November 19th, 2010
07:56 AM ET
3 years ago

Carville defiant on Obama comment

Washington (CNN) – Democratic strategist James Carville compared President Barack Obama to his Democratic primary rival and current Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Thursday, implying in rather lewd terms that Obama needs to toughen-up.

And he's not sorry for it.

"If Hillary gave up one of her balls and gave it to Obama, he'd have two," Carville said at a "Christian Science Monitor" breakfast discussion.

His comment was a response to whether Obama is taking strong enough stands on taxes and repealing the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" military policy.

Carville made a similar comment to "Newsweek" during the 2008 campaign season when he compared Clinton and Obama's toughness.

"If she gave him one of her cojones, they'd both have two," he said.

He reacted to the comment on CNN's "John King, USA" Thursday.

"If I offended anybody, I am not sorry and I do not apologize," Carville told CNN's Chief National Correspondent John King.

But he also said he intended the comment to be a joke.

"Of all the things people say about the president, I think this is fairly mild," Carville said. "I repeated a joke I made in the campaign."

soundoff (162 Responses)
  1. mesamick

    It's time Pres. Obama and his administration to put their man-pants on and started ninja-kicking back at the obstructionist rethugliecants and get something done for America already. If it takes a raw jab from the "Ragin' Cajun" to get it started then please Hillary...Give 'em one already! ROTFL!

    November 19, 2010 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  2. massms

    Much as I dislike Carville, his politics and his crassness, I have to admire his having the courage of his convictions. Unlike so many of his fellow politicians, he didn't deny his comment, try to whitewash it or cave into media pressure by issuing a phoney apology. He could have expressed it in a more dignified way; however, he did make a pivotal point.

    November 19, 2010 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  3. patnamm

    And the democrates complain that the republicans do not respect the president ...

    November 19, 2010 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  4. fed up in ohio

    I am incensed. 1+0=1. While we're at it someone needs to give obama a spine! He has compromised on so many things that all attempts at reform have been dictated by Republicans or Dem Blue Dogs and are DOA.

    November 19, 2010 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  5. W L Jones

    Strange !!strange coming from a person from Louisana after the storm destroyed New Orlean, Its shows who had what when it come to..to helping there fellow man also after oil spill.,,same..O.. same O See nothing beyound there own noses.

    November 19, 2010 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  6. vic nashville tn

    Democrats lost the midterm because voters didn’t turn out .Many democrats feel Obama is not fighting back. Hillary supporters always defend Obama now they are tired. President doing right thing example GM but he is not marketing

    Now time for democrats to celebrate GM republican didn’t complete the mission but they celebrate the Mission Accomplished

    November 19, 2010 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  7. tepeters

    I think it is about time that James Carville and his other half both retire from commentary-their nasty and droll commentary contribute nothng to the improvement of our body politic. And while we are at it, CNN should do something novel and get rid of all the so called experts and have their journalists do more objective reporting rather than having so called experts try to tell us what to think or having point and counter point interviews where we listen to two sides shout at each other. For example have a report on the historical record as to whether tax cuts or stimulus spending helps the economy and creates jobs. I know CNN has done objective reporting it needs to do more.

    November 19, 2010 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  8. John Allen

    Mr. Carville and I are miles apart politically, but I REALLY admire him for sticking by his statements. In these "politically correct" times, it is so refreshing to refuse to apologize every time someone MAY be offended.

    November 19, 2010 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  9. Eric

    Ah yes!!! The Left never has to apologize for statements like this. They only get outraged when someone on the right speaks poorly.

    November 19, 2010 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  10. Nancy Pelosi, the wicked witch of the west, the DemocRAT gift that just keeps on giving

    And don't you think our enemies and allies know this as well??? Leftist like Obozo think having two of them means you're some kind of big bully. Isn't that why Obozo has been on his 2 year apology tour?

    BTW, has anybody given Michelle a TSA pat down to see if she has them instead?!

    November 19, 2010 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  11. b layton

    The fact of the matter is that Carville is absolutely correct and everyone knows it. Joke or no joke.

    November 19, 2010 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  12. Robin

    I think it was funny (and true)!! I am a hardcore liberal Democrat and even I have been forced to admit that Obama needs to grow a pair. HE WON...why he feels the need to continually try to compromise is beyond me. The Republicans don't compromise when they win, so why he thinks our party should be any different is insane. I, along with millions of others, voted Obama in to make changes, not to play nice little lap dog with the Repubs. Grow a paid...Make a hard decision...Quit being such a wimp Obama. PLEASE!!

    November 19, 2010 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  13. T'sah from Virginia

    "His comment was a response to whether Obama is taking strong enough stands on taxes and repealing the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" military policy."

    I am really sick of everyone – Pundits, Pollsters and Citizens – taking CHEAP SHOTs at our President!!! Carville remarks are UNCALLED for because NO ONE can BUILD A MAN. President Obama has his OWN WAY of doing things and if people don't LIKE IT – Shame on THEM!!!

    While Carville is MAKING these comments – which were unnecessary, DADT is getting PASSED!!!! The tax cuts WILL END for those making $250,000 or higher!! And ALL of this came about with the "two balls" President Obama already has!!! Furthermore, Hillary doesn't have ANY BALLS!!!

    Ewww, now I can't stand Carville! Actually, I can't stand anyone who feels they can just say anything about President Obama because he is DIFFERENT – he operates DIFFERENTLY – he LQQKs Different – his NAME is Different – he DOES NOT show EXCITEMENT yet everyone wants him to be ANGRY and AGRESSIVE – Jeez! Bug OFF and STOP making someone JUMP and after you DEMAND IT all you want to hear from them is HOW HIGH!!!! NOT in this Century!!

    President Obama will continue to MOVE AMERICA FORWARD and when history is written, Americans will realize just HOW HIGH he did JUMP to accomplish it!!!

    November 19, 2010 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  14. diane

    For one, I appreciate that he did not apologize for his remark. I get sick of all those politicians and otherwise, that make comments, that they mean or that are meant as satire and then from pressure they feebly "take back" what they
    said. Give me, anyday, a person who says what they truly think. At least you know where they are coming from.

    November 19, 2010 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  15. geecee

    You know, I like President Obama alot, but I have to agree with Carville. Obama is just being too darn "nice". He needs to go after the Repugnantcants and his other critics, i.e. Limpbag, Faux Noise Channel, and all the rest of the talking head haters and go after them with a vengeance. They are so full of lies and when he doesn't respond or refute them, their braindead followers think it must be true cause he didn't react to what they said. Although, of course, there are those who immediately call him "uppity" if he tries to defend himself on a rare occasion. They say he is "whining" because he got criticized and then tries to fight back. But if there is a choice between being called "wimpy" or "uppity", he should choose the "uppity" characterization. At least he'll seem tough and a fighter, and Americans ultimately like the fighting spirit instead of a milquetoast. He has to take off the gloves. I am getting tired of the compromiser who tries to placate the right. They will never give him the time of day – it's about time he realized that. Granted he knew that would be the case with the Health Care Reform Bill so he had to get it done without them. Well, keep going Mr. President. Repeal DADT, get the START treaty passed, discontinue the Bush tax cuts on the wealthy ($1Million and over), keep it going!!

    November 19, 2010 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  16. Aatami

    Carville has never been known for his sensitivity and that's not the value that he brings to the table. He's a smart guy and should be listened to by the President and his people. The fact is that as a progressive democrat, I am sick of the dimwitted
    republicans running rampage over the country. I agree, Obama needs to show some leadership or suffer the fate of being written into the history books as a one term fluke.

    November 19, 2010 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  17. Vee

    That's the problem: these people get diarrhea of the mouth, say something stupid, then compare what they say to other obnoxious comments about our president in an effort to justify their own (disrespectful) behavior. Wrong is wrong–no comparison is needed between the two. I've never heard or witnessed so much gross-disrespect of one person in my life: I know people have strong, diverse opinions when it comes to politics but our president deserves respect simply because of the office he holds. Its an office that he was elected to, might I add. Try to show President Obama the respect and humility he shows others. Like him or not, at the very least respect him.

    November 19, 2010 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  18. maine liberal

    You got to love JC.
    More democrats need to get a spine

    November 19, 2010 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  19. jeff, alabama

    James is just a good ole boy
    from Louisiana. Those folks
    say the damndest things.
    You wanna really hear some
    good stuff from ole Jim Boy ?
    Try going to a football game in
    Baton Rouge when LSU is playing
    The Alabama Crimson Tide !!
    But don't take your kids along.
    I assure you, those are not the worst
    words that have ever come out
    of James' mouth.

    November 19, 2010 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  20. kds562

    I agree with Carville. Although I respect and support the President, he has to get tougher on the party of No in particular when they reject his invitation to discuss major national issues. As we heard from McConnel, his NUMBER ONE priority is to stop the re-election of Pres Obama, not unemployment, foreclosures, energy independence, health costs, hunger, or education.

    November 19, 2010 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  21. Ray E. (Georgia)

    Ah, Humn,
    Trouble in Paradise James? Maybe you want Obama to become a Republician? Maybe you have been listening to Governor Chris Christie too much? Keep at it. You will get it sooner or later.

    November 19, 2010 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  22. Ricky L

    Why apologize when it's true.

    November 19, 2010 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  23. J Thomas

    I don't have a problem with people speaking like this, or their mind. I'm tired of all the PC garbage we have to deal with. BUT, at the same time, I find it interesting that if a Republican had said this, there would be a major uprising, calling for the person's termination, Sharpton and Jackson crying out racism, and even threatening. But Carville's a liberal. He won't get so much as a slap on the wrist from the Dems.

    November 19, 2010 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  24. Tracy

    James, I have always respected you but you have just stepped down in my esteem. You have gone too far this time and you do indeed owe this President an apology! Have the cojones to apologize!

    November 19, 2010 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  25. Brendan H., San Antonio, TX

    Some times it's just better to keep it to yourself, James. I know you are a Clinton backer, haiving managed Bill's first campaign, but Hillary lost, fair and square, and while I supported her in the primary, I took up the Obama banner as the party candidate and supported him. James, it's time to get over it.

    Save the quips for Palin because she's running, make book on it.

    November 19, 2010 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
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