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Another “Hot Mic” Snafu: Was CNN Caught On Tape Coaching Its Debate Focus Group?

While there was substantial surprise when CNN announced in its post debate poll that Hillary was the clear winner from last night’s debate, when it announced that 57% of its 537 “democrat leaning” viewers found Clinton to be the winner… 

… another “hot mic” incident may have emerged when CNN may have accidentally caught itself coaching a member of its post-debate focus group how to respond to a question following last night’s debate.

In a video uploaded to YouTube shortly after Sunday’s debate shows CNN discussing the debate’s events with a focus group of undecided Ohio voters, CNN captures a moment from the debate in which Hillary Clinton says, “that America already is great, but we are great because we are good.” Then, as CNN cuts back to its focus group, CNN reporter Pamela Brown can apparently be heard speaking to a group participant in a hushed tone.

“America is great, because we’re good,” Brown is heard saying.

Realizing she is back on the air, Brown then asks the same participant what anti-Trump argument from Clinton impressed her most. The participant responds with a close approximation of what Brown had just said to her seconds before.

“She stated that America is already great, and I tend to agree with that,” the panel member says. “Though we are slow in progressing in a number of ways, we are progressing and we need to continue the momentum.”

As the Daily Caller notes, “this brief exchange is being interpreted by many as proof CNN was coaching focus group member about what to say on the air. Within just a few hours of being uploaded, the video collected nearly 150,000 views. There are other possible explanations, though; Brown may have been informing focus group members about what clip CNN had just aired (since they couldn’t see the replay themselves), or Brown could have been setting up a semi-staged response after previously finding out what the focus group member wanted to say.

Watch the exchange below.