posted at 5:01 pm on September 11, 2016 by John Sexton
The media isn’t refusing to cover Hillary’s collapse today but they are downplaying it. Here’s the headline on CNN’s landing page right now. Is that really the big news here? The subheading says she stumbled and was helped into the van.
The opening of the story is a little better than the front page:
Hillary Clinton appeared wobbly Sunday and stumbled as Secret Service agents helped her into a van to depart the 9/11 commemoration ceremony early.
The Democratic presidential nominee felt overheated, her campaign said, when she left at about 9:30 a.m. ET and traveled to her daughter’s nearby apartment.
To be fair, CNN includes the video so anyone who cares to look will see that Hillary was propped up against a concrete barrier. When the car arrives she begins to stumble but seems unable to walk. And then she collapses and is carried to the car by Secret Service officers on each side of her. The Daily Beast reports that a senior law enforcement officer told them, “They threw her in like she was a side of beef.” That’s closer to what we see in the video than “appeared wobbly.”
Meanwhile, the Washington Post spoke to a former Secret Service agent who says the behavior of the agents in this video is very unusual:
According to a former Secret Service agent who reviewed the video, the detail was clearly rushing and did not expect for Clinton to leave at that time. The former agent noted that it is against Secret Service protocol for the protected individual to wait for a car to arrive. In the video, Clinton is leaning against the bollard as a black van pulls up.
It is also unusual for a detail leader to leave the protected individual’s side, as a Secret Service agent, Todd Madison, is seen doing in the video, to open the van’s doors. Opening the van is the site agent’s job, according to the former agent; the detail leader’s proper position is next to Clinton. The agent may have had little choice given the rushed nature of the departure.
In short, these agents appear to be scrambling. Meanwhile CBS News’ version of the story is even worse than the one at CNN:
To be fair, CBS did post the video within the story but the story itself doesn’t make any effort to describe what took place in the video. That seems odd. The news here is not that Clinton left early and it’s not what she said about how she felt before leaving. The news is that she passed out on her feet this morning.