December 3rd, 2007
08:58 AM ET
15 years ago

Obama denies new Clinton attack, calls her 'stressed' by polls

Obama responds to accusations about his political action committee Hopefund.

DES MOINES, Iowa (CNN) – Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama denied allegations from rival Hillary Clinton's campaign Sunday that his political action committee Hopefund was used to bribe public officials in early voting states.

"Everything that we've done is in exact accordance with the law," said the Illinois senator at a press conference. "Unless they can show that it hasn't been, I suggest they focus on trying to get their supporters to caucus in Iowa."

Earlier in the day, Clinton's communications director Howard Wolfson called Obama's PAC a 'slush fund.' Obama fired back, adding that some of Hopefund's contributions even went to supporters of Clinton's campaign.

"I think that folks from some of the other campaigns are reading the polls and starting to get stressed and issuing a whole range of outlandish accusations," he said.

A Des Moines Register poll released this weekend indicates that Obama holds a slight lead in the first-in-the-nation caucus state. Obama leads the pack with 28 percent, while Clinton is close behind at 25 percent - within the poll's margin of error.

Obama also attributed some of Hopefund's actions to the fact that he had not been planning to run for president as long as "some of the other candidates have been planning for it."

"By the time we announced that I was running, there was still money left over, which we used to contribute to candidates all across the country to help build a Democratic majority," he said.

The Clinton campaign took issue with that as well.

In a press release, Clinton spokesman Phil Singer said Obama is "re-writing history," adding that his comments are "fundamentally at odds with what his teachers, family, classmates and staff have said about his plans to run for President."

"Sen. Obama's campaign rhetoric is getting in the way of his reality."

Shortly after that, another response came from team Obama.

"I'm sure tomorrow they'll attack him for being a flip-flopper because he told his second grade teacher he wanted to be an astronaut," said Obama spokesman Bill Burton.

Both candidates were in Des Moines Sunday morning following Saturday night's Iowa Brown and Black Presidential Forum.

The Des Moines Register poll also indicated that fellow Democratic opponent John Edwards had the support of 23 percent of the 500 likely Democratic caucus-goers surveyed. The poll was conducted November 25-28 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.4 percent.

-CNN Iowa Producer Chris Welch

soundoff (157 Responses)
  1. Naomi,ks,mo

    I think we should not be polls driven. That is what Barack implies here. We should just wait to see who gets nominated.
    I am a strong Barack supporter.

    December 2, 2007 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  2. DD, kingston, New Hampshire

    Obamas says Hillary stressed by polls?

    I wonder who has more stress – Obama or Hillary. At this moment, Hillary is beating Obama is ALL states, except Illinois and Iowa. Is that what Obama can do to have a statiscal tie with Hillary in Iowa, after nearly spending most of his $90 million raised?

    After losing Iowa and New Hampshire in 1992, Bill Clinton later won the nomination and presidency. That could be done.

    Hillary 08

    December 2, 2007 07:41 pm at 7:41 pm |
  3. Patrick Lincoln, NE

    Here we go... It is a well-established fact that the Clinton's play dirty. It is well-established that they don't play nice, but rather attempt to destroy their opponents. Like the smear attempt a couple of weeks ago, when Clinton officials were behind-the-scenes claiming they had knowledge of an Obama scandal, this is just another desparate attempt to stop the bleeding in her campaign. Sadly, her personal ambition (and that of her husband) trump what is good for the party or the nation.

    Just say no to Hillary '08 and yes to my man, Obama!

    December 2, 2007 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  4. Reggie, Germany

    Obama is right if they have something to prove their accusations putit on the table. Otherwise stop with the attempts at character assasination.

    I mean really, 'his comments are "fundamentally at odds with what his teachers, family, classmates and staff have said about his plans to run for President."

    The man is 46 I believe what teachers and classmates are we talking about?
    Even if we assume it were college it would be over 20 years ago!!!!

    This statement is just plain retarded . I think it's Hillary and Mr. Singer's MINDS that is at odds with all reality.

    Think somebodies feeling the pressure??

    Do we really want such vindictive people in the White House???

    Not me.

    December 2, 2007 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  5. jmaya, iowa

    Obama is very deceptive guy people should know and if he is elected in case it will be disaster for our democracy and civil liberty.

    It is very interesting to see Barack Hussein Obama getting positive coverage all the time and Hillary getting punched even though she is the best candidate for president. I think in this country being woman and running for president is worse than developing country. Shame to American Media for putting a smart and capable woman down.

    Thanks CNN for bringing PAC issue.

    December 2, 2007 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  6. suzzy,Derry,NH

    let her get stressed. Someone is doing a good thing to you.
    Go Obama!

    December 2, 2007 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  7. Hillarylover - SA

    Obama is a liar. Plain and simple. He is so full of it. Un-f'ing-believable!I know it has to be republicans writing the hurray comments because no decent democrat supports this guy. Weak and pathetic. Vote Clinton or get ready for the republicans to get into the whitehouse. Where they are determined to strip women of rights and throw homosexuals back to the stone ages. Obama isn't going to win it just amazes me to think some people do. Get smart people this is a huge setup.

    December 2, 2007 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  8. Mary,charlestown,S.C

    In other words she is getting desperate!!!!

    Good news peopleeeeee!

    Des Moines Mayor Frank Cownie endorsed Senator Obama for president today. Mayor Cownie was re-elected in 2007 with 80% of the vote.

    December 2, 2007 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  9. Anne Detroit MI

    ALL WE've seen is these two clowns attack each other. Neither has acted in a civilized manner, neither has pointed out to the voters along the way their CREDENTIALS and experience - only fighting and accusing and playing politics ! What kind of Presidents will they make ?!

    December 2, 2007 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  10. David,des moines Iowa.

    His electability is inevitable. You Qoute me on that I tell ya. Over here is all Obama......

    December 2, 2007 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  11. WiseOne

    Obama cruise on, let the nay sayers curse and send false accusations. The American voters are very smart and intelligent knowing what they want after 8 years of failed policies and falsehood.

    The MSMs may print negative information but the voters are not the MSMs they know better and will do the right thing voting for you because our future is at stake.

    We are ready for HELL from the haters because we will send them back to HELL. The harder they come the harder they fall because we have their interest at heart and the interest of their children and our children for a greater America.

    The movement has only just begun, come january the movement will become a nation.

    December 2, 2007 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  12. Anonymous

    Dry Sarcasm FTW

    December 2, 2007 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  13. Mia, Stafford, VA

    Get her BARACK. They are so full of CRAP. Barack should name the Clinton supporters that he has supported financially by name to make them (HRC Campaign) look the sore losers they are being.

    December 2, 2007 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  14. James,Pa

    She want you to throw your game and that won't do it! Keep focused. We are in this together...

    December 2, 2007 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  15. Christian, Tampa FL

    The Clinton attacks are indeed seeming more and more desperate. Obama just needs to keep his position in Iowa and increase his lead. He must maintain the perception that he is honest and honorable and keep his attacks to retaliatory measures and comments on proven facts rather than rhetoric. Such a strategy will help fight the right-wing attack machine in the general election.

    December 2, 2007 08:25 pm at 8:25 pm |
  16. Mia, Stafford, VA

    Anne from MI – Barack has never been uncivilized, always cordial and RESPECTFUL if you have seen something different please feel free to share the link.

    DISRESPECTFUL, UNCIVILIZED comes from the Dick Cheney's and the Tom Delays'. Now they know how to get DOWN & DIRTY....

    Amazing what a short memory you have.

    December 2, 2007 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  17. Christian, Tampa FL

    In response to "Hillarylover:"

    Actually, a lot of very real Democrats and Independents support Obama, and a lot of Republicans have indicated that they could support him.

    If you have anything of SUBSTANCE to say against the good Senator, so be it, but until then, let's keep in mind that Hillary is losing in head to head match ups against every Republican candidate and that we Democrats need to keep that in mind.

    December 2, 2007 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  18. NY, NY

    Mr. Obama where's your state senate records? Politicians boast their records and you're hiding yours?

    Also how did you get away from paying your parking tickets that are 10 years overdue and only pay them when you decided to enter the democratic presidential race.

    December 2, 2007 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  19. Joel,Boston,ma

    I personally think the incident on friday was to campaign for Hillary across New Hempshire. That was so astonishing for me.....

    December 2, 2007 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  20. Reggie, Germany

    Captain Sky, most people try to hide their ignorance. You wear it proudly.

    Your statements are just as retarded as Mr Singer's but thats not suprising, "Birds of a feather flock together"

    December 2, 2007 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  21. JAN

    I once believed Hillary Clinton was very smart but for some reason she keeps sticking her foot in her mouth and she doesn't realize more americans are paying attention to politicians. Everyone keeps bragging about her political machine. It appears to me her political machine needs a tune up and she needs the strongest nerve pill they sell on the market or maybe she needs a pill they don't sell on the market to CALM HER SKANKY SELF DOWN.

    December 2, 2007 08:49 pm at 8:49 pm |
  22. Henry,Iowa

    Posted By Captain-Sky : December 2, 2007 6:44 pm

    wow, what grade are you. Who is ready to read such an article.
    Advice: Ask banks if you can do fine prints for them for their credit cards customers....Just a thought because I can not waste my time trying to read your hate mail!

    December 2, 2007 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  23. White Man, America

    A vote for Obama is a vote for racism. He, Sharpton, Jackson, and Oprah are all hate mongers who get away with subtle racism on a daily basis.

    So what can we serious voters do about it? I say vote white this year... or to put it subtly like Obama and his supporters would: it's time for a white president. Seriously, Obama is running on the race card and worse than that, he's not exactly intelligent or substantive. I put him in the same league as GW Bush. Vote for that.

    December 2, 2007 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  24. Trang, Fremont, CA

    So Hillary doesn't know how to persuade voters to go for her, she has to bring down the other.

    That's okay, it's not going to hurt Obama. He's not going to get paranoid about it. He knows who he is. He makes the offer to the American people, and it's up to the American people to decide.

    I know legislators have PAC and they often send e-mails to me asking for me for donation to help another fellow democrats. I think this is similar to that. Obama has his PAC so does Hillary, and they both use it to raise funds to help fellow Democrats.

    December 2, 2007 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  25. Jen, des moines, ia

    Obama is good at denial.

    Earlier, he denied that his healh care plan is not universal. Now, he denied that his PAC funds have not been used to buy votes.

    Obama lied in both counts. He is inexperienced, a poor leader, and not electable.

    Hillary 08.

    December 2, 2007 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
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