December 6th, 2007
07:08 AM ET
12 years ago

Clinton volunteer's sending of anti-Obama e-mail causes stir

An anti-Obama e-mail sent by a Clinton volunteer is causing a stir in Iowa.

(CNN) - One of the recipients of a controversial anti-Barack Obama email forward that put Hillary Clinton’s Iowa campaign on the defensive Wednesday said the volunteer county coordinator who sent the original message may have been unfairly targeted.

“She thinks people misunderstood her intent,” said Gary Hart, who said he spoke with the volunteer, Judy Rose, a short time ago. The former Clinton volunteer insisted “she was just sending it along so people know what kind of information is out there,” not because she believed the charges herself. He added that Rose is baffled by the uproar.

The controversy began early Wednesday when an Iowa supporter of presidential candidate Chris Dodd posted a comment on the liberal Daily Kos Web site, accusing an unnamed Clinton volunteer of forwarding an anti-Muslim e-mail aimed at the Illinois senator, containing charges that have been widely discredited.

The e-mail - one of several hoaxes that have been circulating since the Illinois senator announced his candidacy - claims that Obama is a Muslim whose campaign is part of a plot to destroy the United States. Obama is not, and never has been, a Muslim.

Within minutes, Clinton Internet Director Peter Daou posted a message from campaign manager Patti Solis Doyle disavowing the remarks. Rose, a Jones County volunteer, was immediately asked to leave the New York senator’s campaign, and did.

The war of words between both candidates, who are running neck and neck in Iowa polls less than a month before Election Day, has reached a fever pitch over the past week. Within the past few days, both have asked supporters to track attacks and “dirty tricks” aimed at their campaigns.

The Obama campaign is not commenting on the incident.

Earlier: Obama camp denies 'dirty tricks' accusation

- CNN’s Rebecca Sinderbrand


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Hillary Clinton • Iowa
soundoff (211 Responses)
  1. disgusted with the lack of intelligence in the room

    If you are a democrat and vote for hillary clinton, then you are voting republican!! the republicans are hoping she is the candidate they are going to eat her alive. Furthermore, experience is synomynous with scandal...when cry we want change yet we shun the man who can bring it about. Lastly, I'm not even going to entertain the comment about American will not elect a black president...how ignorant...you don't speak for all americans!!! If Hil is the democratic nominee i hope another republican is put in office!

    December 6, 2007 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  2. Gideon, Chicago, IL

    he was borm a muslim.
    Posted By wm marshall las vegas,nv

    He wasn't "borm" a muslim. Kids aren't born with religious affiliations.

    December 6, 2007 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  3. Megha, San Antonio, TX

    JB from Boston, I think you watch Fox News too much. Is everyone missing the point here that the volunteer was fired? All these nasty things Obama supporters/Hillary haters are saying about Hillary are also pretty low, but is anyone complaining? Obama can't be held accountable for that.
    I am supporting Hillary but not hating Obama, for heaven's sake, Obama supporters, this amount of vitriol isn't going to get Obama elected.

    Be nice, Obama supporters, don't stoop so low.
    Hillary 08'

    December 6, 2007 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  4. Bea, Hoboken, NJ

    The Clintons may be a lot of things, but neither one is a bigot. The campaign acted correctly by asking this young woman to step down.

    Let's be realistic, neither the candidate nor his/her top campaign staffers can possibly know what thousands of volunteers are doing at any given time, unless something hits
    the fan as it did with this email.

    December 6, 2007 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  5. Gregg, Bismarck, ND

    Why is religion such an issue for Americans. Religion is nothing more than another American business. The church provides a service, the church hopes the faithful of the church will donate cash, the more faithful that can be recruited the more money the church gains, and it's tax free. I should start my own religion (just kidding). 🙂

    I'm not anti-religion; I'm just disgusted that Americans make religion a major issue in a run for the White House. Religion can be a wonderful thing, but it can also be the cause of death and destruction. As long as the candidate's morals and values are shared by a majority of Americans, leave religion out of the picture. Our country has bigger issues to deal with.

    I don't care if someone is a Morman, Jehovah Witness, ect. The only thing that concerns me about religion relates to the radical interpretation of that religion by certain individuals. Hurting someone in the name of God, whatever your God might be called, is a disgrace. I pray for the health of my family, I pray for peace, I PRAY. I pray; isn't that enough!!!

    December 6, 2007 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  6. Robert Bassett, Temple,Texas

    It just so happened that I asked that question in a e-mail yesterday. I expected Mr Obama to not only answer the question, but to address the subject. My comment-Question was; The name Barack Obama is an Islam-Muslem faith name.Was he born with this name or was his real name changed to this name later in life for his faith? The other part was would Mr Obama confess to Jesus Christ being his Lord, and Savior? Is this just a freak coincidence? I would really like for Mr Obama to address these issues!So far he personally has not, and will not address this issue!

    December 6, 2007 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  7. sevens7777 Frisco, Txs

    To all of you Muslims, GET FRIGGEN over it. The Muslim community in general, I repeat in general think their religioncan do no wrong and will at the drop of a hat slam other religions. This simply amazes me, I have spent time in Jerusalem, and amazingly everyone gets along, courteous, and considerate, why can't they do this in the rest of the world. Obomba, Please go away!!!!!!!!!

    December 6, 2007 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  8. ROL, WDC

    To quote Arnold Flick, La Jolla CA :The relationship of the President to the Muslim faith of his childhood is a matter of national interest, and needs to be spelled out.

    Obama is President already? And he's a Muslim? We should BE so lucky! (As my Jewish grandmother would say...) With a brown-skinned Muslim in the White House, we'd get out of Iraq with some dignity, have better leverage on world oil prices and get all those pesky third world people at the UN off our backs. Too bad Obama's not Korean, and from Florida, or we'd have world peace and the presidential election sorted out in a jiffy! Seriously folks – it's great to see all those Iowans posting for themselves instead being squeezed into soundbites.

    December 6, 2007 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  9. AJ, IL

    More smear tactics by Hillary's Campaign. Hillary did say she was going to step up her attacks, but I didn't think she meant personal. Hillary did say this part of the campaign is "fun" for her.

    Arnold Flick, of La Jolla, CA, you are wrong. Obama is not a Muslim, he is a Christian. In a supposedly secular society, religion should not matter as it relates to public office. This is ridiculous. All this rhetoric about Obama being a Muslim or Obama planning to be president early on is total B.S.! We are talking about a small child going to Indonesia with his mother and a small child dreaming of being president one day. This total non-sense and beneath the average American.

    If I were to say that Hillary Clinton is a republican because she volunteered for Republican candidate Barry Goldwater in the U.S. presidential election of 1964, what you say?

    December 6, 2007 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  10. Tom W - Dedham, Mass

    This is just another trick from Obama's side. A decoy volunteer to try and smear Clinton. We stand stand strong behind Clinton – she is the strength.

    Posted By Nita – San Antonio : December 6, 2007 6:58 am

    This is just another dirty trick from Obama. Most likely this volunteer had been enlisted to try to smear Clinton. Its not working – we all know how low Obama can go. It's not going to work. And, you people you are dinging Clinton – shame on you. We stand strong in our support. CLINTON 05

    Posted By Jimenez – Texas : December 6, 2007 6:26 am

    These postings by Clinton supporters proves the theory that Obama supporters are more educated and therefore smarter than the Clinton sheep.

    Do we want more YEARS of these type of SCANDALS big and small with another Clinton presidency?

    And "Goody", have you not been paying attention and looking at her polling?

    She and her campaign are falling apart, and it isn't even the Republicans challenging her yet.

    I agree with Hillary on one thing, this is "fun".

    December 6, 2007 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  11. Randy S. Lawton, OK

    Obviously he is a Muslim Jihadist, a regular one man sleeper cell. He joined the Trinity congregation 20+ years ago (wait, wouldn't this be a sin of some sort to a Muslim, I'm just guessing), as part of his nefarious plot. He knew that he would be a serious challenger to be President 3 decades down the road. He's just biding his time. You just wait, when he's President, at his first State of the Union Address, he'll walk into the halls of Congress with a suicide vest on and wipe out our entire government.
    GOOD PLAN!

    Some people on these boards need to seek help.

    Now on a more serious note, I would think, the world being what it is today, that his background in a Muslim community, in a Muslim madrassa(hope I used that correctly), and his familiarity with Islam would be an experience checkmark in his favor. At some point he's gonna have to sit down with certain people for various diplomatic reasons. What other candidate is going to have a better understanding of the mindset he'll be negotiating with, Hillary? Puh-lease.

    December 6, 2007 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  12. Adam, Pittsburgh, PA

    What can you say? The guy's brown, and that's all it takes for some people to despise him. Crazy but common.

    Fortunately, most of those people aren't going to vote for a Dem anyway, so who cares? Midwest and Mountain West are where the election will be fought, and there are just too many moderate Repubs crushing on Obama for it to matter.

    December 6, 2007 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  13. Les WA

    A man who DENY his OWN HERITAGE is NOT fit to lead this country. How low can a person get? A man who doesn't have any conviction, is NOT fit to lead this country. According to my arab friend, in Sharia Law, a child born into Muslim parents is a Muslim, why Obama is in denial of his own heritage? If a person deny his own roots which is the VERY foundation of who you are, what are the other things he is hiding from the American people? His mother was not a christian, she was an ATHEIST. Therefor, while growing up before moving back in the US, the only exposure he was exposed to was Islam. He converted to christianity later on in life. Obama also LIED about the background of his father, he was no ordinary goat herder, wealthy farmer. If you don't have money, you can't send your child overseas especially to get their education in USA, it is every expensive. I know some people supporting Obama because they read his book, to them that's enough to vote for him – that is SHALLOW.

    A lot of you have forgotten what race of people attacked this country (9/11). Obama has a CHARACTER PROBLEM, he's too far from being honest, too far from being trustworthy, he also lacks the conviction to act. I will not risk my single vote for a person who has the notion people just take his speech as testament of truth without backing it up.

    OBAMA is more DANGEROUS than our current President. Obama is non-committal on important issues that matters to all Americans. I DO NOT TRUST OBAMA, I see something in him I find scary, it has nothing to do with his race or his heritage, far deeper than that. I hope others saw it too.

    December 6, 2007 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  14. Brandon, West Palm Beach, FL

    While the Clinton and Obama camps are finghting between themselves. Voters should take a look at Governor Bill Richardson, a candidate with a record of actual accomplishments. Not someone who can only site a voting record or pay lip service to special interest groups.

    December 6, 2007 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  15. Mary, Beaver, PA

    A pattern of dirty campaign tricks coming from the Hillary camp? So, who's surprised?

    December 6, 2007 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  16. EE

    This is very naive for Clinton Campaign staffers to issue blatant lies .

    This makes politics mean and uninteresting. there is no more debate on issues but useless emails.

    BTW if Obama should go after the Clintons for their adulturies, and corrupt Chinese links or Hilary's lesbian Saudi affair, how would they feel? Nonsense all together.

    Hey, wait for the Republicans to open that can of worms if Hilary is nominated

    December 6, 2007 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  17. Frank, Henderson, NV

    while I have to agree that a candidate can't reign in everyone, I do think these leaks like this from time to time are certainly planned and the candidate will deny any involvement.

    December 6, 2007 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  18. Patience DoGood

    To all that seek to make a candidate's religion an issue (on both Democrat and GOP divides), let us now refer to our founding document the Constitution–specifically Article 6.

    "...no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States."

    What difference does it make if a candidate is Christian, Islamic, or prays to the flying spaghetti monster? Please wake up, America, and vote for those that seek to stand behind the Constitution.

    December 6, 2007 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  19. Joe, Indianapolis,IN

    Ok, here's a lesson for those those who are too ignorant, absurd, narrow-minded, and stupid enough to believe what some e-mail or rumor says as opposed to researching information for themselves.

    First, what is a muslim? Go here (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muslim) to read the definition. Have you ever heard or seen Obama do or say anything mentioned in the definition of Muslim? Where's the evidence the he ever proclaimed an adherence to Islam? If you haven't heard any, then you have absolutely no basis for claiming or questioning whether or not he's a muslim. For the idiots who say that he is a Muslim because his father was a Muslim or because he was exposed to Muslims, you're about as smart as a wooden post. Do your research!!

    Second, if you're going to be afraid of anyone, you should be afraid of all the hypocritical Judeo-Christians running around Washington right now and who claim they're part of the "moral compass" leading this country. They're the ones who have spent 600 billion of your tax dollars in the middle east. They're the ones YOU keep re-electing, but they NEVER listen to you. They're the ones who say one thing, yet they do another. They're the ones who are for sale. They're the ones who have put the next three generations in debt to China. And you're pissing and moaning over a trivial e-mail about someone's cultural experiences and exposure from when they were a child? Come on!! How infantile have we become?

    Third, I think this public ignorance and lethargic approach to educating and informing ourselves has contributed to a culture of misinformation and reactionary political soundbites in this country. People are too ignorant about the things that really matter and only believe "he-said-she-said" stuff that hasn't been validated by a credible source or that simply makes no sense! And we wonder why currupt politicians, crooked businessmen, identity thieves, and sneaky snake oil salesmen thrive in this country?!!

    December 6, 2007 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  20. Ray (Nashville, TN)

    Obama would be a great president. Clinton would be a great president. What matters is that one or the other beats the Republican candicate. If we get a Republican in, the supreme court will be locked in as a solid right wing block for about 20 years. Forget about your quibbles with this or that with Clinton or Obama. Keep your eye on the real issue.

    December 6, 2007 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  21. Michelle, AZ

    My last name is Hispanic, but I'm not Hispanic. Many Hispanics are Catholic, but I'm not Catholic. Many Hispanics enjoy, say, enchiladas, but I don't really care for them. Many Hispanics speak Spanish, but I don't speak it too well.

    I am simply amazed at the level of ignorance out there. People believe that because someone has a particular middle name they're involved in a nefarious plot aimed at destroying our country from within?

    What about a person with an Hispanic last name who isn't Hispanic who has been to a predominantly Muslim country but isn't Muslim? What on earth could that person be up to? Oooohhh...scary!

    December 6, 2007 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  22. David, Gilbert Arizona

    I'm a republican so I just laugh about all the mud slinging and name calling you democrats are doing in a "campaign for change." Change my arse. Your candidates are running the same old dirty campaigns that have gone on for decades. Kudos to you democrats.

    I'd also comment that you should be ashamed of yourselves. Democrats are supposedly liberal tolerant accepting people. Gay rights, pro-choice, hug your local illegal immigrant, and yet when the word Muslim comes up all this hate and name calling starts flying around. So much for tolerance. It would seem democrats are just as hypocritical as they accuse republicans of being. Kudos for that one as well.

    I'm laughing at the superior intellect.

    December 6, 2007 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  23. Beaster

    As for some of the comments added to this board, I don’t know of many that would want to be on your level! If you focus so much on a name, you missed many points of view. Just the facts please! Many say that HRC's campaign is under attack and i agree, but from within. An implosion waiting to happen!

    December 6, 2007 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  24. Surrealist, Fort Myers, FL

    HOPE is what he is all about.
    H- Help me not screw up!
    O- Other guys fault, other guys fault...
    P- Put off direct answers and NO platitudes, phrases: President...not prez, chief, or head dog.
    E- Enjoy no days until it is known.

    December 6, 2007 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  25. Amanda, Chicago IL

    I am an avid Obama supporter and volunteer for his campaign; I can't stand Hillary. But I have to stand up for her on this one. There are SO many volunteers that they can't all be controlled down to the emails they send. If it were one of her paid staffers, then that would be different.

    December 6, 2007 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
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