DENVER (CNN) – Barack Obama planned to name Joe Biden as his running mate by text message at 8 a.m. ET Saturday morning, but was forced to move up the announcement when CNN broke the story after midnight, a senior Obama official said.
At 12:42 a.m. ET, CNN reported that Obama had picked Biden to join him on the ticket. Several other news organizations confirmed the CNN report shortly afterwards.
“Had a certain network not blown our cover at a certain time the text message would have gone out in the morning, 8 a.m. Eastern,” Robert Gibbs, a senior advisor, said with a grin on Sunday. “We told people they would find out from us. When we decided it was going to get out we decided to send the text out.”
Gibbs said he believes despite the fact that the rollout plan had to be altered, a “vast majority of the people” still learned by text message when they woke up in the morning.
Some Republicans and others suggested that Obama’s 3 a.m. ET email had been intended as a deliberate swipe at Hillary Clinton, who ran a primary season ad that referenced that hour of the morning to make the case she was more qualified to handle a breaking crisis.