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. Paul Glair

    CNN you must have made a bussiness decision. I respect that. I hope that it wasnt political. I like cambell Brown even if she did dedicate her coverage to the Bush campaine in the last two elections. Guess I'll just have to watch it on MSNBC.

    October 29, 2008 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  2. Spencer/VIRGINIA

    I guess I'll continue to watch CNN for D.L. Hughley and Soledad O'Brien. D.L. is funny and Soledad is hot.

    October 29, 2008 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  3. George Nelson Jr.

    I am real disappointed in the decision CNN made. However I notice that you carried full speeches for Palin and then McCain on today that gave them more than thirty minutes collectively. Are you really trying to cover the news or change the outcome in order to increase ratings while appearing to be fair and balanced,

    PS – I'm sorry thats the other guys

    October 29, 2008 11:04 am at 11:04 am |
  4. blindsided

    @ am a xtian

    What did I do wrong exactly? I gave you quotes from the books that this man wrote with his own words. How am I anything bad and not fit to be a parent???

    October 29, 2008 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  5. Hardworking American

    Ms Jenny; who really gives a flip. Just think soon you will be able to stand in line for more handouts. Or maybe they will mail them to you if you stay in one place long enough!

    October 29, 2008 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  6. Tina

    this is what he has to do because of the NEGATIVE IMAGE PORTRAYAL thanks to the McCain campaign.........He has to sell himself unlike any other......He is not the boogey man..........He had to raise this amount of money to even try to compete with the GOP tricks.......and now that he has beat them at there own game they have no words....................CHECKMATE........

    October 29, 2008 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  7. Lyle

    The talking-heads at CNN should review their coverage of the last two years of this Presidential election cycle.

    It is shocking and disingenuous for CNN to state… “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.”, after the two year long Obama commercial that CNN news coverage has become. CNN and other major news outlets have played a very dangerous game throughout this election cycle with the blatant one sided pro-Obama, anti Hillary Clinton, anti-Republican coverage they have thrown at the American public.

    CNN has been the parade marshal in the Obama Love Parade since Mr. Obama announced his candidacy and to now claim a desire to be objective and cover this election from all points of view is a disgusting finally to the complete abandonment of all that a news organization should be. The American main-stream media has become a mindless handmaiden to Mr. Obama and lost all credibility.

    October 29, 2008 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  8. I see Russia from my HOUSE

    Robert Draper, however, offers a defense of Wallace, saying she's kept quiet about things that a couple of McCain higher-ups have leaked to him, and that Wallace was in a very unenviable position:

    I'm sympathetic to Eskew and Wallace, and not just because they're decent people. They've held their tongue from leaking what a couple of McCain higher-ups have told me–namely, that Palin simply knew nothing about national and international issues. Which meant, as one such adviser said to me: "Letting Sarah be Sarah may not be such a good thing." It's a grim binary choice, but apparently it came down to whether to make Palin look like a scripted robot or an unscripted ignoramus. I was told that Palin chafed at being defined by her discomfiting performances in the Couric, Charlie Gibson, and Sean Hannity interviews. She wanted to get back out there and do more. Well, if you're Eskew and Wallace, what do you say to that? Your responsibility isn't the care and feeding of Sarah Palin's ego; it's the furtherance of John McCain's quest for the presidency.

    October 29, 2008 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  9. Molly Weasley

    You should point out that the NFL changed the time of its opening football game so that it would be finished by the time John McCain gave his acceptance speech at the RNC. So preempting pre-game chatter of World Series programming of the last three innings of a game is certainly no big deal.

    October 29, 2008 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  10. JT

    This is a surprise. CNN declines Obama, This is really the first time. CNN's so called political experts had already twisted news with their talking points to get the partisan messages across.

    I got news for you CNN, our organization just change the TV network we are tuning in, we used to tune in to CNN but now had change to another network for the reason that you guys cannot send out a non partisan messages.

    October 29, 2008 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
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