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Plant-Gate Getting Serious

John on November 13, 2007 at 9:25 am

It took a day longer than expected but “Plant-gate” is getting some traction. CNN published a new, more detailed interview with Muriel Gallo-Chasanoff, the 19 year old student who started this by coming forward:

Gallo-Chasanoff, whose story was first reported in the campus newspaper, said what happened was really pretty simple: She says a senior Clinton staffer asked if she’d like to ask the senator a question after an energy speech the Democratic presidential hopeful gave in Newton, Iowa, on November 6.

“I sort of thought about it, and I said ‘Yeah, can I ask how her energy plan compares to the other candidates’ energy plans?’” Gallo-Chasanoff said Monday night.

“‘I don’t think that’s a good idea,” the staffer said, according to Gallo-Chasanoff, “because I don’t know how familiar she is with their plans.”

He then opened a binder to a page that, according to Gallo-Chasanoff, had about eight questions on it.

“The top one was planned specifically for a college student,” she added. ” It said ‘college student’ in brackets and then the question.”

Topping that sheet of paper was the following: “As a young person, I’m worried about the long-term effects of global warming. How does your plan combat climate change?”

As for the campaign’s claim that Hillary had no idea what was going on:

“I don’t know whether Hillary knew what my question was going to be, but it seemed like she knew to call on me because there were so many people, and … I was the only college student in that area,” she said.

She also believes there were other plants that day:

“After the event,” she said, “I heard another man … talking about the question he asked, and he said that the campaign had asked him to ask that question.”

The man she references prefaced his question by saying that it probably didn’t have anything to do with energy, and then posed the following: “I wonder what you propose to do to create jobs for the middle-class person, such as here in Newton where we lost Maytag.”

A Maytag factory in Newton recently closed, forcing hundreds of people out of their jobs.

Hillary’s campaign also asked her not to talk:

During the course of the late-night interview on Grinnell’s campus, Gallo-Chasanoff also told CNN that the day before the school’s newspaper, Scarlet and Black, printed the story, she wanted the reporter to inform the campaign out of courtesy to let them know it would be published.

She said the “head of publicity for the campaign,” a man whose name she could not recall, had no factual disputes with the story. But, she added, a Clinton intern spoke to her to say the campaign requests she “not talk about” the story to any more media outlets and that if she did she should inform a staffer.

“I’m not under any real obligation to do that, and I haven’t talked to [the campaign] anymore,” Gallo-Chasanoff said, adding that she also doesn’t plan to.

Is she still supportive of Clinton:

While she acknowledged “it’s possible that all campaigns do these kind of tactics,” she said it still doesn’t make it right.

“Personally I want to know that I have someone who’s honest representing me.”

Honest doesn’t seem to be Hillary’s forte.

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