CNN Hypes, Takes Credit for 'Climate Crisis' Town Hall

September 4th, 2019 7:26 PM

On Wednesday's New Day, CNN host Alisyn Camerota and chief climate correspondent Bill Weir previewed their whopping seven-hour town hall forum for Democratic presidential candidates to discuss what the two described as the "climate crisis" and what to do about it. After admitting he is "biased" on the issue, Weir declared that that even if there were a town hall on the topic every day, "it wouldn't be enough."

At one point, Camerota may have delivered unintentional honesty as she discussed whether Democratic candidates would have plenty of time to "spew" their plans before laughing and taking back the choice of words. Weir also credited CNN with spearheading the environmental-themed town hall after the Democratic National Committee rejected the idea.



At 6:49 a.m. Eastern, Camerota began the segment: "This morning, Kamala Harris has just released her plan to fight the climate crisis. She aims to be carbon-neutral by the year 2045. Five candidates have unveiled their plans for the past few days ahead of CNN's big town hall tonight."

Camerota brought aboard Weir, and began by asking him why CNN chose to spend so much time on one topic, leading him to recall:

Because there was so much cry out from those voters who have caucused as Democrats or independents who put this topic at the very top of their concern list. And many were calling for a dedicated climate debate with all 10 on stage -- the DNC didn't go for that for whatever reason, so we thought, "Let's make it happen." So we're doing back to back to back to back to back to back town halls just focused on this.

A bit later, after host Camerota asked for a "cheat sheet" of how the candidates' plans differ from each other, Weir made a flub that is probably in line with the wishful thinking of many journalists as he recounted: "At the modest end of the scale, you got President Biden. His blueprint is about $1.6 trillion."

Camerota jumped in: "Former VP -- you just promoted him -- but go on," leading Weir to laugh and joke that Biden may be President "in an alternate universe."

He then added: "I'm biased. I think we could do a town hall a day on this, and it wouldn't be enough to cover it because it's everything -- it is everything In our lives from energy to politics to geopolitics to psychology to history."

While recalling candidate Andrew Yang's plan for the government to give every American $1,000 a month, Weir recalled studies direly predicting that hundreds of millions will have to relocate to escape rising sea levels..

About half an hour later, as CNN political director David Chalian appeared to do another preview of the "climate crisis" town hall, Camerota discussed the amount of time Democrats would have to "spew" their plans before regretting her choice of words;

It looks like every candidate has about 40 minutes to do this … Are these just questions from viewers and voters? Or will they be able to kind of spew their complicated (laughs) -- "spew" is probably the wrong word -- explain their complicated climate plans.