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August 23rd, 2008
03:43 PM ET

Avoiding the rain to break big news

Kay Jones
AC360° Editorial Producer

Almost everything went as planned for Election Center and AC360 last night almost to the end, but as you've probably read before, nothing in television ever really goes as planned.

So with two minutes left in the 10p ET hour, we decided to go live at 11p. There was a slight problem with that plan: We were getting kicked out of the Pepsi Center by the Secret Service for their pre-convention security sweep and they didn't really care about our plans.

We tried to hang on a little longer, but just three minutes after 11, a very loud announcement came on the intercom – "Fire Drill". Anchor John King tried valiently to finish his interview with Candy Crowley, battling through the sirens and announcements.

But we took this as a sign that we definitely needed to leave. John ran out of the arena, across the street to our location at the CNN bus, where another crew had been called back to set up a camera. Then the real fun started: Rain.  So the crew quickly erected a tent to protect the equipment, and just as importantly, John & CNN Political analyst Gloria Borger.

More trouble – one of the blackberry servers crashed so any e-mails we needed were floating around in e-mail no man's land. Oh and this location? The Secret Service wanted us out of here too.

So, on to plan C. The CNN political desk had the smarts to set up a live truck outside the security perimeter. So we hustled Suzanne Malveaux over there and eventually Gloria Borger made her way there too.

Of course, nothing is ever easy. The Broncs-Packers preseason game was just finishing, so thousands of fans in cars were clogging the route.

But everyone made air, and John King was able to break the news that Joe Biden is Obama's VP pick – before that 3a text message.

More from the CNN Grill as it happens.

See ya later!

August 23rd, 2008
01:01 PM ET

McCain's reaction to Biden: More coffee

Ted Fine
AC360° Senior Producer

We hear that John McCain called Joe Biden to congratulate him this morning. "Old friends" we hear. No public comments from McCain yet.

In fact, we haven't heard anything from McCain since the start of last week. We've only seen the Senator getting his coffee fix.

Here's the report from the pool producer with McCain this morning:

A little after 8 am a four car caravan pulled down Hidden Valley Road towards the mailboxes. The senator and Cindy were in the second vehicle trailing a silver mini-van. There was also a dog in the back seat with them – what looked like a springer spaniel (according to others...I know nothing about dogs).

The senator arrived at the Starbucks in the Safeway at 820 and walked in with Mark Braden and Cindy. He emerged wearing a white tshirt, blue jeans and a blue cap. Cindy wore a black shirt, a tan hat and blue jeans. She was also wearing her bright pink cast.

Some pictures from the van but the McCains' heads were mostly obscured by a pesky pine tree. Will feed if there's interest.

He arrived back at 840 without incident.

That should be the lid for the day, but the pool will be on call.


Filed under: John McCain • Raw Politics