March 26th, 2008
01:18 PM ET
10 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. CB in FL

    Sick of back biting by Obama supporters, some commenters have said. Who is without a doubt viciously trying to destroy the party and steal the nomination with a take no prisoner mentality? HILLARY, you darn right! Say what you will about Senator Obama but, he remains the People's Choice!

    March 26, 2008 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |




    March 26, 2008 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  3. Brian G, Sugar Land, TX

    Idiots one and all!

    March 26, 2008 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  4. ralph - Ellicott City, MD

    Hey Arthur, slow your roll.

    Welcome back, Samantha. I hope you have learned a valuable less in during this fickle political season. Watch your step, next time. We need your courage and wisdom to tackle what lies ahead. It's a little unfortunate that during these trouble times, you can't call it like you see it. As far as I'm concerned, you went easy on the lady.

    March 26, 2008 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  5. Xavier - NJ

    Any politician that can lie to the American public with a straight face and say the following words "On my trip to Bosnia, I had to run with my head down while evading snipers bullets after landing at the airport" is either two things. 1) an uncurable sick liar 2) a mental basket case – That person should immediately resign and dissappear into obscurity.

    March 26, 2008 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  6. Nando, Florida

    For all you Hillary nut jobs out there 30 Billion in Iraq , But its has nothing to do with our economy? Oh yeah if you guys forgot she also stood BY JOHN MCCAIN to vote for GEORGE W. BUSH's WAR!!!

    March 26, 2008 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  7. Truth, Honesty, Ethnics, Faith, & Values!!!!

    The Clinton's are just concern with themselves and will not stop to they get what they want.

    HRC is making it up as she goes. Bill Clinton said that the Clinton don't Quit. Just ask Monica. The Clinton's are in debt to other countries.

    Hillary, Chealsea as well as Bill Clinton are all liars. Everytime they open their mouths out comes a lie...

    An why is Hillary head always bobbin up and down? Oops that Bill.....

    March 26, 2008 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  8. fran canada

    I can believe how many so called adults use the words shut up how disrepectful.

    March 26, 2008 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  9. Nikki

    This is my first year as a registered democrat...I'm starting to feel like I "jinxed" the party.

    I will go back to my old ways of no being affiliated with any party.

    Democractic Party is a major disaster. We had two of the best candidates and the way things are going, we'll have a third term of Bush's policies.

    March 26, 2008 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  10. Dennis

    It is a good point. Obama is going to pull the troops out, but he can't just say, "okay, boys and girls, pack your things and let's get out of here." He will need input from armed forces currently in Iraq on how to do it. Interestingly enough, this quote from a supporter can get distorted into something it doesn't mean, and yet when Hillary herself outright distorts her 35 years of experience (e.g. ducking sniper fire in Bosnia), which is the biggest reason she has to vote for her, little is said. If you can't trust what Obama says because of a comment by Powers, then you surely can't believe or trust anything Hillary Clinton says.

    March 26, 2008 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  11. Jamobama

    I can see that Hillary and her supporters share a lot in common. No wonder they are so emotionally attached to this LIAR!!! If someone can't remember a simple trip, how is she going to remember what to d when she answer that 3:00AM call?

    March 26, 2008 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  12. cc, Chicago

    Arthur – Texas

    Please tell me you don't actually think Hillary Clinton would look better compared to Obama if you examine "half-truths" or utter lies? The woman has decades of examples of her distorted version of facts when it comes to her accomplishments.

    As for Hillary's ability to deal with the economy – do you think taking a time out from world trade and home foreclosures is going to help the economy? Her plan from day one is to take a time out to examine the issues. A time out from home foreclosures would further exacerbate a credit crisis and likely cause an increase in home mortgage interest rates, thus putting those homeowners in trouble in a tougher spot in terms of getting refinancing. And frankly, the world is not going to stop and wait for us if we take a time out from trade to decide what we want to do. These are not "ready on day one" plans.

    March 26, 2008 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  13. John

    All said it is pathetic ignorance that prevails here regarding the past weeks regarding the Rev Wright scenario... People have been waiting for some trivial incident to help corrupt their small minds into believing that Senator Obama would not make a good president. Whether you support him, hill or mccain,,, is it not time to demonstrate some sense of integrity within ourselves. are we not tired of exposing our ingnorance to the world.. Can we truly take this opportunity to show the world what the constitution of america really represents vs. what we have made it out to be... Imagine this,,, some new developing nation actually adopted our constitution, implemented it to its fullest, with all the diviersity of a population one could imagine... I bet we as a nation based on our historical history, would not recognize it.....And in the end we would probably find fault with it... So lets take this opportunity to move on and take advantage of this opportunity... The only reason why this garbage has been displayed and accepted is because we love a good Jerry Springer,,, show,,,After all is it not the ratings that keep any show on....The number who tune in.....Small minds are easily entertained.....Barrack said he believes in
    America,,, well keep working it and he won't believe any more, maybe that is what he really needs to do..... Wake Up and smell the coffee

    March 26, 2008 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  14. nowlin w.wells

    I hope name calling is not a mode of operation. I am in support of
    Obama . Realizing that our best example of Action is can we campaign
    to strength America.The Visa over stays, and patrolliing the Borders , is
    very important. I suggest we make a priority to enforce our territory,
    and our resources. Making good decisions is not name calling,nor is it
    experiance without accomplishments.

    March 26, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  15. Ghost13

    Has Hillary or Obama both even bothered to attend a military base in the U.S. to see the perspectives of our men and women in uniform? They both seem like corrupt power hungry individuals. The whole democratic party is starting to resemble the pigs in "Animal Farm."

    March 26, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  16. brad from chicago

    Debbie , NJ she lied ,I will say it for her. Actually she thought he was her uncle and didn't want to throw him under the bus. Go Hillary

    March 26, 2008 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  17. MJB in GA

    Samantha Power is a great example for young women – independent, smart, and honest. Hillary Clinton, on the other hand, manages to embody every negative (false, as to women in general) stereotype (literally every one, I think) out there about women. She is a calculating enabler who lies and plays on people's emotions/sympathies in seeking power for its own sake. She is a HORRIBLE example and is actively setting women back (as she has been for nearly 20 years at this point.) Nancy Pelosi – there's a great role model for young girls. Hillary is nothing but a pile of baggage, an embodiment of all the failings and hypocrisy of the Baby Boomer generation. 6 times. She knew. And her response??? She consciously used it to her advantage. How messed up is that???

    Go ahead and censor me again, CNN....

    March 26, 2008 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  18. Debra Hasan

    Looking over the comments, you can tell who the intelligent voters are.

    They are the ones that are backing Obama. Clinton is a liar and would do anything to win. For the backers of Clinton, you have to be kidding, this woman has lied to you all and you still don't care.

    If you don't vote for the right man, you going to be right where most of you all where, when you voted that idiot in. Whatever you do, don't blame it on minority, blame it on yourselves. I think, it stupid when you vote against your self interest. (Think about it)

    March 26, 2008 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  19. MJB in GA

    Dear Clinton Family-

    Please leave the stage and take you tackiness back to Arkansas. We've had enough.

    The America People

    March 26, 2008 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  20. Wang LI

    Obama is the best hope for America.

    Bush opened the doors for Al-Qaeda in Iraq...
    Sure enough, HRC will have Al-Qaeda at our gates...

    It is time to wake up...
    Being American, nowadays means so little good...
    In a few years, there will be no country for us to stay in.

    March 26, 2008 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  21. Dawn Finley

    I found a speech that I had written in high school, many, many years ago which stated I Speak for Democracy. Not then, nor now, do I
    believe it is the right of the press to favor one candidate over another.
    The Clinton Administration left this country in good standing. They did not hurt the U.S. So, why do all people talk about how ruthless they are and how they harmed the US. This Harding nonsense is just that–nonsense. Why blame Hiliary for all the negative–O/Bama has been just as negative. CNN is not a democratic station and Cafferty, expecialy, is so one-sided it cannot even becalled good journalism.
    Don't blame Hiliary for the negative. Look at both sides of the question and get the emotions under control. A lot of women news people appear to be just plain jealous of Hiliary. Too bad they don't have her intelligence.

    March 26, 2008 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  22. Helen

    Power, you have lost credit by using the word 'monster'. Now it is time for you to shut up. Obama will give you a job if he is a terrible as you.

    March 26, 2008 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  23. The Rookie

    We Democrats are blowing it. You watch, we will end up with McCain and we wont have anyone to blame but ourselves and our 2 candidates! Thats all we do is fight each other now, its beyond old and stale!
    WAKE UP!

    Oh by the way, once he is in office, then we get to hear each campaign blame the other. No wonder Republicans are loving this!


    March 26, 2008 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  24. Slap Stick, Florida

    CLINTONITES!!!!, If you can't take the heat then get out of the Kitchen. HIllary has yet to release tax returns, she has lied about Bosnia, lied about foreign policy experience, lied about overall experience. She is a liar and America does not need another liar in the White House. We have had the that for the past 8 years. NO MORE! NO MORE!

    I will vote Republican before I vote for Hillary. McCain is shaping up to be more a liberal than Hillary and that is so sad to say.

    March 26, 2008 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  25. Jean

    Say one thing in the campaign trail in front of lots of supporters because that is what they want to here and then, turn around behind the doors telling something else to the powerfuls; that is what the Obama camp has done at least twice. In fact, Power was in the middle of the mess. I don't understand why she thinks I will see Obama better suited than Hillary Clinton. Obama is as trustworthy as Hillary Clinton. In this case, I'll go with the pro., Hillary Clinton.

    Miami Gardens

    March 26, 2008 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
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