January 9th, 2008
06:30 PM ET
3 years ago

Voter who made Clinton teary picked Obama

The CNN Ticker

Marianne Pernold Young looks on Monday after asking a question that led Hillary Clinton to tears.

(CNN) – Many political observers are crediting Democrat Hillary Clinton's surprise win in New Hampshire to the New York senator's rare display of emotion at a Portsmouth Coffee shop Monday morning.

But Clinton's tearful moment failed to win at least one Granite State voter - the very woman who prompted her response in the first place.

Marianne Pernold-Young told CNN Wednesday she ultimately picked Barack Obama in Tuesday night's primary because of the Illinois senator's performance at a recent rally she attended.

"I was moved to tears. Not once, but twice," she said. "And he has this enormous electricity. And I was just taken aback. And I just had to go with my feelings." (Video: Young speaks on American Morning)

On Monday, Young asked Clinton how she was holding up under the rigors of a presidential campaign - an inquiry that cause the presidential candidate's eyes to well up and voice to tremble.

"It's not easy, and I couldn't do it if I just didn't, you know, passionately believe it was the right thing to do," a teary Clinton said. "You know, I have so many opportunities from this country, I just don't want to see us fall backwards." (Video: Clinton gets emotional)

The moment instantly became the most-covered event on the campaign trail on the day before the critical New Hampshire primary, drawing praise from some who said Clinton had finally bared her true self to voters. The next day, Clinton won among voters who said a candidate who "cares about people" is most important (a category John Edwards won in Iowa.)

Young told CNN she herself was touched by the event, though it was not enough to convince her to support Clinton.

"I was very touched and I was totally in awe that she would open up to us, all of us there," Young said. "But it was a delicate matter."

On CNN's American Morning, Clinton wouldn't speculate whether the moment had put her over the top in the Granite State the night before, but said, "I'm really glad that I had a chance to say what I believe with all of my heart, that politics isn't a game, it's not a horse race. It's about people's lives." (Video: Hillary Clinton on American Morning)

– CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

soundoff (816 Responses)
  1. BobbyC

    Just like the woman who asked the question of Hillary I had more respect for her before the tears. I was leaning toward Obama but now I am sure. I saw the tears of desperation and Bills rants confirmed the desperation. If you are a person of emotion it shows always not just when things are not moving in your favor. If I went for a job interview and the employer told me it was not going well, I don't think tears would make the situation any better.

    As far as Obama is concerned:

    Why would anyone think that any one other person can solve all there problems? If you listen to all the candidates Obama is the only one constantly saying we. He says that because although he will be the one leading the charge from Washington, it will take all Americans to push for change in America. What he can do for us is stay truthful and resist corporate influence as opposition to change. What we can do is replace those who are roadblocks and stay involved in the process.

    January 10, 2008 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  2. Wendi

    Would a female CEO cry to get support to take over another company? I think not. Why should you vote for a woman who is going to cry to get votes? This world will not stand for an emotional woman at the helm. It's going to be an even more hostile world if Clinton is elected.

    January 10, 2008 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  3. Carl

    one more thing... ever since I was 7 years old, there has been a Bush or Clinton in the White House...

    I'm SICK of it

    January 10, 2008 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  4. amw

    Crocodile tears, my fellow patriots.

    You might be right in saying that nobody really cares to hear how one woman from new hampshire voted, but I think there IS something we can take from this.

    Don't base your vote on one issue, or gender, or race. Vote for who you truly, deeply believe has the best vision for the United States as a whole. This election isn't just about national security, or immigration, or the war in Iraq, or whether "its time we had a woman in the Oval Office". It's about ALL the issues that surround our country today. It is our civic responsibility to vote for the candidate who would be the best president. Be informed and trust your instincts.

    May we come out of this mess with a great leader.

    January 10, 2008 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  5. Karlos

    By the way, you CNN readers are the same people who rank Celebrity "news" as the most popular stories. Wow I'm so impressed by your knowledge! Get a clue!

    Most of you like Obama because he's the "new Ipod", the new Apple 'Wow", but nothing special or revolutionary.

    Why do CNN readers hate Hillary so much? What is wrong with you people? Hillary, Edward and Obama all mean well for this country, but why be so negative about Hill-Dog? Mrs. Clinton is clearly more experienced and can put together a top-notch old-Bill cabinet. Stop being so negative about Hill-Dog!

    K

    January 10, 2008 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  6. JP

    I am a Republican-leaning Independent that has been transformed by Barack Obama. I will take him over any Republican. I can not help but be captivated by this man's courage, brilliance, and unifying message. This is quintessentially important for Democrats, because they must nominate a candidate that can win a swing voter such as myself. A Clinton nomination will be a rerun of Gore and Kerry. Democrats must be awfully tired of this movie. I, and countless others, will not stand by while the Bush/Clinton dynasty propagates FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt). America will not be intimidated by the attacks and strong-arm tactics of the Clinton war machine. Go Barack!

    January 10, 2008 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  7. Harry, NY NY

    Maybe she realized in this day and age where America is so incredibly divided over what political party they belong to, she realized that Hillary is not a candidate that gets us past that point.

    Ever since Bill Clinton's first campaign where he went on MTV and introduced mass media to presidential campaigns, the political process has grown with a frenzied crescendo until it rivals rooting for a team in the superbowl!

    We don't need another president that is as divisive as the current president Bush, just in the other direction.

    How ironic this voter was reinforced by HRC's reaction to her question.

    January 10, 2008 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  8. Jack K.

    Poor lady should have selected John Edwards.

    Obama and Clinton are only interested in their entry into the history books.

    Once elected they couldn't give a poot to anybody who actually voted them in office.

    If you want commitment–then vote John Edwards.

    All the rest are trying to put "cherries on their resumes".

    January 10, 2008 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  9. Angela

    Why are we still equating tears/emotion with weakness?
    Every Olympic athelete has cried, the Queen of England has cried. YOU have cried!
    You parents cried! ( probably when you were born, but not for the reasons your thinking)
    It is a testament to the passion one feels, not an indication of weakness.
    An being a woman I have cried especially when I have gotten no sleep and had a grueling schedule.

    I believe it takes strength of character to allow yourself the freedom to feel your passion to the fullest and not have it squelched for fear of being labeled weak.

    She has more moxy, nads or whatever than anyone else in the race and that's what we need right now!!
    Do not under any circumstances think she is weak.
    Remember Margaret Thatcher – no weakness there!

    GO HILLARY GO – all the way to the White House!!!!!

    January 10, 2008 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  10. Jimmy, Okla.

    Maybe Kerry can teach him something about swiftboating. Kerry was very unpopular with Democrats and Independants. Alot of people voted for Kerry because in 2004 the Democratic contenders were comparable to this years Republican canadates. (not very good). I voted for Kerry, but did not like him. I will NOT vote for Barack Obama for President,(maybe Vic President) and it is not because of his age it is because his speaches are too glamorous. They have no substance just a lot of Southern Preaching tactics to get people rialed. Kerry delivers speaches with substances, its just his snobby attutude turned people off, resulting in his inability to bring it home. President Bill Clinton won twice. John Kerry and John Edwards have both lost. Obama is without substance, and the Media is holding Senator Hillary Clinton to much higher standards then the good old boys. Which in the end will be good for it will show her strengths. Not just taking on the Republican right wing she will have to deal with the NEGATIVES ATTACKS by the MEDIA. Probally because most of the famous Anchor people are men. (I said "most" Obama supporters before you go and start slaming me for my opinion) Yes Obama supporters are the most rude's people on the blogs these days.
    "SENATOR HILLARY CLINTON FOR PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES"

    January 10, 2008 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  11. AD

    How come there isnt a story on CNN.com about who I voted for? Does this really matter to anyone?

    January 10, 2008 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  12. Maxmalick

    35 years of experience in Washington. What have you done for me lately???? That s what we care about. Hillary, you are running for President of the United States. How many years of experience do you have doing that.

    In 35 years in Washington, we could never associate the word emotion, or cry with the name Hillary Clinton.

    Suddenly, as polls are saying she s about to lose 2 in row, she breaks down and of course for only 2 seconds. Cry me a river, come on.
    She would not even break down when Billy cheated on her. pffffffffffffffffffffffffff....., we dont know which staff member Bill is gonna go after this time.

    We face serious issues, we dont need another episode of the Clintons soap opera. We need to wake up.

    January 10, 2008 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  13. Anonymous

    that retarded OBAMA is winning this i don't car what anyone says...Clinton got emotional just to win more votes. WHAT A LOSER

    January 10, 2008 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  14. Bobbie J Arkansas

    Hillary is going to win no matter what any one says
    We need she and Bill to get back on track.
    If she will get Colon Powell for vice it can be done.

    January 10, 2008 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  15. Kalsang

    Hillary won the New Hampshire because of Edward blunder. There is a Tibetan saying that "Never let the opponent loose when he or she bows down". Edward double team on Hillary even after hillary loosing Iowa and when obama was already attacking her.

    January 10, 2008 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  16. EJR BAY AREA

    i HAVE BEEN IN SEVERAL EXECUTIVE POSITIONS IN MY LIFE AND AS ALWAYS MEN TYPICALLY THOUGHT IT WEAK IF I SHOWED ANY EMOTION. GUESS WHAT I CONTINUED TO BE SUCESSFULL AND THEY DISAPPEARED?

    TYPICALLY MOST OF THESE MEN NEVER REALIZED THAT PEOPLE ARE MOVED BY EMOTIONS THROUGH OUT THEIR LIVES . PEOPLE IN POWERFUL POSITIONS ARE NO DIFFERENT. HILLARY IS NOT PHONY SHE IS JUST DISPLAYING A HUMAN TRAIT THAT WE ALL HAVE "FEELINGS" .

    January 10, 2008 08:21 pm at 8:21 pm |
  17. crock

    Hillary won't survive a presidency. Everyone knows that.

    January 10, 2008 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
  18. Maria

    I am a female NH voter, and I am totally disgusted with the voters who don't know what issues are important to them personally to know which candidate reflects those values. When I hear how many people were undecided right up to the minute they got into the voting booth or how a calculated crying moment could sway their vote, it makes ME want to cry. People, wake up!! Her husband was the king of calculated tears in front of cameras, so she had the best teacher! Voters who can't access the enormous amount of information available on every candidate and assess for themselves prior to voting day who they will support should refrain from voting. I think it's a major reason why we get some of the whacked out leaders that we do–those candidates/politicians who can manipulate by images and press and perception but are without any real substance. And the naive electorate who fall prey to those tactics and vote on their emotions or other useless reasonings. With an electorate like NH showed to be this week, it leaves me unsettled about our country's future. Thank you.

    January 10, 2008 11:09 pm at 11:09 pm |
  19. Anonymous

    wow you all kidding , Do you really want a president with out experience?

    January 11, 2008 02:31 am at 2:31 am |
  20. J, Germany

    America always has played such an important role in the world. It has so much potential to do good. If it was not for America Europe, Germany and especially former West Berlin, where I live, would not be the same they are now. The world wouldn't.

    But recent events (particularly during the last 7 years) just make people forget about the good America did in the past. Please vote for somebody who can restore the function and image that America used to have in the world. And please make it a matter of issues.

    Obama probably would bring America sympathies quicker. And whether he is not qualified (experienced enough) to bring about the change everybody seems to wait for is not for me to know or say. But whether Obama or Clinton – it hardly can get worse in my opinion. I don't know about the republicans though. They don't seem to (want to) learn from the past.

    January 11, 2008 07:21 am at 7:21 am |
  21. Peggy of Illinois

    Race vs. Gender. So what if Obama is electrifying. He is a fairy tale. Hillary is a woman. What is wrong with the women of this great nation. The men as President have failed this country. Women of America should stand behind Hillary and she what she can do. Surely she could do better than the other choices. It is time for a change and it is time for a woman......So what if she shed a tear. I think she is passionate about the people of this country.....Come on women. STAND BY YOUR WOMAN.......

    January 11, 2008 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  22. Mr Whelan, Scotland

    The United States is a country – wether the world likes it or not – holding the strings to the entire globe. It has the invisible banner of Uberpower and we all have to accept that. This is the reason why I follow 'Election 08' so closely. I only hope that Americans have the sense to stay away from the Republicans this time. Although I do agree with some of them regarding their foreign policies.
    If i had the choice of voting it would be Obama without looking back.
    However, if Mrs Clinton were elected I honestly believe she has the resolve and strength to bring Americas global reputation back towards respectful.

    Either way, in the eyes of the word – unless the states fall under the fiasco of 2002 – we will be a lot safer with the democrats of The United States.

    Regards,

    An independant Scotland.

    January 11, 2008 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  23. Max

    If CNN likes one democratic candidate it's Hillary. Also if this woman was moved by Obama's speech and decided to vote for him that is much better than voting for Hillary because she cried. I understand showing emotiion is somehting we should praise but not in the election for presidency. Global leaders our NOT going to respect someone who chokes up (especially when asked a personal question GAG!). How about the passion and ambition to deliver a speech that inspires others to cry. I think Hillary has been on cloud nine in the Senate/White House for too long to realize what real people go through everyday.

    There's no crying in presidency.

    END THE DYNASTY: Bush/Clinton/Bush/Clinton?--Democratic?

    January 11, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  24. James

    Hillary Clinton is by far the best candidate. If nothing else, remember that she is the person who organized and fought for a real Health Care and Social Security System in the 90's such as you can find in European countries. One that would protect us all, rich or poor, making it less expensive and thus more accessible to every American. Hillary Clinton would be an enormous change for America in many ways but first and foremost because she has NEVER been president. Her opponents would like to make us believe the opposite, but they can't. Many names have popped up recently to try to lay claim to the Democrate nomination but most of them we simply don't know or at best we have just learned how to spell their names. "What's wrong with experience?" a journalist asked John Edwards referring to Hillary Clinton after the New Hampshire primary. We should all ask that question.

    January 11, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  25. Matt

    Can someone please explain to me how having exactly ONE more term as a senator gives Hillary SO much more vast experience and makes her a more qualified presidential candidate? Did she somehow gain year upon year of knowledge casting however many more votes in the senate? The experience argument is wearing very thin with me as I don't understand how anyone can claim that Hillary has so much more of it. The last time I checked, BILL Clinton was the President and HE can claim that experience, not Hillary. Nobody ever elected her to run the country. And for anyone to claim that it is her opponents who are trying to make us believe she has been the president confuses me...if anything I seem to recall Senator Obama claiming her experience as First Lady had NOTHING to do with giving her the qualifications or experience to be President.

    I suppose it is typical though, of a woman with all this self-claimed experience, who just managed to find her OWN voice in NH (who else was she listening to all those years she was gaining her incredible experience I wonder?), to want to be able to both claim her years in the White House as her qualifying experience to be President while at the same time blaming her opposition for making people believe she is an experienced politician.

    I wonder which reinvented model of her and her new voice we'll get this week..and the week after that...and then the week after...and so on.

    January 11, 2008 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
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