November 12th, 2007
03:00 PM ET
15 years ago

Obama: We don't plant questions

Watch Sen. Obama's remarks about Sen. Clinton's planted question.

(CNN) - At a press conference in Nashua, New Hampshire Monday , Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, refused to directly criticize Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-New York, after reports that her campaign staff had planted at least one question at a town-hall-style event last week.

But Obama still made a subtle dig apparently aimed at Clinton, one of his chief rivals for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination .

“I’ll let Sen. Clinton answer for her campaign,” Obama told reporters. “When I go into a town hall meeting, I never know what questions to expect and that’s a good thing because the people of New Hampshire should expect that their candidates are going to hear what’s on the voters’ minds and not what’s been concocted by the candidate’s staff."

After saying that he has sometimes received questions on the campaign trail that have stumped him, Obama said planting questions is “not a practice that we’ve ever engaged in and it’s not a practice that we ever plan to engage in.”

Related: Watch Clinton's controversial question

Related: Democratic rivals respond to Clinton's planted question

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- CNN Associate Producer Martina Stewart

soundoff (80 Responses)
  1. By cnn consumer

    I think CNN you are doing a pretty bad job and someone need to get fired for it!!

    November 12, 2007 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  2. Ed

    No, your campaign bused Illinois supporters for the Jefferson Jackson Dinner

    November 12, 2007 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  3. caucus goer,Derry,NH

    While we know where Barack stand on major issues, We don't know what Hillary has to offer. She has two sides on every issue and I think that is not good for America right now. I just think I have a clear view of who Barack is in a very short time compared to Hillary who I have known as first lady to senator. I think the next president need to tell us even things that we don't want to so that we can make our own choices,
    caucus goer

    November 12, 2007 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  4. aj huntington, ny

    Yes I believe that Obama's camp doesn't "plant" questions. But overall , I have to say it's getting boring listening to these candidates fighting amongst themselves.

    November 12, 2007 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  5. John New York, NY

    I'm glad that Sen. Obama didn't jump on the chance to attack Sen. Clinton over a relatively petty matter.

    He should continue to challenge her judgement on issues such as the Iraq war and Social Security.

    Also, he should take issue with any of her flip-flops on important issues.

    Why? Because if he doesn't do that and Clinton becomes the nominee, the GOP is going to bring up the flip-flops anyway- from January straight till November

    (Clinton-bloggers- your fingers will be worn out trying to respond to 10 months of GOP attacks.)

    This is why we have primaries.

    November 12, 2007 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  6. Jared

    Well said by Obama. Again.

    November 12, 2007 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  7. Martha,charleston,SC

    This guy is so Amazing...The media has been witch hunting him but I can not just tell how intelligent this guy is. I certainly wont be suprised if Hillary looses to him. I am Barack supporter without shame. I have been a republican and I have lost faith with my party. Ron paul could be a choice but he is so weak to win and he is a republican, Obviously what majority of the people don't wanna see in the white house,
    Obama 08!

    November 12, 2007 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  8. Karen, NYC

    Barack Obama 08!

    November 12, 2007 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  9. jeff,fl

    I wanna feel American again, where a dream is a dream for everyone,white,black,yellow,blue.....I want to start off by electing some other than anybody who has been in Presidents relative. In short I want my country back!
    Go O-ma-ma!

    November 12, 2007 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  10. Cheap Shot, Montana

    Sorry Ed, no proof of any bussing by Obama only hat air from Clinton's campaign. No wonder the flags fell down

    November 12, 2007 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  11. bushwhacker

    The Clinton's have proven themselves to be master politicians, whether it be planting questions, overloading town halls with supporters or responding to wilded-eyed professors screaming out support for their ideals, no one knows political corruption better than the Clintons. Let the dynasty continue..

    November 12, 2007 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  12. Janet,loudon,Nh

    I think it is pretty clear that Hillary is loosing the game to Obama despite her network(Cnn)campaining for her the whole summer. I think grassroot campaign for Obama is working. He just got a huge endorsement in NH on friday and those are good signs with 2 months remaining to the primary. No suprises, this guy is likable to many of our kids and people who wanna be included in the goverment. All said and done, I am waiting so see how this game will play out in the finals. I like hillary but I don't know if I will vote for her because Obama is getting things sink in my heart.

    November 12, 2007 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |


    November 12, 2007 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |

    No Senator Barack (I'm too green to plant questions) Obama doesn't have shills to ask planted questions for him as does Senator Hillary(I did not plant a question with that woman... Miss Muriel Gallo-Chasanoff) nor does he vote in the Senate!

    November 12, 2007 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  15. S. Alexander

    Frankly, I hope the country is getting tired of the bashing, holier than thou attitude.
    At least Hillary voted on the Lieberman amendment re Iran. Barak, you never showed up to vote. What then gives you the right to criticize her. She showed up and took a stand.

    November 12, 2007 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  16. Richard, Ewing, NJ

    Obama has his own issues. Yes, he has not planted people in his crowd, but he is a non-interactive person. He rarely hold townhall style meeting and rarely allows the chance for "Q&A". I suppose you do not need to plant questioners if you do not even have a "Q&A" time.

    In addition, Obama critized Hillary Clinton on her vote on the Iran amendment will lead to another war and that it was irresponsible for her. Really? If it is so important, Mr. Obama, why do you cast a "undecided" vote? That sir, is truely irresponsible for 1) not taking a stance 2) critize someone does.

    I am neither a fan of Clinton or Obama.

    November 12, 2007 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  17. just a blogger

    Obash, you don't need to plant questions. You know why, look up your head and see the flags falling on anyone who does that. No need to attack her either, the flags are doing it for you already. She doesn't have enough weight to shake you.:)

    November 12, 2007 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  18. Bubba, Swainsboro GA

    caucus goer, there ARE two sides to every issue. You don't know THAT? It's common knowledge among most educated adults.

    November 12, 2007 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  19. Wayne, Silver Spring, MD

    Obama: "I dont do nasty"

    This is another example. Such a commendable leader!

    November 12, 2007 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  20. Larry. San Diego, Ca

    There is no way the US will elect this guy, sorry but it's true.

    November 12, 2007 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  21. ronnie - knoxville, tn

    Yeah, I really want a President who won't wear a flag pin. Not.

    November 12, 2007 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  22. jim,ny

    Nice tie.

    November 12, 2007 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  23. Mike,Panama City,FL

    Wow this is really interesting

    Actually it seems like he is saying We plant questions to , yippee

    November 12, 2007 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  24. Danielle Clarke

    Yes ED, i know all the candidates bused their campaign staff to the dinner for the hard work they did. Thanks for speaking the truth.

    Barack has lead an honest campaign. Baracks staffers have lead an honest campaign. Baracks grassroots supporters have lead an honest campaign. Baracks web site is an open web site where all are open to see the truth. We don't approve certain messages we approve all messages as long as they are not people using fowl language. Thats what this campaign is about. Thank you for speaking the truth. Join and join the truth !

    November 12, 2007 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  25. Ed,Ellenville,New York

    I hope CNN follows through and enforces the "no plant" rule. Obama has no problem. I bet the republicans are going to suffer for it. Maybe a "plant'o'meter"?

    November 12, 2007 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
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