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.

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soundoff (157 Responses)
  1. Sonny

    Christine O'Donnell is a rude and dump cow. Why she agreed to have an interview but not to answer questions asked? Piers did a wonderful and asked tough question. Good for you Piers, you are the best journalist.

    August 17, 2011 09:37 pm at 9:37 pm |
  2. dave richman

    She was very strange in her objections to the questions. Completely weird response on her part. Completely appropriate and well mannered on his part.

    August 17, 2011 09:38 pm at 9:38 pm |
  3. JC

    Wow, imagine if she did become a senator, she'll just walk out anytime someone talks about something she doesn't like. Now aren't you glad people of Delaware were not stupid enough to vote this woman in?

    August 17, 2011 09:39 pm at 9:39 pm |
  4. Anonymous

    I am not a tea party supporter, nor a big Christine O'Donnell fan. I generally enjoy Piers Morgan's interviews but was very disappointed with the questions he chose to discuss with his guest. He showed an obvious lack of respect by insisting on matters of sensationalism such as masturbation rather than relevant issues. Where was he going with this?...

    August 17, 2011 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  5. Jeff

    Ashley Killough, you need to seriously proofread what you write. This article is full of egregious grammatical errors.
    1) "O’Donnell made national headlines in 2010 when she denied in a TV ad that she was not a witch,..." O'Donnell denied that she WAS a witch, not that she was NOT a witch.

    2) "She’s set to soon to release a book that she hopes to be an inspirational tool to the grassroots conservative movement." There is definitely one too many "to" in there, and it could probably be rewritten to avoid the four that are there.

    3)"But when asked about issues from her book and her campaign Wednesday, O’Donnell walked away from the interview, upset that Morgan wasn’t not talking about the things she wished to address." What's up with the double negatives, Ashley?

    4)"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 she said she outlines in her book." Ok, technically I think this is grammatically correct, but c'mon...this is one of the worst sentences I've ever read in journalism.

    CNN, get it right.

    August 17, 2011 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  6. ObamaSham

    She went on CNN to talk about her book and her political beliefs, not gay marriage. But Pierce was just looking for a gotcha question he could stick to her. I wouldn't put up with that either. The Tea Party stands for limited government, less taxes and fiscal responsibility. We have no opinions on social issues.

    August 17, 2011 09:42 pm at 9:42 pm |
  7. Anonymous

    Hahahah she just couldnt answer the question. Piers did his job, you go you handsome devil :D.

    August 17, 2011 09:43 pm at 9:43 pm |
  8. petena

    Witches brew!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 17, 2011 09:43 pm at 9:43 pm |
  9. ObamaSham

    She went on CNN to talk about her book and her political beliefs, not gay marriage. But Pierce was just looking for a gotcha question he could stick to her. I wouldn't put up with that either. The Tea Party stands for limited government, less taxes and fiscal responsibility. We have no opinions on social issues.

    August 17, 2011 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  10. S1N

    The ironic part is that the issue she was being questioned about, gay marriage, is referenced and briefly discussed in her book. I'm just in shock that Piers Morgan actually recommended purchasing it even after the way she disrespected him in the interview. I have never seen someone so condescending and patronizing when trying to plug their own product on national television. Her handlers seriously need to coach her in better question dodging techniques.

    August 17, 2011 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  11. lori

    I can't draw any conclusions about Christina O'Donnell really (though I know others have some); Piers though talks too much and overwhelms his guests. Too much of Piers "shows-up". If he could just talk less and listen more – it would work better. I know far more about him some nights than I do the guest. In the case of this interview he behaved like a bully. I was left with a limited impression of her – but a poor impression of him. Enough so that tonight – I found my way to a computer to write this post. Enough already – stop piers.

    August 17, 2011 09:48 pm at 9:48 pm |
  12. Anonymous

    Delaware, what are you thinking? Is this really the best candidate you can come up with? sad.

    August 17, 2011 09:48 pm at 9:48 pm |
  13. Glen

    She wants to talk about her book and drum up sales but only wants to talk about certain parts????? It does not work that way....if it is in the book and you are there for the book then it can be asked.

    August 17, 2011 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  14. Anonymous

    Its what she is known for.. what did she expect. The mini-Palin lives up to true form though. I believe we are on her 16th minute on the fame clock.

    August 17, 2011 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  15. littletingod

    O'Donnell, Palin, Bachmann. How many more weird women will the GOP/Tea Party bring forth?

    August 17, 2011 09:50 pm at 9:50 pm |
  16. SecedingfromTexas

    Saw the show, she confirmed her "witchdom".

    August 17, 2011 09:51 pm at 9:51 pm |
  17. Ray in Vegas

    So cute and so stupid. So she thinks she gets to be in the driver's seat when she's someone else's talk show? And it's somehow rude for the host to ask questions about issues that are in your book because you'd rather talk about something else? What's rude is walking of a show because you don't care for the question. I'm glad Morgan kept his cool and took the high road.

    August 17, 2011 09:52 pm at 9:52 pm |
  18. JB

    Has anyone been able to verify her supposed claim of a speaking engagement at the Republican Women’s Club?

    August 17, 2011 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
  19. Paul Barger

    She's a non-entity, politically or ontologically

    August 17, 2011 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  20. Kim

    I was glad to see her put an end to such poor questioning from the PRO masturbator that he felt was so cool & important – II miss Larry King -Piers Morgan was rude to her. Why not treat guest with respect ? Does CNN think this is entertainment & going for the reality show mentality ?

    August 17, 2011 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  21. Anonymous

    SHE had better things to do? What a joke of a human being – and a politician. Did her coven call?

    August 17, 2011 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  22. Layla

    Well at least one of them was polite. And now I now why I don't like Piers Morgan.

    Accept our agenda or be bullied? I don't think so.

    August 17, 2011 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  23. Fred

    This is another clear attempt of a show host trying to poke at a guest to get a reaction all for the sake of ratings and making a name for himself. The only other possibility is Piers is a pervert.

    August 17, 2011 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  24. Sandi Shorter

    Wow! if this is what the Tea Party has to offer up – then i'm running like crazy! I'm tired of hearing people bash the President and not offer one single logical and rational idea to put forth!

    August 17, 2011 09:57 pm at 9:57 pm |
  25. Alverant

    So she wanted to plug her book and instead got asked hard questions. I guess "tea party principles" don't include explaining yourself.

    August 17, 2011 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
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