December 6th, 2007
07:08 AM ET
13 years ago

Clinton volunteer's sending of anti-Obama e-mail causes stir

An anti-Obama e-mail sent by a Clinton volunteer is causing a stir in Iowa.

(CNN) - One of the recipients of a controversial anti-Barack Obama email forward that put Hillary Clinton’s Iowa campaign on the defensive Wednesday said the volunteer county coordinator who sent the original message may have been unfairly targeted.

“She thinks people misunderstood her intent,” said Gary Hart, who said he spoke with the volunteer, Judy Rose, a short time ago. The former Clinton volunteer insisted “she was just sending it along so people know what kind of information is out there,” not because she believed the charges herself. He added that Rose is baffled by the uproar.

The controversy began early Wednesday when an Iowa supporter of presidential candidate Chris Dodd posted a comment on the liberal Daily Kos Web site, accusing an unnamed Clinton volunteer of forwarding an anti-Muslim e-mail aimed at the Illinois senator, containing charges that have been widely discredited.

The e-mail - one of several hoaxes that have been circulating since the Illinois senator announced his candidacy - claims that Obama is a Muslim whose campaign is part of a plot to destroy the United States. Obama is not, and never has been, a Muslim.

Within minutes, Clinton Internet Director Peter Daou posted a message from campaign manager Patti Solis Doyle disavowing the remarks. Rose, a Jones County volunteer, was immediately asked to leave the New York senator’s campaign, and did.

The war of words between both candidates, who are running neck and neck in Iowa polls less than a month before Election Day, has reached a fever pitch over the past week. Within the past few days, both have asked supporters to track attacks and “dirty tricks” aimed at their campaigns.

The Obama campaign is not commenting on the incident.

Earlier: Obama camp denies 'dirty tricks' accusation

- CNN’s Rebecca Sinderbrand

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Hillary Clinton • Iowa
soundoff (211 Responses)
  1. Bill, NY

    Get real people: America will NEVER vote in a black president. Period. It is too backward a country. Obama supporters are wasting their vote...and giving the Republicans a firm hold of the reigns. Vote Hillary, a VIABLE candidate to oust The George.

    December 6, 2007 01:59 am at 1:59 am |
  2. Al, Buffalo, NY

    So what if Obama really WAS a Muslim? Why would that matter anyways? Not all Muslims want to destroy America...

    December 6, 2007 02:27 am at 2:27 am |
  3. theprofessional

    For someone who is so "experienced" and "ready to lead", it's incredible how quickly Hillary Clinton's campaign is falling apart. Everything was going great when no one was paying attention to the race. But now that the spotlight is on, she seems to be melting under the heat.

    December 6, 2007 02:33 am at 2:33 am |
  4. hodan

    since when did it become a crime to be a muslim?
    we dont need him to be muslim and he could only dream about becomming us president.


    December 6, 2007 02:34 am at 2:34 am |
  5. Hamd, Santa Clara, California

    Gosh, it being a Muslim such a bad thing these days?

    A Proud American Muslim

    December 6, 2007 03:07 am at 3:07 am |
  6. David Russell, B'ham AL

    "Its too bad things became so negative in what could have been a chance to recreate politics."

    (I say) Don't start no stuff and there will be no stuff. Last 6 weeks Obama has repeatedly called Hillary a liar in an eloquent way. Obama has been handled with kid gloves by MSNBC/Washington Post. Now these same organizations are attacking CNN for being fair to all the candidates in a recent debate. CNN will stand up to anyone, thats why I watch the "Situation Room" every day.

    December 6, 2007 03:57 am at 3:57 am |
  7. Goody - Eugene, OR

    Tom, She's coming unglued? Don't make me laugh. She can through it with the best of them, big boy!

    December 6, 2007 04:10 am at 4:10 am |
  8. Rick, MD

    I never cease to be amazed at the trivial garbage that CNN seems to consider news worthy. Every single day, CNN becomes more like the National Star or other tabloid trash. Show some class CNN.... PLEASE!

    December 6, 2007 04:48 am at 4:48 am |
  9. Dr B Meftah, Farmington Hills, MI

    I wish that poeple stop using Islam (or any other religion) as their Troy Horse in politics. Defaming any religion is a shame. And to be a Muslim is not given to everybody. Only the few can embrasse this Honorable religion and follow its rules.

    December 6, 2007 05:17 am at 5:17 am |
  10. Independent in IA

    Poor Obama....It's acceptable for your campaign volunteers to engage in attacks on Clinton, but when the tables get turned you want to cry 'foul'. Get used to it buddy-boy, it's gonna get even hotter in the kitchen...

    December 6, 2007 05:25 am at 5:25 am |
  11. Willy, Chesapeake, VA

    Another vast right wing conspiracy by President Bush. A shocker, Mrs. Bill Clinton is as pure as driven snow!

    December 6, 2007 05:41 am at 5:41 am |
  12. mark wilkes barre pa

    this one is just some moron thinking there helping poor hillary.It looks like with the friends hillary has who needs enemies !! Still ,it's good to see these hack jobs exposed for what they are trouble making want-A-be cronies.

    December 6, 2007 05:55 am at 5:55 am |
  13. Mike, Grand Rapids MI

    Obama's father was a Muslim. Obama attended a Muslim school. At time(s) he grew up in a Muslim neighborhood. Easy to see where these stories begin.

    December 6, 2007 06:25 am at 6:25 am |
  14. Jimenez - Texas

    This is just another dirty trick from Obama. Most likely this volunteer had been enlisted to try to smear Clinton. Its not working – we all know how low Obama can go. It's not going to work. And, you people you are dinging Clinton – shame on you. We stand strong in our support. CLINTON 05

    December 6, 2007 06:26 am at 6:26 am |
  15. Maryann Iowa

    Obama was/is Muslim until hew saw that voters are not in favor of it. What is he now? He changes each day. One day he’s white, he next he’s black, JUST can't TRUST this guy. A TRUE EXAMPE OF A FLIP FLOPPER, he's too inexperienced to even campaign, let alone be a president. Obama supporters look stupid to the rest of the country, its obvious they think they are voting for Oprah, and maybe they are, who knows who obama would get to do the job. He can’t….

    December 6, 2007 06:27 am at 6:27 am |
  16. Jojo Hillem NH

    awwwhh...poor poor little obama winphrey... Looks like Oprah has finally replaced Michelle Obama, soon she will jump infront of obama, listeb to her workers,she is one power hungry woman,

    December 6, 2007 06:51 am at 6:51 am |
  17. Daveyt MD

    Atleast its true! not the negative lies hes trying to sell on Clinton

    December 6, 2007 06:52 am at 6:52 am |
  18. Hoping in SA

    Of course he isn't a muslim – he was raised w/his white mother and her parents beliefs. Give us a break.

    December 6, 2007 06:55 am at 6:55 am |
  19. Nita - San Antonio

    This is just another trick from Obama's side. A decoy volunteer to try and smear Clinton. We stand stand strong behind Clinton – she is the strength.

    December 6, 2007 06:58 am at 6:58 am |
  20. Mo, Baltimore MD

    The involvement of this Clinton campaign volunteer in spreading false rumors is incredibly bothersome to me. Given how easily disproved this rumor is, it seems fundamentally dishonest to tolerate its propagation.

    December 6, 2007 07:04 am at 7:04 am |
  21. Bob, DC

    That Clinton volunteer was simply acting like a "Clinton". This incident illustrates the underlying attitude among those within and near the Hillary campaign - "Win at all cost".

    December 6, 2007 07:19 am at 7:19 am |
  22. Anonymous

    your man!!!

    December 6, 2007 07:21 am at 7:21 am |
  23. Emily, Waterloo, Iowa

    Senator Clinton has had to deny many things going on in her campaign...

    If it were Judy Rose's intent to show what an uproar such accusations were, then I would assume that she would at least add something like "this is an uproar" in the subject field. That would show her intentions. Simply forwarding an email to county officials seems a bit fishy to me.

    Also-this was not just a volunteer-she was also a county coordinator, and also a member of Hillary's Women's Leadership Council.

    I don't believe this to be an isolated event. Many in Hillaryland are incensed by the support Obama is accruing-a recent report states that some "hate" Obama for denying Clinton the nomination.

    At the grassroots level, it seems that there is a pattern of behavior developing here. Rather than Senator Clinton disavowing isolated incidents, she should make a general statement that she does not tolerate such slurs. Meaning Hillary should play fair and be principled in her engagement.

    But I would argue that by going on the negative like Clinton has, maybe in a different tone that would not harm her support, she is still engaging in these acts. Of course if the mother bee launches baseless attacks, her worker bees are sure to follow.

    Why do I still expect Senator Clinton to take responsibility rather than pleading ignorance to every liability she has been forced to address?

    I don't know.

    These are dirty politics Senator Clinton. Unless a larger effort is made on your behalf to tone down the language, these attacks will certainly continue.

    Please don't condone these acts by simply denying them. Learn to take more responsibility for what is going on. Stand up to this bigotry.

    These acts only serve to affirm what people think about Hillary. Willing to do anything to win, combined by a penchant to secrecy and dirty tricks.

    December 6, 2007 07:38 am at 7:38 am |
  24. Les WA

    Nader supporters wanted Obama to win the nomination, they're the same group of people who gave the election to Bush in 2000 against Al Gore; they're doing it again.

    Neoconservatives wanted Obama to get the nomination, they knew against any of their candidates (GOP), they'll be back in the WH and regain seats in state level. Even Hannity (foxnews), a neoconservative, defends Obama but criticize Hillary. The GOP knew they have NO CHANCE to keep the WH and regain seats they've lost against the democrats in state level if Hillary is the nominee. I believe Senator Robert Ford of SC when he said the democratic party is doomed if Obama is the nominee. This country is not color blind, not counting the fact Obama lack the conviction to act. He doesn't have a track record either as he stated before when asked about his record as state senator; "they don't keep records", but has the gall to ask Hillary to release hers.

    December 6, 2007 07:45 am at 7:45 am |
  25. OG, Washington, DC

    So, what's the problem with him being a Muslim? He's not as corrupted as the rest of the gang.

    December 6, 2007 07:48 am at 7:48 am |
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