April 23rd, 2008
10:26 AM ET
12 years ago

NY Times slams Clinton's 'negativity'

 Clinton celebrates her Pennsylvania victory with Gov. Ed Rendell.

Clinton celebrates her Pennsylvania victory with Gov. Ed Rendell.

(CNN) - Fresh off her victory in Pennsylvania, Hillary Clinton is facing a stinging rebuke of her campaign tactics from her hometown paper, The New York Times.

In the paper's Wednesday edition, the editorial board which endorsed Clinton's White House bid earlier this year says the New York senator's "negativity" is doing "harm to her, her opponent, her party and the 2008 election."

"The Pennsylvania campaign, which produced yet another inconclusive result on Tuesday, was even meaner, more vacuous, more desperate, and more filled with pandering than the mean, vacuous, desperate, pander-filled contests that preceded it," the board writes.

The paper finds fault in Clinton's latest campaign ad, which includes an image of Osama bin Laden, and asks, "Who do you think has what it takes?"

"Mrs Clinton became the first Democratic candidate to wave the bloody shirt of 9/11," they write, adding that it is a tactic that is "torn right from Karl Rove’s playbook."

"Mrs. Clinton does more than just turn off voters who don’t like negative campaigning," the editorial also states. "She undercuts the rationale for her candidacy that led this page and others to support her: that she is more qualified, right now, to be president than Mr. Obama."

The paper also says Barack Obama deserves some of the blame for the negative tone. "He is increasingly rising to Mrs. Clinton’s bait, undercutting his own claims that he is offering a higher more inclusive form of politics."

But the editorial makes clear the paper thinks most of the blames lies with Clinton. "If she is ever to have a hope of persuading [superdelegates] to come back to her side, let alone win over the larger body of voters, she has to call off the dogs."

soundoff (917 Responses)
  1. Foo Tam

    Why you media gives her such a hard times? After all She and Obama are just playing their role. You think Obama is a saint? You are wrong he just a devil in disguise! You said negatively about her perseverance. You too have a mother, in hard time, I think it is your mother who can do better to carry through and hold the family together. When you attack her, you are attacking all the women including your own mother.

    April 23, 2008 08:00 am at 8:00 am |
  2. Bridgitt

    Sen. Clinton made a comment about her husband being in 3rd place behind George Bush and Ross Perot in 1992 but he kept going, well that situation was different since he was the only democrat in the race and he wasn't dividing the party. I think Sen. Clinton's pride is getting the best of her, and she is thinking more about herself than the democratic party or this country.

    April 23, 2008 08:00 am at 8:00 am |
  3. Helene

    Hillary C. is a monster, that's all. Someone who is ready to do anything, including "obliterating" Iran, using dirty old tricks and plain lies to grab power. She makes me deeply ashamed of being a woman.

    April 23, 2008 08:00 am at 8:00 am |
  4. Floridian

    It's all true. Hilary is doing everything she can to make Obama so unappealing that nobody will vote for him. That is the only way she can convince super delegates that she should be the nominee because she can't win by delegates, which is how everyone else has to win

    April 23, 2008 08:00 am at 8:00 am |
  5. carolflowery

    congratulations, Mrs. Clinton, outstanding victory

    April 23, 2008 08:01 am at 8:01 am |
  6. Steven McCain

    The Times should be run out of town. They endorsed her now they wait till after the election to print this articule. Let Rupert Murdock by them now. they sickening

    April 23, 2008 08:01 am at 8:01 am |
  7. Dana Lowe

    It's ironic that many white voters are rewarding Clinton with a victory based on her "by any means necessary to win" campaign: the strategy vocalized by Malcom X. The NY Times got it right. I only wish voters could follow suit. Until they do, the Clintons and other politicians will continue to use negative attacks in political campaigns because voters reward such tactics with victory. I expect the Clintons to continue to take the "low road". My true disappointment is with those voters who continue to reward Clinton with victory when she takes the negative path.

    April 23, 2008 08:01 am at 8:01 am |
  8. Mr MVP

    It's pretty sad when I read so may people againt Senator Obama. He wasn't suppose to win Pa (my home statet) but the last time I checked he was still in the lead. Don't worry all of you Hillary fan's she will read to you her "We Democrats need to all come together now and support Senator Obama speach" really really soon!

    April 23, 2008 08:01 am at 8:01 am |
  9. marie

    Pennsylvania, What happened with you? We thought the negativity was bad from the Clintons before. Now, the silly season will take a turn for the stupidly ridiculous. KNOW when you're being duped, people!

    April 23, 2008 08:02 am at 8:02 am |
  10. Karl

    Why is it that everyone says it is hurting the Democrats to let the process run through? Why do we have all these primaries into June if everyone is trying to get Hillary Clinton out of the race? I do not see where this is hurting the Democrats-I think it is just Obama propaganda to try and seal the deal through the media not by letting the voting process play out. LET THE PEOPLE HAVE THEIR SAY all across the US especially in MI and FL!

    Hillary08

    April 23, 2008 08:02 am at 8:02 am |
  11. Chris Chance

    she barely won by 10% ... thats not good for a woman that was up in some polls 30-40% at the start... that means 20-30% of people in the state all swung to obamas side in the last few weeks.

    She gained a few delegates and still is a major looser in the overall popular vote... ya its a win but give me a break

    shes won what 16-17 states to obama's 30!

    April 23, 2008 08:02 am at 8:02 am |
  12. Rick

    What a piece of trash story...some of you people believe everything you read...why?

    April 23, 2008 08:03 am at 8:03 am |
  13. Mary K

    Thank you New York Times. The Clinton style is completely self-centered. It is all about her and her turn. She does not appear sincere about anything. I just don't fell I can believe anything she says.

    April 23, 2008 08:09 am at 8:09 am |
  14. Indiana for Obama

    Clinton the world yesterday she "would win at any cost".......she is divisive, a liar and if Obama was deceitful like her and Bill, he would have LOTS of dirt to dish on the these infamous imposter's!

    April 23, 2008 08:09 am at 8:09 am |
  15. Kris

    Hillary throws out the big state argument, but what I notice is that in every big state she starts out with 20+ margins and blows it as people get to know her and Obama...what's up with that? Obama may have trouble closing but she has to fight like a barracuda to stay viable when people get to know her.

    April 23, 2008 08:10 am at 8:10 am |
  16. Robert Wiseman

    That's right...it is the woman's fault.

    April 23, 2008 08:10 am at 8:10 am |
  17. Dee from Charlotte, NC

    Again, the questions still remains that if Obama was that great, why has he yet to reached the magic number of 2025 and won a major primary? He certainly has the cash.

    April 23, 2008 08:10 am at 8:10 am |
  18. Mary

    As a staunch Republican and enthusiastic McCain supporter, all this negative stuff by the Democrats is music to my ears. There is also a part of me that, although I loathe what she stands for, hopes that our first serious woman candidate won't let her party chase her away. You go girl! Hillary, you have every right to be there. They're just scared you'll win.

    April 23, 2008 08:12 am at 8:12 am |
  19. Indiana for Obama

    and.......for those bloggers who said as women we should be proud of her! NOT this woman and many millions more! HRC is a disgrace to professional woman in government.....she is just another back room sell out!

    April 23, 2008 08:12 am at 8:12 am |
  20. Gail

    Give it up Obama followers. He slams Hillary just as much as she does him, except he comes up smelling like roses. Pretty scary that he is untouchable as far as criticism goes, but the people are finally seeing it.

    April 23, 2008 08:13 am at 8:13 am |
  21. Laura Smith

    NYT – You're wrong. Obama is arrogant and has no real plan for all those herds that are following him and his "message". Promises don't turn the country around. Action does and Pennsylvania proves it. Clinton vs. McCain. Get with the program. Obama can go back to Senate 101 and get some education.
    HillarYES NObama.

    April 23, 2008 08:13 am at 8:13 am |
  22. Kate

    I have to agree with the New York Times. I can't believe there are still Americans out there falling for this played out fear tactic. PA wake up!! You voted for a woman who voted FOR this war. She did not do any research of her own and went with the popular vote. She is in part to blame why Bin Ladan is still out there. If this woman becomes president, it will be Bush part 2 in a dress. We need change in America. Doesn't the thought of two families having control of this country for over 20 years frighten anyone else? Hillary does not represent change. Obama does. We need to show the rest of the world that we are progressing and picking leaders who work in the best interest of their country and not in the interest of lobbyists and corporations. OBAMA!!!

    April 23, 2008 08:14 am at 8:14 am |
  23. LifeLongDemocrat

    I am tired of this race. Clinton is lame. Women power.

    No logics just Women power.

    Go ahead destroy the party.

    April 23, 2008 08:14 am at 8:14 am |
  24. Allan Larmont

    To threaten Iran with nuclear weapons does not only generate fear in the minds of liberal Americans, those of us in Europe tremble at the very idea. We are conscious of the fact that Iran is much closer to the United Kingdom than it is to the United States. Senator Clinton should show some restraint.

    Allan UK.

    April 23, 2008 08:14 am at 8:14 am |
  25. John

    Obama's supporters get over it!

    Your candidate sucks! is incompetent! is delusional!

    He outspent Clinton and still trailing 10%.

    How can he win November election?!?!

    April 23, 2008 08:14 am at 8:14 am |
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