November 16th, 2007
12:15 PM ET
10 years ago

Top 10 debate zingers

Jeanne Moos takes a look at the top debate zingers so far in this elections season.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - With over 20 presidential debates so far in this election season, the candidates have gotten their fair share of zingers and one-liners in. CNN's Jeanne Moos takes a look at the 10 most memorable ones.

Among those on the list:

Mike Huckabee: "We've had a Congress that spends money like John Edwards at a beauty shop." (May 15)

Joe Biden: "Rudy Giuliani - there's only three things he mentions in a sentence: a noun, a verb, and 9/11." (October 30)

Mitt Romney: "This is a lot like ‘Law and Order.' It has a huge cast. The series seems to go on forever, and Fred Thompson shows up at the end." (October 9)

Mike Gravel: "Some of these people frighten me." (April 26)

Joe Biden: "Dennis [Kucinich], the thing I like most about you is your wife." (July 23)

John McCain (on Clinton's support of a Woodstock museum): "I wasn't there. I am sure it was a cultural and pharmaceutical event. I was tied up at the time." (October 21)

Watch Jeanne Moos' report for the complete list and add your own suggestions in the comment section below!

Or better yet, catch the Democrats go at it in Las Vegas – again this weekend: Sat. & Sun., 6 & 10 p.m. ET.  It was the most watched debate of the primary season.

Filed under: Presidential Debates
soundoff (78 Responses)
  1. James, Phoenix AZ

    Wow CNN – Bravo. Not one zinger about Hillary! Between your ticker, last night's debate, and this zinger video ... you've REALLY changed your "Clinton News Network" image.

    (eyes rolling)

    November 16, 2007 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  2. Chris, Huntersville, NC

    Joe Biden = The Zing King

    November 16, 2007 11:42 am at 11:42 am |

    The Democratic candidates put on a feisty, exciting debate. It is good to see them mix it up. The attacks at Hillary started promptly but she was deft and swift at deflecting their barbs. She was well prepared for the task. It will take a lot more than was exhibited last night for her opponents to throw her off course.

    November 16, 2007 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  4. demwit

    Dennis Kucinich: "I didn't vote for the patriot act because I read it."

    November 16, 2007 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  5. steve. barstow, california

    Hillarys husband worked the Republican playbook with supporting the first Bush pendence for illegally denying veterans benefits, well he was a playboy just like Newt...she should know.

    November 16, 2007 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  6. harry,Iowa

    I'm angry, just flat angry, these days. Almost a year away from the Presidential election, not even a single primary state vote cast, and with what might be the most critical time in our nations history on the line I'm constantly left with that crazy conspiracy theory feeling.

    I hate that feeling! I want to believe that we still live in a democracy. I want to believe that we do make a difference. However for some reason I can't explain some force in the Universe, not us the average United States Citizen, has chosen Hiliary Clinton to be the Democratic nominee. BAH! I say.

    I say this is an outrage against our democracy. We should demand that the DNC speak out against this insanity and put an end to the speculation that is framed in such a way that the race is made to appear over when it is not! The American people have not spoken and the new media DOES NOT speak for me. So I invite everyone to contact the DNC and speak out against this ludicrous practice of picking candidates behind closed doors. The 24 hour news networks are the work of the devil because they have to "manufacture" news in order to fill air time. Most of that time is flat RUBBISH! Enough! Barack Obama is eqaully qualified as any one else and nothing can prepare anyone for the job of President.

    Hilary had 8 years and a direct shot at fixing health care in a time of peace and prosperity and failed completely and miserably. Ten years have past and Americans die each year from a health care system that is broken. Broken for the doctors and the patients. Personally I'm glad that Barack hasn't been inside the beltway very long. I lived in DC and the place is just caustic.

    Bottom line: I hate polls – Statistics is a theoretical science based on assumptions.

    I'm mad as h#ll that we tolerate this media cr@p.

    and I'm sick of the status qou. We need a President who is going to lead our country and show the world the greatness that is the United States. If I see a Hilary Clinton Nomination I will just die that much more inside and give up for good because that will show me that we have no power, hope, or future; such that we are just slaves.

    November 16, 2007 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  7. Needing better choices in 2008

    What do you expect from politicians? Intelligence.

    November 16, 2007 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  8. jfz

    "CNN", The "Clinton News Network", strikes out again. With Hollywood writers out on strike, who are the people writing the candidates' comedy zingers?

    November 16, 2007 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  9. Phil Chicago, Ill

    Honorable Mention:

    Mike Gravel to Hillary, "SHAME ON YOU".

    November 16, 2007 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  10. Eric, Jacksonville FL

    Rudy Giuliani – "We can't have universal health care because then Canadians would have no where to go for medical care."

    November 16, 2007 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  11. Mike - Phoenix, AZ

    Ron Paul: "This idea of going and talking to attorneys totally baffles me. Why don't we just open up the Constitution and read it? You're not allowed to go to war without a declaration of war."

    November 16, 2007 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  12. Fort Lauderdale, Fl

    Bravo the Clinton News Network! Blitzer should work for the Clinton party. It's a shame to see how the other candidates had a few minutes to talk, and Clinton had the entire time. It was the The Clinton Show. You guys work so hard last night to make Obama and Edwards look bad, and repair Clinton image.

    November 16, 2007 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  13. Honestly, TX

    I don't know why people think Hillary is experienced.

    We know at least one job that Bill thinks an intern can do better than Hillary.

    November 16, 2007 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  14. Rick, Myrtle Beach, SC

    And I thought Tim Russert was bad. Wolf made him look like Einstein. Total waste of time. Dont get me started on John and the brunette who's name escapes me. Questions from the audience were better than Wolf's weak questions and moderating.

    November 16, 2007 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  15. joseph, austin, tx

    Richardson "hey mexico provide jobs for your people." sad and funny at the same time.

    November 16, 2007 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  16. Bob Wong

    The "democratic debate" at UNLV leaves no doubt about the agenda of CNN. The exclusion of any questions that challange these candidates supports the belief that you are not fair and balanced. What are you afraid of? Another question Hillary cannot answer? I will not watch CNN again as there is no substance!

    November 16, 2007 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  17. Earl, Ohio

    John Edwards on Hillary Rodham's licenses for illegals flip-flop:

    "Unless I'm missing something, Senator Clinton said two different things in about two minutes," said former Sen. John Edwards.

    November 16, 2007 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  18. Tyler Dunn, Baltimore

    Am I missing something or should this article be renamed "Top 6 Debate Zingers?"

    November 16, 2007 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  19. Brandon, San Antonio, Texas

    Zingers? First of all, who uses that word anymore? I thought I was reading an article dated in the 1980's and the debate candidates names were Reagan and Carter. Personally, I thought zingers were either a Little Debbies snack cake or perhaps a splinter faction of an extremist terrorist organization, but I digress. Who cares who made the best "zinger"? Anyone who can be swayed towards a candidate by a one sentence remark aimed at degrading another candidate shouldn't really be allowed to vote; but that's just my opinion, I could be wrong.

    November 16, 2007 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  20. Chad, Wisco

    Joe Biden – "Oh sorry, I actually answered the question." I am a republican and dont like the dems too much, but I will say that if Biden is elected at least I'll know where he stands and be entertained at the same time.

    November 16, 2007 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  21. Earl, Ohio

    Dennis Kucinich, wehn asked about his seeing a UFO: "And also, you have to keep in mind that Jimmy Carter saw a UFO, and also that more people in this country have seen UFOs than I think approve of George Bush's presidency."

    November 16, 2007 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  22. Daniel

    Notice how these guys are telling you about the others and not themselves!

    All losers.
    My votes is for Hillary

    November 16, 2007 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  23. Bill, Rochester, New york

    Viewing the debate last night left me soure on all the candidates. Not one took the lead to describe how they would go about to correct the problems our county has. Team work is good and we all know the capitol and both houses need to work together, so tell us your steps or procedure to the solution we need!

    November 16, 2007 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  24. Mike the S., New Orleans, Louisiana

    Joe Biden wins hands down. It is about time someone exposed "The Hero of September 11th" as an emperor without any clothes.

    Of course, we just elected one to the White House twice, so maybe that's what Americans want: another enigma.

    November 16, 2007 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  25. Jed in Texas

    Im sorry Wolf,your a nice guy but your in over your head as a moderator and your monotone has drove me crazy for years.Please retire!

    November 16, 2007 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
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