May 18th, 2009
08:59 AM ET
5 years ago

McAuliffe blasted by rival for supporting Hillary Clinton

McAuliffe supported Hillary Clinton in the Democratic presidential primary campaign.
McAuliffe supported Hillary Clinton in the Democratic presidential primary campaign.

(CNN) - Virginia gubernatorial candidate Brian Moran is hammering his Democratic primary rival Terry McAuliffe for backing Hillary Clinton instead of Barack Obama throughout much of the presidential race.

The Moran campaign is hoping a new 60-second radio ad running on black radio stations in Virginia will remind African-American voters - likely to be a crucial voting block in the June 9 Democratic primary - of McAuliffe's full-throated support for Clinton and his past criticisms of Obama.

"Terry McAuliffe may have a lot of big money for his campaign, but don't let that hide the truth," the ad's narrator says. "The truth is, Terry McAuliffe led the campaign that ran the '3 a.m.' attack ad against Barack Obama. McAuliffe worked to put up the ads that questioned Obama's ability to be president."

The new attack is especially pointed because McAuliffe has gone to great lengths to model elements of his gubernatorial campaign after Obama's, which won Virginia in both the Democratic primary and the general election. In March, McAuliffe's campaign ran an ad on black radio stations proclaiming: "In 2008, our voices were heard when we elected our president, Barack Obama."

But Moran's new ad claims that, "if Terry McAuliffe had his way, Barack Obama wouldn't be our president today." Referring to a light-hearted appearance by McAuliffe on The Daily Show last June, the ad says that "McAuliffe even went on national TV and joked Barack Obama could, quote, 'kiss my ass.'"

The McAuliffe campaign called the ad "false and misleading" and accused Moran of "trying to divide Democrats again, especially at a time when we all need to come together to help President Obama get the economy back on track." The campaign said McAuliffe "fought tirelessly" for Obama after the primaries ended.

Moran and McAuliffe are competing against Creigh Deeds for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination. The winner of that contest will face Republican Bob McDonnell in the general election.

UPDATE: The McAuliffe campaign responded again Monday by rolling out the endorsement of Tom Daschle, who co-chaired Obama's campaign.

"From the day Hillary Clinton ended her historic bid for president, Terry worked tirelessly to unify our party around Barack Obama and get him elected President," Daschle said in a statement. "His energy and enthusiasm were tremendous assets on the campaign trail and we were grateful to have him on our side."


Filed under: Terry McAuliffe
soundoff (60 Responses)
  1. shelby

    Do we always have to make it a racial thing? I guess Moran thinks all the blacks will be offended and natually vote for him.

    May 18, 2009 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  2. Laverne

    This is exactly what the repubs want, Dems fighting again and taking their focus off of the prize. Stop it! Dems made great progress and broke many glass ceilings during the past election and we came together at the end despite all the negativity and hurt feelings. The only way we are going to be able to continue to make progress is to stick together. I would be weary of this Moran guy if he is using tactics to try and divide his own party, it is not necessary. Please beware of the low down and dirty tactics people, lest Virginia will turn back red!

    May 18, 2009 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  3. bebe

    Slow news day?

    May 18, 2009 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  4. Lynn

    Moran obviously belongs in the Republican Oarty...they are the ones who boot out people who don't fall line with their party "leaders". Although I was and am an Obama supporter I hope this loses him many votes.

    May 18, 2009 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  5. Ren from Baltimore

    Virginia--you know Terry is your guy. PLEASE do not let the party-of-no get the best of you; you are too important to us.

    Terry McAuliffe's support of Hillary, a most noble and top-shelf candidate, lent to the rounded development of Obama's candidacy. Terry could help put a fine point on just what the people wanted and needed, and Obama was smart enough to meet the challenges that the Clinton-McAauliffe team put to him-so we elected Obama as our President. Do you really expect us to see McAuliffe as the enemy now? Noble compatriot, yes; evil doer, most certainly not.

    Go McAuliffe, go Virginia!

    May 18, 2009 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  6. Kevin in Ohio

    Dino....real real intelligent. You show the true hate-filled nature of the liberal left-wing.

    May 18, 2009 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  7. AUSTIN,TX

    w.i. jones=idiot

    May 18, 2009 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
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