January 31st, 2008
09:50 PM ET
6 years ago

Schneider: Clinton tackles the First Spouse issue


Former President Clinton campaigned for his wife in New Jersey recently. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)

Hollywood loves the core of Obama’s answer on the sex and violence in media issue: don’t blame producers, blame the parents. He doesn’t let them off the hook, but he does argue their case somewhat.

Meanwhile, Clinton’s having trouble with a tougher question – and a unique problem for her. Obama doesn’t have to deal with the specter of a former president in the White House alongside the new commander-in-chief. There’s a lot of evasiveness in her response.

Related: Hillary Clinton says she's running for president–not Bill

– CNN Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider

Filed under: Schneider analysis
soundoff (263 Responses)
  1. SE

    I can't w8 for Tuesday!!!

    January 31, 2008 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  2. Joanne

    We need to get real. How many of us actually vote the way we do because our SPOUSE told us to. It really is a non-issue and I refuse to apologize for every stupid thing that comes out of my husbands mouth too.

    January 31, 2008 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  3. shamla

    to the final question Hillary said " Bill had nothing to do with this campaign. and finally it is her and it is "her name " on the ticket and it is her decsions at teh white House.
    But earlier she took credit for Bill Clintons' 8 year regime and was bloating on the flourishing time.
    Does this mean that she will include or exclude people to her convenience?
    Very contradicting????

    January 31, 2008 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  4. Will

    Did anybody else notice Sen Clinton's laugh..came through real shrill and loud. I am just worried about another "Dean Scream" moment.

    January 31, 2008 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  5. Becky Aaronson

    Obama doesn't have any past experience for him to address nor for us to look at. I recall the Clinton years as very positive and am supporting Hillary for many reasons not the least of which is BECAUSE of Pres. Bill Clinton. Those that argue the 'Bush/Clinton/Bush/Clinton' need to be introspective–have they dedicated their lives to public service? If so, then they have a right to their view, if not–shame on them! I for one would not want to put myself under the scrutiny and judgement that is the system today.
    I know that a spouse can be a sounding board, be a partner, but ultimately, as she says, SHE would be making the ultimate decision.

    January 31, 2008 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  6. Taylor


    January 31, 2008 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  7. Chris in Va.

    How else would an un-indicted criminal explain their past. Parry-turn-dodge!!!! If anyone thinks Obama is tough on her, and you want a Dem in the White House, you'd better hope to God she doesn't win the nomination and the Republicans get hold of her!

    January 31, 2008 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  8. Dan

    Obama / Clinton

    clear ticket to the Whitehouse.

    January 31, 2008 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  9. Doc Bee

    Her answer was good. However, aside from being responsible for running the country she would have to control or curb her husbands influence. To me thats not good and worries me.

    January 31, 2008 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  10. melissa j.

    She laughed a little too loudly on this one. Seemed nervous. And then her typically rambling answer went off topic.

    January 31, 2008 09:58 pm at 9:58 pm |
  11. Meir Kroll

    Did anyone notice what happend at the end there….. Barack actually straitened his chair after he got up when the debate was over! Unfortunately I can't say the same for Hilary… I think that says alot about a person. Especially someone at that epitome of power to still be grounded enough to do something like that. BARACK OBAMA ALL THE WAY!!!!!!!

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  12. Marsha

    When does she get to leave this question behinde her and get to ride on her own hard won laurels?? Or, is that possible in this still too often chauvinist society??

    I keep hearing people say she's hard, and then when she breaks down and seems sad, they wonder if she can do the job?? Come on!! If any of the guys on the circuit break down, they are given kudos for being modern men in touch with their softer emotional sides!! When does this double standard end??

    Many other countries have had or currently have female presidents. Why is America still fighting this gender battle of the sexes about the presidency?? Could we have any less effective or less well-liked President than George Bush?? She's a bright, hardworking woman. Does that scare all American men?? or just the reporters who follow her around watching for signs of being too hard, or too emotional?????? MsIrish

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  13. Alex

    Obama clearly won this debate hands down–especially in Iraq, Health Care and everything else.

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  14. May

    Mr Bill Schneider really have problems with everything Hillary says or does .....

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  15. Patty

    Why don't you keep your biased opinion to your ownself?!

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  16. Northern Nelly

    Hillary won this debate, hands down!

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  17. hawkeye0202

    Time after time Hillary DID NOT ANSWER the specific question asked.
    Just proves she is as slick as Willy. I am voting for Obama on Teusday and if he is not the nominee, I will vote REPUBLICAN for the first time in 9 presidential elections ABC=ANYBODY BUT CLINTON.

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  18. she did not answer the ?

    she never really answered the question. she gave a big laugh and then said that this is her campaign and she is in charge.

    a follow up question should have been- if indeed you are in charge hillary, then why did you let your husband go on for so long in regards to his disrespectful attacks? and why did you not publicily acknowledge that you instructed/encouraged your husband to end his disrespectful attackst?

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  19. allan hatfield

    as a painter
    i cant understand berac and his thoughts

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  20. whatime

    Oboma 08!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  21. Andrew

    Could we please avoid the heat on Clinton?

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  22. Jack

    Bill?! You missed the atom bomb Clinton dropped. "It took a Clinton to clean up after the first Bush, it's gonna take another Clinton to clean up after this Bush."

    That was like the quarterback running in a 50 yard TD. Since this was our superbowl...

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  23. Chiman

    Bill: This is ridiculous. Mrs. Clinton answered that question very smartly, gracefully and we cold see the dissapointment on Mr. Obama's face as this question was based on a comment from somebody from his campain. Mrs. Clinton was very professional asnwering the question.
    STOP talking campaigning for OBAMA – Remember you are a independent press and not Obama Press.

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  24. kim

    Loved obama..esp the way he did that chair thing..hilalry didnot care..i know doesnot matter..but shows the personality...

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  25. Erin

    I still feel like Hillary hasn't really laid out how much influence Bill will have if she were elected. I think he's a HUGE advisor but she cant adopt the Obama's mantra of change and be consistent if she says that... just another issue skirted.

    January 31, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
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