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. terri

    Republicans and Hillary people are stupid the reason he did not campaign there during the primary season was because everyone agreed not to because they MI broke the rules now he should be punished what idiots


    I am sure there are plenty of people in MI that want you there.

    June 16, 2008 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  2. Nancy McKinney



    June 16, 2008 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  3. proud army and navy mom

    No Sammie, the repugs pushed up Florida dates. Michigan, after much back and forward, decided to just go early because they didn't think that only two states should have first dibs at primary all the time.

    the fact is that Sen Obama is an honorable man, playing by the rules and they (repugs and bitter Hillary supporters) are desparately trying to sling every insult/lie at him because they are extremely afraid that they will be proven the losers that they know they are.

    June 16, 2008 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  4. Heather

    Wow... How can anyone vote republican given how clearly STUPID they think we all are?? They're the ones who put MI in this mess, not Obama. Good Grief.

    CNN, come on - why do you report things like this without fact-checking? What happened to journalism?

    June 16, 2008 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  5. NM

    We can thank Billary for these attack ideas the GOP can use. Thanks again, beeatch.

    June 16, 2008 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  6. tom Florida & NorthCarolina

    The Republicans are doing this because it works. It would be nice to think that most people will see though this and they will, but they only need to fool 5-15 % of the people and it will be worthwhile.

    The Dem's unfortunately need to hit back hard and not let them get away with it.

    June 16, 2008 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  7. Josh

    Michigans don't vote for Bush's third term.

    June 16, 2008 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  8. Darryl Miller

    Well let see?

    MIchigan we need Jobs,

    Michigan we need to end the war

    Michigain we need better schools and affordable Colleges

    Michigain we need leader who are honest

    Michigain we need for the Oil Companies to stop ripping us off

    Michigan we need to stop the greed and help people keep thier houses....

    June 16, 2008 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  9. NoMcSame

    Only a fool would vote for McSame as bush. He gives me the CREEPS. Looks like the walking DEAD in the Night of The Living Dead. Do we really want to have that old geezer represent us for the next four years? We already had a clown for the past seven, now do we need a zombie?
    Michigan you better get on board and stop the foolishness. The red states are the reason that we are in this mess. Time for a change don't you think?

    June 16, 2008 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  10. Anonymous

    Al of the negativity that Hillary kept stirred up us still fuel for the fire for the GOP.

    June 16, 2008 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  11. Praying for America

    Please stick to the issues and stop this foolishness. America if we keep letting McCain tell us what everyone else is doing wrong. What has he done right? He has been in the senate for over 20 years there has to be something.

    June 16, 2008 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  12. Lolu

    I think only the uneducated voters in Michigan would take this ad seriously, because the facts are there for everyone to see. When the state decided to hold it's primary early, they were fully aware of what would happen. Admittedly, the rule is a dumb one, considering the fact that Michigan would be important in the general election. But still they state was aware of the rule, Hillary Clinton was aware of the rule (AND AGREED TO IT AT THE TIME), so why Obama is being blamed for it now, defies belief. Had Hillary Clinton won the nomination, the RNC would have had even a bigger field day, cos she agreed to the rule, did not campaign in the state and when she saw the nomination was slipping away from her, she started to fight for them to be seated. So when she starts making silly comments like the ones in this article and the RNC comes up with the garbage that they have and people take it seriously, then it's a really sad situation

    June 16, 2008 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  13. Alex M

    The GOP is getting desperate because they only speak to the Rich, the White, and the Old.

    June 16, 2008 11:21 am at 11:21 am |

    Too Bad He Wont Be Taking His Name Of The November Ballot! IN YOUR FACE GOP!

    June 16, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  15. Jim

    The Republican party is what caused this in the first place by moving up the date's...I can't BELIEVE they are gonna get away with it too, they pulled such a fast one on you guys and a lot of people there don't even know it and are still blaming the democratic candidate's, this is what the republican party was hoping for and they got it! Unbelievable...

    June 16, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  16. Yup

    Anytime our right to vote is infringed upon is a HUGE ISSUE!!

    June 16, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  17. AA

    More concerning to me are the trolls that continually leave comments like Hillary would have, should have, and that, and that...

    Continue to act like a child and you will be spoken to like one. Continue to behave like a child and you will continue to be lied to, tricked into, scared into, another 8yrs of war and pathetic economics.

    You will then have a lot of time to explain your Hillary stories to your children from your new rented apartment while you are packing your home, because your job will most likely be outsourced you will not be able to afford a vacation. Lots of free time to tell them how that when your candidate lost you decided to make a stand and vote for grandpa the cranky war hero, who has but one delusional agenda and not enough smarts to surround himself with those that are progressive enough to recognize that the country is an inch away from imploding.

    Or you can say "not this time."

    June 16, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  18. Tony, NYC

    Obama will never win over enough of Hillarys supporters to win in Novemeber. Go ahead and talk down to us and call us names Obamas clan. Your "King" is still not going to win.

    June 16, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  19. Hillary Supporter

    Here we go Democrats...your flawed candidate is not going to win.

    June 16, 2008 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  20. le


    June 16, 2008 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  21. Boomer

    Oh come on! What's he supposed to do??? The states broke the rules and he and Hillary agreed that they should be penalized. She changed her mind when she started losing and needed their votes. Unethical or what??? Obama is the only one who played fair. Give me a break Republicans! And give me a break all you Democrats who have proven yourselves traitors to Hillary by threatening to vote for Grandpa McCain. He'll set the woman's movement back light years including overturning Roe vs. Wade. WAKE UP!!!!

    June 16, 2008 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  22. Chad

    Dear Senator McCain,

    We dont want a third term of bush two was enough!

    Obama 08

    June 16, 2008 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  23. pathetic RNC

    Talk about issues people, not picking up Cintons pathetic commets.

    June 16, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  24. NM

    We can thank Billary for using creative ways to attack Obama and giving the GOP more ideas on how to discredit him so she can get the presidency. Smart girl.

    June 16, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  25. WeLuvObama

    Republicans it will not work this time. People are not concerned with old stale statements. If this is the best the repub can do, they are in BIG trouble. Please stick with the issues.

    June 16, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
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