December 10th, 2007
12:43 PM ET
3 years ago

Clinton camp answers Oprah with Angelou

Poet Maya Angelou is the star of a new radio ad for Hillary Clinton.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - On the heels of media mogul Oprah Winfrey's high profile Sunday visit to the crucial primary state of South Carolina for Democrat Barack Obama, rival Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign is launching a new radio ad there featuring noted African American poet ­ and Winfrey pal ­ Maya Angelou.

Angelou, who first announced she was backing the New York senator's presidential bid earlier this year, calls Clinton a "strong woman and a protector of families," in the 60-second spot running on stations across the Palmetto State.

"Each generation of African Americans stands on the shoulders of those who came before," Angelou also says in the ad. "Today, the challenges facing us threaten the dreams we have had for our children. We need a president with the experience and strength to meet those challenges."

The ad comes in the wake of Winfrey's wildly popular tour of early-voting states with Obama over the weekend. The pair drew the biggest turnout in South Carolina, where African Americans make up more than 50 percent of Democratic primary voters.

While Clinton once held a double digit lead in South Carolina, a Mason-Dixon poll released Sunday seems to show Clinton beating the Illinois senator by only 3 percentage points, 28 percent to 25 percent.

– CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

soundoff (132 Responses)
  1. Kay, Stanford CA

    A lot of you guys are wondering how much Clinton paid for Maya Angelou's endorsement, but I think you're forgetting that Ms. Angelou has a long history with the Clintons.

    After all, she WAS Poet Laurete during Bill Clinton's presidency (one the of highest honors a poet can recieve from the government), and since she was appointed as the 1st one in 30yrs, I highly doubt that she forgot it.

    ...But with that said, I can just SEE the Clinton political machine saying to themselves,
    "OK guys, we REALLY need a famous BLACK woman who every loves- Babs just ain't cutting it.
    Hey, what about Angelou? Doesn't she owe Bill a favor for the whole Poet Laureate thing??"

    Aye. OBAMA IN 2008!!!!!!!!

    December 10, 2007 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  2. Shauna, New Zealand

    Regardless of who you vote for, this is indeed a proud moment for women, and indeed for black women–the fact that these are the people chosen to carry the next president over the threshold is something I am overjoyed to witness.
    I love Maya, I love Oprah–neither one would stoop so low as to be a PAID ENDORSEE...so, may the best marginalized candidate WIN!!
    Hurray for Change!!

    December 10, 2007 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  3. J. McKinney SW MO

    I just read this on one of the political websites,regarding Oprah:

    "She is one of the most influential US entertainers and is the second-most admired woman in the United States - behind former first lady Clinton, according to a recent Gallup Poll."

    I knew Hillary was way up there, but I didn't realize she was #1. But that aside, democrats, use your head and realize that we need Clinton's experience and stability. Vote Hillary.

    December 10, 2007 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  4. Tim, El Cerrito Ca

    Kids, kids, kids...stop all the petty bickering for goodness sake. By the way Maya Angelou and Hillary Clinton go way back. Maya adores Hillary so I don't think she even had to ask let alone pay for her endorsement. Also, there has been a video of her on Hillar's website for months so this is not new. People would know that if they took the time to learn about ALL the candidates. I did take the time and that's why I support Hillary. Now now children...don't be bad boys and girls and play nice! Go Hillary!

    P.S. You might say "Maya who" You would have to be into English Lit. She wrote the very famous "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" She was sexually abused as a child and for years refused to speak. She overcame all of that to be the great woman she is today. She's also Oprah's mentor so I'd be careful in your critism.
    Now run along all you little children...

    December 10, 2007 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  5. Tony, Enterprise, Alabama

    The disrespect shown to Maya Angelou by the bloggers on this ticker is disgraceful.

    I am sure that the bulk of the hateful comments originated from Obama supporters trying to temper the impact of Ms. Angelou's support of Senator Clinton. And that makes me worry about the who is supporting him. Just another reason not to support him.

    Regardless of the hateful bile that has come forth from the Obama camp, Ms. Angelou has as much right as Oprah to make her preference known.

    The comments on this blog are so out of line! This is a woman of history whose writing and work for civil rights long before Oprah was even been born will be long remembered.

    Oprah isn't qualified to buy her shoes, much less fill them.

    December 10, 2007 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  6. Hillarylover - SA

    No one in their right mind should compare Maya Angelou to Oprah. Ms. Angelous is one hell of a woman. And, she isn't a sell out. True american in the deepest sense. Before you compare these two women – read up on her. Oprah will never be a Maya Angelou

    December 10, 2007 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  7. Tim McGuire, Mpls...MN

    Ok, are we voting for a big name star, a renowned poet, a race car driver, what ??? I'm voting for a person who can turn this Country around and it's not Oprah or Maya. When Oprah got on her own big bandwagon this weekend and shouted the almighty 'Beleive In Change" , I got this really sick feeling about what her support is all about Oprah Oprah Oprah Oprah"...yes dear God it's all about me....Oh and a new trinket to add to my favorite things to have 'Obama" please....ha ha ha ...what a joke she is. Sets up private school in Africa and then has a sexual pervert run it for her. If that's good judgement on her part, what does that tell you about her endorsement of Obama. Give it up Oprah, your old news. TM...Mpls

    December 10, 2007 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  8. Maryann

    If you don't know Dr. Maya Angelou, you don't have to comment. I like both Maya and Oprah. But, for this time, Maya read Hillary right. Oprah didn't read Obama right. With all respect, I wish Oprah prepare for this event more thoughfully, do some research on Obama's policies, stands, and most of all, avoid reading her notes when she speak. With complicated political issues, just throw a few "lines" is really not enough. She did great, but for Oprah, she is way better than that. I believe after the excitement, voters have to do their one thinking and make up their onw minds for what they believe, who they believe.

    Maya Angelou is inspiration, lots of respect.

    December 10, 2007 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  9. nando, Florida

    Wake me up when she's done, This woman would put a Meth USER to Sleep.

    December 10, 2007 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |
  10. Dan, Minneapolis, MN

    Many of the comments are not only tedious but infantile. Is this an sample of educated, reasoned thinking?

    December 10, 2007 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  11. Roger - IL

    Not only did Maya Angelou speak at President Clinton's inauguration, but she was also named Poet Laurette by President Clinton.

    December 10, 2007 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  12. Rick, North Carolina

    I am not going to vote for clinton or obama, both are poor choices for president, I wish we had a democrat with something work voting for.
    If they can not speak for themselves, then how will they speak as our president.
    Obama looks weak and scared on the stage.
    Clinton looks offensive, uptight and worried about speaking her mind.
    I am a lifelong democrat and hate to say it, but am going to put the odds on another republican president.

    December 10, 2007 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
  13. selina, norcross, GA

    The most baffling and embarrassing thing is the way Hilary seems to be running catch-up and copy cat with Obama.
    yes black women celebrities are in.. Maya

    Now its not strength and experience it is "new beginnings"?
    You are 60, take lead or give way!

    December 10, 2007 09:39 pm at 9:39 pm |
  14. Allan

    Oprah generates more attention in here than Obama. If not for Oprah, Barack would still be in oblivion unknown to anyone in the world. vote Hillary, now with support from Angelou, a respected person (obviously more convincing than Oprah since she doesn't do it for popularity) who commands everyone's attention.

    December 10, 2007 09:42 pm at 9:42 pm |
  15. Andy, New York, New York

    Maya Angelou is an African American icon in her own right. Like Oprah, she sees what she is looking for in her ideal candidate. That she appeared on Oprah's show many times, thereby accentuating her personality and poetic passion, shows Oprah is an equal opportunity name maker. And this is why Oprah can draw 30,000 for Obama, but Maya cannot. They are two different people. That said, Hillary is going to lose in the long run, cause while America may be ready for a woman President, America is not ready for Hillary! She's the elastic hard plastic that stretches until her flaws are so transparent, they are frightening.

    December 10, 2007 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  16. Eugene Minter, Fort Hood, TX

    Why do Maya Angelou let the Clintons use her like this? This is really sad.

    December 10, 2007 10:29 pm at 10:29 pm |
  17. Joe, Dallas, TX

    Changed my status to INDEPENDENT. Both parties are corrupt and I could care less what famous person they get to speak on their behalf. I'm also really irritated that the Obama campaign keeps calling me for money every day on my cell phone! Please stop calling my phone, you're wasting my daytime minutes! Thanks!

    December 10, 2007 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm |
  18. The Golden State, CA

    Isn't America great? Democracy lives in the USA even though displaying Maya this week after the OBama Oprah machine kicked butt this weekend is a bit sad for Hillary.

    HRC is really trying to catch up in the democratic race and know where near a REAL position of leading her campaign with integrity, creativity, and power. Bill speaking out everyday for her makes her look even more disorganized. Hillary, if you really want this nomination show us you can do it on your own, we will listen.

    Obama 08 you ARE the ONE!

    December 10, 2007 11:17 pm at 11:17 pm |
  19. Chelsea Anne Garen, Vista, California

    Great Maya ! at critical time, you stand out for Hillary, the right choice you made. You know more than anyone else. Hillary is the best for our nation, and Obama would be the second if possible. I am sure that he will learn a lot from Hillary in future !

    December 10, 2007 11:19 pm at 11:19 pm |
  20. Kimberly, Antioch CA

    I agree with THE GOLDEN STATE comment. Bill take a nap, go play golf, let your wife be the candidate, even though we understand what a charge you get from the campaign trail.

    But in all honesty Bill, we are seeing more of your mug in the media promoting HRC than Hillary, what is up with that? From my perspective, you have it backwards, unless of course Bill you really are the candidate ... in that case the signage needs to change.

    Hillary we are waiting for you to speak up and sell us through your own words.

    December 10, 2007 11:26 pm at 11:26 pm |
  21. hey allons,tn

    Hey rick life long democrat put the odds on another republican president trying to get vots for repulicans won't work after g.w.bush anyone with any inteligent at all would't vote republican Hillary 08

    December 10, 2007 11:30 pm at 11:30 pm |
  22. disappointed in California

    Oh I see now that CNN removed the comment from The Golden State, I guess they were wrong, democracy doesn't live anywhere near CNN.

    December 10, 2007 11:30 pm at 11:30 pm |
  23. sean Metamora,IL

    wow the horrid maudlin poetry must not be selling too well,
    poets used to alter the direction of sociaty now they shill for politicos.

    December 10, 2007 11:49 pm at 11:49 pm |
  24. Al in Dallas

    Clinton equals ESTABLISHMENT, and the establishment is broke. A vote for Hillary is a vote for more of the same broken politics that have placed our great nation at the brink of ruin. Obama equals CHANGE, and the time for change is now!

    December 11, 2007 01:16 am at 1:16 am |
  25. Ebony, NYC, NY

    I didn't know Maya was a socialist.

    December 11, 2007 02:06 am at 2:06 am |
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