March 11th, 2008
03:37 PM ET
6 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. sascha

    Give me a break. The clinton clan just seeks scapegoats because they will lose. Here is a short collection of the most stupid comments:

    1. Caucasus are unfair.
    2. The media are so unfair
    3. Obama is black.
    4. What's next??

    March 11, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  2. dennis

    Another ill advised comment by the clinton campaign. For a party that prides itself on diversity and inclusion, they're sure showing signs of the opposite.

    March 11, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  3. sonya

    why is it so hard for people to accept this fact. it is true, not racist. what is racist is the 90% african americans voting for barack. tell me...is that not racist????

    March 11, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  4. Marc A. Turnes (DeKalb, IL)

    So Ferraro is playing the "He wouldn't be here if he wasn't black." card, and playing the "He wouldn't be there if he was a woman" card... doesn't this seem at all contradictory?

    Clearly Clinton has some top-notch fund-raisers.

    Not that it is any surprise, given their penchant for misinformation.

    Let me close by saying Hillary Clinton isn't a Muslim... as far as *I* know.

    March 11, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  5. CampaignObama

    Count AA out? Out of what? They're going Republican??? Give me a break.

    March 11, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  6. way to hill supporters!

    I doubt that she will denounce or reject this attack. She still hasn't denounced the comments made about blacks by the Latino Civil Rights Leader in Texas.
    Spitzer now Ferraro, gotta love those politicians from NY, no wonder she decided to become a Senator for N.Y. Her political games fall right in place with N.Y. politics.

    March 11, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  7. David C. In Indianapolis

    The more things change, the more things remain the same.

    Obama '08

    March 11, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  8. Brian

    Ugh. Here we go again with Clinton supporters denigrating Obama over his race. Their campaign is truly disgusting.

    Also... the democratic party would like to thank Geraldine Ferraro... for nothing.

    Let's throw the full weight of our party behind changing this kind of entrenched us-versus-them mentality that permeates Washington. Let's finally bring the nation together to solve our problems with the kind of hope and change we all still believe is possible in politics.

    Let's do it together America!

    OBAMA '08!!!

    March 11, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  9. emb

    Hillary is not telling the truth. She has not discussed anything with Barak Obama. Another instance of Hillary doing and saying anything to get elected! SHAME ON YOU HILLARY!!!

    March 11, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  10. Ryano

    Senile. I looked that word up in the dictionary the other day. And guess whos face I found next to that word.

    March 11, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  11. Sheila

    The Clinton campaign is desperate. Obama is where he is because he has worked hard and the people have willed it. Despite having the kitchen sink thrown at him, he is still on top. The more Hillary's campaign disparages his experience and accomplishments ( yes, he has much ), the less likely it is I will vote for her if she wins the nomination. To think I defended Pres Clinton and Hillary throughout their WH years.. GOBAMA 08.

    March 11, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  12. Captain

    OH PLEASE!!!!! This woman is so full of herself, its NASTY!!! She FAILS to mention the fact that Clinton would be OUT of the race by now if She was NOT a Woman. Considering the fact that women make up he majority (56%) of the democratic party, I'd say that her gender has carried her a long way in this race. Then, when you add the fact that she has constantly been playing THE SYMPATHY CARD and expects the rules to somehow NOT apply to her, you get a pretty good idea where her success comes from, barring the fact that her last name is Clinton.

    March 11, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  13. The Patriot

    He is the one running behind his race. Tell me something new. Everyone can sit there and talk about how Hillary is only where she is today because of her husband, but no one can say that Obama is where he is today because of his race? Hey, the truth is the truth. His race has helped him in this campaign and everyone is OK w/ that just as everyone has been OK w/ the sexist remarks targeted at Hillary for the past 3 decades............talk about being a Hypocrite!

    March 11, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  14. Kathy

    WHAT A LOSER, LITERALLY

    March 11, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  15. AJ

    why on earth shoud that be repudiated? It's true isnt it?

    March 11, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  16. Bukky, Baltimore

    "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."

    I bet Obama never counted himself "lucky" to be a black man in the United States. I bet he didnt know that he got into Columbia and Harvard because he is a Black Man. He became editor and chief of the most read and heralded law review because he is a Black Man.

    I've heard people make the affirmative action arguement in education BUT never in politics. The first candidate that people the JUST see a Black man, now they are trying to relegate him to JUST a black man and tap into inate prejudices that suprisingly have yet to show there faces.

    This is low... I expected it from the likes of republican but not my own party.

    March 11, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  17. Jim Shimmer

    Racist. Its so sad to see racisim in this day and age. People like that should be prosecuted. They really should. I wish the very people who are racist go through the tough times the african american people went though and then I'd like to ask them how does it feel.

    People don't like Hillary because she flip flops. She is not decisive. She will do anything to win. I am sure she will stoop to a new low. She represents the same ol dirty politics of the past. Obama will change all this. Thats why he is in the spot light.

    This is a way of the clinton campaign to attract attention. How pathetic!
    Everybody know your true colors Hillary. You are finished.

    March 11, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  18. DENOUNCE & REJECT

    Both Ferraro and Ed Rendell, who are Clinton supporters, have both said the same thing about Obama. America does NOT accept any type of racist remarks. PERIOD!!! Hillary will need to DENOUNCE & REJECT their comments. More importantly, they both should be fired from her campaign or else any rejection will be meaningless!!!

    This pretty much sums up the Clinton party “over 200 years this country has had partisanship – that's the way our country is."

    The Clintons are divisive and will bring the same old people doing the same old politics and making sure that America doesn’t come together.

    Also, Ferraro admits that Obama is bringing people together.

    March 11, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  19. Robin

    Hillary Clinton and her group do whatever it takes to win the nomination. It could be harmful to the Democtratic party in November. However, they don't care at this point. Because of the way she runs her campaign, both Mr. Obama and Mrs. Clinton are becoming more vulnerable, when Republicans start their attacks. She already has provided them too much materials...such as the Red Phone call ad.

    March 11, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  20. Deborah

    Hillary is such a disgrace. The democrat party should reject and denounce her.

    FERRARA has not credibility who cares what she thinks.
    She should not be where she is if she were not white.

    THE RACIST DEMOCRATS are showing their TRUE COLORS!

    OBAMA 2008!!!!!

    March 11, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  21. Alexandra

    HillBilly won't you fire her?
    You were the same one that jumped on Obama's back to fire Powers after she made an unfortunate comment, so why won't you do the same?
    Shame on you Hillary.
    Actually Ferraro made a good point for Obama quote "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."
    This is exactly what Obama has been talking about – that Hillary is very partisan and will champion the same old divisive politics.
    Thanks Ferraro for showing america the real Clinton.
    Obama '08

    March 11, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  22. Kurt

    Duh! She is ABSOLUTELY right.
    Martin Luther King said we have to judge people based on the content of their character NOT the color of their skin. And it IS VERY difficult. If it wasn't difficult Martin Luther King would not have asked to do it it.
    Clinton does not have a monopoly on the women vote. In some states it is 60-40 or 56-44 or 50-50 (wisconsin).
    He DOES have a monopoly on the african american vote by a LARGE CONSISTENT amount. 8-2 or 9-1!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! that's crazy!!!!

    March 11, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  23. Obama for prez

    The Democratic Party need african americans to win, and they are really showing the party colors now

    March 11, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  24. Independent

    ....i am beginning to see consistency in her campaign: say and do anything to win...

    March 11, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  25. Vette

    Hillary MUST DENOUNCE, REPUDIATE AND REJECT Geraldine Ferraro. She is a member of the Clinton Campaign and utters such comments. SHAME ON YOU HILLARY. Shame on you and the media for now pushing to have HIllary be Obama's VP. After the things she and her camp have said and done about and to Obama she would do good to run for VP of the local dog catcher. Give up the race and go home

    March 11, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
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