August 16th, 2007
08:52 AM ET
14 years ago

Rove slams 'fatally flawed' Clinton

Rove sharply criticized Clinton Wednesday.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - He may plan to take a break from presidential politics, but soon-to-be ex-White House aide Karl Rove isn't holding back when it comes to his critique of Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton.

On conservative talk-radio host Rush Limbaugh's show Wednesday, Rove predicted the New York Democrat would win her party's nomination but said she was "fatally flawed" and would ultimately lose the race for the White House.

"There is no frontrunner who has entered the primary season with negatives as high as she has in the history of modern polling," said Rove, who announced Tuesday he was resigning his White House post. (Listen to Rove's comments on Bush, Clinton)

"She is going into the general election, depending on what poll you look at, with high forties on the negative side and just below that on the positive side. There is nobody who has ever won the presidency who has started out in that position," the man also known as "Bush's brain" added. (Related: Clinton happy to give Rove 'heartburn')

Rove also fired back at Clinton's recent campaign ad in which the former First Lady states, "If you're a family that is struggling and you don't have health care, you are invisible to this president."

"I am a little surprised she jumped out there and made such an accusation when she has a record so spotty and poor on health care issues," he said.

Phil Singer, a Clinton spokesman, brushed aside Rove's critique of her favorability numbers, saying, "It sounds like Karl Rove is writing Sen. Obama's talking points."

"The reality is that as the campaign now gets under way, Sen. Clinton's ratings are improving because Americans are seeing that she has the strength and experience to deliver change," he added. Rove's final retreat 

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Karl Rove
soundoff (451 Responses)
  1. allen cohen brooklyn new york

    hillary is plain and simple a complete liar she will use and step or mow down anybody and anything in her way, she did, is, and will, for the rest of her miserible life bite the hand that feeds her, thats why her downfall will be very bad at the end and she will just go in to the darkness with nobody ever even remebering who she was a short time later, people like that never respect anybody beacause of self hatred, she even hates her own dauther. the bottom line is, that because she gets up there and tells people what they want to hear, these innocent people believe her and will ofcourse be very disappointed when she will crash land very hard and not be heard from for a long time. so maybe its a blessing in disquise that she is running.

    August 16, 2007 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  2. Riki, Sacramento, CA

    Umm...guys? I hate to break it to all you libs out there, but Bush isn't running in 2008. Don't you think it's time that the candidates start presenting some original ideas instead of continuing to bash a non-candidate? It doesn't take a high IQ to rail against the status quo (as evidenced in so many posts here). Let's see some evidence that all your Democrat darlings can actually think for themselves for a change. I won't be holding my breath.

    August 16, 2007 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  3. Robert Hollywood,FL

    I hope the right wing talk shows continue to let Karl Rove,Newt Gingrich and Dick Cheney talk because the American people know they are all liars and as far as ethics and morals go theres are all in the toilet. The American people are tired of being lied to and the more they let these men talk the more I know that Hillary Clinton will definately be our next President!! We all know that George W is not a smart man and I feel bad that he let such evil men direct him to lead this country into the mess it is today. Then again I guess thats the only kind of people George W has known his whole life. I feel sorry for him.

    August 16, 2007 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  4. G Letourneau Arlington, TX

    Why is it a "slam" or "bash" when a conservative comments on a liberal? While some liberal can unleash a tirad at a conservative and there is not any "Slam" or "bash" or "slime."

    This is media bias and they don't get it. Therefore why should I believe anything the main stram media has to say? It's flawed and can't be trusted

    August 16, 2007 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  5. Eric, Arlington, VA

    You will be missed Karl; thanks for your service. These people who slam you don't know the nice, caring person you really are, and how you are villified in the press. These are the same people who get their news from CNN and NBC (among other biased sources) and don't have half a brain to think for themselves so they repeat their tripe.

    With my brother serving in Iraq, I sure don't want a Dem, especially Hillary, in the White House running things, and constantly undermining our troops. Sure Bush has made his mistakes, but he has the guts to fight and do what is right in the world.

    August 16, 2007 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  6. Mike, Murrieta, CA

    Carl Rove is right. She is there because there is no other "qualified" leader in the democrat party. Obama may have good ideas but he is naive as a fresh congressman about changing the world. Hillary is doomed once the political machine begins to show the public her multiple flip-flops, constant pandering and win at all costs attitude.

    Thanks Hillary for the entertainment, but you aren't capable of running the most powerful country in the world.

    August 16, 2007 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  7. Larry Whitlock, Los Angeles, CA

    When any politician promises to create another program to "help" you, the unseen little guy, just remind yourself that the program will require more of YOUR MONEY to fund more bureaucrats who will create more rules and regulations that will require you to let them decide what is in your best interest. In other words, those politicians want you to surrender your responsibility for making decisions for yourself. Of course, if you don't mind being dependent "on the kindness of strangers" (i.e. bureaucrats), waiting in lines all day to have a few minutes to plead for some service for which you believe you are "entitled", then, by all means, please vote for the people who promise to give us an authoritarian/totalitarian government.

    Last night I heard Mark Levin on his radio show state the following which he thought would make a very good bumper sticker: "SCRAPE THE BOTTOM, VOTE FOR RODHAM"; that represents my thoughts exactly.

    August 16, 2007 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  8. Esther, Schaumburg, IL

    I'd love to have a woman in office. But not this one. I have both of the major parties with a flaming passion, and I'm sick of the divisiveness we've had in this country for the past 16 years. Another 4 or 8 years of venom is not what this country needs. Let's put an end to both the Bush and Clinton dynasties.

    August 16, 2007 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  9. Gary Barnes, Cary, NC

    I think Hillary is just what Republicans need to mobilize the faithful. Go Hillary!

    August 16, 2007 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  10. Korie, PA

    "Hillary haters make me sick. Republicans make me even sicker! This country never had it so good as when Bill Clinton was president! After six and a half years of rotten Bush and Company destroying this country and everthing it stands for I would welcome another Clinton in the White House!
    If ever there was a "fatally flawed"
    candidate it was Bush!
    What a joke it is to say that you don't trust Hillary! Look who's talking! You fool Republicans trusted Bush! What does that say!
    As I recall, Hillary tried to get universal Health care through but the idiot Republcans,along with the pharmacy lobby, had a hissy-fit and destroyed it!!
    If Hillary gets the Democratic nomination I will support her 100%
    But then I will support any Democrat over the lousy Republicans!

    Susan, I hate to clue you in, but the Republicans were not in power in the Congress when Hillary tried to get her health care scheme up & running. Thank your beloved Democrats.

    Also, when is everyone going to wake up and smell the coffee, Hillary is not Bill. I personally don't believe Bill was a good president (and not because of the blue dress either), but all of the Bill Clinton fans think that they can get him back by voting for her. Folks, she isn't him.

    Also Susan, if you don't think Democrats are taking just as much money from the pharmaceutical companies and the insurance companies, you've got your head in the sand.

    We need to get past the Bush-Clinton-Bush area and get a fresh start. Whether that fresh start is Republican or Democrat, we just need to get there. And I do have to say to the Bush bashing campaigns out there, he's not running in '08. For that matter, no one that has served under him in any capacity is a top tier candidate, so get over it. Run on issues & your ideas, not on Bush bashing. If that is all a candidate will do, I surely won't vote for him.

    August 16, 2007 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  11. Millie, Raceland, KY

    Hillary isn't my pick, but I will support her all the way to the White House. We can't stand another 4 years of having a dummy leading our country. George Bush is an embarassement to this country. The Republician Party should be ashamed to call him the "P" word. I know I never will! He hasn't erned it! I am not happy with the Democrat house either. I think the house should be wiped clean the next time...Democrat and Republican.

    August 16, 2007 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  12. James Day sr. Carlsbad Ca.

    What is going to happpen when the Clinton scandals of now her fundraising felony, and the past scandals that never got resolved hits the campaign trail? Bill Clinton nothing stuck to him but Hillary is not charming, every little mistake every word, every mistake, every brain dead blunder will stick to her!! She has spent how much money and how many stupid brain dead debates and the media has her front and center 24/7,and Rudy still beats her, he has not even begun to campaign the GOP has even begun to campaign!
    Biggest problem she is unlikable, and men hate her with pasion, she reminds me of an over bearing angry feminist mother or wife who hates being a women! The sound of her voice is like a chalk board having fingernails going across and the arogant and condisending attitude towards most America, her flip flops, her pandering to ultra liberal Anti American groups, and the fact she has never done anything in life that was not a result of her Husband and his political machine. Name one thing that she has acomplised other than run for Senate and President at the same time, you can't, she has never had a leadership posistion except running the Bimbo eruptions in the Whitehouse in 1992-1996! A senator has not won the whitehouse since JFK, and Hillary you are no JFK and she is extremely easy not to be likable, her negitives will 60% by the time the GOP exposes her frauds he schemes her inherent flaws! She is so polorising that she will offend so many people in her campaign because she is so dishonest and it shows!!!!!Just remember an congentital liar always lies!

    August 16, 2007 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  13. Stan, Buffalo, NY

    I may not like Rove but he makes a most valid point. anyone on here saying otherwise is delusional about Hillary. she is a neo-con, globalist.

    August 16, 2007 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  14. Cathy Turtletown Tn

    Mary B
    Please take a look @ I believe you will see a difference in his Health plan vs. Clinton.

    August 16, 2007 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  15. Sig, Los Angeles CA

    "How can Clinton criticize the Bush administration when she and her husband are responsible for the worst healthcare debacle in U.S. history. Thanks to the Clintons, we now have a mangaged healthcare system that is step short of criminal."

    Omigosh, what are you on; crack? Please provide definitive information on how the Clinton's debacled healtcare in this country? If I'm not mistaken, Hillary TRIED to do something about healthcare in this country. Yet, your Republican croonies bought and paid for by the Healtcare industry shut her down without having a reasonable debate on healthcare. Now, we've had a Republican administration for 7 years, at one point they had control of the House and Senate, and what did Bush and the Republicans do regarding healthcare? NOTHING!!!!!

    August 16, 2007 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  16. Scott, San Antonio Tx

    I wish Bill Richardson had a real chance to win. He's the democrat candidate that might actually be a good president.

    August 16, 2007 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  17. The King of Cable

    What folly to compare Bush's "record" with what Hillary "might" do . . .

    August 16, 2007 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  18. Len, sparks nv

    I don't need Karl Rove to know the truth about Clinton. People, even Democrats in Nevada hate her. How will she overcome that? If you want a war between Democrats and Republicans then pick Clinton. I'm for Obama because I want less political strife. He is the inclusive candidate. If Clinton wins, I won't knock on doors or make phone calls. I don't want to talk to those Clinton bashers.

    August 16, 2007 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  19. Eddie Port Saint Lucie, FL

    Can somebody please tell me what this experience the Clinton campaign keeps crediting Hillary with. Is it being Bills wife, or her great socialist healthcare plan? Really people. Anyone else, man or woman, running for president with her tiny bit of experience would be laughed off the stage.

    August 16, 2007 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  20. J. Philip, Mt. Olive, Louisiana

    Aaaahhh, Liberals, are you cats always this gullible ?

    Hillary, so far, has only been preaching to the choir and has turned down all debates with FOX or any Republican Candidates. So, why aren't you asking yourselves Why ? I can't wait till your Democrat Primary is over and Hill gets the nod and then will have to debate the likes of a Romney or a Giuliani, and who, I may add will be advised by Karl Rove.

    If I was a Democrat I would be holding my head in shame for what your Party has done to this country.

    August 16, 2007 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  21. Carole Makowski Longview TX

    Interesting how the article stops short of quoting the damning list Rove gave as to how she is spotty and poor on health care issues. Also interesting to read the comments of people only reacting to the select information and slant of the article.

    Is it any clearer now to anyone else why we have such a disconnect between reality in politics, and generally accepted propaganda?

    August 16, 2007 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  22. Lee, Southern Illinois

    Hillary is the best thing that could happen to the Republican party.

    August 16, 2007 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  23. Korie, PA

    Please draw me a line from W being dumb to voting for Hillary? Are you saying ALL the other candidates are stupid? As I stated before, Bush isn't running, nor is his VP, Sec. of State, etc. HE WILL BE GONE IN 2009! I hate to call names, but I think your logic on this one puts you in W's class, you know the one with the pointy hats.

    We have the opportunity to get past this President in a little over a year. Pull your heads out of your rears and realize that! And, whether you agree or not, W did "earn" the White House. I didn't vote for Bill Clinton either time he won, but I knew that he had "earned" the right to be called President.

    August 16, 2007 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  24. jf denver, colorado

    Hillary in the oval office ? Since she likes girls too like Bill cigar prices are for sure to go up. Hey Hillary, What really happened to Vincent Foster and all those other people who died that you and Bill knew ?

    August 16, 2007 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  25. Suziku

    Who cares what Karl Rove thinks?! Although I am not a Hillary Clinton fan, much prefer Obama or Edwards, Mr. Rove's opinion is irrelevant!

    August 16, 2007 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
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