April 13th, 2008
08:30 PM ET
3 years ago

Clinton hits Obama over 'bitter' comments at Compassion Forum

Sen. Clinton wasted no time Sunday night before again criticizing Sen. Obama for his recent remarks about small town America.
Sen. Clinton wasted no time Sunday night before again criticizing Sen. Obama for his recent remarks about small town America.

GRANTHAM, Pennsylvania (CNN) - Minutes after Barack Obama tore into Hillary Clinton for criticizing his comments about some small-town Americans, the New York senator said again Sunday that those remarks about some could be seen as “elitist” and “patronizing.”

"But from my perspective the characterization of people in a way that really seemed to be elitist and out of touch is really something that we have to overcome," Clinton said at the Compassion Forum, airing on CNN.

"The Democratic Party, to be very blunt about it, has been viewed as a party that didn't understand and respect the values and the way of life of many of our fellow Americans," she said, adding that the fact that the comments came at a “closed door fundraiser in San Francisco” helped reinforce that impression.

She said that Obama was a good man, but compared him to unsuccessful Democratic candidates Al Gore and John Kerry.

"We had two very good men, and men of faith, run for president in 2000 and 2004. But large segments of the electorate concluded that they did not really understand, or relate to, or frankly respect their ways of life," said Clinton.

–CNN Associate Political Editor Rebecca Sinderbrand


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Faith • Hillary Clinton • Pennsylvania
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. rick hubbard

    hill 08

    April 13, 2008 10:23 pm at 10:23 pm |
  2. Jay

    The two good men who ran for Presiden in 2000 and 2004 are really good men.
    The person in 2000 did not lose – He won.
    The person in 2004 lost not because he was out of touch with America, but because he was out of touch with the CLINTONS. They did not want him to win otherwise the lady could not have thought of contesting till 2012.
    Maybe by then she would have been old.
    But GOD has his strange ways. You reap what you sow.
    They never knew that GOD would send Barack Obama as a candidate.

    April 13, 2008 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  3. B

    Hillary going duck hunting to help feed america

    April 13, 2008 10:25 pm at 10:25 pm |
  4. emma dunn

    I am very saddened that Hillary Clinton will continue to criticize Barack Obama about a statement that he made about unemployed rural workers are bitter about their loss of jobs,health insurance, retirement benefits, etc. which is true and many voters have blogged and agree with obama's statement.
    Hillary Clinton has demonstrated that she will polorize the country not unite it as Obama will do as president. Hillary is a rich, priviledged female and cannot understand the trials/tribulations of struggling workers who have lost their jobs due to Nafta that happened during her husband' adm.

    Hillary , let's unite the party,. not polorize it which will benefit the Republican party;

    April 13, 2008 10:25 pm at 10:25 pm |
  5. Santiago

    Rethoric is the best thing Obama can show. If he makes mistakes with that too, what can you expect of him as president.... Que Dios nos coja confesaos'. ON HIS OWN WAY OBAMA IS ANOTHER W. BUSH... LOST OF NOISE BUT NOTHING TO SHOW...
    Be careful fellow Democrats, do not make the same mistake Republicans made by electing a man of "values"; look where that has taking this nation.

    Hillary will take care of business for America.

    April 13, 2008 10:25 pm at 10:25 pm |
  6. clintons out of control

    Please someon stand up to this family..............where is the DNC and leaders when needed, someone needs to tell them, enough is enough, so many lies, so many double standards, it is very sad........
    in good faith I could never vote for another Clinton.............

    April 13, 2008 10:26 pm at 10:26 pm |
  7. Tim, Texas

    I think Hillary told a fib on Sunday, wow!!!

    April 13, 2008 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  8. Raelee

    BOSNIA......Hill did you forget?

    NAFTA Did you forget you and Bill are part of it?

    Fire Penn the free trade king

    April 13, 2008 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  9. TL

    Amazing... she'll even go to a Christian forum and be dishonest. She knows her elitist argument is a stretch and yet even under the pretense of God she will sit there and push her dishonest agenda.

    Just last night she's knocking back a shot of Crown Royal wth a beer chaser for the camera's, but tonight she's a friggin' nun. Don't get me wrong, I don't have a problem with drinking, but the hypocrisy is astounding.

    I'm surprised she doesn't spontaneously combust when she goes anywhere near a church or the subject or God.

    April 13, 2008 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  10. wyoming dem

    Now she throws Gore and Kerry under the bus. She is NOT for the democratic party, she is for herself.

    April 13, 2008 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  11. MWS

    I think Hillary Clinton has unfortunately crossed the line.
    She is divisive, and twists words at ever turn. This latest attack
    has no other purpose but to forward her own candidacy
    by tearing down Obama by deliberately distorting and taking his
    remarks out of context in order to insult people , anger people.
    And she calls HIM divisive!! Hypocritical and cynical and down in the
    gutter.

    April 13, 2008 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm |
  12. Keith

    Wow - she's GOOD.

    Clinton's comments get to the heart of what was REALLY offensive about Obama's statements. It wasn't that he called some people "bitter", it's that he stereotyped an entire segment of the population in a demeaning manner.

    He is an arrogant elitist - much worse than Kerry!

    April 13, 2008 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  13. Joe Palubinsky

    Why don't you ask the workers at the York pepermint patty plant in Pa. if they are bitter about having thier plant shipped off to Mexico?

    April 13, 2008 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  14. Willy

    and some of you want one of these two whiners in the W.H. answering a phone at 3 a.m.?

    April 13, 2008 10:34 pm at 10:34 pm |
  15. Alice

    I think Obama hit it out of the ball park .

    April 13, 2008 10:35 pm at 10:35 pm |
  16. Colli

    Hillary will say or do anything to get elected. To call Obama an elistist is so ridiculous, it will surely come back to hurt her. Obama grew up in a single mother's environment, did not have a summer cottage to go to, worked hard, and did not make 101million dollars over the past 8 years. Who really is out of touch, a liar, and an elistist...I think we all know the answer to that. Please no more Bush nor more Clinton's. Vote Obama everyone

    April 13, 2008 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  17. Steve

    Yeah, I can see how you, a Democrat, calling Obama's remarks elitist and patronizing will help the party when Republicans call his remarks elitist and patronizing.

    Go Away Hillary!

    April 13, 2008 10:38 pm at 10:38 pm |
  18. Neil

    Hillary, give it up already. You and everyone knows exactly what he meant. That is unless you'd like to explain how you avoided sniper fire and then didn't after it was found out by CBS, and that you had "misspoke" a.k.a. lied, after your wonderfully orchestrated story about being in Bosnia.

    April 13, 2008 10:38 pm at 10:38 pm |
  19. Sara

    Amen sister!

    April 13, 2008 10:38 pm at 10:38 pm |
  20. Keisha Tafari

    I am so tired of Hillary Clinton, or should I say, The Clintons, acting as if they understand the common people. First we have Bill who claims to understand black people. Wrong! If Clinton understood black people he would have not made the dumb comment that Barack only "won the southern states because he is black". That offends black people and so Hillary lost votes. Now we have Hillary trying to state that Barack has offended the rural people of America by making comments that they "cling to their guns and religion." How can the truth be offensive? Although guns and religion is the way of life for those in the rural areas, it does not rule out the fact that many, not all, are BITTER. Barack has apparently met people who have displayed these attitudes! It is not a mockery at their way of life, it is a reality for many, not necessarily all. They cling to their religion for hope that their lives will get better while a gov't spends millions on a war. This is not exclusive to the rural people; it is true for urban America as well. why is there violence in the inner city? Bc people have lost hope and the gun is a tool that is misused for an expression of anger, and we have those who cling to religion to replace their bitterness with faith. NO, the Clintons DON'T understand people in America. The Clintons are out of touch!!

    April 13, 2008 10:40 pm at 10:40 pm |
  21. Arkietwo

    Not only an Elitist but a Demagogue as well !!

    April 13, 2008 10:42 pm at 10:42 pm |
  22. duck47

    Obama has really managed to "spin" this away from the reality that his remarks were made in answer to a question from the audience at the upscale fundraiser in Marin County as to why he was trailing in Pennsylvania. In essence he answered by blaming the Pennsylvanians and describing them in the demeaning way that he did. This is a much worse deed than what he is portraying it and speaks directly to an issue of character. How far will you stoop to gain favor with the "big shots" and will you throw the "little guys" in Pennsylvania under the bus? The answer is yes, in this case and runs completely contrary to who he says he is. He should count his blessings that he has managed to divert most people from noticing this important aspect.

    April 13, 2008 10:44 pm at 10:44 pm |
  23. pam ingram

    she has attempted to make an issue out of no issue. the whole thrust of his comments were empathetic toward the frustrations that many americans experience. that the media abets these red herring attacks is despicable

    April 13, 2008 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
  24. Stewart from North Carolina

    Al Gore might describe his loss a bit differently and take offense at how Hillary Clinton described it. Basically he was robbed.

    April 13, 2008 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
  25. BITTER AND FOR OBAMA

    YOU ARE TAKING THINGS OUT OF CONTEXT, GET OVER IT, MOVE ON. PEOPLE ARE BITTER ABOUT THE ECONOMY, THE WAR.
    IAM SO BITTER AND OBAMA IS SPEAKING THE TRUTH. OBAMA SPEAKS FOR THE AMERICAN PIPO, AND IF YOU DONT THINK SO THEN YOU ARE FOOLS.

    April 13, 2008 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12