April 17th, 2008
02:29 PM ET
7 years ago

Clinton campaign gets Weather Underground questions

Hillary Clinton speaks during Wednesday's ABC debate.

Hillary Clinton speaks during Wednesday's ABC debate.

(CNN) - The morning after Hillary Clinton attacked Barack Obama over his relationship with William Ayers, founder of Weather Underground, her campaign advisers struggled with questions over her view of pardons for members of that group issued by her husband, former President Bill Clinton.

On a conference call with reporters, spokesman Howard Wolfson said he did not know where the New York senator stood on the pardons, but that he would check.

The Obama campaign has responded to Clinton’s questions to the Illinois senator at Wednesday night’s ABC debate with press releases pointing to the former president’s pardons of Weather Underground members Susan Rosenberg and Linda Evans.

The group, which formed in the 1960s, sought the overthrow of the U.S. government, and carried out violent attacks including bombings.

soundoff (360 Responses)
  1. Walker

    William Ayers made comments that appeared in the paper ON 9/11, NOT AFTER. His comments were related to a pending publication of his and UNRELATED TO 9/11. Please check you facts.

    April 17, 2008 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  2. Obama schooling

    Obama supporters:

    One's past misdeeds are not equal to one's current actions, today.

    Obama used drugs in his past. Did he change or is he still doing that now?

    Those men were pardoned. They no longer cling to their despicable positions of 40 years ago.
    Obama's white grandmother was a 40 years ago rural white woman who changed her bigotry and bias.

    William Ayers was recent- after 9/11. Still hating.
    Rev Wright was recent and continuous for 40 years. Still hating.

    A lot of progress has been made in 40 years. Some have changed with the social and spiritual evolution of man.

    Obama's world had stayed with the old attitudes of hate, violence and division.

    Others have embraced change and become better people over 40 years.

    April 17, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  3. Caimon

    Yes, you can make the distinction. The position of President is not a joint position. It was bill's pardon, not Clinton's. Obama never addresses anything that comes out of his closet without blaming Clinton. The Republicans must like this. If Obama is the nominee, he can't withstand the Republicans' attacks.

    Obama, please release your tax records when you were a Senator in Illinois. I know you will say that because I (a factory worker) didn't release mine to the public, you can't release yours. Give me a break! Just answer the question.

    April 17, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  4. Pam

    PA voters, please end this now by voting overwhelmingly for aObama!!

    A vote for Hillary just drags out the enevitable, I don't mean that as nasty at all!!

    The Media is the only one to gain by dragging this out.

    April 17, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  5. Sue

    It is about time the media takes her to task.
    shecontinually takes credit for the Clinton Administration, why should she not take the heat. She should also be made to answer NAFTA, Penn, total tax transparency, Bosnia, Insurance, her board postion on Walmart, the 800k that went to their personal account from Columbia trade agreement that Bill supports, and to many things to mention that the media has let her skate on. She needs to be vetted!!!

    April 17, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  6. tracy

    Ya, she brought it up and bounced back right to her nose!

    Go Obama, we have your back!

    April 17, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  7. The Truth Will Set You Free

    From Dreams Of My Father;

    “To avoid being mistaken for a sellout, I chose my friends carefully. The more politically active black students. The foreign students. The Chicanos. The Marxist professors and structural feminists.”

    April 17, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  8. Tanya K

    Democrats, Lets all calm down and work together!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    This Country, Our Country Cannot take anymore Bush Politics!!!!!!!!!

    April 17, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  9. MD

    Ironic that the democrats don't have a solid candidate that can withstand questions of judgement and ethics.

    April 17, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  10. Farrell, Houston, Tx


    April 17, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  11. carlo

    You know what Ramon? I have always been amazed at how Bill Clinton, Dick Cheney, and GW Bush basically dodged the draft, but people actually see them as patriotic. People in America really are stupid, aren't they? And let's not even talk about how Rev. Wright hates America when he waived his deferment while in college and volunteered for Vietnam. Yeah, that really sounds like a flag burner.

    April 17, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  12. The Truth Will Set You Free

    From Dreams Of My Father;

    “THAT HATE HADN’T GONE AWAY,” he wrote, BLAMING WHITE PEOPLE,- SOME CRUEL, SOME IGNORANT, sometimes a single face, sometimes just a faceless image of a system claiming power over our lives.”

    April 17, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  13. Jan

    Ayers is still alive and kicking, and again Obama has ties with another
    anti American.

    Who cares what Bill Clinton did 10 years, that was then and Hillary
    is NOW.

    Hillary 08

    No flag pin for Obama
    No respect for the national anthum
    Anti American mentor Rev. Wright



    April 17, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  14. Republican

    Who cares about last night debate? It was all hit job to Obama. I hope he doesn't accept another debate!

    April 17, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  15. Jamaal Kansas

    That is exactly what she gets her statement turned back on her that is Karma I love Keep it up Hilary you are Drowning yourself not even touching the skin of Barack Obama. Thank you Senator Obama for Being Kind this Evil hag

    April 17, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  16. Kumar

    I am getting sick of these debates. What is the purpose.? They are not even entertaining. I wished ABC has concentrated on issues and plans rather then small stuff that will not solve any problem. Both candidates are smart and have good of the country in their heart. Both will make excellent president compare what we got or what Republicans are putting forward. I blame DNC for this 6 weeks break where idle time is filled by these useless stuff. Media has to fill air time to sell time. There is nothing to report. Lets voters make up their own mind without such media help. Media is a big business and does not have the national objective except for maximizing profit.
    Lets primary go and then superdelegates quicly vote and lets winner of delegates win. Get on with business of preventing third term for Bush.

    April 17, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  17. lol

    as an american obama owes the voting public answers to his many questionable "friendships". hillary wasn't attacking him, this is a fair question that should be explored more by the main stream media. obama's annoyance when he is asked questions he doesn't want to answer is an example of his arrogance. he'll never be able to handle the republicans and swift boaters if he get's the nomination, which I doubt after his poor debate performance.

    April 17, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  18. L.Bowie

    Why is America punishing Obama for Rev. Wright's comments and actions. Why is America punishing Hillary for Bill's actions. If you personal think about how ignorant it would be for someone to judge you on who all you have ever been in the company of, you would reframe from this nonsense and stick to the matter at hand. People, we need to focus on what is important. Those important issues are the economy, healthcare, the war, global warming, immigration, and foreign policy. I am sick of the mud slinging, racial overtones, and immature antics that have been going on between the campaigns and their supporters. In the words of Hillary, "I love my country, but am looking for my government to stand up for the people". In the words of Obama" I am bitter, but clinging to my religion to help relieve some of the dispair I feel. Finally, in contrary to Michelle Obama, " I am not proud of my Country". At least not at this moment. The United States has lost its gleam the shined all over the world not too long ago. This administration has to go. The candidates need to focus on their differences from the republican party and focus on those strengths.

    April 17, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  19. s.b.

    President Clinton didn't pardon Ayers, who was the group's leader. Ayers is a friend of Obama's, not the others.

    April 17, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  20. Diane

    Did Bill really pardon those terrorists?

    Wow i did not know that...Hmmm..

    April 17, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  21. The Truth Will Set You Free

    From Dreams Of My Father;

    “The emotion between the races could never be pure….. THE OTHER RACE (WHITE) WOULD ALWAYS REMAIN JUST THAT: MENACING, ALIEN AND APART”

    April 17, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  22. shirley

    If you saw the debate, you know Hillary was debating personal issues and Senator Obama was trying to stay on tract with real issues facing Americans today. Hillary brought this issue up, this was the first time Obama had mentioned any of Hillarys nasty background and he had no choice this time. I wish Senator Obama had asked Hillary how her husband could be lobbying for the Columbian Trade Deal and deposted his pay of $800,000 into their bank account with out her knowledge; and how could her campaign manager take time off to go to Columbia without her knowledge. NAFTA has had a huge negative backlash for American workers and it is an issue if Hillary is still supporting these kinds of trade deals. I believe she does and is still supporting not only NAFTA but more sweeping trade deals. The Clinton's have made a lot of money for pushing Trade Agreements through Congress.

    April 17, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  23. Ray Ito

    Hillary Clinton is a SERIAL LIAR just as her husband is a SERIAL CHEATER.
    They cannot be trusted – they'll always violate the White House – it's in their DNA.

    April 17, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  24. Jane

    Hillary's response: "I may be a lot of things, but I'm not stupid." She certainly confirmed to the American voting public that she is two-faced liar and an unscrupulous narcissistic opportunist. She's lost the nomination and will whine up until the day Obama wins the nomination. No more Hillary! Anyone but Hillary!


    April 17, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  25. Madeline

    Shame on ABC for pandering to exploitive and divisive politics!

    So I have a question: Hillary's campaign seems to be based on one principle – that is that Obama is unelectable because he's not as tough as she is; she can get nasty with the Republicans and she's clearly the ONLY one that can get nasty enough to beat the Republicans.......... how does she reconcile that

    with the fact that Obama is beating her????? Despite her nastiness?

    Could it be that she is being condescending to the voters? Does she really believe she can "make it so" simply by saying it outloud – a little liike the Bosnia story?

    Or could it be that there really is a larger segment of that voting block that finally found a voice in Obama? One that doesn't want divisivness; that wants to be spoken to as adults and partners in our democracy; one that doesn't want to apoligize for being hopeful AND idealistic???

    April 17, 2008 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
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