November 16th, 2007
06:01 AM ET
5 years ago

A candidate's best friend?

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Diamonds may be a girl's best friend, but don't ask Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York to choose those over pearls.

"I know I'm sometimes accused of not being able to make a choice," Clinton said, laughing. "I want both."

Clinton was asked if she preferred diamonds or pearls during CNN's Democratic debate Thursday night. The first and last questions of the night were directed at her and concerned her ability to make a decision and stick with it.

Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware could be heard in the background saying that he liked diamonds better.

– CNN Associate Producer Lauren Kornreich


Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (199 Responses)
  1. Steve, Sydney Australia

    This is fun to watch from 7000 miles away. As an American abroad, it is excellent to see our grand political process held under such high regard. Not only do we reduce our potential next president to Diamonds or Pearls (I can't wait for someone to ask Rudy – BOXERS or BRIEFS), but we can also have special blog entries that drill into the detail with tons of Americans (including myself) taking the time to analyze in detail how much this question means to modern society... WELL DONE

    November 16, 2007 12:27 am at 12:27 am |
  2. Sam, IM, MI

    I am a 28-year-old female. I watched tonights debate, and am completely disgusted with what I heard tonight. Can we as the American public get some truth out of our politians. I'm tired of the "mud-throwing" as well as the empty promises of "When I become President". Lets hear some real answers to some real questions! There is no doubt that changes need to be made, but can we focus on those changes instead of cutting one another down and playing this game of one-upmanship?

    November 16, 2007 12:29 am at 12:29 am |
  3. Davis, NJ

    THIS WAS A VERY STUPID QUESTION . ARE YOU KIDDING ME ? EXACTLY HOW RELEVANT IS THAT ? What was even more interesting about this DUMB question is that even on this, Senator Clinton could not state a clear position: Which one do you prefer -Diamonds or Pearls – She said BOTH! ... WOW...

    November 16, 2007 12:35 am at 12:35 am |
  4. Mike Longview, TX

    I work for a New York-based company that manufactures and distributes the finest man-made pearls in the world and it would be my great pleasure to send some to the next president of the United States!!!
    HILLARY'08
    PS She rocked the house tonite!

    November 16, 2007 12:36 am at 12:36 am |
  5. Jay

    We deserve what ever we get. We elected Bush twice and we act surprised and angry? It's time to make another choice. I do not what to hear any compliants after 4 years. So get your common sense hats on and choose correctly.

    November 16, 2007 12:36 am at 12:36 am |
  6. stan pitts p.a

    when cnn takes to being hillarys media machine they undermine our democracy, they stylishly help sell hillary to us instead of just throwing the facts at us and letting voters decide, cnn its not too late, you are still the best just be fair to all the candidates, obama even with the decidedly biased and calculated questions thrown at him did great under fire!!! obama 08!!!

    November 16, 2007 12:38 am at 12:38 am |
  7. John, Euless, TX

    Some of you people need to lighten up!! It was meant to be a funny question. I really hope some of you small minded people don't have voter registration cards. It is scary that you are so full of hate. Take a deep breath and discuss the real issues.
    Aren't all the questions from the audience considered planted questions considering the questions were known prior to being asked?

    November 16, 2007 12:41 am at 12:41 am |
  8. Ryan M., Charlottesville, Virginia

    "Diamonds or Pearls?" question asked. "I want both" replies Clinton. The softball question of the night meant to humanize Clinton. Ironically, Clinton chose "both" which must be a flaw related to the fact she takes two sides to every issue.

    I was disappointed tonight. I expected more of CNN and of Wolf Blitzer. Instead, the Clinton News Network came through for Hillary in true fashion. Softball questions – I especially loved Cambell Brown's question about whether or not Hillary has played the gender card. They also gave Hillary free reign to speak out of turn and gave very limited time for Edwards to speak, who was the most effective at characterizing Clinton's weaknesses in the previous debate. If you think Clinton is going to possibly be a uniter, think again. When asked how she would unite the country, she sounded similar to Bush. "I will listen" but then went on how to say that she would do whatever she wanted to do. Bush said the same thing and who can argue whether or not he has listened. I would venture he has listened. Her supporters did a great job packing the auditorium and disrupting debate.

    I despise the media for promoting such a circus atmosphere. You media types always want to build a story because of your focus on ratings. God forbid we ask the candidates where they stand on issues and allow for equal time. Instead, the debates have become like game shows, with sound bites having the most impact. Last debate, you wanted Hillary brought down a notch. This time you wanted to show she could fight back by taking it easy on Hillary and going after the #2 and #3 candidates with tougher questions. CNN wasted too much time with meaningless banter at the beginning.

    We learned nothing new about the candidates and where they stand on the issues. Clinton continues to evade specifics on any issue. Obama continues to be focused on trying to reshape the political landscape. Edwards continues to be a populist. The rest of the field is just trying to make it to the first caucus. I thought Richardson did the best he has done in a debate, along with Biden's straight forward ansers – whom I support by the way. What's funny is that Biden has the best experience to take on the challenges we face in the next four years, but the media gets caught up in the story, as does America. Admit it media, you want Hillary in the White House. While you want a story of a close race, you can't help yourself. You want to keep America divided by promoting a divisive candidate. Otherwise, I think you worry that people will stop watching stories about politics. We really need a candidate that can unite our country and I don't think any candidate on either side has made that case, yet.

    I think the REAL STORY of this past debate was the fact it was just like Hillary's planted questions – more of the same calculated politics. CNN is in Hillary's back pocket and I really don't think the performance can be judged fairly. It is no secret that James Carville advises Clinton and that he works at CNN.... Hmmm.. CNN the FoxNews of a Clinton Presidency...? We'll see.

    November 16, 2007 12:46 am at 12:46 am |
  9. Rebecca, St. Louis, MO

    "Do you prefer diamonds or pearls?" Thank you for wasting 10 seconds of my life, CNN. That 10 seconds would have been far better used allowing someone besides Hillary Clinton to finish what he had to say.

    November 16, 2007 12:47 am at 12:47 am |
  10. Dave, Des Moines, IA

    Hey CNN, if you're going to have the questions put forth by Dan Senor's wife and all of the pundits be Bill Clinton's old cronies, can you at least do the country a favor and disclose it beforehand or at least pretend you don't think debates and votes are a complete joke?

    November 16, 2007 12:48 am at 12:48 am |
  11. Kirstn, Los Angeles, CA

    Are you kidding me? As is is this really matters in a Democratic debate. Cam we get serious here? Clinton News Network is such a joke.

    November 16, 2007 12:49 am at 12:49 am |
  12. SomewhatDecided, Corvallis, OR

    Yet another example of a Hillaryism that I could do without. The validity of the question aside, this situation highlights the growing pattern of bias in these debates. The one chance that candidates have on a supposedly level playing field is interrupted by an attempt at envoking a cute response from Hillary. Apparently it is overly-idealistic to hope for a professionally-done, appropriate debate. Lets get serious, get to the issues, and stop trying to give Hillary more opportunities to embarass herself with her visscitude and pompous demeanor.

    November 16, 2007 12:50 am at 12:50 am |
  13. Bald Eagle Heartland USA

    Isn't decision making and "sticking with it" exactly what we don't want our leaders to do, as Bush did/continues to do? What if the decisions they make are bad? Should they continue to "stay the course" and "stick with it"?

    November 16, 2007 12:55 am at 12:55 am |
  14. Dennis, Anchorage, Alaska

    I like Hillary, but how could she like Diamonds?!? Did she watch "Blood Diamond?" People should boycott gold, diamonds and everything else that destructs the environment, kills people etc. We don't need them, especially when they have done so much to hurt the world.

    November 16, 2007 12:58 am at 12:58 am |
  15. Steve, South Orange NJ

    I don't think that CNN was heavily biased toward Clinton in this debate. Nor do I blame the moderators for the debate performance of my choice for the democratic nominee. What I do think is irresponsible is for the MEDIA to judge and spin on who the winner of such debates are. Clinton won this debate because CNN says that she won this debate. Just like Sen. Obama, Sen. Edwards, or any other candidate would have won had CNN declared them winner of the debate. I think the person I feel worst for is Rep. Kucinich. I don't think he has a chance in winning the nomination but it is ridiculous to give him less time so that Hillary Clinton or Bill Richardson the VP hopefull more time. Overall this was a good debate for Hillary, Sen. Obama, and Chris Dodd. Everyone else did alright except John Edwards who was beat up by all the Hillary supporters in the audience but hey what are you going to do when a network is so biased to one candidate.

    November 16, 2007 01:01 am at 1:01 am |
  16. E, Long Beach California

    Must we trivialize this important debate with such a stupid question? DOES THE HEADLINE HAVE TO BE ON TOP OF THE CNN HOMEPAGE? (The "TICKER" Should read: Former NY Mayor LOVES both his wife and mistresses!

    November 16, 2007 01:02 am at 1:02 am |
  17. Sean, MPLS, MN

    Sweet Jimny Christmas.

    That was arguably the biggest stinking pile of a debate I've ever seen. A horrible format, a moderator who couldn't control the candidates or the crowd, just crap all around.

    November 16, 2007 01:04 am at 1:04 am |
  18. E, Long Beach, CA

    Why do candidates have to be asked this during a stupid question? Why does the "TICKER" have to display that Senator Clinton, wants both diamond and pearls.

    The Ticker Should INSTEAD Write: FORMER NY MAYOR LOVES BOTH his WIFE AND MISTRESSES!!

    November 16, 2007 01:04 am at 1:04 am |
  19. Alexander, Washington, D.C., USA

    This question actually has a lot of merit. It is traditionally used to test one's personal character and demeanor. Hillary failed the test miserably.

    Answer:
    Pearls are modest and symbolize purity from within.
    Diamonds attract too much attention, jagged and they cut.

    She's running for President of the United States, not a fashion show or some beauty pageant. I am truly disgusted.

    Vote for Liberty – Ron Paul 2008!

    November 16, 2007 01:06 am at 1:06 am |
  20. ohiocrat

    You do the math. 2 Former Clintonites; James Carville and David Gergan. A female reporter barely able to hide her glee every time she was able to squeeze in another "Hillary Clinton clearly demonstrated..."

    That's the "team" you have pretending to analyze the debate? What an absolute joke. Now I know why I haven't watched CNN in years. They are the single most scared network in history. Must preserve status quo, must preserve status quo...

    Ted Turner must be rolling over in his grave. Oh wait, he's not dead, it's just his once-proud "news" network that has wilted away.

    Go back and look at the tone of the questions Edward's was asked. John Anderson's fake tan couldn't even conceal his rage when he played "Devil's Advocate" by asking Edwards about "flip-flopping"–a term Edwards has NEVER used when talking about Hillary.

    I love how Anderson Cooper tries to wimpily squeeze in a "...our audience should know that Mr. Carville and Mr. Gergan served as advisors to President Clinton."

    By the time he finished saying "Clinton" his head was clearly pointed at the floor. He was ashamed of himself–as he should have been.

    Oh yea. That was at 10:38–a good 20 minutes into their "expert" analysis. What a pathetic joke CNN has become!

    November 16, 2007 01:06 am at 1:06 am |
  21. Bea, Hoboken, NJ

    Oh, lighten up!!! It was the last question of the night and it was a young girl who asked it. Besides, she does seem to like both as she's usually wearing diamonds (like tonight) or large pearl necklaces.

    November 16, 2007 01:10 am at 1:10 am |
  22. Mike Dallas, TX

    1. Yankees or Red Sox? "Iwill alternate"

    2. Diamonds or Pearls? "both"

    This is sickness. This is pathologic. This is not normal.

    November 16, 2007 01:11 am at 1:11 am |
  23. Quita, Valhalla, NY

    I'd like diamonds, pearls and Condi in office.

    November 16, 2007 01:13 am at 1:13 am |
  24. Steve, New Orleans, LA

    CNN continues it's downward spiral from news titan to 'Hard Copy' clone.

    Such a shame.

    November 16, 2007 01:13 am at 1:13 am |
  25. anita d. cruz, spring texas

    THATS THE BEST QUESTION OF THE NIGHT OF THE DEMOCRATIC DEBATE, SOME LAUGHTER WHEN THE LADY ASKED HILLARY "WHAT SHE PREFERS DIAMONDS OR PEARLS?" THAT WAS HILARIOUS AND I LOVE IT, JUST LIKE WHEN BILL WAS ASKED "BOXER OR BRIEF?" HEHEHE!

    November 16, 2007 01:24 am at 1:24 am |
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