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. Pepou

    Who is Ayers and WHO CARES ! Anything coming out of Fox News and Hannity, please. Can we get back to REAL issues, like the war, the economy, Stupid !

    April 17, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  2. Alex H

    Kim –

    Kim Kim Kim... seriously? 911 was in SEPTEMBER of 2001... they were pardoned in JANUARY of 2001... an EX-president can't pardon anyone. They were pardoned before 911... you knew that.

    April 17, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  3. paulie_nj

    hmmm, another hyprocritical move by Obama. He is as I write this campaigning in NC saying he will not play the same old politics game of bashing the competition but that's exactly what he did by bringing this up last night. However, just because they are married does not mean that Hillary had anything to do with or that she agrees with what her husband Bill did. Obama is saying the same old politics games will not be played when he is president but make no mistake, 1 man in the White House is not going to change how 100's of other politicians get this done. If he thinks he's gonna teach old dogs new tricks he is sorely mistaken and has his supporters believing just that. Wake up America!!! Obama = hypocrite and you will see more of this as the months go by.

    April 17, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  4. Rebecca

    Of course now everyone is saying don't blame Hillary for what Bill has done or said, but funny how when someone Obama knows does or says something, he's to blame and shame on him for not distancing himself. Well, maybe Hillary should've distanced herself from Bill back in the Monica phase.


    Obama should not have to answer for what Rev Wright has said or anyone else. He's his own person. There are plenty of white people who hang out with opening racists white people and yet they claim they're not racist. Should they too distance themselves from their friends?

    Come on people. Stop being so stupid.

    I always knew most white people were narrow-minded and stupid, now it's solidified.

    April 17, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  5. jeff b

    Hey Obamabots, facts are ugly things –

    William Ayers was a founding member of the Weather Underground – The group was a violent anti war organization who’s charter was the overthrow of the United States government. They bombed the Pentagon, the US Capitol and a number of NY City police stations.

    William Ayers own girlfriend and 2 other members of the group were killed by a bomb they were building to use against military recruiters at Fort Dix. The group also killed 2 police officers and a security guard during a botched bank robbery-the purpose of which was to gain funds to further their terrorist activities.

    William Ayers has never renounced his actions and to this day defends them and laments that the group had not done more. Look it up.

    Obama knew exactly who this man was and yet chose to nurture a personal and professional relationship with him. I’m sorry Quent my friend, but someone aspiring to the Presidency of the US does not do that.

    As for Obama comparison of his relationship to Ayers and Bill Clinton’s pardoning of two of the groups members – it is absurd to equate the two – firsat of all Bill Clinton pardoned them, not Hillary – and second – the two women pardoned served nearly 2 decades in prison, renounced their past activities and swore an allegiance to the US to gain the pardon – a far cry from what Ayers has done.

    April 17, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  6. HILL or bill?

    Make up your mind Obama.

    Who is running- Hill or Bill?

    And don't Christians forgive and pardon the repentents?
    If People change over 40 years- pardon is acceptable.

    Rev Wright did not change his doctrine of hate and violence. And as a man of God- from the pulpit no less.

    William Ayers did not change his doctrine of Anti-american violence and hatred. He made his comment after 9/11

    BIG DIFFERENCE, Obama and pro-Obama media.

    Please get the issue correct for once.

    April 17, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  7. Shiloh WA

    Wonder who Bill has connections to in all his foreign romps. Bet he's been to a few choice parties. Wonder how much the Clintons are worth when you coun't their off-shore accounts-tax free? Where are those reports from the Clinton library? Be nice to see are the other pardons. By the way, Hillary, we do choose our husbands. Bill had an inappropriate-opportunistic relationship with an INTERN (abuse of authority). He was impeached for PURGERY and OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE!

    April 17, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  8. mama4obama

    She looked as though she had a mouse up her sleeve all night...but I dont think she planned on getting bitten by it.

    Too funny

    April 17, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  9. Mack

    But why does it seems that Obama is more connected with this Weathergroud guy and other Anti-Americans like him and is trying to become President. Scary.

    April 17, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  10. Libero

    The double standard here is STUNNING: why is Hillary responsible for what her husband did?? I am so outraged by the media bias in favor of Obama that completely ignores his significant weaknesses that I will be donning my McCain button as soon as the media and Democratic party drives Clinton out...I wonder what would happen if "typical white person" was uttered by anyone else and a different color was inserted??? 24/7 coverage with an outcry to drop out, that's what...it's all forgiveness and happy happy joy joy when Savior Barack says something, but if any other candidate slips even a little, it's doomsday...GET REAL

    April 17, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  11. Bryant in Indiana

    I can truly say that the only fair question HRC got asked by George S. was: "Is Sen. Obama electable?" HRC's response was, "Yes, yes, yes!!" Despite the fact George S. and the Clintons fell out with each other long ago, I still felt it was a conflict of interest for him to be moderating this debate, as he was strictly biased, barring the one question I mentioned above, and his slip was definitely showing. There was no pretense of this debacle even being fair and balanced. Fair and balanced does not even denote Fox News, much less. ABC News. If crap were a flower, they would be a bouquet. I guess it shows if the media itself focuses on a flag pins versus people losing their jobs and homes, it clearly demonstrates that the press is elitist, out of touch, and they cling to non-issues, as they generate ratings over substantive issues. With HRC clearly and resoundingly admitting that Obama is electable, she effectively gutted her own central argument to the superdelegates. Obama held his own despite being gang-raped……

    Obama '08 "We are what we have been waiting for."

    April 17, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  12. jj

    OH, Is BILL Clinton running?? I thought all this time it was Hillary???
    If people can blame Hillary for what Bill did as president, then why can't they blame Obama for his Mentors speechs that he listen to for 20 years by choice and not because he was family.

    April 17, 2008 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  13. Campaing Fundss

    I will no longer send my monthly donation to Hillary. I don't want to throw it away. It is time for me to start supporting the respective nominee and start the process to get the White House back.

    April 17, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  14. Jane

    Gary, it's time to stick a fork in Hillary. She's done.

    April 17, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  15. Peter

    Is Barack trying to change the subject? Barack had a problem with the truth in the debate last night. The question was not about what happened when he was 8-years-old. The question was about what happened when he was a grown man running for office. By the way, the question was about him, not about his spouse, so why is he asking about Senator Clinton's spouse?

    Obama is in North Carolina right now trying to pretend that the problem was with the questions last night, not with his answers or lack of answers. The truth is that Senator Obama lacks substance and until that changes, he is never going to be presidential.

    April 17, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  16. zona

    It is Hillary Clinton who can't take the heat. Those asking the questions in last night's debate seemed to handle Clinton with kid gloves while attacking Obama on Rev Wright, "bitter", and William Ayers. It would have been much more beneficial to the public had the questions contained political issues only.

    While the questions given Obama seemed to force him to somewhat defend himself at every corner, Hillary was asked one defensive question about the Bosnia Bombing (supposed)–and she skirted around that one. There was no mention of NAFTA and how she is $800,000 richer because of Bill's speaking engagements to NAFTA, or the Paul case, or the pardon of her brother or ...should I continue?

    Obama, keep up the grace and dignity.

    April 17, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  17. pc

    Everyone knows that the Clintons play dirty politics and they have a double standard in government.

    April 17, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  18. Forgiveness is for Everyone

    "To forgive is divine" is biased in their forgiving it seems

    April 17, 2008 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  19. max, houston

    I think Obama himself pointed out that he shouldn't be held responsible for what 'someone ELSE' did. Shouldn't that logic apply to Hillary as well?

    April 17, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  20. Ben

    Bill April 17th, 2008 1:24 pm ET

    It's her husband,stupid,not Hillary…Stop blaming her husband's screw ups on her….I don't blame our present president's screw ups,which are many, on his father.
    she is running on her husbands record and she can not have it both ways. All the crap that happened in the 90's need to be aired
    Right hillary?

    Go Obama!

    April 17, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  21. P.G.

    The people president Clinton pardoned went to jail and showed remorse. Obama’s friend did not have remorse and said he wanted to do more. Obama went out of his way to form a relationship with Ayers.

    April 17, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  22. Now for Obama

    Hillary is WRONG about her baggage, there are many first time voters (18 yrs olds) that know nothing about Hillary's baggage. They were in elementary school when the Clinton's were in office, knew nothing about politics. The more they find out, the more they hate her.

    April 17, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  23. JML

    Some things just shouldn't be brought up...

    April 17, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  24. AJ, IL

    Yeah right Danny...I also caught some episodes of HANNITY AND COLMES in which Hannity made this connection saying that Obama and Ayers gave speeches together and their kids played together.

    First, proof of Obama and Ayers giving speeches together is based on an pamphlet listing the speakers at some event. Very flimsy!

    Second, Obama's kids are 6 and 9 (girls). Ayers is the same age as Hillary and so his kids are 27 and 30 (boys). What exactly does play together mean? Seems stupid to me.

    April 17, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  25. Shizzle

    It's her husband that pardon them not Hillary. Obama will do anything to distract attention from him. He actually was a board and friend with William Ayers. That's a big differenc between pardon and having a personal relationship with someone. Obama supporters are still drinking the dirty koolaid and next to snap out of it. Obama even flat out lied that he his writing wasn't on the gun control paper. Charles gibson had the proof right there. He even try disown his pastor last night to give the round around until George said "disown" and then he said I disown the comment. not the pastor. He keep saying Hillary is old politican and he's the new one. He's the same one and is a lot more dirty and it's so sad that the media has been giving him a free ride til last night.

    April 17, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
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