It was the ringtone heard round the world.
At the outset of last night’s vice presidential debate, moderator Martha Raddatz, ABC News’ senior foreign affairs correspondent, told audience members inside the auditorium to shut off their cellphones by reminding them that she once experienced an embarrassing ringtone incident.
“I am not the scolding type, so I’m not going to repeat all these things about turning off your cellphones,” Raddatz said. ”I am just going to give you a warning. I was once in a White House briefing and my phone went off and my son … had put in Chamillionaire’s ‘Ridin Dirty,’” a hip-hop song about avoiding cops while having drugs in one’s car.
That 2007 incident led then Bush administration press secretary Tony Snow to stop his briefing and ask the assembled White House press corp: ”Does Martha have a hip hop ringtone… Play that funky music, white girl!”
When Chamillionaire learned of Raddatz’s pre-debate shoutout, the flattered rapper paid her a compliment via Twitter.
“Can’t lie. That just made my night. Appreciate it,” he tweeted. “@MarthaRaddatz Keep it gangsta.”