December 2nd, 2007
07:43 AM ET
9 years ago

Clinton booed at Iowa forum

Clinton was unable to travel into Iowa on Saturday for a pair of events with her fellow Democratic rivals.

DES MOINES, Iowa (CNN)–An audience of progressive activists booed Senator Hillary Clinton today during an exchange on immigration reform. At the Heartland Community Values Forum in Des Moines, Iowa, Clinton was asked whether “giv(ing) undocumented immigrants a path to citizenship” would be a priority in her first hundred days as President. Clinton told the audience "comprehensive immigration reform will be a high priority for me.” That response elicited boos – and no applause.

Asked again whether she’d take up the issue in her first hundred days she said,“Well you’ve got to get the Congress to pass the legislation in order for the President to do as much as possible, which I will do.” That was met by still more loud boos.

Clinton was taking part in the Forum by telephone - she had been grounded in New Hampshire after her last minute trip there Friday night. The event’s moderator told CNN she believes Clinton was hurt by her distance, more than the substance of her answer. “She gave a boilerplate response, when the audience wanted a conversation, a dialogue,” says Cathy Hughes, the moderator and Chairperson of Radio One and TV One. “She didn’t have a feel for the room. One of the advantages of being here in person you can feel the emotional energy.” After one of speakers attending the Forum told an emotional personal story, a voice that sounded like Clinton's could be heard saying “Can you hear me?”

Comments by John Edwards, Dennis Kucinich, Chris Dodd and Barack Obama – who were present -were received with loud applause.

-CNN Congressional Correspondent Jessica Yellin

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Chris Dodd • Dennis Kucinich • Iowa • John Edwards • Race to '08
soundoff (191 Responses)
  1. Danny,IA

    It shows her inability to handle important issues. She also could not handle the hostage crisis inteligently. I do not believe that she can take up the challeneges. I am sorry.

    December 1, 2007 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  2. pam Eugene, OR

    Hillary deserves the boos! She has a side stepping reply for everything!They wanted a conversation from fer and they got rhetoric. The others all have pretty good plans for Health care. IF, and it is a big if, elected Hiallary will never be able to get anything passed because she is so hated by the repubs and even a lot of people in her owm party.
    Anyone BUT HRC 08

    December 1, 2007 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  3. Jackson, Morongo Valley, CA

    Obviously these people wanted a "wish list" answer ... which, if answered honestly, none of the candidates could give them. If Presidents could enact this legislation, Bush already would have done it. Hillary was giving them a realistic answer ... and why would immigration be a priority over other issues for American citizens anyway!

    December 1, 2007 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  4. Jeff Spangler, Arlington, VA

    Shrillary was booed not because of her physical distance from the forum but because of her ideological distance from the clear majority of American citizens and voters who do not believe we are estopped from enforcing the immigration laws for any reason, least of all because we have become economically dependent upon an underclass of criminal aliens.

    December 1, 2007 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |



    I doubt the problem was her not being there. They weren't responding to her non-presence, they were responding to her 'boilerplate response'. The audience doesn't want a 'conversation' nor a 'dialogue', they want someone they can trust and find engaged in the points of issue.

    Hey Hillary: “Can you hear me?”

    December 1, 2007 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  6. Wayne, Silver Spring


    is this suppose to be a counter balance post for "Working feverishly, Clinton tried to project image of calm"

    LOL. Pathetic.

    December 1, 2007 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  7. Ben Marble, M.D. Long Beach, Ms.

    If the dummicraps are stoopid enough to nominate HiTllary they will be guaranteeing a repuke victory in 2008

    December 1, 2007 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  8. Walt, Belton, TX

    I bet you could feel the chill through the long distance telephone lines.....

    Brrr, Brrr.

    Guess she couldn't be there cause she was still staging how her grand entrance would be orchestrated after her "crisis". Where was slick willie during all this?

    December 1, 2007 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  9. Keith Franklin, Kettering, OH

    Clinton bashers will say this shows that no one supports her and she is no good and blah blah blah. BUT when the same thing happened to Barack Obama and John Edwards at the last televised debate, their response was "CNN filled the audience with Clinton supporters". So, should Clinton supporters say that this event was filled with Barack Obama supporters or Edwards supporters? Some people are just hypocrits. I am an undecided Democrat, and I like Obama, Clinton, Biden and Edwards (to a lesser extent). I will vote for which ever one wins the primary and I do not like to see any of them bashed.

    Democrats 2008

    December 1, 2007 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  10. Dana, Pelham, NY

    Although I like Hillary Clinton very much, I WILL NOT vote for her because she supports giving amnesty to illegal immigrants. This a serious issue.

    December 1, 2007 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  11. John, Stamford

    O boy. Let's all hope Clinton implodes. Then CNN can have a juicy story and we can have Obama, who will lose to an idiot like Giuliani, who just advocated building up the military against Russia. How many hydrogen bombs do we actually need, Mr. Moron Mayor? Isn't the military built up enough? What's their budget again?
    Dump all you want on Clinton. She's far more intelligent than any Republican out there.

    December 1, 2007 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  12. pam Eugene, OR

    Let's try again and see if you post this one Clinton New Network. HRC deserves to get boos and you can't put a happy face on this one. She side steps every quetion. She does not want to have a conservation with the voters because she won't be pinned to to a position. She always has the same rhecoric and nothing definitive. She is like a greased pig and you can't hold her to anything.

    December 1, 2007 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  13. bkk atlanta

    I watched this on the TV. She had the right answer for the question. People need to understand that congress has to pass the legislation before president can sign. It is how the process works

    December 1, 2007 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  14. Adrian, TX

    This made me laugh.

    December 1, 2007 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  15. Bruce

    Of course theybooed her, what do you mornons expect. CNN is as out of touch as the Liberal Democratic Party

    December 1, 2007 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  16. Steve,Ft. Lauderdale, Fl

    This is what happens when she has to answer real questions instead of "plants".

    December 1, 2007 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  17. Steve, Portland, OR

    Go Iowa, anybody but Hillary.

    December 1, 2007 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  18. faith,Iowa

    This is crap. I'm really tired of all these stuff. Looks like we are giving Hillary a push to the white house. I can not imagine how other candidates are working hard just to see Hillary being helped to stage things and hype the country.

    December 1, 2007 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  19. Nita - San Antonio

    This is a very serious issue. But what are suppose to do? Lynch them? Kill them? Clinton answered the question correctly. It needs to be addressed. Why do we have this problem? Because we have people on welfare who are sitting on their ass – collecting our hard earned money and not working these jobs. We have companies/people giving them jobs – fine them. People who are renting homes/apts fine them. People who are selling cars fine them. We wouldn't have this problem if we stopped these 3 things.

    December 1, 2007 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  20. E. Elliott, Orlando, FL

    I have to think she would be a massive improvement over the crap that W and handlers have presented us. But the idea of a path to citizenship and forgiveness of these crimes is wrong. They need a path back where they came from and go through the same process honest people do. No rewards now or ever for breaking our laws and making our borders a joke. Bush has been in the fight to take the jobs from American wokers from the day he was pushed into politics. Hillary is exactly the same as the other Dems. That place is on W's side, which we should know by now is failure.

    December 1, 2007 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  21. Joe, Wilmington, DE

    A typical non-committal Clintonesque answer.

    December 1, 2007 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  22. Dooze, Mountain View, California

    To Jackson, Morongo Valley, CA.

    you have to remember that America started from immigration so to ignore this issue or give it less importance would be starbing the dreams of others who want to find their homes here just like your forefathers did years ago..please wake up to reality.

    December 1, 2007 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  23. Ken, San Diego, CA

    The far left is as bad (and nutty) as the far right. The question that illicited the boos was "would you inact legislation to give illegal immigrants a path to citizenship in your first 100 days". A non-lying (and dare I say moral...) candidate will give the response Hillary did. A lying and pandering candidate will say "yes" and give the answer that Dodd gave.

    By the way, the boos were coming from the Chicago group (90% of them wearing "Obama" t-shirts), which made up OVER half of the attendees...If it had been in reverse and Obama was booed (as he was at the Nevada debate) all of the Obama supporters would be saying "Hillary is horrible. How dare she have her supporters boo Obama." Give me a brea.

    December 1, 2007 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  24. Bill W, Coatesville, PA

    Once again, she cannot commit to an answer on anything without polls in hand showing what 80% or more of the people are in favor of. Her stand on any issue is whatever is popular at the moment. She has no ideas, no plan, and we have no reason to elect her president. If her last name wasn't Clinton, she wouldn't be running in the first place.

    December 1, 2007 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |

    I'm trying to figure out what these people want with Hillary. It seems she can do no right by some people. She gave a VERY realistic answer to a REALISTIC problem. What turns people off to politics is politicians giving the electorate UNREASONABLE campaign promises and not coming through. Every Republican candidate has said they would try and overturn Roe vs Wade. Guess what? That is unrealistic it's not going to happen. Why promise something you know you can't fulfill on. One last thing. Why do we give so much importance to Iowa and New Hampshire anyway. They are not representative of what makes America American so we should stop letting them pick our President.

    December 1, 2007 08:21 pm at 8:21 pm |
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