
  16. Jarrod- Santa Rosa, CA

    It just goes to say how the media really plays a role in who gets heard, and who doesn't.

    Gravel's ideas, to me, weren't bad- but he really wasn't offering solutions. He was good at pointing out problems, but not really saying how he'd solve it. He has a lot of passion, which I like- but doesn't display himself in a matter that will more or less cause skeptics to take him seriously.

    He does poke fun at himself and mentioned more than once that he wasn't given equal opportunity to answer on issues and questions. He's out of touch in the sense that he's honest about the Democrats and tells it like it is.

    His best bit was when he mentioned to "follow the money" because it's so true. Whoever is financing the campaign is going to influence what happens in the next Presidency...

    July 24, 2007 05:48 am at 5:48 am |
  17. Dan, Boston, MA

    Our nation is so used to two-faced politicians who can't answer a question straight, who can't take any action unless it benefits their campaign sponsors, and who can't hold any view that might make you mistake them for humans.... that, yes, Mike Gravel appears "quirky" in comparison.

    Here's someone who actually calls us on the absurdity of our knee-jerk, special-interest wars. Here's someone who wants to fix problems rather than just spout vague, meaningless rhetoric like the other leaders.

    Mike Gravel is actually honest, and actually stands for something worthwhile. So what's the average American's impression of him? "Quirky."

    July 24, 2007 06:25 am at 6:25 am |
  18. Anonymous

    How can people learn about Gravel's views when the poor guy only gets 30 seconds in the whole debate?

    July 24, 2007 06:28 am at 6:28 am |
  19. AnyoneButHillary

    Mike Gravel was the only real candidate in the debate. It is politics as usual with the other people.

    I'll vote for Gravel in the democratic primary.

    July 24, 2007 07:01 am at 7:01 am |
  20. Jeff, Surrey, BC

    Mike Gravel is a great American, and has alot of mainstream ideas, but he is downright horrible at politics.

    I liked Gravel initially, but it's time for him to step aside.

    July 24, 2007 07:25 am at 7:25 am |
  21. John M, Baltimore, MD

    Gravel's spot was the only one which clearly stated positions on any issue. Sure each issue deserves hours of explanation by each candidate, but since debates are attentional messes anyway, this will do. Compare it to the other spots. Biden: hokey 80s-style political commercial. Obama: looked like a movie trailer, not a political message. By comparison, Gravel had perhaps the most straightforward and least quirky video. (And I don't even support him, I'm just being fair.)

    July 24, 2007 07:35 am at 7:35 am |
  22. Balvir Singh, Burlington, nj

    Gravel is the honest of all candidates in this debate. I hope he gets elected. The president's job is not going to be a hidden cop, gathering intelligence, shoot enemies at frontline, but to look at all the information, evidence presented and make the best possible decision for our nation and for our people. Also, I just do not believe others are clear minded enough to put national interest ahead of corporate interest. Others in the debate have a lot of ties in Washington, big corporations; a lot of people who are working for them to get elected. You think when any of them gets elected; he/she is going to ignore the interests of his/her funding corporations?

    It is time for a change, and let us end this new kind of monarch 'Bush-Clinton' rule.

    July 24, 2007 07:49 am at 7:49 am |
  23. Mary, Beaver, PA

    Yes, by all means. Let the media select the candidate for you, brand the ones they want you to ignore as "quirky," and then marginalize them so that you will forget them and their message. Once again, let the media force its "establishment" candidate down your throat, whether you want him/her or not. No wonder most Americans are tired of "politics as usual!"

    July 24, 2007 07:52 am at 7:52 am |
  24. Brie, Somerville, MA

    I have to say, although Gravel might not have a shot at the Presidency, if you invite him to a debate, you ought to give him more equal time with the rest of the candidates. The DNC prided itself on inviting all the candidates to this debate, but still treated those non-front-runners as second class. Anderson Cooper got to speak more than Gravel did.

    July 24, 2007 08:00 am at 8:00 am |
  25. Ryan, Chapel Hill, North Carolina

    The "quirky" candidates in the race are the only ones who make sense. Instead of pandering to a disillusioned audience, they are trying to speak the truth. If you really take the time to research their ideas you will also find that they are quite mainstream. Also their policy proposals, especially those of Kucinich, are quite detailed and plausible. I think it's just ridiculous how the media makes fun of these fine Americans and ruins any chance they have of gaining ground.

    July 24, 2007 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
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