June 16th, 2008
10:49 AM ET
10 years ago

GOP attacks Obama over Michigan primary

Obama campaigns in Flint, Michigan on Monday.

Obama campaigns in Flint, Michigan on Monday.

(CNN) - As Barack Obama took to the trail in Michigan on Monday, the state's Republican party released a web ad needling him over his decision not to campaign in Michigan during the Democratic primary season - a line of attack Hillary Clinton warned of throughout her own presidential bid.

"Why did you boycott Michigan for so long?," the web ad asks. "You stiffed our voters."

The nearly two-minute long video proceeds to highlight Obama's "bitter" comments from a San Francisco fundraiser earlier this year.

"You insulted our way of life," the ad says, displaying assorted images of hunters and churchgoers.

A blog post on the Michigan GOP's Web site said the ad was created "to remind Michigan voters that when they wanted to hear from Barack Obama, he took every opportunity to thumb his nose at them."

In her push to have the disputed Michigan and Florida delegations seated in full, Clinton regularly argued that in a general election, Republicans would hammer Obama for his reluctance to do the same.

"If the Democrats send a message that we don't care about your votes, I'm sure John McCain and the Republicans would be happy to have them," Clinton said at a campaign stop in Detroit in March. "In fact, the Republicans will argue that Michigan and Florida voters shouldn't trust the Democrats to look out for them when we wont even listen to you."

Obama removed his name from the primary ballot in Michigan last year, a decision that led to a long-running debate with Hillary Clinton's campaign over the how to fairly count the votes from that state's unsanctioned Democratic contest.

Clinton won the uncontested Michigan vote in January with 55 percent of the vote, beating out "Uncommitted," which netted 40 percent. Earlier this month, the Democratic National Committee voted to seat the full Michigan delegation with half a vote each, allocating 69 delegate votes to Clinton and 59 to Obama.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Michigan
soundoff (415 Responses)
  1. Radiance

    Fool me once- shame on you. Fool me twice- shame on me.

    The Republicans think your a bunch of fools Michigan- you gonna prove them right?

    June 16, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  2. Von Bismark Vienna


    June 16, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  3. No McBush

    Vote McBush if you want to make the wealthy rich,rich,rich$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$.

    If you work hard!
    have small kids!
    Kids in or going on to Higher Education!
    Are for Woman rights!
    Are for equal rights!
    Vote Obama

    June 16, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  4. White Independent

    This is such bs. He didn't campaign there because he was told not to by the DNC. He would have gone there if their primary had been held when it was supposed to. They had a gentlemens agreement to remove their name from the ballot, unfortunately they forgot the former white house interior decorator wasn't a gentleman. Usual devisive politics of the past; you cant' beat him with actual facts or better policies so you just call names and try to cause fear and see what sticks. It didn't work in the primaries and it won't work in the general.

    June 16, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  5. donna

    That's just like the RNC to try to bring up OLD wounds and feed off people's fear and ignorance..they have to BEG FOR VOTES because they have VERY LITTLE CONFIDENCE In their own nominee...they don't want to talk about what THEY CAN do for people but instead focus on what they think Obama can NOT do...sad..but desperation brings out these sorts of things..and folks buy it!!!

    Obama took his name off the ballot AFTER the REPUBLICAN governor allowed the MICHIGAN DNC to BREAK THE RULES..why should he spend the money/time to campaign somewhere where the vote wasn't suppose to count?

    For all the Hillary supporters (to which I was one before she started playing dirty), she is OUT OF THE RACE..move on..if voting for McCain makes you feel better then by all means go for it but do not think for a minute that HE is better suited to run the country..he stands for EVERYTHING THAT HILLARY does not...so voting for him is a stab in her back..

    June 16, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  6. Jason

    Only if McCain veto every single beer, will I vote for him...

    June 16, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  7. Semps, Chicago

    There is no doubt Obama will win Michigan because MCcain does not have an appealing ecomonic policy for the people of Michigan.

    June 16, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  8. Reason

    Obamabots, for the love of God, stop blaming Hillary for your problems!


    June 16, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  9. Poison love

    Notice how Obama's response to everything questionable that he does is..."there was nothing illegal".

    Maybe not illegal but plenty unethical- from eliminating all competition in Illinois, to destroying Hillary Clinton by playing the race card early on, to hiring lawyers to block the revote in Fl and Mi. That is not NEW politics of hope and change. That is politics at its dirtiest.

    Now he will re-spin the scenario and call for unity and explain all his nasty, corrupt tactics away with a fancy lofty speech.

    People wake up. This man is poison.

    June 16, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  10. Ian

    So what, he stuck by his word. Good for him, actually.

    June 16, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  11. JJ

    OK, Am I wrong in saying this ad is a farce? Obama didn't campaign in MI because he was following the rules of the party right? The RNC needs to get their facts straight. Stick to the issues!

    June 16, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  12. loves it

    GOP can't fool us this time. Obama will win with or without Michigan.
    PUMA = poor uneducated miserable adults.....Don't think I'll join up.

    forever for hillary – Its a free country...you should vote for whoever you want. Why act like its a big deal? NEWS FLASH...I get to vote for whoever I want to also. Nobody cares if you are a republican....

    June 16, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  13. artDEsign

    We are in this mess because FLORIDA & MICHIGAN BROKE THE RULES! If people are looking to be angry at someone, how about the leaders of FLORIDA & MICHIGAN?? Besides, Hillary got the full vote in Florida, and was still ahead in Michigan after the decision. I'm thinking sour grapes for all the angry Hillary votes planning to vote GOP for spite and shame on the GOP operatives taking advantage of this rift blogging as 'disaffected Democrats'. BOTH groups are behaving very un-American.

    June 16, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |

    To Forever for Hillary:

    Do yourself a favor and cash in whatever pension/401 k/ or money in your grandchild's piggy bank and stuff it under your mattress. Cause if McCrap gets his clutches on the white house, that is all the money you will see until he leaves office.

    Vote Obama or not at all!

    June 16, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  15. Ephra

    I AM A DEMOCRAT. and to all of those who keep thinking your right to vote was infringed upon during the dem. primaries. try reviewing the party's rules, don't blame Obama and/or his followers; don't you think is time to put a bit of blame on Hillary and her campaign machine? take responsibility your mistakes!! .
    AND TO ALL THE REPUBLICANS OUT THERE, it's time to evolve.
    The the nineteenth century happened a looooooooong time ago.
    let the presidential candidates have a civilized competition.
    let the best man win. NO TRICKS.

    June 16, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  16. Freddie, La

    RNC did the same stripping MI of half their votes and gas is still over $4 a gal, and the economy still sucks. Thanks to Bush and McCain is the same...

    June 16, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  17. Mike in miami FL

    I still have a hard time understanding how uneducated we are in this country. I live in Florida and the replublican controlled senat in the state of florida is to blame. they are one who moved up the primary date not the DNC. I beleive it is time we make elected official accountable for their actions specially those republicans whose don't beleive in the laws and will do whatever necessary for not counting the votes. It is 2000 all over with those republicans. The republicans have no moral value most still beleive the economy is doing fine. God helps us all !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    June 16, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  18. same old thing from Obama

    Obama is just an expert liar...
    He can do a complete turn about and just explain it away with some prepared speech.

    This man is not presidential.

    June 16, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  19. M.S. Indiana

    And when did Obama make the rules ?? think some one else did...
    And did the Gop itself not strip MI from half the delegates them self ???

    So what real issue is this ?? like 100 more years in Iraq ?? gi bill to support our veterans and future veterans ?? what about the economy ?? people loosing their jobs and houses ??

    June 16, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  20. Jerry

    I am tire of Republican blaming th demoncratic party because of the votes didnt count it was the Republican party who changes the election day so blame the republican party. I want to know why did the Flrida and michigan let republican party determine when they going to hold the election

    June 16, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  21. shelly

    Such Hipocracy, the repbus stripped half there delegates from the state as well

    June 16, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  22. Mark Anthony - Lake Elsinore, CA

    I just don't understand why people keep blaming Obama for this crap!!! Clinton, said herself the states should be punished until she needed them.

    If anything she couldn't be trusted she flip flopped, Obama stayed true to his decisions. That's the type of President we need and honest true one.

    June 16, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  23. windrider

    How like the Rovian mindset of the GOP to attack Obama for following the rules he agreed to, in writing, just like Clinton. Of course, Clinton changed her mind...and got the DNC to change its rules...and then whined about the outcome. People who believe this dribble were never going to vote for Obama anyway. As for the Clinton supporters deserting the Democratic Party in droves, it doesn't seem to be happening except for the very vocal minority who can keep a self-destructive grudge going as long as Jews and Arabs do.

    June 16, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  24. Jay

    I have had enough of this Hillary supporters voting for McCain. GWB to us to war in a Arab nation, and the Muslims you hate have found a way to fight you by raising gas prices. So who is the fool now,
    America, the Muslims have found a way to win this war. They know they can not fight us on the battle ground and win, so they have found the easiest way without fighting. So vote for McCain and the Muslims you hate so much will make you pay $20.00 at the pump.
    I thought Americans were smart.

    June 16, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  25. Tammy - KCMO

    It's becoming more obvious every day that the Republicans and McCain know they can't win the election based on issues so they are going back to attack ads and dirty politics to try to sway voters.

    I have hope that most voters are sick of this style of politics and vote for Obama in November or at the very least a 3rd party candidate to show the Republicans that we've had enough.

    June 16, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17