January 10th, 2008
03:55 PM ET
6 years ago

Blitzer: It's going to get ugly

CNN's Wolf Blitzer.

CNN's Wolf Blitzer.

(CNN) - Jack Cafferty’s best-seller is entitled “It’s Getting Ugly Out There.” I suspect the presidential campaign eventually is going to get very ugly.

The bitter back-and-forth between the various Republican candidates, and the similar nastiness among the Democrats, will be child’s play compared to what is likely to happen after the political dust settles and the two major parties have their respective nominees in place.

Indeed, the two parties’ opposition research is already in high gear preparing for the political struggle for the White House.

Former White House political adviser Karl Rove, writing today on the op-ed page of The Wall Street Journal, seemed to signal this. “Former President Bill Clinton hit a nerve by drawing attention to Mr. Obama’s conflicting statements on Iraq,” Rove writes. “There’s more – and more powerful – material available.” Rove added that Obama “won’t escape criticism on all this easily.”

Drawing distinctions between the presidential candidates is totally appropriate; it’s part of the democratic political process that we cherish. That is what elections are all about – making choices about our leaders.

Having said that, if you think it’s rough out there right now – just wait. No matter who the nominees are, it will get a lot more intense. In recent days, I’ve discussed this with some of the campaigns, and top staffers on both sides assure me they fully understand what’s in store. They insist they’re ready.

- CNN Anchor Wolf Blitzer

Filed under: Wolf Blitzer
soundoff (171 Responses)
  1. Truth2Power

    Annabelle, only cowards who have no proof would make such an allegation in their answer and not quote their source. Don't believe it until you can confirm it and validate it. Otherwise, the warmongering cowards win. Go Obama! By the way, isn't freedom of and from religion among the rights postulated in the US Constitution?

    January 10, 2008 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
  2. S. Wright

    Let it get ugly, Mr. Blitzer.

    I'm sure you'll slink out of it, just as you did when you moderated that Dem debate.

    January 10, 2008 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |

    It,s will get urgly out there when the republicans starts mentioning Obama as husein, Husein being a muslim name and it is quite clear that Americans will not go for any one with a muslim link as president. they will praise him now to help get rid of hillary and then grind OBAMA to win the presidency. WAKE UP america!!!!!.

    January 10, 2008 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  4. Leo

    Annabelle: Hi. You are free to vote for the candidate you desire. Please do not distribute false information. There is enough of that going around already. Mr. Obama has nothing to do with the Koran. Please don't listen to the first 'kook' you see spreading false information around. Mr. Obama attends Trinity United Church of Christ. He and Michelle are highly educated, talented and dedicated individuals. I will be proud to have Mr. Obama as President of the United States.

    January 10, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  5. kate

    Ugly , Smugly!
    All I have to say is if John Edwards is not the Democratic nominee I will change my registration from Democrat to Independent and may not cast a Vote for the Presidency at all!

    Do you think that is what they mean when they keep talking about "Change"?

    January 10, 2008 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  6. Smurfysax

    Why would any self respecting person, Democrat specifically even give ear to what Karl Rove has to say regarding the presedential candidates, inparticularly the Democratic candidates. This man undeniably ducked and dodged prosecution (with a little help I might add from the Bush elite powers that be) when he worked for the George W. Bush establishment. NOW he's trying to stir up the Democratic race in an effort to divert attention away from the Republications in the hopes that a fight amongst the Democrats will cause chaos and dissention which would give them, the Republicans a chance to pounce and ultimately win the race. That is of course, unless it's stolen again.

    As for the ugliness, politics is, will be and has always been ugly. I can't believe the American public, the general population is weak minded enough to believe everything they / we hear the politicians say anyhow. People can't make up their own mind anymore because they are accustomed to having EVERYTHING spoon fed to them, everything. Let's get back to the basic and place the power back into the hands of the American public. We'll decide the best candidate and elect him/her ourselves. What a disgrace we've become in this country... And we call ourselves "FREE".

    January 10, 2008 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  7. Nadeem Tahir

    O'bama is an outsider? Come on give me a break. Last I looked he was a US Senator. Isn't that the most exclusive inside club in the nation? Do you think he will leave the Senate once he is done with this current blatantly hypocritical attempt to fool the american public.

    January 10, 2008 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  8. CS

    I agree with John in NY, NY except for the outcome, which will clearly be a Huckabee victory. If these two are the nominees, it may be the most civil election in history, except for the PAC's, they will fight like rabid dogs.

    January 10, 2008 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  9. Mike

    Well, Obama has not been able to convince the civil rights Guru's such as the Rev Jesse Jackson and the illustrious Rev Al Sharpton of his blackness. The onlu thrue believer he has so far is Oprha Winfrey. I think that between his flirting with the Koran and his whiteness attitude, it will detract some of the established black community from backing him up.

    January 10, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  10. Joseph

    If I were barack I'd spin Rove's comments back at him, but most importantly, back at the Bush administration. It would go something like this: "Here is a man, the brain behind the most divisive administration in American history. He leaves abruptly from office on the run from possible corruption charges. Seeing Hillary Clinton up in the polls for the last 12 months caused him to send me an open letter 'teaching' me how to attach her. And then suddenly, as soon as I have started winning elections he is attacking ME! His main objective is to create discord and divisiveness within the Democratic party in order to better facilitate a Republican victory in '09. The actions of Karl Rove goes to show that, as a man with much influence in Washington the last 7 years of this administration, is what represents the Bush administration... Divisiveness, political gaming, causing confusion of the public's reality, etc... This is the very reason I am running.. to get rid of this very thing within our Government."

    The above would be a great way to spin it back against the Bush administration and give Karl Rove a real good reason to shut his mouth for good.

    January 10, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  11. darrell

    We are in trouble.

    If we are so bitter over Bush, America voted in Twice, and cannot see the potential of a politician. What we look for is what we find. Our thinkinking can empower us or no thinking keeps all things the same. Our Choice!

    Change is thinking outside Washington is what we need. With Obama, we would have a listen ear. Dead ears rule the status Quo until they loose. Now all are change agents.

    If Hillary was about (change) she would have voted no to Bush plan for Iran.
    What happen to change.

    Bidden Motivate people better than her.

    To Cry is not a good tool with other leader when things do not go your way


    January 10, 2008 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  12. nancy

    No kidding Obama is a Christian, a preacher background too. Why do you think he gets along with Huckabee, as noted by John in NY? A better reply though was from J.M. who basically noted why the Koran would be different then the Bible?

    To John, I can't say anything about Huckabee, but before you start singing the praises and trying to disect who is the honest man, you should know what your talking about. I suspect you haven't heard anything about Obama's ties with currupt Chicago real estate developer. It's a genuine story (with all major news publishers for almost a year now) that has been buried and one where Obama has acknowledged on many and very different levels...from "it was a bonehead deciscion" to "I don't know what I said to him".
    It may be innocent enough, but it looks much worse then innocent and similar if not worse then Hillary's "investment scenarios" that caused her much more scrutinay. Worse, it's burried. So many voter know next to nothing about this guy or his background, good or bad. Most are taken with the hype and his speeches and I will agree they can be excellent.

    Like everything else, time will tell, but who will we loose in the meantime? Americans need to stand up, GET EDUCATED ( before they weigh in), then vote!

    January 10, 2008 08:09 pm at 8:09 pm |
  13. Sherry

    For the greatest democracy in the world, we really need to reconsider whether or not the example we are providing inspires or arouses disgust. The best way to encourage the spread of democracy and freedom is to demonstrate the dignity and decorum with which our electoral process can be conducted. Anytime we resort to vilifying and belittling those that disagree with us, we mock the process of reasoned discourse and dialogue. The political advisers of the last two elections brought the process to new lows, engaging in dangerously superfluous attacks, all the while detracting from the important issues facing our country. We need to avoid the disgruntled, negative static, and force the candidates to address the real and unavoidable problems they will face whilst in office.

    January 10, 2008 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  14. Chris

    The presidential candidates speak for change. They do not provide a specific
    substance, other than that they have “experience”! Experience in what...?
    The only real change has been bigger and deeper whole,
    trillions dollars of debt, hopes of empty promises – brain washing the
    people, filling their coffers, ignoring their duties, responsibilities, plunge
    the country into a war for over 5 years and lost of lives.
    A true change of substance will be when the people can express
    “THEIR WILL” on “ALL MAJOR ISSUES”. The duties and responsibilities
    of the Congress should be and must be ”strictly construed”.
    Amend the Constitution for the people to “express their will”
    on ALL MAJOR ISSUES! We need that “change” now – today!
    The future destiny, liberty, freedom to live, work etc. should be in the POWER
    of the people to “express their will” on ALL MAJOR ISSUES!
    It is time to stop granting unlimited – absolute power to ANYBODY
    now – today, rather than to relinquish “HOPES” to express
    The Congress did not comply with their duties, responsibilities and accountability!
    The truth is the "Government is dysfunctional! There is no accountability today...”!

    January 10, 2008 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  15. Don't vote for hate

    BARACK OBAMA IS NOT A MUSLIM!!! Or a religious extremist of any ilk. How many times does this lie need to be dispellled??

    Let me guess – you believe the swift boat lies even after they were difinatively proven to be lies.

    January 10, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  16. serenity1227

    Nita, if they were idiots we would be far better off!
    These people are just shrewd enough to be VERY
    dangerous. Their allegiances are to big money, the entire petro-chemical industry, profit over people at ALL times, concession after concession as "owed" payback of one type or another. There appear to have been crimes against the Constitution, and the average American totally beyond belief.
    Keith Daggett, Liberal Democrat
    Mojave Valley AZ 86440

    January 10, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  17. mark wilkes barre pa

    I believe wolf,,, just look at that mug on him !!! Aface only his mother could love,,, lol

    January 10, 2008 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  18. FAIR TAX,LA.

    fair tax!!
    no libs please
    save our country!!!

    January 10, 2008 08:25 pm at 8:25 pm |
  19. James

    From FDR's "New Deal" to Johnson's "War on Poverty" to Regan's "War on the Middle Class" to Bush's "Starve the Beast" (Social Security and Welfare).....Ron Paul is breath of fresh air. If the USA was truly democratic, then the people would run Politics, but since the majority is poor, this is the wealthiest individuals greatest nightmare. I am not a Libertarian, but I would vote for Ron Paul against the present Feudal system, the Republicans are currently encouraging.

    January 10, 2008 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  20. Jeanie

    Thank You Dave in Spokane and Bert pointing out the oft-repeated lie that Obama is a Muslim and Obama used the Koran when he was sworn in.

    I expect that there is a long line behind Carl Rove when it comes to dissing Sen. Obama's presidential bid. It's the nature of the game. With that said, I can completely understand how Carl Rove would sing Hillary Clinton's praises. They are both experts at sleaze, corruption, and divisiveness. A vote for Clinton is a vote for the return of an impeached president and the politics of personal destruction in the White House. I'm voting for OBAMA.

    And Carl baby keep it coming!!!!

    January 10, 2008 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  21. Jameel

    People have to realize that Obama has absolutley no type of experiance and you need to look at a persons record and not let your self get cought up in the glitter and fame that the so very nice media has given to Obama. The fact is that in a general election he is going to get raked over the coals, and the same outcome that happened in New Hampshire will happen in the rest of the country people say one thing and when by them selves do the total opposite, its the american way.

    January 10, 2008 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  22. Danny U

    Hey Wolf, just a suggestion for the next debate you moderate: try to be fair this time around and quit throwing Clemens-like, steroid-induced fastballs at Obama while tossing softballs up to Hillary. Yes, I am an Obama supporter, but your bias during the last CNN debate was quite obvious.

    January 10, 2008 08:36 pm at 8:36 pm |
  23. Jake, California

    ANNABELLE, anonymous

    Nice try. I wonder you guys thing every one in American is naive like you two.

    Oh guess what.. I saw a picture of George W and Osam Bin Ladin on the internet, do yo guys want a copy, send me your emails.. I swear I am a nice guy, I won't abuse your email...


    January 10, 2008 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  24. nancy


    Why is it you can't go to BarackObama.com and learn anything about his background or positions without first logging in to join his campaign?

    January 10, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  25. pam

    7/26/07 Vote 284: H R 1: This amendment to the Homeland Security Act of 2002 was made in order to implement the recommendations made by the 9/11 commission. Different versions of the bill were passed in the House on Jan. 9 and in the Senate on July 9. A modified version of the bill, with conference report changes, was revisited on July 27 and passed by a vote of 85-8. The bill requires the inspection of all cargo traveling on passenger aircrafts and establishes the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board. This panel, suggested by the 9/11 commission, is responsible for advising the president and senior White House officials maintaining respect for privacy laws and civil liberties. Other provisions of the bill include grants to states, urban areas, regions, or directly eligible tribes to be used to improve the ability for first responders to react to and prevent terrorist attacks, according to the Congressional Research Service. The bill also outlined details regarding the detention and treatment of captured terrorists. The bill was signed into law by President Bush on August 3. Not Voting – obama . HRC voted yes.

    January 10, 2008 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
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