April 16th, 2008
09:34 PM ET

Live Blog from the Anchor Desk 4/16/08

Tonight, the last Democratic match-up before the Pennsylvania primary.  Sen. Hillary Clinton and Sen. Barack Obama debated in Philadelphia and by the second question Obama had to explain, yet again, just what he meant when he told campaign donors at a San Francisco-area event 10 days ago that small-town Pennsylvania residents are "bitter" over their economic circumstances and "cling" to their guns and religion.  Who won?  Who lost? And what impact will it have on the primary next week?  The best political team in television will dissect the debate for you.

And we’re continuing our series on the top contenders for the White House with Sen. John McCain.  It’s an in-depth look at the presumptive Republican Nominee including what drove him to attempt suicide.

 Plus, tomorrow there’s an unprecedented custody hearing in Texas.  What will happen to the 416 children removed from the polygamous compound?  Anderson’s going to talk to a spokesman from  FLDS and a former member. 

We’ll be blogging for two hours tonight.  We’ll start posting comments at 10p ET and stopping at 12a ET

Filed under: Live Blog
soundoff (602 Responses)
  1. RC Lendz Philadelphia, PA

    Get over yourself Gergen, she never said he was not electable, she said that she was more electable, bringing more votes together in the fall. If Obama wins the nomination, would you expect Hillary to support McCain like the Democratic turncoat Lieberman?

    No, she would toe the party line.

    And what has Obama said on this? Nothing!!!!!!! Ask him if she is electable. See what he would say. I have never heard anyone ask him this question and obviously he never volunteered it on his own.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:15 pm |
  2. DeniseGA

    I ike him too Patty,

    He truly is objective. I like to hear his view on the issues!

    April 16, 2008 at 11:15 pm |
  3. Campbell

    Nancy – you are so right. I was on the debatge blog earlier, and I stated that I expected Ashton Kutcher to come out and tell America that we'd been punked b/c the debate was ridiculous. 🙂

    What a tremendous waste of intellectual space!

    April 16, 2008 at 11:15 pm |
  4. Rochelle

    Anderson where is part 2, this is a rerun

    April 16, 2008 at 11:15 pm |
  5. Megan Dresslar

    Yen, McCain will be here soon, I think..........

    April 16, 2008 at 11:14 pm |
  6. Alvin

    I would like to know why Obama seems to always say it's silly season when he's being asked fair judgement questions like Rev. Wright and the small town PA comments he made? He always talks about same old politics when it's a tuff question but he and his campaigne plays politics frequently.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:13 pm |
  7. Brandi down the bayou.

    I was wondering the same thing, I miss Erica's head bobbing to the music! 😀

    April 16, 2008 at 11:13 pm |
  8. xtina, chicago IL

    hear, hear Susan. I also want to know how much tax money (if any) is going to support these compounds. Are they a non-profit church that doesn't pay taxes, too?

    April 16, 2008 at 11:13 pm |
  9. Sahira

    David Gergen is awesome!
    Unlike some others, he knows what he is talking about....

    April 16, 2008 at 11:12 pm |
  10. Megan O. Toronto, ON, Canada

    oh there's live Anderson thank goodness

    April 16, 2008 at 11:12 pm |
  11. Maureen T

    Goodnight folks, time for my beauty rest! Excellent show though! See you tomorrow.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:12 pm |
  12. Jolene

    @Michael: I don't think the bloggers are finding the sect ruled by men surprising, what is surprising is that they are having the women be the front for the media cameras.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:12 pm |
  13. xtina, chicago IL

    JoAnn is right, Obama never did answer Rev question. He also went waaaay off topic when asked why he said he doesn't need to wear flag pin

    April 16, 2008 at 11:12 pm |
  14. DeniseGA

    Thank you David! and Anderson

    So she lied in the DEBATE. Key phrase lie!

    April 16, 2008 at 11:12 pm |
  15. CaseyJPS - California

    It's not just the male "ruling" of the religion. It is about the (apparent) absolute power the men assert over the women throughout every aspect of life. I'm obviously making assumptions, but that's the way I see it, for now.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:11 pm |
  16. Teresa, Kent, OH

    @ greg: now THAT was funny : ) thanks.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:11 pm |
  17. EJ - Ohio

    Thanks for the answer to my legal question, Abby.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:11 pm |
  18. Patty

    I seriously don't fully understand why anyone would want the Presidency. I love America like everyone, but run it? Good Grief!

    April 16, 2008 at 11:11 pm |
  19. Shawn North Carolina

    That was the most biased debate I have ever seen they asked Obama why he didn't wear a stinking lapel pin. What kind of question is that? That was a right wing debate set up to swiftboat Obama if I ever seen one. Someone needs to expose that one of the panelist worked for the Clinton admin, and the other was just on fox news I mean fake news, and took notes on what questions to ask.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:11 pm |
  20. Susan Seymour

    Your coverage of the FLDS community in Texas and the removal of children is important and very interesting. From the video tonight it is clear that this is an economically prosperous community. The church is large and lavish, the homes also large with up-to-date kitchens, sleeping accommodations, etc. I wish you would address where their money comes from.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:11 pm |
  21. Nancy Wad

    Why do the people who moderate the debates insist on asking questions that do not relate to the concerns of the American people? These debates are like entertainment commentary shows that just deal with gossip. When are we going to hear what the candidates are going to do for us?

    Southern California

    April 16, 2008 at 11:11 pm |
  22. Tracey - Boston

    I think they are letting us just blog until midnight. I'd like to see the McCain piece too.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:11 pm |
  23. Pat

    Wow – 6 in 10 voters say a politiciain is not honest – seems the polls are getting better for politicians!!

    April 16, 2008 at 11:10 pm |
  24. Esin Efe

    Thanks for the analysis of the debate, since I was unable to make anything of it. To be frank, it was very unsatisfying watching it.

    Anderson, can't wait to see you at Tulane in 2 weeks – knowing what New Orleans means to you, I look forward to hearing you speak!

    April 16, 2008 at 11:10 pm |
  25. Megan O. Toronto, ON, Canada

    @ Megan.....what is on now is not live. It is exactly what was on at 10

    April 16, 2008 at 11:10 pm |
  26. RC Lendz Philadelphia, PA

    What Obama said about Rev. Wright tonight: He disassociated himself from Wright because it was going to serve as a distraction. What???????

    If should have said he disassiated himself because of the comments, not because it would be a distraction. He supports Wright and his comments in my opinion.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:10 pm |
  27. Peb, Valley Village, California

    Am I mistaken? I thought I heard Anderson say the AC360 would be live for 2 hours tonight.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:10 pm |
  28. Gary in Kent, Ohio

    Michael your "men rule the world" point is well founded. I still fell bad that families are now torn apart and that it is "reality" TV we are now seeing.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:09 pm |
  29. Patty

    I like David Gergen, he always brings another perspective and articulates it beautifully.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:09 pm |
  30. Jo Ann, Ohio

    Anderson, Are we going to get to see Erica's profile of John McCain tonight?

    April 16, 2008 at 11:09 pm |
  31. greg

    Good Evening Anderson and bloggers. Welcome. to nothing.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:09 pm |
  32. Yen

    What happened to the piece on McCain?

    April 16, 2008 at 11:09 pm |
  33. Jo Ann, Ohio

    Obama really didn't answer the question of why it took him so long to disassociate himself from Wright.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:08 pm |
  34. keena

    You know any mother seperated from her child for whatever reason can experience unbelievable heartache. I am a mother of a 6month old and it hard enough just going to work and leaving him. I do sympathize with their pain of not having their children. However I strongly disagree with returning these children to their parents. Any mother or father for that matter that would allow a child as young as 13 years old to engage in any marital activites with a man 50 years old really even18 years old, is disgusting and is not deserving of their parental authority.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:07 pm |
  35. Brandi down the bayou.


    ssssshhhhh...they already give anderson a hard time about being too soft. are you trying to get him more attention for the few actual opinions of his we get hints at? lol

    to others,

    anderson soft on the questions? hmmm...i remember very well his hurricane coverage and his tough questioning during that time. kudos AC, gotta love you for calling it the way you see it when you can. <3

    April 16, 2008 at 11:07 pm |
  36. carmen

    Megan, sounds better second time around LOL

    April 16, 2008 at 11:06 pm |
  37. Megan Dresslar

    Yes Megan O.
    We are live for 2 hours now.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:05 pm |
  38. angie tn

    boy all this nick picking of words obama didn't lie folks are bitter not only bitter but angry sick and tired of being sick and tired seeing there dollar (which in only worth 15 cent now) go no where trying to stretch their pay checks yes there is bitterness and we do call on God when times are hard and we do go to the things we know for comfort ...keep staying out of the box obama...bring it home let us know you know how we feel

    April 16, 2008 at 11:05 pm |
  39. RC Lendz Philadelphia, PA

    I agree Carla. I am a strong Clinton supporter, and if there are any other fellow Pennsylvanians here tonight, this debate should have tipped you over to Clinton. Our local news held several different focus groups, college students, people on the fence, strong supporters from both sides, etc. In both the college and fence groups, both were strongly for Clinton. One college student who supports McCain, might switch to Obama. Other college students who were Obamites, switched sides, and still other college students who were on the fence, are now leaning towards Clinton. Come on PA, do what Carla from Canada says: Get it right!!!!!!!!

    April 16, 2008 at 11:05 pm |
  40. Jo Ann, Ohio

    It was obviously a calculated move to put the women in front of the cameras. It's a mother and child thing. They are being used to garner sympathy from the viewers and the authorities.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:05 pm |
  41. Christine

    Is it me or did the video of the compound look like a bad copy of MTV Cribs?

    As I said I didn't get to watch the debate, but I have noticed that Obama can not answer off the cuff. He does seen to stutter and hem and haw alot.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:05 pm |
  42. monique

    My only hope is that Hillary Clinton does not win the nomination!!! I have never liked her, and as far as the Bosnia Lie, it is important, becuse if she can lie about something as simple is that she will NOT she will not hesitate to lie to america about anything

    April 16, 2008 at 11:04 pm |
  43. Michael

    Is the fact that the men are in charge of the FLDS really that big of a deal? After all, its really a religious movement..a theocracy of sorts. Its not like its the only religion dominated by men. This week you have the spiritual leader of the catholic church in the US.. and uh oh, wait a minute... its lead and ruled by men. Women can't be priests, biships, cardinals or the Pope. They have no real say in church doctrine or principles, and by Papal decree, never will.

    So while I don't defend the FLDS lifestyle, I don't think that the fact that a religious sect is ruled by men should be all that surprising, even in this day and age.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:04 pm |
  44. Lorie Ann, Buellton, California

    Has the John MCain piece been nixed or just thrown out to after 11 pm . Maybe tomorrow we viewers will see it?

    April 16, 2008 at 11:04 pm |
  45. Patty

    Barack was sincere. He is definately likeable. That said, I'm still
    not sure he has a better grasp to fix the problems in America than
    Hillary is...but...I'm certain he'll do far more then John McCain.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:03 pm |
  46. charles McQuay

    Tell nancy grace. She is not the only woman to have twins. We have heard all we need to hear about her kids.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:03 pm |
  47. Mary H. St. Louis, MO

    Yes, Anderson thanks for trying to get the men to speak out. I doubt the men will speak out if they are the ones "spiritually marrying" the underage girls. The court house tomorrow should be interesting. Would like to be a fly on the wall in that courtroom.

    Aunt Sally needs some wrinkle cream...

    April 16, 2008 at 11:03 pm |
  48. Michelle N San Diego

    I think the fathers don't comment on the children because they probably don't even know all of their names or ages. Didn't one of the former FLDS women last week say that her own father thought she was one of his grandchildren & asked her to go home??

    April 16, 2008 at 11:03 pm |
  49. E. Jones

    As one who feels he could support either Clinton or Obama in a general election, I think this vetting process is necessary so that we know who the best candidate is to win in the fall. Tonight I was struck by Clinton's more forthcoming responses to questions on controversies, while Obama seemed to obfuscate somewhat. It's still not clear to me that he has clearly explained his remarks about small town citizens. I still find his explanation not entirely forthcoming and somewhat embellished when compared to what he actually said. Rather than just admit that he made a mistake, instead he continues trying to explain it in different terms when what he said is on the record and is clear. This and other such issues do concern me as to whether or not they affect electability. There are already huge historical obstacles to overcome.

    April 16, 2008 at 11:03 pm |
  50. Kitty Windfield

    I have been watching the video of the women of the El Dorado compound...
    Is it just me, or are these the 'Stepford Wives' on the hoof...
    Blank affect....same voice pitch...robotic mannerisms etc.?
    These are ADULT VICTIMS....
    I would venture to guess that not a single one has had an indepenent thought, that was not promptly punished for having it.
    My heart goes out to ANY devoted Mother who is seperated from her child...
    These are not women...They are breeding stock.
    They need to be with their children, while BOTH mother and child are gently DEPROGRAMMED....Preferably, with the assistance of those women who have escaped in the past....They will NEVER trust anyone from the outside....
    Have they considered doing an infra-red surveillence of the property...?The natural proportion of female to male children is WAY out of the norm...Where did the rest of the male children go?

    April 16, 2008 at 11:02 pm |
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