September 20th, 2007
03:00 PM ET
14 years ago

Senate votes to condemn MoveOn, Clinton votes no

Clinton voted against a Senate measure Thursday that condemns

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The Senate overwhelmingly voted to formally condemn the liberal organization Thursday for its recent publication of an ad questioning the credibility of the top commander in Iraq Gen. David Petraeus.

Twenty Democrats joined the Republicans in the 72-25 vote that officially repudiates the group's ad. Sen. Joe Lieberman, an Independent from Connecticut, also voted for the measure, sponsored by Texas Republican John Cornyn. (Related: Bush: ad on Petraeus 'disgusting')

Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-New York, who has been criticized by several Republican presidential rivals for not formally distancing herself from the organization, voted against the measure.

As for the other 2008 Senate Democratic hopefuls, Chris Dodd of Connecticut voted against the measure while Barack Obama ofIllinois and Joe Biden of Delaware did not vote.

Republican National Committee Chairman Mike Duncan issued a statement highly critical of both Clinton and Obama shortly after the votes were cast.

“Senators Clinton and Obama need to decide whether they’re running for America, or running for," he said. "If Clinton and Obama cannot bring themselves to take a stand against a vicious attack on the man leading our forces in Iraq, why should American voters believe they are capable of demonstrating the leadership we need in a Commander in Chief?”

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney was also highly critical of Clinton, saying in a statement her vote raises questions over whether she would be a "credible commander-in-chief."

"Hillary Clinton had a choice," he said. "She could stand with our troop commander in Iraq, or she could stand with the libelous left wing of her party. She chose the latter.

"The idea that she would be a credible commander-in-chief of our armed forces requires the willing suspension of disbelief," he added, a reference to Clinton's comments to Petraeus at a recent Senate Armed Service Committee hearing in which she said his upbeat assessment of conditions in Iraq required "the willing suspension of disbelief."

Meanwhile, Executive Director Eli Pariser said of the vote in a statement, "No wonder public approval of Congress is tanking. They’re so out of touch with reality that they can find time to condemn an ad but they can't do what most Americans want – vote to end this war."

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: • Presidential Candidates
soundoff (107 Responses)

    Absolutely incredible and pathetic! ... where did the first amendment go? Thank you Hillary Clinton for standing up for freedom of speech.

    September 21, 2007 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  2. Alex Perea, Buena Park, CA may have made a tactical error in placing the ad. That does not make politics the central issue. We provided the right wing a straw man to wack away at while the real issue is the troops fighting and dying in this ill conceived and atrociously implemented adventure. Bush should be ashamed to hide behind the General's stars.

    September 21, 2007 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  3. Jim, Durham, NC

    Interesting censorship on this thread.

    September 22, 2007 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  4. Rodney Cruz, Little Elm, Texas

    I wonder where my Junior Senator of Texas finds time to waste my tax money in sponsoring condemnation of newspaper ads (which by the way are protected by the First Amendment), and apparently can't find time instead to use my tax money to do what we ask of him, which is to end this war. I am sure his time would be more productive if used to solve other "small issues" that bother a few millions of Americans (including Texans) like healthcare, education, poverty, crime, transportation and government WASTE OF RESOURCES. Just a thought, John.

    September 23, 2007 02:14 am at 2:14 am |
  5. Joe, Florida

    Freedom of Speech!!!

    Hillary did the right thing. Obama declined to vote saying that it was a waste of time. While it's true that it's a waste of time to debate on it, we can't allow a website funded by the people to be shut down. Don't forget "By The People, For The People" has become one strong for Americans to show their discontent with the War; why should it repudiated?

    September 23, 2007 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  6. Trisha, Wailuku Hawaii

    Hooray for Hilary for having the guts to stand up for we the people. Obama showed he is gutless and Biden was not a viable candidate in my opinion from the get go. Inch by inch, challenge by challenge, it becomes clear who has the resolve and integrity to represent us. Imagine if someone told you the Senate had a choice to give rest to our troops or score a political point and they chose scoring a point but claimed they supported our troops. Only in America can representatives expect to fool the people all the time.

    September 23, 2007 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  7. Brianna Webb, McEwen, TN

    Whether she distances herself or not I belive that there is more to a person than just the words coming out of their mouths there must be the actions to back them up. Only Senator Clinton has shown this, when she helped a young Sailor find his way back home where as Mr. Obama did not. How will he look after the nation when he won't take the time to look after one Sailor abused in Obama's own state??

    September 23, 2007 11:25 pm at 11:25 pm |
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