April 13th, 2008
08:30 PM ET
2 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. Ronnie...Charlottesville, Va

    CLINTON IS CORRECT.

    April 13, 2008 10:46 pm at 10:46 pm |
  2. Peg

    What exactly is she saying here? She's demeaning Al Gore, John Kerry and comparing Obama to them? Where are the Superdelegates......get her out of there NOW!

    Her last statement makes no sense either....referring to Al Gore and John Kerry.....that they were "men of faith" but really didn't understand, relate to, or frankly respect their ways of life......what in hell is she talking about? She makes no sense at all. Does she think she somehow is the Mesiah and suddenly very different?

    What a bunch of lies, lies, lies. No NO NO

    April 13, 2008 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm |
  3. sherry proctor-minor

    It is amazing to me that someone who just made 100 million dollars last year can accuse of all things, an african-american male, born of a single white female of being an elitist. Senator Clinton doesn't believe what she's saying and hopefully those who think will not believe her either!

    Go Obama!

    April 13, 2008 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm |
  4. Jeff

    If you can't win democrats! how can you republicans that dispise you so much???

    April 13, 2008 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm |
  5. maryland

    We have heard enough of the "bitter word" I am not over the Bosnia lies yet.

    April 13, 2008 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  6. tabac blond

    In re: to Clinton's comments on "...two very good men, and men of faith, run for president in 2000 and 2004", and how basically the electorate didn't get it. I really didn't get how her husband, our president at the time used the Oval Office, with Ms Lewinsky, in a degrading shameless and disrespectful manner to his electorate. Additionally betraying Hilary and his daughter with blatant disregard. How Hilary can speak about '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.' I WONDER WHY?

    April 13, 2008 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  7. Steve S

    Obama is telling the truth. Clinton's the one with the elitist & patroning attitude.. Billy & Hillary are completely out of touch with main stream American

    April 13, 2008 10:50 pm at 10:50 pm |
  8. prakash chand

    Go girl ,keep pounding him ,he is fragile, he will breal.

    April 13, 2008 10:51 pm at 10:51 pm |
  9. James in Oregon

    Obama blew Clinton away in that faith forum, plain and simple. Obama is going to win PA because he is real , and understands every day people's problems , Clinton and Mcsame are so out of touch.

    April 13, 2008 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  10. Audrey

    I was wondering and wanted to ask... since Hillary Clinton is a Methodist and her husband is a Baptist, does it cause any problems between them?

    April 13, 2008 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  11. jAYjAY

    Obama should campaign. On Hillarys Bosnia lies.....lies....lies as hard as she is on his bitter remarks

    April 13, 2008 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  12. Jack

    Get a life lair you will soon be bitter after Barack knock you out of this race. At least you have a good job. Unlike all those poor bitter people who don't hav a job and con't afford to pay their bills.

    April 13, 2008 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  13. dwilson

    Hillary is absolutely right. Obama has opened himself to the Republican machine's characterization of him as not only an arrogant, condescending elitist, but also as unpatriotic and even un-American through his relationship with Rev. Wright. I don't see that Obama has a prayer to win the General Election.

    Even many Democrats believe both those characterizations of Obama to be true.

    April 13, 2008 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  14. Alice

    What a jerk! I thought Hillary was PROUD to be "on stage" with Obama.

    April 13, 2008 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  15. Mike

    Senator Clinton, you did GREAT this evening!

    Go Hillary!!!

    "You have my vote..."

    April 13, 2008 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  16. TT

    Well, finally the primary is OVER after her remarks on Gore and the democratic party.

    How can democrats now support her when she claims that the democratic party is a "party that didn't understand and respect the values and the way of life of many of our fellow Americans,"

    Democrats, c'mon, you know much better than this.........

    April 13, 2008 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  17. Greg in Canada

    Did Clinton just say that Obama is a political loser... just like Kerry AND Vice-President Al Gore?!?

    Nice job of portraying Al Gore, the most accomplished of the non-president superdelegates, as a weak former candidate. (No wonder Obama threw in that mention of "I think Al Gore won.") The DNC members must loooooove that!

    Looks like someone better get Hillary another boilermaker!

    April 13, 2008 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  18. That's Reality

    And Hillary doesn't represent the views of most Ameriacans – only rhe media "elites" anad those who are duped by them. Sorry CNN, but I think that is largely the truth.

    April 13, 2008 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  19. Skipper

    She hit that one right on the head. Smart response, Hillary. Obama has no excuse for his comments.

    April 13, 2008 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  20. Andy Gamblin

    Dear CNN
    My name is Andy I heard Mrs Clinton and Mr Obama
    speak tonight on cnn about faith and I beleave that
    Mrs Clinton done better than he did and I feel that
    she would be the best one for President .

    Your friend Andy

    April 13, 2008 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  21. Lois

    I live in middle America and I am bitter. High gas prices, food, healthcare, prescription drugs, lost jobs, homes lost. Yes I am bitter.
    Yes, he probably should have explained that people has reason to be bitter. Would it have been spun any differently if it had been said in an open forum or in Pennsylvania? Probably not. People are looking for anything he says to pick it apart. Clinton should have little to say as she out and out lied. He just told California how much of America feels. How can she explain her faith and justify her lie?? Were we better when President Clinton was in the White House? Yes, but then the scandal of him and Monica and the cigar won out.
    By the way, I am very educated, over 50 and own my home. So does that make me blue collar?? But, I am also bitter as to how the economy is the worst it has ever been in my life. Senator Clinton has no idea of how I live, what my faith is and therefore does not know what my values are. Who is she to jump on this band wagon as after all, it was not a Lie.

    April 13, 2008 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  22. Yes I am Bitter

    I'm bitter that so many Americans are so insipidly "stupid". To vote for people who say they care about them and then do nothing, absolutely nothing to help Americans. Higher gas prices, losing your home, the rich getting richer, and I could go on... yeah I'm BITTER paying $300.00 + a month for gas.

    But truthfully, I laugh. And I say to those of you who want to support people who in the end will only care that their cronies get rich, go ahead and vote for them. You get poorer, you lose your home, and you continue to pay high gas prices while those "so" called caring candidates who think people aren't "bitter" will continue to do the same thing over and over again.... Maybe if the Clintons get back in the White House they can charge a double rate for the Lincoln Bedroom and hopefully help home owners, but don’t hold your breath.

    April 13, 2008 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  23. Pat

    All obama does lie's to us all and a lot of people fall for it I know I was one of them because I had voted for him, and all he does is lie and a racist, just think if it was Hillary that said that he would go after her big time please people vote Hillary or vote McCain but not the racist obama.

    April 13, 2008 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  24. Eli of Stockbridge

    110 million makes you elite... sen. clinton can ry to spin it, but she is elite, and surely part of the royal family. limos, fancy hotels, $3000 suits, etc. She never was in touch, unless you can remember the moment she ducked the cannon fire during her landing of a B-1 bomber in bosnia.

    April 13, 2008 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  25. Lisa in Iowa

    Obama's father left when he was 2. Raised by a single mother and grandparents, and used food stamps. Worked in south side of Chicago trying to help poor communities.

    Clinton used to travel to a summer cottage as a child and played pinocle. Became a lawyer and now is a multimillionaire.

    Who is the elitist in this scenario?

    Hillary is the one who is extremely condescending and patronizing to her own followers, trying to tell them they are not bitter. Guess what, Hillary – people ARE bitter, and Obama is able to see it, and feel it, and he will work to help us. All you care about is your precious 'legacy' and 'Clinton empire'. You have no idea what life is like for real people. You have lived in a bubble for the last 20 years.

    April 13, 2008 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
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