November 13th, 2007
11:00 AM ET
12 years ago

Student given question to ask Clinton: I wasn't only one

Watch Student Muriel Gallo-Chasanoff's interview with CNN.

GRINNELL, Iowa (CNN) - The college student who says she was told what question to ask at one of Sen. Hillary Clinton's campaign events told CNN Monday that she wasn't the only one at the event who was a plant and said "voters have the right to know what really happened."

In an exclusive interview with CNN, Muriel Gallo-Chasanoff, a 19-year-old sophomore at Grinnell College in Iowa - whose story in her campus newspaper has now been widely circulated - said that giving anyone specific questions to ask is "dishonest," and the whole incident has given her a negative outlook on politics.

Gallo-Chasanoff, an undecided voter, said what happened was really pretty simple: she says a senior Clinton staffer asked if she'd like to ask the senator a question after an energy speech she gave in Newton, Iowa, on November 6. (Watch Gallo-Chasanoff ask Clinton the question)

"I sort of thought about it, and I said 'Yeah, can I ask how her energy plan compares to the other candidates' energy plans?'" Gallo-Chasanoff said.

"'I don't think that's a good idea," the staffer said, according to Gallo-Chasanoff, "because I don't know how familiar she is with their plans."

He then opened a binder to a page that, according to Gallo-Chasanoff, had about eight questions on it.

"The top one was planned specifically for a college student," she added. " It said 'college student' in brackets and then the question."

Full story

-CNN's Chris Welch and David Schechter

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Iowa • Race to '08
soundoff (489 Responses)
  1. Jim in Orlando, FL

    The extent to which some supporters of Hillary can excuse away even the most repugnant of practices is disheartening. There are followers of other candidates, in both parties, who do expect a higher standard of their candidate. One thing that is heartening about this is that while you can fool some of the people apparently all of the time, you can't fool all ...... and she is losing support.

    November 13, 2007 09:43 am at 9:43 am |

    Oh, yes. I LOVE the excuses that are made for Billary. Of course, the "World's Smartest Woman" once more has NO CLUE what happened, with planted questions.

    Stop and think for a moment. This woman, if she's telling the truth about "never" knowing what's going on around her is, to put it mildly...Clueless.

    Of course, the Clinton-cronies, and liberal dems – meaning all but Joe Liebermann – try to smear President Bush and say his group did the same thing.

    Using their logic, must have been a Bush Member who planted that question. Billary-Hillary just didn't know. Clueless? Riiiiiiiight. More like crooked – just like Bubba.

    November 13, 2007 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  3. Vote2008 L.A., CA

    Clinton = Bush... Let's get some new blood in the White House.

    November 13, 2007 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  4. Billy Bobb Annapolis, MD

    gawd who cares? plaNTED QUESTIONS OR NOT POLITICIANS WILL NOT listen to the people that voted them in.

    November 13, 2007 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  5. John, Edison NJ

    The thought of Clinton in office is like being in the middle of a nightmare. These Hillary supporters must like higher taxes. Then again you love socialism as well.
    The thought about leaving IRAN in the hands of LIbEralS frightens the hell out of me. All I can say is we haven't been hit with a terror attack since 9/11 unlike under Bill Clinton where we were hit multiple times which includes the first WTS attack. If we get hit under any LIbEral president I as well as others will hold all LIbEralS responsible.

    November 13, 2007 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  6. Cable King Pittsburgh PA

    Controlling questions has been a component of politics for a substantial period of time.

    However, anyone involved in this behavior is certainly disengenuous

    November 13, 2007 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  7. Randy S. Lawton, OK


    Posted By JAMES DUCKWORTH : November 13, 2007 9:18 am

    James, are you familiar with the term oxymoron? If not, read the above statement, and for 10 points tell me why it is the most oxy-MORON-ic post on this thread (as yet).

    November 13, 2007 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  8. Roger, Evansville, IN

    Typical of Clinton supporters to smear the girl and imply that she was either paid off or is lying. Have another drink of the Kool-Aid.

    November 13, 2007 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  9. Ra The Florida Keys

    Don't Vote for Ron Paul.
    I don't want to tell you who to vote for,
    I would just like to ask you to please listen to Dr. Paul and then decide for yourself.

    November 13, 2007 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  10. Gene, Fort Lauderdale, FL

    There is no doubt in my mind that Senator Clinton new the question was planted. You can see by her response and the way she looked at her notes for the answer. Young people aren't concerned by global warming. That is the furthest of their concerns!

    November 13, 2007 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  11. John Doe, New York, NY

    The one thing I will say is, having volunteered for the campaign (anything but a Republican for me at this point), a LOT of things are done behind the scenes and I HIGHLY doubt Hillary knows about it. She was there maybe at the MOST once a month, and usually it was to receive a very macro-level vision of the whole campaign. At events, Huma takes her around and they barely have time for themselves. Again, I highly doubt Hillary knows this is going on.

    November 13, 2007 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  12. Justin Marks

    How would Hillary have made it to the White House if JFK Jr had been alive and ran for the open senate seat

    November 13, 2007 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  13. Jason, Lake View, SC

    I am no Hillary guy trust me. She is the worst thing in the world for America, but all politicians do this on both sides of the isle. Is it cowardly, yes. Will it stop, no.

    November 13, 2007 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  14. Len, Alexandria,KY

    Here we go again: 'I Know nothing about it" this coming from Hillary?? how many times can she claim to be smart and yet "know nothing about"... so many issues???
    Let's face it either she's too stupid to be CIC or she's the ultimate liar!!!

    November 13, 2007 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  15. TB, Tampa

    I am a die hard democrat and I will probably never vote republican, but lets be fair here. If this was something Bush would have done we would be jumping down his throat. Clinton is no better! For someone who does not know what is going on in her camp surely is not qualified to run the country! When you make a mistake in the White House are you going to say you didn't know about it Hillary?? I don't think the American people can survive another White House scandal. She is a big baby! When her polls are soaring she's the toughest and best qualified to lead the country...when she's slipping Bill takes all the blame or try to explain how it's not her and "the boys are just being touch on her". Maybe you are qualified to lead the country in it's current state, one that's based on lies and deception, but unfortunately for you Hillary, we want our country back. One that reflects equality, honesty, and opportunity!

    Obama 08!

    November 13, 2007 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  16. Jim Krebs, Philadelphia, PA

    I agree that this demonstates a lack of integrity by this candidate and her campaign, which is more of the same for the American political system.

    November 13, 2007 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  17. Andy J, Upstate, NY

    I love it how all the Clinton supporters try to justify this question planting on the fact that Bush and his admin. do it too. Oh, oh, ok, so if Bush does it then its OK for everyone else to do it... I'm sure all of you Clinton supporters agree with that, right?

    Wasn't it Hillary who berated an alleged right wing "plant" just a month or 2 ago? How terrible it was to have someone planted to ask a question of Hillary... until it was Hillary who had the people planted. Hillary is a cry baby, who likes to play dirty and then cry foul when she gets hit back.

    Enough of this old-style politics, this garbage that invades our politics.... We need a new type of candidate, and not the old style politician that is Hillary.

    November 13, 2007 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  18. Saif, Atlanta, GA

    Now, this young lady will be accused of being part of the great, right wing conspiracy. Sorry to see her innocence being abused by regressives, who'll go to any extent to defend Sen Clinton and her staff's screw-ups. If you made a mistake, just admit it and move on. But, has anyone ever heard the Clintons apologize for anything?

    November 13, 2007 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  19. Dan Ross, Wellington, Fl

    I think Hillary has been taking lessons from Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots on how to cheat. Obviuosly neither are very good at it.

    November 13, 2007 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  20. Carlos Lorenzo, Miami, FL

    The only thing I want to know now from Hillary Clintoney is one thing:


    November 13, 2007 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  21. Joseph DiGiacomo Philadelphia,PA

    Why doesn't Hillary have an ear piece so Bill can feed her the answer?

    November 13, 2007 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  22. Kurtis North, San Diego, CA

    It doesn't matter if the questions 'sounds' whether it might be a hard question or not. The idea is to have people as Hillary questions she has thoroughly prepared for and has a canned answer ready.

    You might as well go to a carnival machine with 10 fortunes pre-canned, grab a handle and put in your money. You're only going to get one of the prepared answers.

    She is completely faithless with the people and will be a disaster for the country if she is elected President, or Vice President, for that matter.

    By the way, I don't read entries with a large number of caps in it, so please don't.

    November 13, 2007 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  23. HarryBalls, Lexington, KY

    Hillary is nothing more than a non-nappy headed,lying skank ho. Apart from that, she is the dream candidate for most Democrats who don't care about the character of their own peeps and who will go to great lengths to justify bad behavior of their own kind.

    November 13, 2007 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  24. Jennifer Randolph, Hanover NH

    This is not a new strategy for the Clinton campaign. Awhile back Hillary CLinton was interviewed here in my home state by NH Public Radio. I was dismayed to read a blog by someone who had called in with the hopes of asking the Senator a question. Apparently, there was a "list" of aceptable questions, and every time the caller suggested something she wanted to ask the Senator about, she was told that Hillary would not take that question. Eventually, she was told she could not ask a question, so her husband tried with similar results. I heard the interview before I read the blog, and what I noticed was that questioners were not given any opportunity for follow up, or "did that answer your question?" follow-up from the moderator. This meant Clinton could provide pat answers that in several instances were sidestepping the question, with no chance for anuyone to call her on it. This makes me uneasy about Clinton. I am a strong Obama supporter, but when I lived in NY supported Hillary's senate campaign- making my first monetary campaign contribution ever. I still have my Hillary coffee mug. I hoped she would some day make a White House bid, and be the first woman president- something I didn't think I would see in my lifetime, and a great example for my three daughters. Now I realize that she is not what I thought she was, and too steeped in the politics-as-usual status quo of covering her a** and duping the public. It is disappointing, and I am instead supporting the candidate with the most promise for the kids' future- Obama. The silver lining in this experience, however, is that we have reached the point where a woman candidate is a viable candidate- so in that sense the victory for my daughters and myself has been had. Now it is up to us to choose the BEST candidate, regardless of gender.

    November 13, 2007 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  25. Anonymous

    You mean to suggest that campaigns plant people to ask questions in open forums?

    I refuse to believe it! Next thing I know you'll tell me they do shady things to get around campaign finance laws.

    The fact that this is an issue for Hillary and not any other candidate shows what lengths people will stretch to take her down. And for the record, I'm not a Hillary supporter in the least. I just think it's unfair to hold her to a higher standard than the others running.

    November 13, 2007 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
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