March 11th, 2008
03:37 PM ET
7 years ago

Obama camp calls for Clinton to drop Ferraro

 Ferraro is a supporter of Hillary Clinton.
Ferraro is a supporter of Hillary Clinton.

(CNN) - Barack Obama’s chief strategist said Tuesday that a comment by one of Hillary Clinton’s top fundraisers that Barack Obama would not be a major presidential contender if he were not black – coupled with Clinton’s “own inexplicable unwillingness" to deny that he was a Muslim during a recent interview – indicated “an insidious pattern that needs to be addressed."

David Axelrod called on the New York senator to drop former New York Rep. Geraldine Ferraro from her finance committee. "When you wink and nod at offensive statements you're really sending a signal to your supporters that anything goes," said Axelrod.

Ferraro, the Democratic Party’s vice presidential nominee in 1984, told the (Torrance, California) Daily Breeze that "If Obama was a white man, he would not be in this position. And if he was a woman he would not be in this position. He happens to be very lucky to be who he is. And the country is caught up in the concept."

Ferraro said the New York senator had suffered because the press "has been uniquely hard on her. It's been a very sexist media. Some just don't like her. The others have gotten caught up in the Obama campaign."

"I was reading an article that said young Republicans are out there campaigning for Obama because they believe he's going to be able to put an end to partisanship,” she added. “Dear God! Anyone that has worked in the Congress knows that for over 200 years this country has had partisanship – that's the way our country is."

Full story

(Update at 2:15 with Obama campaign comments, context)

– CNN Associate Political Editor Rebecca Sinderbrand

soundoff (490 Responses)
  1. Pam

    Betcha $10.00 the moderator wont print this!!

    If the "Super" delegates and DNC cannot see that Hillary Clinton is going to destroy our Democratic Party with her antics such as touting our opponets worthyness for one, it is truely just a sad day in America!!

    What happened to morals!! The fact they are sitting back and letting this happen is just beyond reason.

    Please stand up, if this plays out for months just to end up at this point again in 3 months it will be devestating.

    March 11, 2008 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  2. My .02

    What else is new, judging a book by its cover. Something the HRC supporters have become very accustomed to. He is mixed by the way, his father left when he was 2, and he was raised by his white mother and grandparents. Not that race should play an issue, but unfortunately in 2008, 45 years after King's "I have a dream" speech, a lot of individuals still speak ignorantly and haven't learned a darn thing. It's sad that we cannot get over the racial divide in this country, as we cannot accomplish near as much with that divide. Maybe someday.

    March 11, 2008 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  3. Andy

    She is right. Look at the disproportionate African American vote for Obama.

    March 11, 2008 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  4. Stephanie

    I loved Bill Clinton until this race began. I never cared much for Hillary but didn't think she was a bad candidate. I just preferred Obama's message.

    The Clintons have no shame and will say whatever they can to win. Black aren't voting for OBAMA because he is black but because he is the BEST Candidate. The election has nothing to do with being a woman or being black.

    As hard as it is for Hillary to Believe we just DON'T want her as our President.

    Go Obama/Edwards '08!

    March 11, 2008 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  5. Bill

    I am not a racist, nor do I have racist ideas, but you have to look at reality with Obama getting 80% of the African-American vote when many who vote for him cannot name one bill that he has introduced in congress nor any part of his candidacy platform.

    March 11, 2008 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  6. me in Miami

    He will not win the general election period. The fact that his dad was from africa and black has nothing to do with it. is too bad...

    March 11, 2008 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  7. Fernandez

    The truth hurts

    March 11, 2008 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  8. Goodheart

    It is true that Obama is getting over 80% of the black vote. I'm not sure if they truly believe he would be the best President or if he is getting their vote because he's black. Regardless, didn't Obama's campaign call Hillary a "monster."? Who are they to be critical of these comments so soon after they just attacked Hillary.

    March 11, 2008 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  9. Tina, North Carolina

    To Maya:

    Well of course, Hillary was there...she knew that Obama couldn't make it; she'd go miles out of her way for anything if she thought it could somehow make him look bad. Psst! It didn't work.

    Tina

    March 11, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  10. GM

    the biggest genocide in modern times occurred under the watch of President Clinton and his wife Hillary. What have they do for blacks??
    poverty did not reduce under his administration, he did not appoint a black as secretary of state, he did not appoint a black as chair of the joint-chiaf of staff, - how many blacks were in his administration? The reality is that George Bush have done more than Bill Clinton ever did for black people and people should not be fooled again.

    March 11, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  11. Tom Swift, NH

    `
    I call upon Hillary Clinton to reject AND renounce Geraldine Ferraro.

    March 11, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  12. Paul-Chicago

    AFRICA For HILLARY- You are SO majorly uninformed. Please look at the statistics of WHO is voting for WHO in this race.

    March 11, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  13. Sara M

    America is full of idiots.

    Unfortunately, they speak the loudest.

    Obama and his cultlike followers will destroy what's left of the US...and when Obama screws up, because he doesn't know what in the hell he's doing in the first place; he will have RUINED any chance of another black president.

    Go sit on that for awhile.

    March 11, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  14. Mike in Houston

    Another racist comment from the Hillary camp.

    I would say that a) if Hillary were not a woman she would not be a serious contender and b) MOST IMPORTANTLY, if she were not married to Bill, she would still be working at the Rose Law firm.

    March 11, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  15. Dr. James R. Hickey

    My advice to the lady: If you are going to make bomb-thrower remarks to the press, at least do so in the proper tense.

    ...if he WERE white....

    March 11, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  16. SA

    As I understand, the Democratic party is supposed to be a big tent for several minorities. How can Barack Obama, who is losing the majority of Hispanic vote, the majority of Asian American votes, the majority of Jewish votes, and the majority of women end up being the nominee of the Democratic party because he is getting 90% of the African-American votes. If the party poohbahs are thinking all these other minorities will just sing Hallelujah and pull the lever for Obama in November, they are deluded.

    March 11, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  17. Independent

    If this statement was true, we would have had a black president a long time ago. Obama is not the first to run for president.

    These people say things and hope all of us are too stupidto think. No on e in the other camps are saying any sexist remarks why don't Clinton backers just stop!!

    Jesse JAckson and Al Sharpton was not supported because they were black. So,, this statement is baseless.

    March 11, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  18. Unbelievable

    Hay Market "But in this country blacks have special treatment, not a big news"

    WOW, this is a truly incredible statement. I guess some trailer parks have finally gotten internet access

    March 11, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  19. Sal in Phoenix

    You people need to get a life...What she said was absolutely true and there is nothing wrong with it..has it come to this where a person can't even use "black" in their description..She also included "woman", should all women get up in arms...This is rediculous...He is black and people are caught up in it because his white side comes across during his campaining and makes him more electable..That's what it is and there's nothing wrong with it...

    March 11, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  20. Tina, North Carolina

    To Maya:

    Well of course, Hillary was there...she knew that Obama couldn't make it; she'd go miles out of her way for anything if she thought it could somehow make him look bad. Psst! It didn't work.

    Tina

    March 11, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  21. Amy

    Remember her continued comments on how she won the improtant states and voted supportted by the important people in the campaign. This must be one of those residents she claims is more important that the rest of the country.

    March 11, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  22. Jimmy Alderson in Atlanta

    Obama is inspiring not because he is black, but because he says what I have been wanting politicians to say for as long as I have been politically aware.

    Geraldine Ferraro hasn't done anything except to play in old politics (i.e. mud slinging)

    Both McCain and Obama are changing the way campaigns are ran forever. Those from the old ways (Clinton/Bush) are frightened that now people will not respond to fear mongering anymore.

    Can we change the way politics is ran in this country?

    YES WE CAN!

    March 11, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  23. Mike

    The Clintons are so pro Black UNTILL they have compitition from a Black person. I want to see OBAMA WIN. I am sick of the two faced. flip floping ARROGANT Hillary. Watch that phony smile disappear from her face when Obama is President and she can not even be ellected dog catcher. Obama please save our country from four more years of the two faced, power hungry, arrogant Clintons.

    March 11, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  24. Lenore Z.

    I don't quite get why he wouldn't be in this position "if he was a woman." Isn't Hillary a woman? I guess she's saying that being Black, and a man, he has an edge. Yeah, just look at all the black men who have dominated the Presidency over the decades!
    Really dumb comment. Not surprised, however, that an elitist white female is supporting another elitist white female. Or an insider Democrat supporting another insider Democrat.

    March 11, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  25. mike

    Would Clinton be where she is if she weren't a woman? I don't think so.

    March 11, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
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