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Friday, November 30, 2007

Hostage Situation at Clinton Campaign Office in New Hampshire

posted by on November 30 at 11:09 AM

Developing, via MSNBC:

ROCHESTER, N.H. - A man took an unknown number of people hostage at a New Hampshire campaign office for Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Hillary Clinton, police said Friday.

The man claimed to have a bomb strapped to him when he walked into the office in Rochester, WHDH-TV reported.

Hillary Clinton is not in the area. She was at the DNC Fall meeting in D.C. today and canceled her planned speech there after news of the hostage situation broke. Live video here.

UPDATE: The man is reportedly demanding to speak with Hillary Clinton.

UPDATE: First statement from the Clinton campaign:

There is an ongoing situation in our Rochester, NH office. We are in close contact with state and local authorities and are acting at their direction. We will release additional details as appropriate.

UPDATE: Reports that the two hostages have been released.

UPDATE: ABC News has more on the suspect:

The suspect was a well-known local man with history of emotional issues who told his son to watch the news, a well-placed law enforcement source told ABC News’ Pierre Thomas.

UPDATE: With the hostages reportedly released, some thoughts: Obviously, what happens to the hostage-taker is still unknown, as is exactly what he wanted or who he is. But it’s safe to say that close attention will be paid to how Clinton herself handled this moment. There are loose echoes of Bush on 9/11: Clinton about to give a public speech as reports of a dangerous situation trickle in, the media clamoring for a reaction and more information, many Americans following the event live on television (or online).

Her response, as reported so far, seems likely to play well. Clinton canceled her speech and headed to her Virginia campaign headquarters to monitor the situation. Her campaign quickly put out a statement that acknowledged the situation and said the campaign was in close contact with state and local authorities. Already, the image this creates is a sharp contrast to Bush on 9/11. Clinton reacted quickly, communicated quickly, and then headed to a place where she could best help respond to the situation.

UPDATE: It’s 12:40 PST. WMUR reports that authorities will hold a press conference at the scene in a few minutes. It’s also now unclear whether one or both hostages were released. That should be cleared up at the press conference.

UPDATE 1:45 PST: Capt. Paul Callaghan of the local police department says during the press conference: “This is a hostage situation.” That would seem to indicate that there is still at least one hostage. But, confusingly, Capt. Callaghan also said: “I want our residents to know that the situation has stabilized.” And: “The situation is still fluid.” Capt. Callaghan was asked if he had been in touch with Sen. Clinton. “We have been in touch with a lot of various people,” he said.

UPDATE 2:55 PST: There’s a name floating around for the suspected hostage-taker: Leeland Eisenberg from Somersworth, N.H.

UPDATE 3:15 PST: WMUR reports that the suspect has surrendered and the last hostage, a young man, has been released. The standoff lasted more than five hours.

RSS icon Comments


Wow. This will be great for her numbers. Especially if he's some kind of queer-hating gun-toting Jesus freak or something.

If I didn't know better, I'd think it was planned.

Posted by Judah | November 30, 2007 11:13 AM

I bet it's Andrew Sullivan.

Posted by spencer | November 30, 2007 11:18 AM

It's gotta be some gun-toting misogynist Jesus freak. I'm kind of surprised that this type of thing isn't happening more often, considering the boundless rancor that conservative America displays toward Hillary.

Posted by Hernandez | November 30, 2007 11:20 AM

My guess is it's Dick Cheney.

I hope they ship him to GITMO for some 24/7 waterboarding once they get him.

Posted by Will in Seattle | November 30, 2007 11:21 AM

Come on Obama, STOP THIS NOW, you are gaining on her. No need for violence...

Posted by Just Me | November 30, 2007 11:25 AM

This is going to turn into a horrible tragedy, and you people cracking jokes are going to be really embarrassed. I'm going to enjoy rubbing it in when that happens. This sort of tragedy is a good opportunity for me, in that sense.

Posted by elenchos | November 30, 2007 11:34 AM

Rub it in all you want. Nobody cares.

This is hilarious.

Posted by Mr. Poe | November 30, 2007 11:36 AM

I'd bet y'all five bucks the Looney was a Republican, but I doubt anyone would take that bet.

Posted by Y.F. | November 30, 2007 11:39 AM

My question is, does he believe in Evolution, or is he descended from a white race that moved to America and buried golden tablets that you need special rose colored glasses to read?

Posted by Will in Seattle | November 30, 2007 11:42 AM
This is going to turn into a horrible tragedy, and you people cracking jokes are going to be really embarrassed.

Yeah. Probably not.

Posted by Judah | November 30, 2007 11:46 AM

Huckabee supporters, no doubt. You think that crack about sending her to Mars was a joke?

Posted by tsm | November 30, 2007 11:47 AM

this is an opportunity, of course. hillary's reaction will be scrutinized, but if she is really a good leader (which i believe she is), then her response will demonstrate this.

so it will be good for her, and bad for my obama.

Posted by infrequent | November 30, 2007 11:48 AM

Obama's office has been closed as a precaution.

Posted by ahava | November 30, 2007 11:52 AM

If she really wants to get the Republican vote, all she has to do is shoot him in the face.

Posted by Mr. Poe | November 30, 2007 11:54 AM

This kind of shit will be a daily occurrence if she becomes president, thanks to her popularity among the violent whackjob set.

Which isn't a reason not to vote for her, just a reason to make sure the Secret Service is really well-funded come 2009.

Posted by cdc | November 30, 2007 11:56 AM

Maybe he just wants to fuck her.

Posted by Amelia | November 30, 2007 11:58 AM

@15 - that's exactly what I thought. Actually, I have this sinking feeling we'll hear about a bunch of right-wing white guys shooting up fast food restaurants and the like if Hillary wins.

Thank the Republicans for the years they've spent lowering the level of public dialogue.

Posted by tsm | November 30, 2007 11:59 AM

I blame the Paultards.

Posted by Heywhatsit | November 30, 2007 12:00 PM

HRC will handle this situation perfectly and will stop the Obama mo. Hil will be the D nom.

Posted by poster girl | November 30, 2007 12:05 PM

Amelia! I am shocked! What guy in his right mind would want to fuck Hillary? Oh, that's right... he's crazy.

Posted by M | November 30, 2007 12:05 PM
Obama's office has been closed as a precaution.

Yeah, closed as a precaution against letting Hillary get all the press off this deal.

Posted by Judah | November 30, 2007 12:10 PM

Edwards has done the same thing. Psh. They're trying to steal her thunder. Fags.

Posted by Mr. Poe | November 30, 2007 12:11 PM

If it does turn into a tragedy, it will be even better for her numbers, assuming she comes off as compassionate and such. It could endear her to certain groups of American women who seem to hate her...

Posted by Julie | November 30, 2007 12:11 PM

All of the women who hate her are going to vote for her, anyway.

He's released two hostages. What a pussy.

Posted by Mr. Poe | November 30, 2007 12:23 PM

It's not that "don't taze me, Bro" loser, is it?

'cause he's not going to appreciate some lesser-famous loser cuttin' in on his loser thunder.

Posted by RonK, Seattle | November 30, 2007 12:37 PM

media stunt?

ie: she can deal with dangerous situations that come out of nowhere...
ie... 9-11??

Posted by Cale | November 30, 2007 12:39 PM

If this is a media stunt, it sucks ass. This is totally boring as hell. What's the point in strapping a bomb to your chest, even a fake bomb, and marching in to a building if you're not going to kill anybody? Why let people go? You need them, you idiot. Jesus Christ.

Posted by Mr. Poe | November 30, 2007 12:45 PM

@ 26:
"media stunt?"

ie: typical tool dumbass comment. pfft!!

Posted by toolbox monitor | November 30, 2007 12:47 PM

Anyone know where Paul, Kucinich, and Gravel were at the time?

Posted by Giffy | November 30, 2007 12:48 PM

"Already, the image this creates is a sharp contrast to Bush on 9/11."

And yet, Bush managed to get his sorry ass reelected anyway.

I'll grant that so far Hillary has handled this well, but I think it's premature to speculate that it will make any difference in elections.

Posted by SDA in SEA | November 30, 2007 12:50 PM

i hope she doesn't decide to talk with the hostage taker. i just don't want to see that.

Posted by infrequent | November 30, 2007 12:51 PM

Why are we worried about terrorism abroad, when we have so much here? Oh, yeah, I forgot: they're called the Christian Right and they're rich. Others refer to them as "the base".

Posted by Mike D | November 30, 2007 12:51 PM

mike D: are you saying a man known to have issues is a representative of the Christian Right, and that terrorism of this nature is a significant problem in america today? ... okay?

Posted by infrequent | November 30, 2007 12:56 PM

Oooo Coverage will continue on "The Situation Room"! This is just the sort of think Wolf Blitzer and his wall of TV's were made for.

I really need some weed...

Posted by Giffy | November 30, 2007 1:00 PM

I think this is a perfectly good pretext for invading Iran.

Posted by NapoleonXIV | November 30, 2007 1:05 PM

Time to get tough on the homegrown Red Bushie terrorists and ship them to GITMO to be waterboarded 24/7.

Our nation's democracy is in peril.

Posted by Will in Seattle | November 30, 2007 1:09 PM

@35 - um, don't you think we should try Iceland? The girls are prettier and they have geothermal power and hydrogen fueling stations ...

Posted by Will in Seattle | November 30, 2007 1:11 PM

Somebody needs to award NapoleonXIV for his comments. They're always delicious.

Posted by Mr. Poe | November 30, 2007 1:12 PM

MSNBC is saying that the hostage takers son is talking. He says the thing this crazy nut has strapped to his chest is not a bomb, it's road flairs.

Posted by tabletop_joe | November 30, 2007 1:19 PM

While yours have earned you permanent Troll status, Mr. Poe.

Posted by truth | November 30, 2007 1:21 PM


Posted by Mr. Poe | November 30, 2007 1:25 PM

Hey, road flares are pretty dangerous! Have you ever seen the spikes on those things? Plus, they... well... flare. You could probably burn someone if you stood close enough.

Posted by wench | November 30, 2007 1:27 PM

I been using the Innernet tubes since before you was a pup, Poe.

Posted by NapoleonXIV | November 30, 2007 1:29 PM


Any straight guy who says he wouldn't bang Hillary is lying. Most guys would slip it to Bea Arthur or Ruth Buzzy if they had a slow Thursday night to kill and they knew their buddies wouldn't find out.

Posted by Big Sven | November 30, 2007 1:46 PM

I remember when we had to push the 1's and 0's through by hand at 110 baud.

Posted by Will in Seattle | November 30, 2007 1:46 PM

@44 - exactly. The problem is women usually think men have standards.

We have standards about who we'll marry. But, given enough alcohol, everything else is negotiable.

Posted by Will in Seattle | November 30, 2007 1:48 PM

1's and 0's? Hah! Try passing vacuum tubes through an exchange operator--they *always* got them out of order!

Posted by NapoleonXIV | November 30, 2007 1:49 PM

Has anyone accused Hillary of playing the "hostage card" yet?

Posted by jessiesk | November 30, 2007 1:57 PM

i have to agree with will on that.

and @48, i believe @26 is basically a form of that card.

Posted by infrequent | November 30, 2007 2:10 PM

The last time Rochester -- where my dad lives -- was in the national news, it was when the local Episcopalian church (my dad's, in fact) protested NH's gay bishop.

Good job, Dad, you've picked the one town in NH that makes the rest of the state look normal.

Posted by K | November 30, 2007 2:26 PM

I remember using the oscilliscope on the vacuum tubes and soldering the boards by hands, but I didn't want to scare the kidlings, @47.

Let's hope they get a good sniper to deal with this loonie.

Posted by Will in Seattle | November 30, 2007 2:40 PM

CNN is going to talk to Pastor Rick Warren about how Jebus can help rescue hostages!

Posted by Giffy | November 30, 2007 2:48 PM

Maybe he can drive his Mack truck in there and talk about the roads package?

Posted by Will in Seattle | November 30, 2007 3:03 PM

Wow. Itself a relief that's over.

Five hours taken hostage by a libertarian?

Had he pulled out a copy of The Fountainhead and started reading, I'd have detonated the flare vest myself.

Posted by NapoleonXIV | November 30, 2007 4:01 PM

Well, now that we have come to the tragic end of the horrific events, I think it's time to admit I was right. Only then can the healing begin.

Posted by elenchos | November 30, 2007 4:04 PM


Posted by Mr. Poe | November 30, 2007 4:21 PM

@54 - oh, sorry, for a sec there I thought you said "taken hostage by a librarian" ...

Posted by Will in Seattle | November 30, 2007 4:29 PM

creeepy librarians for ron paul!!!

Posted by hipsterlite | November 30, 2007 4:59 PM

Things like this are why neither he nor his followers should be allowed to have blimps.

You had Oscilloscopes? If *we* wanted to access the internet, we had to bang on the side of our computers in Morse Code! With rocks!

Posted by NapoleonXIV | November 30, 2007 5:49 PM

HLDK !!!!
Hot Librarians for Dennis Kucinich..

Posted by M | November 30, 2007 8:43 PM

I think M has the better viewpoint, and it's closer to what I was thinking about librarians. ... unless they're libertarian librarians, which is not as hot.

Posted by Will in Seattle | November 30, 2007 11:44 PM

Knock it off...this man is ill and it is fortunate nobody was physically hurt.

That is a credit to law enforcement technology in New Hampshire. We need to get to such Americans as the suspect here with the help they need from time to time before they get to the rest of us.

Mental illness is the last frontier in a country that spent more money last year on losing weight than the Federal government spent on developing ways to prevent tragedies involving the mentally ill.

Posted by willipug | December 3, 2007 3:39 PM

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