March 26th, 2008
01:18 PM ET
7 years ago

Controversial former Obama adviser again takes aim at Clinton

(CNN) - Former Barack Obama adviser Samantha Power – who resigned from his campaign earlier this month after calling Hillary Clinton a “monster” - said Tuesday night she was stunned by the “political mileage” the New York senator had gotten from her comments on the timing of any withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq.

"What I was saying is that you have to take into account what the generals on the ground are telling you," Power told a Columbia University audience Tuesday night, according to a report in the Huffington Post.

“Take for example that 3 a.m. phone call (a theme in a Clinton campaign ad)… She is not going to answer the phone and play a voicemail she recorded in 2007. That is crazy. She is going to judge the situation in 2009. Of course she is going to take into account what the generals have to say about the Iraq situation and what they are saying on the ground."

Earlier this month, the Clinton campaign seized on remarks made by Power – who had already left the Illinois senator’s campaign – that Obama "will of course not rely upon some plan that he's crafted as a presidential candidate or U.S. senator" to withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq.

Clinton advisers said Obama's entire campaign was based on his attempts to contrast his early opposition to the Iraq war with Clinton's vote in favor of a resolution authorizing the use of force in that conflict — and fatally weakened by any suggestion that he might alter his current position.

"It turns out those attacks and speeches were just words. And if you can't trust Senator Obama's words, what's left?" said one Clinton campaign memo.

Despite her controversial exit from the campaign trail, Power seemed to suggest Tuesday night that she might be part of an Obama administration.

"Because of the kind of campaign that Senator Obama has run, it seemed appropriate for someone of my Irish temper to step aside, at least for a while,” Power told a Columbia University audience. “We will see what happens there."

–CNN Associate Political Editor Rebecca Sinderbrand

soundoff (170 Responses)
  1. ROBERT APONTE

    Don`t think either candidate has what it takes to make it all the way. Both skirt the issues that are paramount to the sucess of the U.S on the global stage and waste precious time flinging mud balls at each other when the appropriate thing to do is to demonstrate the ability to negotiate the issuses of the day. Clinton is a known commodity and no matter how much make up she puts on she can`t mask the phony that she is. Obama has not shown that he can take Clinton out given the countless opportunties to do so. Maybe he too is ducking the sniper fire...

    March 26, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  2. ray from FL

    The Limbaugh CHAOS program of having hundreds of thousands republicans vote in the Democratic primaries is working like a charm and even Cafferty has not really commented on its affect. Hillary only won the 1st step of the Texas vote because approximately 160,000 republicans voted for her and approximately 100 plus thousand in Ohio and now you see from yesterdays PA newspapers that hundreds of thousands of Republicans have crossed over and registered to vot in the upcomming April primary and Rush is having a GREAT BIG Laugh at all the apparentlt dumb Democrates who are letting their primary be hijacked. The result is apparent a McCain victory in November as the fighting has become fierce with the canidates saying anything. IE Hillary with her experience, what a joke and people believe it and that is truly amaizing. Come on Cafferty, PLEASE let us have your opinion on the cross over voting.

    March 26, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  3. brad from chicago

    there similar because Obama hasn't came up a plan of his own yet. When are we going to see this plan? Talk about tax papers , where is his plan to do the job. Please don't go back and look at Hillary's comments and idea's, give us your plan . No boring speeches and no dreams of hope or change just a plan for the future of this nation. Vote Hillary until we see a better plan. Screw the tax papers.

    March 26, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  4. deb in az

    samantha powers is going to be part of sen obamas cabinet? please this woman reminds me of a second grader.......monster .....gosh will rev wright be part of this adminstration as well? just wait till the republicans have a hay day with this one........im not in agreement with showing all your records either......youre giving the republicans too much info.......... sen clinton didnt lie by the way, she did go to bosnia which in itself was to be commended........but she did pad her resume by stretching the truth.....wait until the media brings out sen obamas resume, i should say his true resume.........are you going to say that he lied as well? his resume is quite padded........to go a step further it almost sounds like he lived in fantasy land.........

    March 26, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  5. Mauri

    Jack, you are right. It's Obama who says (right now) that the day after he is ensconsed in the Oval Office, he'll have the troups on their way out of Iraq. Hillary says she'll handle withdrawal responsibly. Occasionally, Obama repeats Hillary's stand. So who knows what he will do, he's so busy worrying about what Hillary is saying. As for Miz Power, she should crawl back into her hole where she was banished to for spouting off her mouth in the first place.

    March 26, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  6. Ratgurl

    Hold your ground Sam! Your comments were accurate, and your commentary true!

    March 26, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  7. EDW

    WELL SAID BEAU:

    I'm an Obama supporter and I recognize that both these candidates have similar positions and both are trying to win. if there were 2 republicans still running, that race would be nasty too. Which ever one does win, all democrates have to back the nominee. If we're dumb enough to let our emotions drive us to McCain, then we deserved Bush all along.

    March 26, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  8. AnnaMarie

    Didn't the 3:00am little girl Casey Knowles denounce and reject Hillary answering the phone.. And if Hillary is sleep deprived and "mispoke" (= lie) to the caller doesn't that put our country at greater risk..

    Vote Obama 2008

    March 26, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  9. L. Tran, TX

    Samantha,
    You left not because of your bad-taste remarks on Clinton, you left because of your contradiction of Obama's Iraq policy (which you were/are the adviser), kind of contradicting yourself.

    March 26, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  10. MichaelP

    CNN will you PLEASE start analyzing what is going on here, and show the differences between the 2 campaigns? The Clinton campaign continually slanders Obama's character by doing stuff like this... intentionally spinning a realistic caveat of Obama's Iraq plans to consult the generals into this:

    "It turns out those attacks and speeches were just words. And if you can't trust Senator Obama's words, what's left?" !!!

    What the heck? And to top it off, every time you have an article on the 2 campaigns, you report it as if like they are both doing the same thing. THEY ARE CLEARLY NOT!!!

    March 26, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  11. kathe oakland, california

    Well Samatha if you are going to continue to say negative words about your own candidate – why in heck would he want you in his adminstration. Let's get real here – you obviously think you are so superior that Obama would certainly want YOU in his adminstration.

    I think it is time that all you Obama campaign folks STOP TALKING and attempting to speak for the Senator. HE IS NOT A DEAF MUTE, if he wants to respond allown HIM to rspond not any of you. None of you can touch the Senator when it comes to the spoken word – you mislead what he thinks, you speak what you think. I am an OBAMA person, and I want to hear from my candidate Senator Barack Obama not you behind the scenes folks, who are not running for anything except to keep up with Senator Obama.
    SO STOP TALKING. If there is an answer to some dirt,issue, whatever, first ask the Senator if he wants you to respond PLEASE.

    March 26, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  12. RAJ

    why don't people let Clinton and Obama go through the whole process. Let the winner be the democratic nominee. What is the probelm and how it is divisive if all primaries are held, total votes counted and even at convention, superdelegate votes and aselects. I think it is wrong to ask any candidate to withdraw in the name of unity. It is not democratic.

    March 26, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  13. nancy

    I am really sick of all the backbiting being done by the Obama camp they just don't give up. That Samantha Power person needs to get a life.

    March 26, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  14. Hill riding McCain's jock

    Glad to see ya back Ms. Power. You go girl.

    March 26, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  15. Hill riding McCain's jock

    welcome back Ms. Power. You go girl.

    March 26, 2008 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  16. Arthur-Texas

    Obama has been proven to be a liar.He was in the pews when rev wright said all those awful words about our country.He had denied it at first.
    Then he said he co- sponsered legislation with Sen Dodd which turned out to be a lie,and then there is the whole Rezko mess.
    What othe lies has he been telling that we don't know anout yet?

    March 26, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  17. Sophia

    Well we all know you haven't gone ANYWHERE. Like Wright, you're just officially off the rolecall to LOOK good.
    I still think you are of low breeding to have gone & trashed, yes TRASHED our former First Lady & current Senator Hillary Clinton of NY. overseas. It would scare me to death, knowing you'd be the one answering that 3 am call. Give it a rest Sam.

    March 26, 2008 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  18. Debbie, NJ

    Like Clinton said about Obama, "... And if you can't trust Senator Obama's words, what's left?" Hillary we ask the same of you.

    March 26, 2008 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  19. deezinhilsmof

    Grif your hood is too tight. It is cutting off oxygen to your brain.

    March 26, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  20. Arthur-Texas

    Obama has been proven to be a liar.He was in the pews when rev wright said all those awful words about our country.He had denied it at first.
    Then he said he co- sponsered legislation with Sen Dodd which turned out to be a lie,and then there is the whole Rezko mess.
    What othe lies has he been telling that we don't know about?.

    March 26, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  21. Ralph

    If you heard the interview, like I did, you would know that Hillary lied about what was said. She figured, and rightly so, that most people, including the press, would not bother to check or report such boring details. Once again, Clinton lied for political gain. I guess that makes her a fighter to some. I think it just makes her untrustworthy, like most Americans do. That's why she has lost. Bu-bye Hillary.

    March 26, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  22. Edgar - Orlando, Florida

    Powers comments will have voters changing their mind and either voting for Hillary or McCain....so keep it coming Powers.

    March 26, 2008 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  23. Jim

    Go see a psychiatrist and get some rest!

    This woman suffers from the " I hate Hillary syndrome" and she needs treatment!

    March 26, 2008 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  24. Thomas

    "According to a Gallup Poll released Wednesday, 28 percent of Clinton supporters may break ranks to back McCain in November should Obama capture the Democratic nomination.

    Meanwhile, 19 percent of Obama supporters say they will favor McCain should Clinton be the party's nominee. "

    Clinton or McCane 08'

    March 26, 2008 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  25. All time liar

    "A PROBLEM FROM HELL: AMERICA & THE AGE OF GENOCIDE" BY SAMANTHA POWER IS THE BEST BOOK I HAVE EVER READ. SHE IS ABSOLUTELY POWERFUL. HER WRITING IS WIDELY READ AROUND THE GLOBE.

    March 26, 2008 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
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