Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton travels with a cabal of reporters that critics say won’t press her on actual issues surrounding her campaign. Their questions are often scripted, and Clinton has prepared answers she simply recites.
So when a genuine journalist cracks the facade, the results can be spontaneous and much more telling. And that’s exactly what happened when one gutsy journalist asked a question that took the Clinton camp by surprise.
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On Clinton’s campaign plane after the debate on Wednesday night, Clinton fielded questions. The flight from Las Vegas to New York was long, and that provided the campaign team plenty of time for interviews.
Yet when Clinton came to the press section of the plane to answer questions, most of the reporters asked softball questions that allowed the candidate to parade her per-prepared answers.
One reporter picked up on the controversy Trump had embroiled himself in moments earlier. “Will you accept the results of the election?” The reporter asked. It is precisely this type of question that has critics of Clinton’s sympathetic press core incensed. It isn’t a question, they argue, if you already know the answer.
After that one, NBC’s Andrea Mitchell probed Clinton’s emotional state post-debate. “How did you feel?”
Then it took a decidedly different turn. A reporter had the audacity to inquire about hidden camera videos that exposed James O’Keefe of Project Veritas. O’Keefe had been caught democratic henchmen talking openly about vote rigging, and inciting violence at Trump rallies. The tape, which is the exact type of proof Trump needs to back up his assertion that this election is being rigged has appalled many on both sides of the political divide.
Clinton wasn’t pleased with the question. Her celebratory tone shifted immediately. She rolled her eyes, waved off the question and was done. “I know nothing about this,” she said. “I can’t deal with all of his conspiracy theories.”
Game over. She packed it in and the interview was immediately over. But not the plane ride. There was still a long way to go before the plane touched down in New York.