September 19th, 2008
07:50 AM ET
10 years ago

Obama-Biden surrogate mocks Palin

A supporter of Obama-Biden got tough on Palin Thursday.

A supporter of Obama-Biden got tough on Palin Thursday.

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (CNN) – An Ohio mayor who introduced Joe Biden at a rally Thursday night said Sarah Palin’s hometown of Wasilla, Alaska was “not the real world.”

“One of the things that bothers me is the fact that Governor Palin talks about she's ready to be the Vice President because she's been a mayor.” said Jay Williams, the Democratic-turned-independent mayor of Youngstown. “I’ve never been to Wasilla, but I’m sure it’s a nice little town, In fact it’s so little we could invite them all to sit down in [Youngstown’s] Chevrolet Centre and probably still have room left over.”

“I would love to be the mayor of Wasilla,” he continued. “I could probably do it from my home and not show up to work too often because in Wasilla, they don’t have a crime problem. There were two homicides in Wasilla in the last 13 years.”

Williams added that the average Wasilla income and price for a home are above the national average.

“The education, they have small student/teacher ratios,” said Williams. “That’s not the world that we live in ladies and gentlemen, you all know that here in the real world, we have to deal with issues of crime, and poverty, and education. That’s what happens.”

Before Williams moved on to why he is a fan of Biden’s, he took one last swipe at the notion that Palin claims foreign policy experience because Alaska’s proximity to Russia, an argument offered up by McCain.

“That would be the equivalent of me wanting to do your heart surgery because I live next door to a doctor,” said Williams. “It just doesn't add up. Being mayor is a very good preparation for a lot of things, even potentially being vice president. But only if you're the mayor and have to deal with real world issues.”

Barack Obama and Joe Biden have both refrained from saying much, if anything, about Sarah Palin on the stump - their go-to line is they don’t know enough about her to differentiate her from John McCain.

But some of the surrogates introducing them at rallies have been less restrained; earlier this week, a Michigan supporter introducing Biden at an event called Palin a “bucket of fluff.”

soundoff (242 Responses)
  1. Brett

    Youngstown has population of 82,000 and they had 32 murders in 2006. I would say this joker is the problem, Palin must have been much better at preventing crime, or this guy was atually sitting at home. At any rate, I would not want this guys record sticking up for my campaign.
    32 x 16 years = 512 murders in the same time as a place 1 /10th the size had 2 (that's 256 times more), and this guy is bragging about it.

    September 19, 2008 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  2. Republican for Obama

    Matt in Pittsburgh:

    Because she is governor of a state that does NOT produce 20% of our energy it's more like 3.5%. And Alaska is not on the front of our national defense. I mean come on. If the Russians wanted to attack do you really think they would go through the tundra to cross into Alaska and then thousands of miles down to the lower 48? Be honest. The reason the hostility is because after months of hearing the Republicans complain about Obama's experience they nominate someone clearly out of their league. She is the governor of a state with 660,000 people that is swimming in oil money. The next city close to me in NY has more people than Alaska., know it, love it, USE it!

    September 19, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  3. irish

    What the h##ll is wrong with you people. Not the real world ???
    so then he is saying that any small town that operates under 8,000 people is not the real world!!!!!! This is what our country is made up of, all small towns. That is the heartbeat of America. Every single one of you liberals should go to another country and live. Apparently you can't stand this country or our constitution. The hatred that is expressed on these boards is disgusting. And you are all Obama suppoters I'm sure. If you think for one second I would vote for that ellist snob, who by the way is the 2nd largest receipent of contributions from fannie/ freddie and Leman Brothers, your out of your liberals minds How about Obama take some of those great profits and help the economy with them, how about he help some Americans that are hurting. I think not. I was undecided, but I will now vote for McCain. At least I know where he stands. Obama has absolutely nothing to offer the american people except for his fantasy talk. God help us all if he becames president. This country is in the crapper. You liberal are ruining this once great country. You make me sick with your nonsense. Get yourself educated about the issue's, becuase you have no idea what your even talking about.

    Post this CNN, instead of blowing my posted out all the time
    Baised News Media who is in love with Obama

    September 19, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  4. Republican Mama for Obama

    McPalin can dish it, but they can't take it. What morons! Wake up, America!

    -Team IWASP

    September 19, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  5. Eric

    Hillary's choice not to attend shows a significant lack of character and cowardice.

    She couldn't handle sharing the stage, working with someone (anyone) from another point of view or across the aisle against a very real threat of a nuclear Iran.

    September 19, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  6. McWhine

    To: "proud army and navy mom"

    You repug hack. If you are honest enough, you will google "Songbird McCain."

    Where was McCain's flag pin in his acceptance speech?? He must hate America, right??

    September 19, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  7. Gifty

    The fact cannot be changed


    PALIN012 That's my girl.

    September 19, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  8. Nebraska

    Just like the posters here, the Obama team has nothing.

    So they resort to name-calling.



    September 19, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  9. T

    Real smart! Just keep mocking small town America!

    September 19, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  10. Allen in Hartwell, GA

    LIsten, Gov. Sarah Palin isn't a China doll, and she isn't the Virgin Mary. She walked into the political scene with (I would hope) her eyes open.

    If she has flaws that can be exploited they will be. She doesn't balk at belittling Obama or Biden, and I'm sure she loves it when people rush to her defense when someone insinuates that she might be less than perfect.

    September 19, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  11. Steve

    If it wasn't such a serious issue, I (as a European) would laugh at that 50/50 mentality in the US. Even if McCain would have chosen a real pig, 46% would back the animal as VP.
    It's amazing.

    September 19, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  12. Debby

    What the the Ohio mayor conviently forgets that she is a Governor and he still is mayor. LOL I have to laugh at all these Obama surrogates out there that think the Am. people are that stupid. What an insult for us.

    September 19, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  13. Ken in MO

    Unlikely to get through on the Obama News Network, but I'll post anyway.

    Apparently Mr. Williams is unaware that she is the Governor of Alaska. So I'll clue him in — she is.

    And she got more votes for Governor of Alaska than Joe Biden got from all 50 states (or 57 if you count by Obamanomics) from his own party.

    And since the Obama Bin Biden solution to foreign policy is "let's Balkanize Iraq into three independent parts based on sectarian identity (look it up — that's the great foreign policy 'experience' of Smokin' Joe Biden in action, which is to just repeat the same dumb ideas that England and France tried in the 1920's) so we can be positive they will continue to kill each other for the next 1000 years, and then pack up and bail as fast as possible", then perhaps we can use more of the Alaskan outlook on things.

    Obamessiah = foreign policy that makes the US the doormat of every 3rd world dictator

    Bin Biden = just plain dumb ideas that cause more trouble than they solve

    September 19, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  14. carol

    Yes, we are so over "when I was Gov of Alaska" is really getting very very tired!!!!!
    You Ms Palin are not running to be VP of Alaska.....although that's about all you seem to know are running for possible VP of America!!!!
    Does MCPalin ticket think that all the issues this country have and
    there are many, can be solved by Sarah Palin using this same old saying over and over again....."when I was Gov of Alaska"
    Quite frankly I wish that's all you were right the McPalin ticket looks more and more ridiculous to any sensible voter!
    We have grave issues facing this country and need intelligent, honest people with REAL FAMILY VALUES in charge of it.
    Vote wisely this Nov......the McPalin ticket does not bring change of any sort.....think about it, why is the country in such a mess?
    You cannnot claim change when you are deeply rooted in the mess that got us here in the first place!!!!!

    September 19, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  15. brian

    I love these arguments that are out there about Palin like in this article “One of the things that bothers me is the fact that Governor Palin talks about she's ready to be the Vice President because she's been a mayor.”

    I'm not sure I've heard her touting just "mayor", and in fact in this guys own statement he's forgetting what he just said.... Govenor Palin! She's the govenor of a critical energy producing state, not just a small town mayor.

    Common people, don't be so stupid. People are just afraid that she's going to do exactly what she says – reform.

    September 19, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  16. Kara

    Hey – McCain! I can see a gas station from my kitchen window, can I be your next Energy Advisor?

    September 19, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  17. Southerner

    So let me get this straight. The reason that Palin is supposedly not qualified to be VP is that the town she used to run has a low murder rate and high incomes. How are those bad things? Don't we want someone who succeeded in their prior positions? Or would we rather have someone who spent over $100 million as director of the Chicago Annenburg Challenge and managed to have no impact on education? And who also failed so badly at "public housing reform" that many of those projects have now been condemned and are being torn down.

    SO the real question. Do we want the successful former mayor and successful former Governor who is somewhat inexperienced to be VICE president, or do we want the do nothing state legislator and never there US senator who has a long history of failure as the PRESIDENT?

    This "not qualified" game is pretty fun, and it makes Obama look a heck of a lot worse than it does Palin. An inexperienced backup makes more sense than an inexperienced starter. Palin will have the opportunity to learn the job, long before she has to do the job. Obama, on the other hand, would be "Unready on day one".

    September 19, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  18. Lynne Kuber

    Obama and his supporters seem to forget that America is made up of a lot of small towns where "these small town people cling to their guns and to their religion". What arrogance, what elitism on his part to disrespect the small town people. Palin has more executive experience and has actually ACCOMPLISHED something in her short time in public service. She didn't sit on the fence and vote "present", she made a stand and continues to do so. She has real courage and personal integrity, while Obama takes the easy way out and does what is politically expedient.
    Obama, rather than put forth any ideas, programs or proposals of his own, continues to copy from others or tear down what others do.
    As we watch the Wall Street fiasco, Obama still hasn't gotten "specific" on what he would do....he's waiting....waiting for the Fed to come up with their plan....waiting for McCain to put forth his proposal.....waiting for what....November 5 so he can finally get specific with the American people. Do you really think the American public is that stupid....that we haven't figured out that Obama is all talk and no "empty suit" (Oliver North) with a "paper tissue thin resume" (recent news article). What he learned in Rev. Wright's church that 20 years was to preach and sway the crowds with lofty rhetoric....while he hedges on really doing anything substantive.
    McCain and Palin are the real deal....they have courage, personal integrity, decisiveness, strength of purpose and they care about the people they have been elected to serve and it shows. They are not arrogant "elitists" turning their noses up at the small town people. And I predict it will be these "small town people clinging to their guns and religion" that turn out to vote for McCain/Palin and Obama will lose on November 4.

    September 19, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  19. Reid

    EVERYBODY SING~~~~~~~~the party's over.............literally!

    September 19, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  20. Matt


    How in holy hell did Obama mock:

    The bible?
    America Citizens?
    And especially women?

    McCain picked Palin because shes a WOMAN no other reason and it should be a disgrace because she doesnt believe in anything women stand for! Palin or McCain dont stand for equal work fgor equal pay, they dont stand for womans right to choose, they dont stand for increased healthcare for children or elderly and McCain, a man who was a POW, is rated awfully bad by the veterans groups. Obama is rated very very high by them for their treatment. PLEASE LOOK AT THE ISSUES INSTEAD OF SAYING FOOLISH THINGS!

    September 19, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  21. CNN = Jerry Springer of news

    September 19th, 2008 10:05 am ET

    So America if you come from a small town where you don't experience murders, horrible education, etc., your mayor is worthless and should never think about becoming governor or vice-president or perhaps even President. I guess the American Dream that anyone can grow up to be President doesn't apply to you. You all (little town Americans) according to the Dems. live in a different world.

    Maybe you live with the Bible carrying, gun toting people in rural PA you think?

    What gets me is Biden didn't say anything to discourage this viewpoint. Sad!!

    Linda, (not from smalltown America) but URBAN Boston
    I do live in a small town (4,600 people) in Wisconsin, and our Mayor is a joke. It isn't even a full time job. BTW, there are many people here who do vote on 2nd amendment issues and religion, not their pocketbooks. There are protestors in front of the women's clinic every day with signs like, "Family planning promotes child promiscuity." I find this very ironic because I never met so many 30 year-old grandmothers when I lived in the inner city of Milwaukee.

    There are many here who have no health insurance and the few small factories that have closed. The opportunity for jobs is slim and any job requires one to have a vehicle since there is no public transportation and many of the good jobs are miles away from the town. Our mayor has not done anything about any of this...

    September 19, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  22. Palin on Iran "I'm Clueless aren't they neighbors"

    Americans unite and oust the Bush Clinton and McCain dynasty. It's the new world order and we need to put the brakes on it.

    September 19, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  23. BK

    Obama has no experinece he bamboozled all of you. All he does is mock people. Real presidentia. NOT!

    September 19, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  24. Deaner

    Gosh, hard to believe a CNN board is anti McCain/Palin! I mean, they're so unbiased and all...

    September 19, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  25. andy

    I guess to have experience you need to be mayor of a place with a high crime rate, high unemployment, lousy schools and high taxes, at least according to the mayor of Youngstown. I have not been to Wasilla but I have been to Youngstown, it is nothing special for sure.

    September 19, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
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