October 29th, 2008
10:28 AM ET
14 years ago

CNN declines Obama camp ad request

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/POLITICS/10/01/campaign.wrap/art.obama.afp.gi.jpg caption="CNN turned down the Obama campaign's request to air a 30-minute campaign ad tonight."]
(CNN) - The Obama campaign asked CNN to air its 30-minute campaign ad, scheduled for Wednesday evening, but the network turned them down.

“CNN was approached by the Obama campaign and declined their request,” the network said in a Tuesday statement. “We did not want to pre-empt our programming lineup with a 30-minute campaign commercial. We prefer to use our air to continue to cover the campaign, candidates and issues like we always do from all points of view with the best political team on television.”

Fox News Channel – which is a separate network from FOX – was not asked to air the ad. The half hour infomercial which will be airing on CBS, NBC, FOX television, MSNBC, Univision, BET and TV One at a reported cost of $3 million to the campaign. ABC said it couldn’t come to an agreement in time to meet the Obama campaigns requirement to run it in that time slot.

The Obama camp’s purchase drew headlines when the GOP blasted Major League Baseball’s decision to delay the start of its World Series broadcast on FOX television scheduled for that night, if the series were to call for a sixth game, to accommodate the buy. A Fox executive responsible for the buy said the infomercial would replace pre-game programming, but would not delay the airing of the game. Nonetheless, the Republican candidate took a swing. "No one will delay the World Series game with an infomercial when I'm president," John McCain said Tuesday.

The last pre-election programming of this type came during the 1992 race, when Ross Perot paid for similar time blocs on network television shortly before Election Day.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • CNN
soundoff (388 Responses)
  1. Carlo

    I applaud CNN for not preempting actual election coverage to run the infomercial. I know there are 3 local HD stations running it, I have it set up on my media center to record (curious what the hubbub is all about).

    October 29, 2008 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  2. DDDDDDDDDHA

    WE WILL WATCH OBAMA'S AD &

    THE NEWS SOMEWHERE ELSE.

    October 29, 2008 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  3. steve

    CNN – you're almost as bad as Fox news and fair and balanced.

    Cambell Brown – gee, viewers have a real tough time telling who she's voting for. Is Cambell paling around with Bill O'Reilly.....

    When Cambell comes on, we switch channels. Cnn – he PR machine for corporate America and continued rip offs of tax payers.

    CNN......junk right wing reporting that isn't fooling anyone with half a brain.

    October 29, 2008 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  4. Go Bama

    What is with Cambell Brown? No bias no bull? My butt!

    October 29, 2008 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  5. Independent for Obama

    I agree with everyone on Campbell Brown. I refuse to watch her. I change it MSNBC and watch Keith Olbermann. I had feeling cnn was becoming fox.

    October 29, 2008 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  6. EmeraldDot

    No problem..... We'll just tune in to another station. It's the "same old – same old" on all the 24/7 talk news stations anyway. Lots of talk, too much "slanting" of facts and very little truth but what can you expect from people who are paid to talk non-stop, ad nauseam?

    October 29, 2008 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  7. Stacy (PA)

    I still love you CNN. I get the feeling you'll probably air it in it's entirety an hour later for free or on Saturday & Sunday during Ballot Bowl. Not to mention...I know you don't want to hear John McCain whining as usual.

    Obama is brilliant, strategic, and knows how to run a campaign. Look at McCain crying in the dark like a little baby. "It's not fair, I should have been smart enough to think of it first!" Instead I have this annoying woman screaming "maverick" and "joe the plumber" in my ear all day!!

    People are voting early for Obama in record numbers. I wish PA could vote early .

    Obama/Biden

    October 29, 2008 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  8. Joe Green

    It's on every other network, so why bother with CNN?

    Frankly, trying to "broadcast" your message is so 20th centruty – I am surprised Obama is doing this.

    But $3 million is pretty cheap to reach that large an audience.

    October 29, 2008 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  9. Great (x3) Granddaughter of a Founding Father

    I'm surprised...CNN has always been relatively unbiased and you all have certainly been pandering to McCain lately...especially on your news programming. (IE: yesterday evenings "McCain-Palin 1, 2 PUNCH!" segment. Yeah they really got that Obama guy good!!!) And what's up with Campbell Brown being Palin's newest cheerleader? I used to really respect her as a journalist...

    Whatever. I will just be so glad when I don't have to listen to this anymore. I'm an independent who will be voting for Senator Obama in this election. He has continued to stay on message, while McCain has been flailing pathetically around...throwing out every name in the book to scare up votes. If people cannot see that for what it is, I suggest you pay a little more attention to Senator Obama's message...you will see how skewed it has all become. Because that is all McCain can do...skew the truth because he doesn't have a platform of his own to stand on. Plus I feel that his pick of Palin proves how out of touch he is with what this country needs. I used to like McCain and said that I would consider voting for him if he ever got the nomination, but now it's clear that he's sold his soul just to win this thing.

    October 29, 2008 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  10. Laura, Boston

    Way to go CNN!

    It is about time someone (other than FOX) didn't cozy on up to Obama.

    If he had kept his campaign promise to sit down with John McCain to discuss campaign finance than he may not have the 100's of millions of dollars left to put on an ad where he talks and talks and tells us what he thinks we need to know. Why didn't he do something where he would answer some of the questions voters (like me) still have about him.

    I hope everyone will read Campbell Browns article about Obama's broken promise. I have been critical of Campbell Brown in the past for being in the tank for Obama. I even e-mailed her about my feelings. I feel now I may have been wrong. Thanks Campbell and CNN. Please continue to answer our questions and help us to see who Obama really is.

    October 29, 2008 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  11. 08 Voter

    5th game of World Series is tonight.... Go Phillies....

    October 29, 2008 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  12. Rob

    Oh no CNN, you better watch out! After they're done crying to their mommies, the Obamaholics are going to come after you. Forget trying to get an interview with them!

    Nice, this man wants to be president, yet he refuses to answer valid questions, supresses (or has his cohorts) surpress information that is negative of him... Yeah,that sounds like change. Gee, I wonder if we could go back to 1932 Germany and do a comparison....

    Guess if Barry wins I should schedule an appointment to be fitted for a brown shirt, and to receive my indoctrination booklet. So, what race/nationality are we going to blame everything on this time around?

    October 29, 2008 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  13. Jerry

    It doesn't matter whether CNN broadcast this infomertial. They'll debate it's consequences for the rest of the week, thereby giving it FAR more exposure.

    October 29, 2008 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  14. Latina-Indepedent-4-OBAMA

    ****************CNN POST THIS COMMENT *****************************

    CNN, WE ARE SO DISAPPOINTED IN YOU! ALL ALONG WE ALL, HAVE NOTICED YOUR BIASED AGAINST SEN. OBAMA.

    1. YOU RAN THE WRIGHT-STORY 24/7 FOR WEEKS

    2. YOU HARDLY REPORTED ON THE ABUSE OF POWER GUILT OF PALIN.

    3. CNN NEVER 'TOUCHED' THE PALIN CONNECTION WITH THE ALASKA INDEPENDENT PARTY.

    4. ANYTHING CNN COULD REPORT NEGATIVE TOWARDS SEN. OBAMA YOU DID!

    CNN, YOU HAVE LOST THE VIEWERS IN MY HOME. AND I WILL ASK MY FAMILY AND FRIENDS TO DO THE SAME.

    CNN, YOU HAVE LOST ALL DIGNITY, YOU ARE NO BETTER THAN THE FAR-RIGHT-MOUTHPIECE 'FAUX NEWS'.

    SHAME ON YOU!

    October 29, 2008 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  15. THE US OF WHAT?

    “We did not want to pre-empt our programming lineup with a 30-minute campaign commercial. We prefer to use our air to continue to cover the campaign, candidates and issues like we always do from all points of view with the best political team on television.”

    Why not? CNN you show the same stuff over and over again. Well I will be watching Obama sorry CNN.

    October 29, 2008 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  16. Mike in Columbus

    "No one will delay the World Series game with an infomercial when I'm president," John McCain said Tuesday.

    Wow... he did it... he finally said something worth voting for. LMAO

    October 29, 2008 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  17. Wise Way to Spending Money?

    I don't get this ad buy. He is already ahead, and the likely winner. It actually frustrates me a bit. It seems like a big waste of money. More about an ego play that anything.

    October 29, 2008 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  18. M

    And you're proud of this, CNN?

    October 29, 2008 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  19. indyred

    Just because it is advertised as "No bias, no bull," doesn't mean there isn't any.

    October 29, 2008 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  20. Tom

    A wise decision, CNN, protecting your fame is more important than a bit money that would degrade you to a liberal machine like nbc. Good for your rating for the long run.

    October 29, 2008 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  21. Stef

    The only reason why I watch CNN is because of Roland Martin who is very smart and intelligent when delivering the facts. I also can't forget about Jack Cafferty who also is fair and tells the trugh. When this election is over, I will truly be watching msnbc. By the way, the new guy who does the magic wand on CNN around 7am appears to favor McCain because he only demonstrates the map in his favor.

    October 29, 2008 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  22. Mccain is a Liar

    the only reason McBush is talking is because he is mad he does not have enough money to compete with this buy so don't get mad the Obama campaign is funded by the people! Obama 08 and 12 GO VOTE

    October 29, 2008 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  23. Joyce

    CNN its obvious that you dont support OBAMA but ve in mind that OBAMA make ya headline as US PRESIDENT come 04-11-08

    October 29, 2008 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  24. Indiana Joe

    CNN, WHY DON'T YOU TALK MORE ABOUT THIS FACT: McCain/Palin is a HISTORIC TICKET. WHY? The McCain/Palin ticket is the FIRST IN AMERICAN HISTORY in which BOTH CANDIDATES were found to have VIOLATED ETHICS STANDARDS before a national election. Sarah Palin has been found to have abused her powers, violated state ethics ("Troopergate" scandal), and lied about it. McCain, of course, was admonished by Senate Ethics Committee "for exercising 'poor judgment' for intervening" with federal regulators on behalf of Charles Keating, as part of the infamous Keating Five scandal.

    For good judgment and experience, VOTE OBAMA/BIDEN '08!!!

    October 29, 2008 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  25. Gary

    We would'nt want to miss any " Breaking News" stories that happened 12 hours ago.
    or
    Headline, US City bombed, 1000's dead. Evacuations needed. Come back after the break and we'll tell you where.

    October 29, 2008 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
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