August 24th, 2008
06:30 PM ET
6 years ago

CNN forces Obama to release VP pick early

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CNN’s reporting forced the Obama campaign to scrap its original plan.
CNN’s reporting forced the Obama campaign to scrap its original plan.

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.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Extra
soundoff (226 Responses)
  1. Ado

    You want a cookie? Stop being so full of yourselves.

    August 24, 2008 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  2. Karuna

    It isn't that important in the scheme of things, but at the same time I actually was disappointed to learn about it through CNN rather than the promised text message.

    August 24, 2008 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  3. RJ, CA

    Sorry, Jeanette from Charlotte - not all us Hillary supporters now voting for McCain are Republicans. We're Democrats who've left the corrupt DNC and party this year and have no choice but to vote for the best candidate now left. It would have been Hillary, but now it's McCain. We're voters who care about country over party! And McCain will NOT destroy women's rights, if you're talking about Roe v. Wade. That's been on the books for 50 years and neither Dem nor Rep has touched it yet!

    August 24, 2008 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  4. Pam

    Wow, you must be really proud of yourselves.

    August 24, 2008 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  5. Sarah from Delaware

    Well, I learned at 3:23 AM when my cell phone went off right next to my head. It's kind of hilarious that it came in the middle of the night but THANKS A LOT OBAMA for making it a rough night for one of your insomniac fans.

    And for real, thanks for putting Delaware on the national stage!

    August 24, 2008 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  6. ahna

    It was a swipe at Hillary regardless of who is saying it. CNN blowing Obama VP info shouldn't be a surprise to anyone either and it isn't a big deal unless everyone makes it out to be that way. None of this is.

    August 24, 2008 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  7. KateyGreen

    Good for CNN. I'm glad you did your job, and ruined this elitist nonsense of texting a small group of Americans. I hope Obama learns that he needs to conside ALL Americans as he constituents, and not just the annointed few.

    August 24, 2008 06:15 pm at 6:15 pm |
  8. Hayden

    To Dylan:

    CNN, couldn't care less what you think, go back to MSNBC where you belong!

    August 24, 2008 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  9. Republicans hate America

    Well this is what happens when the free press has full access to a campaign not like the McPhony crooked talk express.

    August 24, 2008 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  10. Congrats CNN

    The arrogance of BO to try to deflect his slumping numbers with that charade was laughable. Admittedly, I watched until it was clear who it was. But one HRC wasn't on the list, I officially resigned my affilitation to the Democratic party.

    2000, 2004, and now 2008.

    Good job, DNC. You make Republicans look like geniuses.

    August 24, 2008 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  11. DrMan

    Oh get real Dylan. If you're not going to watch CNN because they released information that basically every news organization had, then I think I can speak for them when I say Good Riddance!

    August 24, 2008 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  12. Kyle

    CNN pats itself on back, after devoting countless hours to Obama's selection and freezing McCain out of its coverage. So yeah, congrats on getting played, I guess.

    August 24, 2008 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  13. Michelle Lawson

    Let's face it, the VP with Obama was getting to be way over the top. If you have you VP choice then announce it and let's move on. All this drama was getting to be a little too much.

    August 24, 2008 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  14. obama

    I can beleive this. Obama has mastered the technology aspect of his campaign. I would not have ever aired this story. You broke the story-does that make you feel better? it is typical of CNN>

    August 24, 2008 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  15. nhvoter

    way to go jerks

    August 24, 2008 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  16. Anonymous

    Yes, yes, CNN - we're all really impressed.

    August 24, 2008 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  17. interesting

    Yeah and you had to send a text at 3 a.m.?

    Really stupid response. CNN Roland Martin must have had you come up with that one.

    Blah blah blah. Sorry Barky, not interested in a radical muslim being president even if you have a sexist, racist surrogate as your VP who though you were unqualified this year.

    PUMA 2008

    August 24, 2008 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  18. John

    Of course CNN should be proud! Coverage is their job. Like they should report this just because BO wanted to get it out by text? Please. Good for the press.

    August 24, 2008 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  19. JP

    Obama's text messaging hype was a disaster, with fake text messages floating around and so on.

    August 24, 2008 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  20. Charlotte

    The whole process was sophmoric. In fact his whole campaign has been sophmoric, complete with ralleys of, YES WE CAN, and football stadiums.

    August 24, 2008 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  21. Matt from Jersey

    Dear lord... What is WRONG WITH THE MEDIA?! You guys have to ruin everything!!! We do not have the right to know who the VP nominee is FROM YOU... Barrack did what he did for a reason, so his supporters would hear from HIM about HIS choice... the fact that someone leaked the info early is a shame, and shame on you. No, No it does not change anything in the long run, but it's the principle of the point: You fail, United States Media. FOX News, CNN, MSNBC... it doesn't matter, there's all a bias in this country and it needs to go away... why should I have to listen/watch BBC America for the most unbiased name in news? Plus, if anyone thinks this is a swipe at Hillary, you're grabbing at straws yet again... this news just fails all around. Good job everyone!!! Thanks for making up my mind to not care what the Media has to say anymore!

    August 24, 2008 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  22. Jake

    I never got my text message anyway!

    August 24, 2008 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  23. Dan

    I am sick and tired of these news networks with big egos who think it's a big deal to break that kind of a story. SO WHAT? CNN is falling all over themselves patting themselves on back that they did this? You're a joke!

    August 24, 2008 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  24. Kevin

    CNN should not be working for an Obama agenda. If news happens it should be reported. The Obama team must take responsibility if they leak the story.

    August 24, 2008 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  25. Charlotte

    The whole process was sophmoric. In fact his whole campaign has been sophmoric, complete with ralleys of, YES WE CAN, and football stadiums.

    August 24, 2008 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
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