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!

soundoff (24 Responses)
  1. Vonne

    Why, just tell me why? The media just had to open my Christmas package for me. The public was willing to wait for the VP announcement; it was the media that had to have the news before the campaign was ready to reveal it. When will you put the publics interest first and not your own.

    For all the women who have decided to vote for John McCain…….remember one thing there are Republicans who don’t like McCain but they would never, never let there party down. It’s not about the Clintons any more it’s about the party and what is best for this country, a man who doesn’t know or care about the economy is not the best choice for this county.

    August 25, 2008 at 2:34 pm |
  2. Barb

    Why does Obama need Biden too do his dirty work, if he can't handle John McCain how can he say he is ready too be President.
    Everyone knows when you hire a hitman you are just as guilty of his crimes as he is.........even if it is an effort too look like you are above ( dirty politics ).
    I think the 3 am text message was Obama's way of telling the American people that he has someone he can turn too in a crisis, because he is not ready too handle that call himself.
    I seen part of the enterview with Obama's wife this morning, she say's the Republican's are trying too make them look unpatriotic, she did that herself , and Obama show's it in all his past associates, which he has never answered for thanks too the media.

    August 25, 2008 at 10:01 am |
  3. Irene

    We talk about Obama being a great father and would be a great President, therefore will be good for the Country.

    He as a half brother in KENYA that CNN documented last week, why are you not mentioning him today and through to Thursday...
    If he's goot 5 million dollars and he's never helped his brother living in a wooden shack.. they how can you all be so sure he will really help your Nation... he's all talk and scrupulus, what he and the Super Delegates and the party did to Clinton need to also publicly apologies to her.... they all believed he was the greatest... not now eh! hope Hilary gets more votes then Obama.. teach them a lesson.!!!!

    August 25, 2008 at 9:47 am |
  4. PoliticoMike

    To Larry,
    The economy is bad for you and and I not the politicians (Dems or Repubs).
    They pretend to care about us and our wallets, then they flaunt how much they have while they force us to watch due to over obsessed news coverage. Gotta love Politics 🙂

    August 25, 2008 at 12:47 am |
  5. Pat

    I bet not many of us have ever thought about what you guys go through to bring us the news and keep us up to date! I know I had no idea! I thought you like kind of made appts with these people and these affairs, you showed up at whatever time, they gave you their undivided attention and you went back to your office and tweaked it and voila!

    Thanks for the insight. I now have a whole new appreciation for you guys who look so debonaire, calm and composed by the time I see you on my screen! I also have a a whole new appreciation for my day job! Great Work Folks! Kudos.

    August 24, 2008 at 10:52 pm |
  6. Ron Mallers

    First I will say that I was a Clinton Supporter... Until she got so nasty in the primary battle.
    Attitude reflects leadership. Clinton supporters have a bad attitude because the person the look to for leadership has a bad attitude (Clinton).
    I totally understand that loosers are never happy, but if Clinton really cared about the country more than her personal political ambitions she would be working even harder to make sure Dems take the White House no matter who is on the ticket!!!!
    These Clinton supporters are really upsetting me. How can they vote for John McCain over Obama, when Clinton and Obama are more aligned than Obama and McCain on the issues? Clinton supporters are bad losers who aren’t willing to join for the party good.
    Are these Clinton hold out’s not voting for Obama because he is Black? Would they have not supported a Black man even if Clinton was never in the running? Things that make me go Hhmmmm

    August 24, 2008 at 7:25 pm |
  7. Vicky

    I have found most CNN news reporters biased against Obama and look for any little thing to pick up on that might make Obama look bad even if they have to exaggerate. To classify them: Glenn Beck trying to get people to look upon Obama as a anti-Christ. What kind of reporting is that. Campbell Brown's eyes light up when she has posed a question that draws negative comments from her guests. I was very disappointed in Candy Crowley and David Gergen's comments after the question period Pastor Rick Warren set up as they ignored the fact it was a complete set-up to make Obama look bad. Did Warren apologize to Obama for not keeping McCain in the so-called "cone"? I for one believe that McCain either saw the questions before or was coached by someone who had. After all his past record does not speak well for his honesty. Just ask his first wife.

    August 24, 2008 at 6:37 pm |
  8. lampe

    Anderson; for once I can honestly say, "I think you are being fair." Sen. Clinton was snubbed by Obama, at the worst possible time. If he thinks for one minute that Clinton supporters are going to come crawling to him, he is in for a rude-awakening!!!! P.U.M.A. this in not going to happening, he has taken it upon himself to rip this party in two. For a man who is supposed to be honest, and wants to bring change to this country, he sure has a funny way of showing it. He can lie with the best of them. So Obama, I hope you like being a Senator, maybe in 8 years, you will be ready to be POTUS, BUT NOT NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 24, 2008 at 1:49 pm |
  9. Dennis

    Gotta love the way Barack uses Joe to do his dirty work.

    August 24, 2008 at 1:37 pm |
  10. Patricia

    Thanks for the great coverage, Anderson. I felt your commentary was fair to both sides and yet served to bring the excitement of the occasion. I think the Obama/Biden ticket is a winner, if they stick to the issues in the speech they made at the announcement. Thanks again for fair unbiased reporting.

    August 24, 2008 at 10:46 am |
  11. Annie Kate


    All of you did an amazing job because it never looked rushed or hurried or hassled on the screen. Between the Secret Service, the rain, the crashed email, the football fans, and the time constraints on the show I'm sure it was more than a little hectic. Seems like Murphy's law was in overdrive for you – if something can go wrong it will all at once...glad you and your team are as resourceful as you are. The coverage so far has been fascinating.

    See you later too!

    Annie Kate
    Birmingham AL

    August 24, 2008 at 1:59 am |
  12. Chris

    I never seem to here it mentioned in all the talk about Obama/Biden that they both have a history of serious gun control.That will be a factor to several million voters,not the only factor but it will be noticed at some point.

    August 24, 2008 at 1:18 am |
  13. Jeanine

    I think that the news casters should stop telling the American people about what each candidate says about the other. We want the real issues. Ask the candidates more about that.

    August 24, 2008 at 12:25 am |
  14. Don, WA

    Very interesting...but what was the Broncs-Packers score?

    August 23, 2008 at 11:42 pm |
  15. esbee c.

    Love Joe Biden!

    Great choice but pretty sure DNC and Obama backed good ol' Joe in a corner on this one!!

    After all the only one that can pull this election out for Obama is Joe Biden.

    August 23, 2008 at 11:38 pm |
  16. Brian C. McGrowder

    After a review of Biden autobiography, it with great thoughts that I would congratulate Obama on a great VP's choice, everyone has a pass and everyone has said something or done some thing that they or not complete and utterly satisfied with. Therefore, what if Joe said and has done so in the pass, it is time to move forward and focus on the road a head. I have sincere conviction that they will win the eighteen million votes that are undecided.

    August 23, 2008 at 11:10 pm |
  17. carrie

    Raining, not raining , Packers -Broncs who cares! I'm just glad he picked someone, and I think Biden is a good choice. Everyone needs to move on, mostly the crying Clinton supporters that say they will vote for McCain if Clinton is not on the ticket, I can't believe they call themselves Democratics , They reminds me of the Olympic wrestler that threw his bronze medal down because he did not win. Dry your tears stand up for your country and do the right thing, We can't afford to have the Repulicans in office another 4 years .

    August 23, 2008 at 8:56 pm |
  18. Mary Jean Baxley, Columbia, SC

    Kay, I think the CNN team had all the pitfalls of live coverage. Sounds like you were all ready for anything. Keep up the great job.

    August 23, 2008 at 8:33 pm |
  19. C. Batten-Mapson


    I am looking at you as you discuss the pick for VP to Obama, and you seem like a lover who has been betrayed. Take the needle off the record – you keep playing the sad song "Somebody Didn't Pick Hillary" – and get over it! I have moved on, you need to do the same.

    August 23, 2008 at 7:54 pm |
  20. Stacey Coleman

    You people ought to be ashamed of yourselves. Seriously. A liberal media? I don't think so. When you went to journalism school did you have values and ideals about an unbiased media informing America, or were you simply counting the minutes until you could sell out to the highest (Republican) bidder in order to sway an ignorant populace? I just hope you spend a FRACTION of the time dissecting and criticizing Mr. McCain's VP pick. For shame.

    August 23, 2008 at 7:53 pm |
  21. Michelle

    I am totally disappointed in CNN;s coverage of the Obama-Biden
    ticket. I guess form the way CNN sees things Obama has done
    nohing since a lot of time is spent downplaying his accomplishments
    in the 2008 election. Why are you all giving so much time HRC and
    the Republican attack machine.?This is journalism at it's worst .

    \You all just do not get it!!!

    August 23, 2008 at 7:46 pm |
  22. Amico

    I can't believe the analysis John King gave on you show from Denver on Sat @7:30 PM ET.

    I am not sure what he is after, but it sure feels that he wants to start a war between Obama and Clinton. He kept talking about why the Obama campaign didn't vet Clinton and he eluded in saying that they didn't give her the respect of checking her records.

    Let me tell you John, as independent voter, we all Know who the Clinton's are, and I am not saying this in a bad way. I actually like Bill Clinton a lot. The fact that You (the media) wanted to create this type of bad reporting for your interest and rating, People like me are leaning to support the Democrats this time around. We also are more worried about the hardship out in the real world. Not the unspeakable reporting like John Kings who wants Mud fighting to please his ego. I know you are a well paid individual, but there are millions of people who really care about the issues.


    August 23, 2008 at 7:42 pm |
  23. larry

    This question has been bugging me, and others in my family. If the economy is so bad, why are they spending millions of dollars for a Democratic event? It's not a rock concert, or a broadway show. Can't they just be real! They are worried that we are spending to much money to fight a war, and to protect our country.. Why aren't people speaking up on this?

    August 23, 2008 at 6:17 pm |
  24. Camille, Belgium

    At least we got to see the show

    August 23, 2008 at 5:39 pm |