May 15th, 2008
04:20 PM ET
10 years ago

Michelle Obama takes heat from Tennessee Republicans

Tennessee Republicans took aim at Michelle Obama Thursday.

Tennessee Republicans took aim at Michelle Obama Thursday.

(CNN) – In a preview of the potential political onslaught Michelle Obama may face in the fall, the Tennessee Republican Party unveiled a new Web video Thursday that highlights her controversial comment earlier this year saying she was proud of America "for the first time in my adult life."

The four-minute video coincides with Mrs. Obama's visit to the state for a Democratic Party event later Thursday. It features several Tennesseans saying why they are proud of America while repeatedly cutting to Mrs. Obama's comments.

"The Tennessee Republican Party has always been proud of America. To further honor the occasion of Mrs. Obama’s visit, the Tennessee Republican Party has requested the playing of patriotic music by radio stations across the state," said a statement on the party's Web site that accompanied the video.

"While Mrs. Obama has trouble being proud of the country where she earned degrees from Princeton University and Harvard Law School and then became a multi-millionaire, her husband makes statements that belittle average Americans’ response to the difficulties of life."

The Obama campaign called the attack "shameful."

"This is a shameful attempt to attack a woman who has repeatedly said she wouldn't be here without the opportunities and blessings of this nation," said Obama spokesman Hari Sevugan. "The Republican Party's pathetic attempts to use the same smear tactics to win elections have failed in Mississippi, failed in Louisiana, and will fail in November because the American people are looking for a positive vision of real change.

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Filed under: Michelle Obama
soundoff (230 Responses)
  1. Sylvia

    I LOVE IT!!!!!!!
    that is why McCain will win if Obam gets the nomination

    May 15, 2008 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  2. Mike Lorain, OH (Please post CNN)

    Leave to Tenn. GOP to belittle a candidate's wife; whom herself isn't running for office. So does this mean that Cindy McCain is fair game...frankly I say no. Leave Cindy and Michelle out of this. Otherwise....CINDY SO US YOUR TAXES. CINDY, how did you like being a one time mistress to a 40 year old married man??

    Why does the GOP insist that everyone wear their patroitism on their sleave? Why can't you be proud but still critical about policies that you don't like?

    May 15, 2008 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  3. EDW

    Once again people, she said she is REALLY proud to be an American right now. As in, I'm REALLY proud to be an American when I see that we run to the aide of China after their earthquake, even with our political differences.

    May 15, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  4. KT

    Michelle's college roommate was pressured by her family to drop out of Princeton rather than live with a black roommate. Do you have any idea what that type of knowledge would do to an 18 year-old?

    Where have the Tennessee Republicans been the last 8 years? The economy is terrible, Bush started an illegal war that has killed a million people, food prices are up, medical costs are up, etc. and Michelle and the rest of America are supposed to be proud?

    Halliburton is proud. Maybe the Tennessee Republicans should ask Halliburton why it is proud of America.

    May 15, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  5. gsusgrl

    Is Michelle Obama running for office? This strikes me as a desperate attempt at winning by throwing everything, including the kitchen sink at the Democrates.

    May 15, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  6. Jessica, GA

    Republicans: what are your plans for this country?

    May 15, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  7. Michelle

    For those people in this country fortunate enough not to have to love a country DESPITE how bad it has treated you as a people...Michelle's use of the word "REALLY" will be misunderstood.

    They are walking a dangerous path attacking Obama's wife (the future 1st Lady).

    May 15, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  8. This side of the Mississippi

    First you attack Obama with Rev. Wright, now you are trying to attack him with his own wife?? how low and pathetic.

    May 15, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  9. Saul M.

    Isn't this old news and dealt with cnn?
    Why fan the flames of this nonsense.
    I used to think better of you.
    hmmm...seems you have an agenda.
    If this is what you're going to,why not be equal and print that story of McCain's wife's ties to the Sudan,you know where the genocide is going on in Darfur.I guess that's not news to you.

    May 15, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  10. Mike

    The Tennessee Republican Party goes immediately into the gutter. This is exactly why we need a new politics in this country.

    May 15, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  11. AJ, IL

    As an Obama supporter, the Republican Party is screwing up big time. They are exploding all over from Illinois, to Louisana and Mississippi and now Tennessee.

    Attacking Obama's wife in Tennessee? Instead of trying to rally Republicans to support and vote for McCain or present Americans with real solutions to the major problems we face as a country, they are attacking Obama's wife one statement showing that the politics of distraction and personal destruction will be their weapon in 2008!

    May 15, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  12. Ray Ito

    Why wouldn't Republicans like Cindy McCain be "proud" Americans all their lives? She never experienced racism, she sat on millions of dollars all her life, never been discriminated against by other Americans.
    Why wouldn't she be a "proud" American?

    After centuries of racism, this is the first time a black person is having a real shot at the White House. Michelle Obama is very right – let's not dance around what true patriotism is.

    May 15, 2008 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  13. MI 4 Obama!

    I think Michele's comment was take way out of context. Who of us has not been frustrated for many years. Crime, moral decline, cost of living, laws that make no sense....I could go on and on. There have been times that I wasn't proud to be an American. Didn't mean I prefered to live somewhere else, didn't mean that I thought we were worse than other countries,,,but lets face it folk....things in America have not been good in a long long time.

    Obama 08 to fix America and make us a proud nation once again!

    May 15, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  14. Mike in Columbus

    Take a couple words and pound them in to the ground... Thats how you win an election.

    Republicans should be proud of their leadership!

    May 15, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  15. Pam

    Come on people, quit using every little nit picking thing to try and erase the new change that is coming to America. Idiots who make themselves look like a bunch of ignorant rednecks. I am a white American and ashame of the divisive crap that some people cannot let go of! Move on oe move out. My God let the bubba mentality die, once and foir all!! The hatred some of you have is scary. WWJD?

    May 15, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  16. hard working, white middle-aged woman

    There have been times in the past that I have said that I was NOT proud of my country. When I've seen the destruction that we brought about in Irak, when I've seen how we left people sitting there in New Orleans after Katrina hit and other times as well. But still I love my country and yes there times when I'm extremly proud to be an American. It seems to me the republicans will try anything, why ? because they are afraid, they know the jig is up !.

    Go Obama !

    May 15, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  17. Ed

    well tell her to leave if she does not like it here move to Africa see how you get treated there

    May 15, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  18. JohnS

    Well GOP

    look at Mississippi
    Look at New Orleans

    have a clue?

    Fix the issues you GOP and BUSH have put us into:

    1) 9 trillion dollars
    2) Economy in recession
    3) High gas price
    4) Mortgage crisis
    5) dumb war in Iraq with over 4000 lost precious American lifes and 1 trillion $, over 30,000 injured Irq veterans

    Show you patiotism by taking care of the Veterans you have forgotten.

    Shame on you GOP, BUSH , McCain

    May 15, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  19. daniel

    From the republicain who cares, they will jump on everything except their own party desaster...Take it ..

    May 15, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  20. MD in GA

    Don't expect people who have had "Unearned Privilege" in this country all their lives to understand Mrs. Obama thoughts but I do and so do millions of others folks just like me. She might have chosen her words better but we get it.

    May 15, 2008 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  21. SlimSista



    May 15, 2008 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  22. SC

    Why is the Obama camp so quiet today

    May 15, 2008 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  23. Eric Wayne

    Wonder if the ad mentioned Cindy McCains addiction to painkillers that she continued to steal from '88-'92 from an organization that she founded?

    May 15, 2008 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  24. Kristyn

    How dare they attack her that way. If they want to attack Barack, he is a politician and he can handle it. Michelle is Barack's wife. She does campaign for him but to some degree she should be off limits to those kind of attacks. Just like Chelsea was off limits. How would those republicans like for their wives/husbands/children to come under attack? There needs to be some degree of decorum!!!!

    May 15, 2008 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  25. What ever happened to real news and investigative journalism?

    I didn't know she was running for office.

    CNN, try to find some real news.

    How about a review of the Clinton pardons of convicted drug dealers and theives on his last day of office, and Hillary's lame denial of involvement, even though her brothers brokered the deals, reaping 6 figure fees.

    May 15, 2008 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
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