February 29th, 2008
09:45 AM ET
7 years ago

Clinton raises the stakes in new ad

 Clinton launched a tough new ad Friday.
Clinton launched a tough new ad Friday.

(CNN) - The Democratic White House hopefuls took to the airwaves Friday to battle over national security credentials, with Hillary Clinton’s campaign releasing a tough new ad that pegged her as the presidential candidate best-prepared to take on foreign crises, and Barack Obama’s team responding with the re-release of a spot that painted him as the White House hopeful with the best judgment to be commander-in-chief.

“It’s 3 a.m. and your children are safe and asleep. But there’s a phone in the White House, and it’s ringing. Something’s happened in the world,” says the announcer in the 30-second Clinton spot, which is set begin running in Texas Friday. A phone rings insistently over images of sleeping children.

“Your vote will decide who answers the call. Whether it’s someone who already knows the world’s leaders, knows the military. Someone tested and ready to lead in a dangerous world.

“It’s 3 a.m. and your children are safe and asleep. Who do you want answering the phone?”

The Clinton campaign said the new ad - titled “Children” - is meant to make voters ponder “who they want in the White House during a crisis.”

Within roughly an hour of the ad’s debut, the Obama campaign announced that it was re-releasing “Gulf,” a 30-second spot that first ran prior to the Iowa caucuses. The ad features retired Air Force Gen. Merrill McPeak, a former combat pilot who was the service’s highest-ranking uniformed officer during the first Gulf War.

“As a combat pilot and Air Force chief during Desert Storm, lives depended on the judgments I made,” McPeak says in the spot. “And judgment is what we need from our next commander in chief. Barack Obama opposed this war in Iraq from the start, showing insight and courage others did not.”

McPeak backed John Kerry in the 2004 presidential race.

– CNN Associate Political Editor Rebecca Sinderbrand

soundoff (408 Responses)
  1. NY

    Obama people are insane. This you call Fear Mongering? Please. She is asking a valid question. The truth is that Senator Obama hasn't done much and has no foreign experience, which will be pivotal for the next president. He didn't even know Canada had a prime minister, not a president. Yeah that's who I want as my leader? – Not.

    He didn't do anything while being the chair of the foreign committee because he was too busy campaigning, so what you are saying is that he was busy auditioning for the job he didn't have instead of doing the job the good people of Illinois entrusted on him to do. He is no better than McCain of Clinton. If anything sometimes, I think he is worst.

    February 29, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  2. RIck

    OPTIONS
    Hillary answer the phone and acts.
    Obama answer the phone and says: I will change the world tomorrow early

    February 29, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  3. Tony

    Fear mongering at its worst, but is the state of the world outside of the United States that much more dangerous than what happens inside the United States. Is possibility of a foreign threat so much that Hillary needs to run ads on the following premise....

    “It’s 3 a.m. and your children are safe and asleep. But there’s a phone in the White House, and it’s ringing. Something’s happened in the world,”

    I dont know about you but my kids face greater threats on the local level moreso than the global level. People are walking in malls and schools shooting each other and she wants us to feel safe because there is a phone ringing in the white house Do you consider this ad by Hillary and some conservatives as fear mongering, would this ad make you feel safe or force you to decide to vote one way or another.

    If this ad makes you feel more safe then you need to go live in a plastic bubble somewhere on a commune in idaho.

    VOTE FOR ME OR YOUR KIDS WILL DIE hillary08

    yea, thats the ticket.

    February 29, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  4. Mike

    I would like the phone answered by a decisive leader with clear judment. Someone with a track record of honest, integrity, and level-headedness.

    So obviously not Hillary.

    I don't agree with Obamas politics, but he seems to at least be even-tempered and thoughtful.

    February 29, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  5. Jerry Tsai

    Frankly, McCain would be better than either Obama or Clinton. But if I had to choose between Obama or Clinton, I want the one who's awake. That's Obama. Clinton sleepwalked to George Bush's tune, why should I trust her? Obama has demonstrated better judgment time and time again. He should answer the phone... and call McCain.

    February 29, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  6. dc

    It's sad to see Clinton's campaign resorting to blatant fear tactics.

    I know that I DON"T want the person answering the phone to be someone who voted to authorize the war in Iraq.

    Fortunately, we have the choice of a candidate with the judgment to anticipate the consequences of our actions in the world.

    February 29, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  7. Chris

    NOT CLINTON, I do NOT want Clinton to pick up the phone when a crisis happens, she just might be a little angry at something Billy Boy did the night or day before so that would screw her judgment up. We see how emotional she has been during the campaign, I cannot imagine how it would be if she became president. Face it, most women are emotional and lead their lives on how they are feeling that particular day/hour/minute, and Hillary is no different, you cannot be emotional and a national/world leader at the same time. As for those who will think I am sexist, it was several women I talked to who brought up that point.

    February 29, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  8. Chris, Duluth, MN

    Wow, this seems like something that would support McCain. Whoever green-lighted this ad should be demoted.

    Obama 08

    February 29, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  9. SID FROM NEW YORK

    “We Have Nothing To Fear But Fear It's Self And Those Who Would Exploit Our Fear For Power And For Their Own Personal Selfish Cynical Gain.”

    February 29, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  10. sandy

    I am glad to see hillary coming back. Cant people see the real truth about Obama not taking care of his job as a chairmen . I truly feel all this votes are coming from young people that dont even know who Saddam Hussein and [is he related to saddam] thats why he doesnt want his middle name be mention.He is a smooth talker I hope he is not another bush and cant get rid of him. I heard a drug addict being friends with a guy who blew up the pentagon hope you all check him out before you vote really compare him to hillary.

    February 29, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  11. Tom Swift, NH

    `
    “It’s 3 a.m. and your children are safe and asleep. Who do you want answering the phone?”

    John McCain

    McCain '08 – A Change We Can Live With

    February 29, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  12. Justine, Cincinnati

    Hillary is a republican in a democratic robe. I'm not afraid anymore Hillary. Go home!

    Vote for change!

    Barack 08!

    February 29, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  13. therealist

    Billary wasn't too worried about that called in 1998, so why would we believe that they would worry about it now??

    February 29, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  14. Zach

    Republicans in Texas are going to vote for Obama to stop Clinton. It is a strategy to get the weakest nominee to compete against McCain. Republicans and independents have flocked to Obama to stop Clinton, not to support Obama. They will all vote republican in November. Democratic superdelegates need to focus on this serious issue of republican support and cast their vote in favor of Clinton at the convention. If they don't, the whole idea of having superdelegates would fail. Black as well as white delegates need to think before they rush into this process.

    February 29, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  15. Tutu Lee

    I really enjoy the comments of Hillary supporters who claim that Obama has "Xerox"-ed his campaign from others, essentially stating that he has no original thoughts. Don't these people understand the irony in having just "Xerox"-ed the quotation of their own candidate?

    February 29, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  16. Mac-FL

    Is everyone here forgetting that BILL Clinton had, during his term in office, the chance to get Osama Bin Laden....and he BLEW IT! 9/11 never would have happened if he had any understanding of Bin Laden's threat to us all and the world. And people here are saying the Clintons (wasn't aware we were electing a "team") have such great "past experience" with this and other foreign policy issues? Bull-Hockey!

    February 29, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  17. risam

    Let's see.. it's 3 am, your kids are in bed and the phone rings at the White House. If Hillary is there, I'm guessing it's the DC police calling to say come and get Bill because he was caught peeping in the windows of your sleeping children.

    February 29, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  18. Rick

    Jennifer, I have news for you and it is not a dead heat. Obama is winning. He has won 11 in a row. The media is actually keeping Hillary alive. If it had been the opposite and Obama did ok through Feb 5 and then lost 11 in a row the media would have ignored him, Hillary would not have debated him and he would be under much more intesne pressure to withdraw. The media is actually keeping the Hillary campaign afloat.

    February 29, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  19. Brent

    FEAR.....right out of the republican play book.

    Worked for Bush. Guess Hillary thinks it will work for her.

    February 29, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  20. Jose'

    Don't you know Hillary, Americans are living back in a pre-9/11 world, partially thanks to you.

    They will live in denial until another 9/11.

    John McCain, it's for you!

    February 29, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  21. Wilhemina

    Hillary also had a Rally advertised on her campaign website, that list "Bill in blackface" as a draw for the event. Now we see this...fear mongering. Wow! Clinton is having difficulty managing her finances, her home, her lies, her taxes, her resume of accomplishments as First Lady. Now she has duped people into believe she would be the one to answer a call at 0300, LOL!!!!

    February 29, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  22. ken__ new hampshire

    obama ___ no experinance __ hello wake up people

    February 29, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  23. Go Away Hillary!

    This is the final straw. Unbelievable. She calls a flyer that accurately states she wants "mandates" on health care "the worst kind of politics out of Karl Rove's playbook," and then she does this?

    No, no, no...SHAME on YOU, Mrs. Clinton.

    Democrats, if you don't reject fear-mongering now, you have no chance in November against the Fearmongering machine that is the Republican Party. You will concede that fear will rule the ballot-box again, as it did in 2004.

    February 29, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  24. Stephanie

    Bottom line: No one has presidential experience until they are actually president. I think sound judgment, wisdom, strength and a sincere desire to serve are the most important qualities at issue right now between these two candidates. For me, their "presidential" experience is the same...none.

    The one person I don't want answering the phone at 3:00am is John McCain. Dems, please quit bickering. We have to be a unified front. Let's vote, pick our candidate and get ready for November!

    February 29, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  25. New York Voter

    Better that Hillary's campaign ask this question - you know McCain will and the Democrats need to win.

    I want Hillary's expertise in the White House, not someone who will need on the job training.

    February 29, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
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