O'Donnell walks out of CNN interview
August 18th, 2011
07:30 AM ET
3 years ago

O'Donnell walks out of CNN interview

(CNN) - Christine O'Donnell, the former Delaware GOP Senate candidate, walked off the set of CNN's "Piers Morgan Tonight" Wednesday when asked about her views on sexual abstinence and gay marriage.

"I'm not talking about policies. I'm not running for office," O'Donnell said. "Ask Michele Bachmann what she thinks."

When Morgan asked her why she was being "weird" about answering questions on her own statements, as well as issues she addresses in her new book, "Troublemaker," O'Donnell fired back, saying she only wanted to talk about tea party principles outlined in her book.

"That's why I agreed to come on your show. That's what I want to talk about," O'Donnell said. "I'm not being weird. You're being a little rude."

O'Donnell made national headlines in 2010 when she denied in a TV ad that she was a witch, responding to comments she made a decade earlier on a tv show saying she had "dabbled in witchcraft."

During her Senate campaign, O'Donnell ran as a tea party darling and social conservative. She said she hopes her new book will be an inspirational tool for the grassroots conservative movement.

But when asked about issues from her book and her campaign Wednesday, O'Donnell walked away from the interview, upset that Morgan was not talking about the things she wished to address.

"Don't you think as a host, if I say this is what I want to talk about, that's what we should address?" she asked Morgan.

When Morgan said "no," O'Donnell began to take off her microphone and said she had turned down another interview for this appearance.

"I was supposed to be speaking at the Republican Women's Club at 6, and I chose to be a little late for that," she said. "Not to endure a rude talk show host, but to talk to you about my book and the issues I address in my book."

In an interview with WTTG in Washington Thursday, O'Donnell said she felt she made the right decision to end the CNN interview. Regarding Morgan, she said, "I wish him well - he's a cheeky bugger."

"Piers, thanks for the invite. Schedule is already packed, maybe another night. No hard feelings, you cheeky bugger," O'Donnell said in a tweet published on her official website Wednesday at 10:30 p.m.

Earlier in the CNN interview, O'Donnell answered questions about her Senate campaign, saying she had made mistakes and caused "self-inflicted wounds."

She argued that during the midterms she had been unfairly treated by the GOP, which she said failed to defend her from both Republican and Democratic attacks.

Most notably, O'Donnell said she regretted listening to the campaign consultants who advised her to make the famous "I'm not a witch" TV ad.

"I listened to the so-called experts who have been losing election after election," O'Donnell said. "The experts aren't always experts."

While the former Senate candidate didn't indicate whether she was vying for a political comeback, O'Donnell said she wants to "stay in the political arena" and talk about the issues.

She also warned that the country was heading toward calamity.

"The reality is our country is going bankrupt. Our country is on the brink of collapsing," O'Donnell said. "This is a very grave situation, unlike any time. We need real solutions."

O'Donnell began to express discomfort when Morgan turned the conversation to her previous comments on sexual abstinence from a 1996 interview she gave to MTV. At the time, O'Donnell was an advocate for abstinence and had founded a pro-abstinence group. She also discouraged masturbation.

When Morgan asked her if she still held those views, O'Donnell said she was a practicing Catholic and supports what the church teaches but would not do the same MTV interview today.

Morgan pressed her again, asking if she was still a supporter of abstinence.

"Are you the pro-masturbation talk show host?" O'Donnell asked, jokingly.

"Why, yes," Morgan replied in jest.

O'Donnell then tried to change the subject to the political principles from her book, and when Morgan continued to ask about her comments on sex, O'Donnell argued that the host was being rude.

Watch Piers Morgan Live weeknights 9 p.m. ET. For the latest from Piers Morgan click here.

soundoff (157 Responses)
  1. Typical teabagger

    Don't ask me what I do, do as I say. Sort of like Wilson owing his ex wife child support.

    August 17, 2011 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  2. LIP

    Really CNN...just can't seem to get enough of trashing those pesky Republican women can you or for that matter, Republican men either. Does a conservative attitude towards spending the tax payers money automatically equal doing all you can to pull them down?

    August 17, 2011 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  3. Linze

    Did anyone proofread this article? “when she denied in a TV ad that she was not a witch“ “upset that Morgan wasn’t not talking about the things she wished to address.”

    August 17, 2011 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  4. JamesKlimaski

    Christine O'Donnell – I will answer only my questions, you are irrelevant on your own talk show. Bow to me or I'm out of here. Arrogance of an airhead.

    August 17, 2011 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  5. Seattle Sue

    I was going to write something about Christie O'Donnell but after a little thought about it I decided not too as she might put a spell on me.

    August 17, 2011 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  6. Rob

    No brains, no guts, no class.

    August 17, 2011 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  7. George

    Not a big fan of Piers' leftist interviews but I must say he didn't deserve a walkout.

    I like Christine Odonnell but she was overly defensive here. I'm sure she was anticipatng the attack Piers was going to mount as soon as she offered anything close to a conservative viewpoint; hmm, maybe he did deserve the walkout.

    August 17, 2011 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  8. Biill Biss

    "Just read my book." Oh and buy it too. OHHH. she turned down another inteview... what are we to do... shine her suit?

    August 17, 2011 09:23 pm at 9:23 pm |
  9. bob

    many tea partiers are into a form of censorship, only ask certain questions. Many also respond to any negative tweets very quickly. We need to watch these folks with their manipulation, this is how the another grass roots party started in the very early thirties and we all know how that came out.. Book burning soon? thank god for the kindle and the ipad, they can't throw all those away. By the way, the far right religious conservatives, wasn't the catholic church in italy? Were they partners with you know who? Doesn't say much for religion when one of the countries was an axis country. You all need to be reading these tea leafs. I'm just saying.... becareful

    August 17, 2011 09:23 pm at 9:23 pm |
  10. aatami

    These people are not only absolutely and completely full sh*! but they don't even have the moral commitment to their own belief systems. I would have more respect if Michelle Bachman would say,"Yes I think Homosexuality is wrong or evil" or whatever she believes but her and this dimwit Odonell's commitments and beliefs take second priority to their hunger for money and power. Not only are they intellectual amoeba but they are hypocrites as well. To the bog with all of them.

    August 17, 2011 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  11. DancinRick

    Wow, this lady can't answer normal questions. What a witch. so punny!

    August 17, 2011 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  12. If it walk like a skank...

    ..."a tea party darling and social conservative...Don’t you think as a host, if I say this is what I want to talk about, that’s what we should address?” Interpreted as "my way or no way" What a twisted skank. (sorry skanks)

    August 17, 2011 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  13. Albert Friday

    Good for her!

    August 17, 2011 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
  14. Bruce Lazar

    One less book that I will read. She was the rude one walking off of the set. What a shame. Her publisher has to be nervous at this point.

    August 17, 2011 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  15. Brandon

    I congratulate Piers for his journalistic integrity. Christine O'Donnell didn't want a journalistic interview, but instead wanted some free ad space. I know her appearance on the FOX news network was much more a promotion of her ideology and to her liking. The interview was 'about the book'. By her own admission, she addressed the issues around the questions he asked 'in the book'. Get with it, Christine. If you want ad space, buy it. Don't expect any self-respecting interviewer not on FOX news give you a pass on "off topic" questions or free air time to promote only the part of the book about which you are comfortable speaking.

    August 17, 2011 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  16. Bradley

    "O’Donnell fired back, saying she only wanted to talk about tea party principles she said she outlines in her book."

    Of course. Naturally, it would be beyond the average Tea Partier's level of intellect to talk about anything else besides what they've prepared ahead of time (and even then, they STILL find a way to screw it up in a very spectacular way). Ms. O'Donnell, I would just like to say that you strike me as being as mindless as Palin and Bachmann.

    However, I must thank you for making me laugh once again at your whole "I'm not a witch" banter.

    August 17, 2011 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  17. Nancy Martin

    Stunningly immature and naive. It was well worthwhile to see the full exchange in order to put O'Donnell's reaction in perspective. Thick skins are required in politics and learning to handle issues that make candidates uncomfortable is the minimum entrance requirement for those wishing to be involved.

    It was hard to see anything rude or difficult about the line of questions. Read the O'Donnell's behavior for what it was – not that of someone to be taken seriously on any level.

    August 17, 2011 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  18. Robert Tomeo

    Message to Piers:
    There was nothing rude about your interview! Why did O'Donnell not simply answer your simple questions! You don't need to be a politician to have an opinion. Ironically she believes "free speech" is in danger? Why not just speak your point of view when given a forum with a huge audience ready to listen. What a lack of guts on her part!!!

    August 17, 2011 09:34 pm at 9:34 pm |
  19. jock

    Pathetic. Piers was kind of a d!ck, but O'donnell needs to learn how to do an interview. If you don't want to answer silly questions, don't write silly books.

    August 17, 2011 09:34 pm at 9:34 pm |
  20. Rob Johnson

    This dimwit actually thinks that when she goes on a show like Morgan's, SHE gets to choose what they talk about, not him?

    Thank God she wasn't elected to the Senate, that's all I can say.

    August 17, 2011 09:34 pm at 9:34 pm |
  21. guy durso

    Christine showed her true colors tonight. Great job Pierce!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 17, 2011 09:34 pm at 9:34 pm |
  22. ratram62

    Piers Morgan could not get off the topic of sex interviewing Christine. Would he ask the same questions to a male politician? I am one of many independents who are watching and listening. Who do I vote for? I want appropriate inquiries not sleeziness.

    August 17, 2011 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
  23. KCS

    Ridiculous. "I came on your show to talk about what I want to talk about now answer your questions." Yes, please- take a role in leading our country. No courage of your convictions- assert opinions to satisfy your warped base and then hide from any question or criticism. That's about right.

    What an embarassment you are.

    August 17, 2011 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
  24. Jeff

    That is what Piers gets for interviewing this weird, irrelevant con artist! Why is this dim wit back in the news? So what she is hawking a book, big surprise, she needs the money end of story.

    August 17, 2011 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  25. Dean Emelo

    I have lost respect for mr p morgan over the way he beat up C Odonnell to night... if you like her or not this was one bash after another showing no respect for her as a lady and a person...none of his questions had anything to do with current issues...I would expect this from fox news... well cnn if you are trying to be more like a reality show... its working...Oh I forgot .. PM has never done anything wrong in his past....he is a saint ....I give her credit for taking his abuse for that long... she was polite... I would have told him to drop dead .... he was just plain rude

    August 17, 2011 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
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