Video: “Raised Taxes” Whisper from GOP debate: Not Romney Prompt

About the Youtube video of the “raised taxes” whisper in Republican debate, when Romney was asked a question…

Who whispered “Raise Taxes” at the Thursday night, Januar 24th 2008 Republican debate?
In case you missed it live and missed the youtube video, Tim Russert asked: Governor Romney, “You are a big fan of Ronald Reagan. Will you do for Social Security what Ronald Reagan did in 1983? ”
The moment he was finished, a male voice, in a whisper, was heard that said “raised taxes”.
Immediately after, Romney said “I’m not going to raise taxes.”

Here is the youtube video of the raised taxes whisper during the GOP debate:

[youtube  vMtXBJWm3CA nolink]

The internet caught fire with outcries that Romney was being prompted.  Even though close ups at various times showed no ear piece in either of his ears.

The only people with a mic were Brian Williams, Tim Russert, the moderators, the 5 candidates, Paul Tash, editor and chairman of the St. Petersburg Times — sitting in the audience, mic’d. Around him sat other people.

Even Brian Williams  Brian Williams heard the voice:

With the benefit of an earpiece on stage, I distinctly heard what some viewers apparently heard. Someone said in a whisper, but audibly:
“He raised taxes…”
I remember looking around the stage with a start – scanning the faces of the candidates, trying to figure out who had just said that. Apparently, others heard it, too. We’re actually polling all of our folks (those who were anywhere near an open mike) and watching all of our iso tapes (where we record camera angles that isolate individual candidates) to see who the whispering bandit is. Its not as if anyone committed any offense – in fact, whoever it was was both fast on the draw and correct about where Tim was going with his question. It was just an oddly disjointed, not-immediately-identifiable voice, thus the mystery.

According to one NBC insider, most people interested in politics could have fnished Russert’s sentence with “Raised taxes”, and it would have been easy for someone to say it out loud, maybe even without realizing it.  In addition, an excellent article at the Huffington Post points out that Romney went on to mention other details that if he had been prompted for, that prompting would have needed to be much more than a word or two, and while he was talking, which isn’t likely.  In other words, he knew his stuff about the topic, like many in the room.

MSNBC reviewed all the tapes and concluded that the open mic picked up a whisper from someone in the audience, and that it was definitely not said by any candidates, the moderators or by someone in the control room.  In addition, Romney couldn’t have heard it from up on stage.

Somehow I have a feeling that won’t quite put an end to this almost scandal that wasn’t, anytime soon. Especially with the raised taxes video on  youtube and digg.

Page topic: Voice in debate whispers “raised taxes”. a Romney prompt? Youtube video

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