April 16th, 2008
10:00 PM ET
10 years ago

Clinton, Obama face off in Pennsylvania

(CNN) - Neither Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama would commit Wednesday when asked in a debate if they would take the other as their running mate should they win the nomination.

Both candidates responded to the first question of the debate with smiles, prompting laughter from the audience. After a moment, Obama said he was happy to respond.

"I think it's premature at this point for us to talk about who vice presidential candidates will be, because we're still trying to determine who the nominee will be." he said.

Clinton echoed those comments. "I'm going to do everything I possibly can to make sure that one of us takes the oath of office next January," she said. "I think that has to be the overriding goal, whatever we have to do."

Each candidate said they thought the other was capable of winning the presidency.

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soundoff (481 Responses)
  1. kw50

    Venus April 16th, 2008 10:53 pm ET
    It's funny that when Hillary was asked about the sniper lies – Obama tried to help by saying let's not get sucked on that issues. And – then Hillary just had to go into her attack mode on him!
    I saw that also and it's because she was just told that "National" polls show that the american people see her as untrustworthy by a margin of 3-1. She should be very, very worried by this point, so she went on the attack. Sen. Obama is a gentleman, to much so, I'[m a female and I would have put her back in her place a long time ago.
    She put her foot in her mouth again tonight. She boxed herself into a corner by saying Sen. Obama is electable. She said, Yes, yes, Yes; he is electable. So, now she can't make that point to the super-delegates. This woman is scary, on one hand she says her faith get her though the day, then she turns around and does the underhanded things. This is why she is behind. God, does not like ugly. Maybe, if she had been in church for 20 years, this would somk in. The Lord sees everything you do.

    April 16, 2008 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  2. Bob

    Tough article on O'Bama taking large funds from lobbyist in USA Today papers. We will probably hear on fox and CBS tommorrow.
    Does anyone tell the truth anymore. Did he think they wouldn't find out.

    April 16, 2008 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  3. Nnanna

    Obama looked so calm and just let everything roll of his shoulder...Hillary keeps saying the republicans this the republicans that...well stop giving the republican ammo dummy....Nuclear Hillary!!! strikes again..

    April 16, 2008 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  4. done with hillary

    Hillary desperation played out tonight. She kept jabbing, but Obama does such an amazing job of deflecting her silly little jabs. Neither candidate had anything close to a knockout blow – I don't see this debate changing much in PA.

    April 16, 2008 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  5. sandy

    Obama has been the consumate gentlemen with her but she is like an attack dog who has been put on automatic pilot. She can't stop. Hopefully when this is all over, she can go home (to New York) and attack Bil over and over and over.

    April 16, 2008 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  6. Lisa in Iowa

    This was the worst debate I have ever witnessed. ABC should be ashamed. George S. and Charlie G. acted like reporters from the National Enquirer. I think Senator Obama was, as always, above the fray, and gracious in his answers.

    April 16, 2008 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm |
  7. Joyce

    I am sick of the flag lapel pin questions. Why do you have to wear one to be patriotic? The flag pin issue has to be the most ignorant of all. We call ourselves Christians right, so if we don't carry a bible are we not Christian? I watch C-Span everyday and do not see flag lapel pins, even on Bush, but Obama is the only one that has to wear one. Tonight Hillary didn't have one on, and I have never seen her wear one. So what makes her so patriotic. It should be in your heart not on your clothes.

    April 16, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  8. H.M.

    And why can't she say the same malarkey in a debate as she says to the super-delegates she's trying to convince? Many have come straight out and said that she's telling them that Obama CAN"T WIN. In the debate when asked straight out it was, "Yes, yes, yes! Gutless if you ask me. What's more, the general democratic public agrees. In the latest polls she scored only 38% on the subject of trustworthiness. And he's beating her on electability too by about 31 percentage points. In November she was ahead of him by, I think 28. That's a 59 point shift!!!

    April 16, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  9. W.H. Thomas

    Wow !! Yall have to go to the ABC News website. Over 6,000 post debate comments and 90% are negative towards ABC News moderators. Reason why I love CNN so much. At least they care about the real issues.

    April 16, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  10. Interesting

    Ok no matter who you're supporting I must say that this debate was extremely biased. People are losing their jobs due to unfair trade agreements and not one question was asked about trade! The first 60 something minutes was an interrogation on Obama like it was Sean Hannity moderating the debate. It was the worst debate that I have ever seen. Also Stephanopolus shouldn't have moderated this debate because of his close ties to the Clinton Administration. It was absolutely ridiculous. Now we're learning that Stephanopolus was on Sean Hannity's radio show the day before and that's where he got his questions from, unbelievable.

    April 16, 2008 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm |
  11. seanwhit

    Please Cafferty expose ABC for the lynching just watched

    April 16, 2008 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm |
  12. Grif

    There you go again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Negative!

    April 16, 2008 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  13. michael

    Wow hillary, You are still trying your negative tactics? Obama busted you with your husbands pardon of the two underground terrorists. You tried to throw Obama under the bus and in the process got run over yourself.

    April 17, 2008 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  14. Martin

    Venus, you're so right! He basically saved her at that moment. She was already sounding VERY bad when she was answering the question about Bosnia, and he could have made it much worse for her. She is lucky to be still on the campaign trail.

    April 17, 2008 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  15. Michael NC

    ABC tonight had the best I have seen of the 21 debates. George Stephanopoulos did a great job! Asking hard questions and then going back when the candidate tried to play political spin.

    @Burt... Maybe you have forgot, but this is a democratic contest. What is Hillary Clinton suppose to do, set on her hands, while Senator Obama attacks her?! Or better yet, give in and let him win? If he cannot handle what little Clinton is tossing at him, Obama will never hold up to a republican. He looked weak tonight int eh debate. To be honest, I was going to vote for Obama. After seeing Clinton tonight at the debate, re-visiting thier websites. I going to vote for Clinton in May here in NC.

    April 17, 2008 12:02 am at 12:02 am |
  16. Shirley, Silicon Valley, CA

    Hilliary is a knife fighter with trashy mouth. She is so disgraceful comparing to Obama. She would be a big joke comparing to McCain!

    April 17, 2008 12:02 am at 12:02 am |
  17. Jared Thomas

    The thing which strikes me most about the Clinton campaign is how cynically tactical it is. As my friend said as we were watching the debate, she's playing the same old game while Obama is playing a whole new sport. She referred to herself as "a fighter" tonight. We need to look carefully at what she means by that. Of course, the good side of it is a relentless pursuit of noble goals. But the reality is a willingness to go to any lengths neccesary to achieve short term objectives. The Clintons have always played dirty. What's more, if you look at her campaign, its being run in the same way Bill's White House was. Cliques and feuding factions jockeying for power and prestige without much of a sense of vision or greater purpose. If Hillary gets to the White House, it will be 4 to 8 more years of Red state/Blue state. The Clintons and their operatives have always practicied the politics of division and the governing style of controlled chaos, which was perhaps appropriate for the 1990's. But we cannot afford that here in the 21st century.

    April 17, 2008 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  18. Bruce From NC

    OBAMA 08

    April 17, 2008 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  19. Darth

    When will this Lady act like a Lady? What kind of role model is this for every young Lady or little girl? A Lady should have Tacit, Charm, Humillity, and Honesty which she has none of! I am all for a Lady President but not this one and never will. You know I thing she has more Testterone then her husband! You know acting tough does not make you tough just look at Goerge W Bush we all know he is a Coward!!! Real strength comes form with in.

    OBAMA 08
    DEM 08

    April 17, 2008 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  20. truth now

    Sen obama was trying to tell the truth on social security. He said he would raise the cap on the amount of salary to be taxed. Now people don't want to hear the truth, so Sen Clinton stated she would appoint a commission to look at the problem which means in the end after more money is spent they will either raise the cap, lower benefits or raise the age at which you can apply for benefits. Wake up people, we need to share responsibility or lose the program which is what the Republicans want.

    April 17, 2008 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  21. ABC bias

    One of the worst debates ever, never really talked about nothing, only about who said what and who knows who. Also why is Geroge Stephanopulous (WHO WAS ON FORMER PERSIDENTS CLINTON PAYROLL) grilling Obama about a 60's radical group and a man Obama hardly new and a bombing that happened (WHEN OBAMA WAS ONLY EIGHT YEARS OLD). which FOX NEWS likes to bring up!!! Start talking about the issues and how each candidate can tackle gas prices, the economy, crumbling roads, the endless war in Iraq, etc, SHAME ON ABC!!!! OBAMA 08

    April 17, 2008 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  22. vic

    This goes to show you what I know. Here we have George Stephanopolis – Bill Clinton's former Chief of Staff – straffing Obama for nearly an hour on gratuitous "flag pin" questions and the media is leading line is the Obama was on the defensive.

    Actually I saw it quite differently. I believe Obama showed remarkable composure and level headed responses to what was clearly a correographed onslaught attack. Senator Clinton in the meantime was all but given a skate.

    Then too, Clintons eyes were relentlessly shifting and looking disingenuinely downward as she tried to gang up with Stephanopolis. In my mind this helped solidify my impression that Clinton is a "shifty", "untrustworthy" person – as 60% of Americans agree.

    While Clinton criticized Obama on the Rev. Wright – Obama reminded her that her own Pastor had come out in Wright's defense! Did the media miss this?

    When Clinton joined in withh Stephanopolis on this left field "Weatherman" issue – he Obama pointed out the hubby Bill pardoned two Weathermen during his administration!

    Clinton extended a new doctirne of American policy, claiming that she would put a protective shield over all the middle East against Iran – a dangerouse precident!

    So who won the debate? How would I know – after all the media seems to have all the answers – apriori – these days. No need to report the news when you can be out there "making it".

    April 17, 2008 12:04 am at 12:04 am |
  23. Terry

    That was the worst display of jounalism I have ever seen. ABC should be ashamed of themselves, it was an absolute disgrace. WORST DEBATE EVER!!!!

    April 17, 2008 12:04 am at 12:04 am |
  24. Ugo

    I guess it should be pretty obvious by now that Obama is never going to have Sen sniper fire as his running mate. she's done anyways, so asking if Obama can be her vice is no longer an issue to consider. she can stay in this race however long she wants, probably until another sniper fire comes to eliminate her. u sooooo done Mrs pant suit.

    April 17, 2008 12:04 am at 12:04 am |
  25. yvonne frank

    too bad all bo could do was whine tonight.what a joke. he looked like what he is one big empty suite and let the media spin how unfair abc was to him

    April 17, 2008 12:04 am at 12:04 am |
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