December 9th, 2007
02:44 PM ET
13 years ago

Oprah vs. Chelsea

Oprah Winfrey campaigned with Barack Obama, and Chelsea Clinton hit the trail with her mother..

WILLIAMSBURG, Iowa (CNN) – On a day when Oprah Winfrey is taking her first leap into the world of presidential campaigning by stumping for Illinois Sen. Barack Obama in Iowa, Chelsea Clinton is also marking a first. It's the first time she's been out on the trail with her mother, New York Sen. Hillary Clinton, during this election cycle. And guess what? They're also in the Hawkeye State.

An attempt to compete with the star power of Winfrey? Not so, said Hillary Clinton.

Answering reporters' questions, Clinton never mentioned the queen of daytime television by name. She did, however, say a trip with her daughter—and her mother, Dorothy Rodham, who also joined them Saturday—had been in the works but that the family kept running into "conflicting schedule needs," that is, until today, coincidentally.

Reporters weren't told about the addition of Chelsea Clinton until Saturday morning.

"It worked out that it was going to be [Saturday], and I'm thrilled to have them with me," Clinton said. "I've had a great time having my mother and my daughter with me. I hope I can persuade one or both of them to come back."

But the two sat quietly while the presidential hopeful spoke.

Asked if Chelsea would be making any comments at any point in the day, Clinton hesitated but stated simply, "I don’t think so."

Reporters were also curious whether Sen. Clinton was at all nervous that Winfrey would no doubt be hogging much of the spotlight Saturday.

At an unofficial campaign stop for breakfast—where reporters with cameras formed a quasi-fortress around the family's table—Clinton chose to answer by saying, "I'm having a good time. I'm just not sure I'm going to eat all of this in front of you. That’s the only thing I'm concerned about right now!"

-CNN Iowa Producer Chris Welch

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Hillary Clinton • Iowa
soundoff (190 Responses)
  1. John, Frederick, MD

    This is a capmpaign law loophole – it should be illegal to do this unless your time is worth less than $1ooo. This woman knows nothing about government but has millions of empty-headed followers who will vote for "her" candidate. Ridiculous.

    December 9, 2007 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  2. babyboomer Everytown USA

    Gee I shudder to think that America might elect a President based on a talk show host's recommendation! Oprah needs to spend far more time focusing on cleaning up her own affairs before she goes around promoting someone elses.

    To those of you not old enough to remember that JFK was a womanizer who flaunted it openly in Jackie's face – would you have called Jackie coldly calculating or just stupid for staying with him? If she had decided to run for public office – would she have been belittled, ridiculed and accused of riding on her husband's coattails? JFK was perhaps the most inspiring President of the 20th Century DESPITE his faults and his weaknesses... but to paraphrase the late Senator Bentsen 'Obama is no Jack Kennedy' – AND anyone who knows the whole Kennedy history knows why there is no comparison.

    As to any comparisons between Jackie and Hillary – Jackie WAS harshly criticized for daring to venture out on her own two feet... Same for Eleanor Roosevelt. Why does everyone insist that former First Ladies are supposed to just fade away silently into the sunset?!

    WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU DIMWITS – Women make up more than 50% of the American population. They gained the right to vote 87 yeas ago and they have a right for those voices to be heard. They have a right to run for President of the United States – And yes they even have a right to stand up and campaign for anyone they choose – including Obama OR Hillary!! But at least Chelsea and Hillary's mum ARE family... rather than just another celebrity talk show diva who may or may not be the best judge of character?!

    So use your brains peeps – find out when and how Obama met Oprah. AND ask youselves "Is it more important for 'Obama the Candidate' to miss extremely important Senate votes to keep beating the campaign trail rather than flying back to Washington to represent his constituents from Illinois as well as the REST of the country's Democrats in Congress"?? Considering that there is only a 51-49 member majority – I for one think NOT!! Right now I suspect Obama is only running for his own best interests NOT WHAT IS BEST FOR OUR COUNTRY...

    December 9, 2007 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  3. jlb hallsville tx.

    Oprah you was always a star in our house until you entered the arena of politics. Your show will not be tuned in again. I always thought you were above racism. Your true color has come out now. The only reason you came out for Obama is his color not what he stands for. All you are doing is helping the GOP. Obama has no chance of winning a national election. A snowball in hell has a better chance. Give it up and go back to your day time talk show. So what if Bill gets to be close to the white house again. We had no wars a balanced budget and a surplus of national funds when he lift office. Most people done better the eight years he was in office then any other president for a long time.

    December 9, 2007 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  4. Jerry Zamora, NY, NY

    I hope people get past the excitement of Oprah, who I like very much, and ask themselves the question why is the Obama campaign having to use a celebrity to sell him at this point?
    Many of the candidates have celebrity support, but they are not positioning them as Obama has. I think at this point the only people who should be out there front and center with the candidates are their families.
    I think this was a bad decision on the Obama campain to bring Oprah out so soon, I think it clearly points out his inability to stand on his own and convince America that he is the one and points out his inexperience which is the reason any pragmatic person whould see he is not qualififed.

    December 9, 2007 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  5. Tex Mex, NYC, NY

    Oprah vs. Chelsea??!! Give me a break! How even dare you, CNN, compare the incomparable? Chelsea is who she is (and what is she exactly other than the daughter of some former President?) because she was born to privilege whereas Oprah is an inspiration, role model, and success story for America by diligently working her way up. Oprah is not coatailing on her parents' fame.

    December 9, 2007 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  6. sunny , nj

    why so much criticism to CNN..? don't you get guys ..? Republicans wants Obama to win Democratic Nomination, if that happen, What chances Obama have to win against any Republican opponent..? I would say Big Zero "0".
    This Criticism to CNN not helping anybody but Republicans.

    December 9, 2007 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  7. Augustine

    Carrying an 88 year old woman on a stretcher to come out and campaign for you is the best way to lose an election. 88 year old woman should be resting.

    And by the way, Hillary and Bill should be retired, resting and letting the new generation of leaders take over. Greedy people!

    December 9, 2007 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  8. Jen, Cedar Falls, IA

    Well, tally another one, here's one more lie from Hillary, claiming that having Chelsea and her mother with her in Iowa was NOT an attempt to compete with the attention of Oprah stumping for Obama on the very same day. I'm telling you folks, this woman just can NOT tell the truth! Even when it wouldn't hurt her. What would it have harmed if she said "Of course that's why they're here!"? It wouldn't have hurt a thing, but she just cannot be honest with America. BEWARE, her latest blunders and those of her coed house partner are their true colors and our country deserves better. We do NOT need another liar in the White House, especially when one of them had already been impeached for lying under oath while working there the last time! Try something new for a change – ABC – Anybody But Clinton! Do a search of Compulsive Lying, read up on it, these 2 are classic cases.

    December 9, 2007 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  9. Adam, Plano, TX

    It amazes how the media it trying to shove this guy down our throats. It's like a Britney Spears thing. I have looked at him for the last 4 years ago, I'm not interested.
    I live in Georgia, and every African American person I speak to is voting Clinton. And I can assure you Oprah will not influence their vote.
    I'm one of "those" baby boomers who cares about Social Secuity and health care, not who the press thinks I should vote for.
    Posted By Christine : December 9, 2007 8:47 am

    if you cared for social security and healthcare, you wouldn't be voting for clinton.

    December 9, 2007 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  10. Vinay Goyal, Fullerton, CA

    It is about time that this country should make a historical decision by electing first ever woman President in the history of the US.

    December 9, 2007 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  11. George, Seattle, WA

    Congratulations CNN - this has to be the first time in history that a "journalist" wrote a news story about a political candidate appearing with their mommy and their daughter. Your Hillary pandering has sunk to a new low - did you even bother to edit this latest press release from the Hillary campaign?

    I guess the polls are being really tough for Hillary right now. When the going gets tough, the tough call on mommy.

    December 9, 2007 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  12. Dallas,Texas

    It's seems that America is still asking that same old question. Are we ready for a Black president? No one has ever ask the question,are we ready for a White president. Many of our former presidents didn't have any experience as president until they filled that position. I'm tired of hearing that Sen. Obama doesn't have any experience to run this country. People forget that the presidency is an institution of many, not just one. America still has racial divide! Sen. Clinton is not her husband Bill Clintion, they have different thoughts and convictions.

    December 9, 2007 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  13. Vinay Goyal, Fullerton, CA

    I do not agree that Chelsea is no match to Oprah and she is born with a silver spoon in her mouth.

    Chelsea and her parent's life was scrutinized every bit since she was born than Oprah's. It should not be counted against her because she is a daughter of a former Governor, the US President and the Senator. Her parents are highly educated, very much admired worldwide for their policies and oratory. She is definitely going to make a great impact on Hilary's campaign. It is about time we should create a history by electing the first ever woman President. Histroy has shown that women Presidents are as good as any man President. Well, anyone will be much better than our current President.

    December 9, 2007 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  14. Randy Michigan City, Indiana

    Looks like to me Obama needs some help in Oprah he knows he's going to get beat. How can the American people vote for this guy who is Not an American a true American would put his hand over his heart during the pledge he had his hands folded down by his waist. I don't trust him.

    December 9, 2007 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  15. Larry Buchas, New Britain, CT

    Oprah gets it! It's about time the rest of you get it too.

    This has nothing to do with man vs. woman or black v. white.

    Obama brings honesty, integrity & ability to rally this country. And he will mend some relationships with the rest of the world. No other candidate out there can.

    December 9, 2007 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  16. Mark, San Francisco, CA

    The most telling part of all of that is when Hillary said Chelsea would not be making any comments. Hillary wants to bring her along to sit there and smile and remind everyone that what would seem to be a non-functional reproductive system (I didn't know robots could reproduce) actually produced a child.

    But is Chelsea going to be allowed to be asked questions? Nope, Hillary wants complete control and wouldn't dare let Chelsea say something truthful that might make her look bad. And Hillary doesn't want Chelsea saying anything that wasn't poll tested first.

    Just another person being used by Hillary. How could you do that to your own daughter??

    December 9, 2007 11:08 am at 11:08 am |
  17. Deb, Richmond VA

    "I always thought you were above racism. Your true color has come out now. The only reason you came out for Obama is his color not what he stands for. ... So what if Bill gets to be close to the white house again. We had no wars a balanced budget and a surplus of national funds when he lift office. Most people done better the eight years he was in office then any other president for a long time."

    Posted By jlb hallsville tx. : December 9, 2007 10:08 am

    Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
    I couldn't agree with you more.
    The presidency of Bush has been a horrible trick played on American citizens. He and his buddies are the only ones who benefitted. I'm tired of being broke, paying taxes to support the rich, and freezing because of the cost of heating oil.

    December 9, 2007 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  18. Ruth Huntington, IN

    Oprah has said she would not get in politics. She wants to support one now because he is afican american. If anyone thinks this is not true then tell me why she had never support anyone. I know someday we will have a black president but Obama is not ready. Their is not enough experience behind him. Obama has not been in politicals long enough to have the experience tobe our president. If you gave the same airtime and newspaper space for Clinton then thangs might be different. Oprah should use her money to build a school in our country along with one in Africa. 50 million dollars would go along way to help our poor. The people in Louisiana and Mississippi that arew still without homes. Iam sure they could use a few schools also. I look at Oprah different because of only backing a african american canadiate. I won't look up to her anymore because of this.

    December 9, 2007 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  19. Pete - St pete Fla.

    Oprah stumping for Obama is as simple as black and white. Oprah has never stumped for a person of another color except for Jessie. Does this say something about Oprah?

    December 9, 2007 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  20. C. MacLean, Raleigh, NC

    "Presidential hopeful campaigns with television personality."

    "Presidential hopeful campiagns with dauthter."

    Been there, done that.

    Could we please get back to the important campiagn issues – the war, health care, jobs, trade?

    We can watch day time talk shows and celebrate Take-Your-Daughter-To-Work Day another time.

    December 9, 2007 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  21. Mark, Dunkirk Ny

    I am not the biggest fans of the Clintons, but before his time in the White House, Bill Clinton was certainly not among the privledged. Chelsea is a private citizen, her parents have rightly kept her out of the media spotlight. In this change of course, I can only think that the Clinton machine is a little nervous at this point. Go Barack-if we truly want change as a nation, he is our guy because he does not have a long political career, and he would approach things from a different perspective.

    December 9, 2007 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  22. Doug, Denver, CO

    Adding Oprah to Obama's campaign has convinced me more than ever to campaign AGAINST him. Talk show hosts? Honesty? Give me a break, people. There is a real world out there in real trouble. Inexperienced politicians and talk-show hosts are not the answer. Just what the world needs is television's take on "honesty".

    December 9, 2007 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  23. E. C., Houston, Texas


    December 9, 2007 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  24. Jmaya81

    Obama Hussein Barack has encouraged hate in this election. I don't know where it gonna end. I am life time democrat but i will never ever vote for this unexperienced guy and a lot of my friend laugh at his speech.

    Oprah is show bizz woman she can tell what brings money or power and Chelsea is a young intelligent and smart and successful woman; please don't compare potato (Oprah) with apple (chelsea).

    December 9, 2007 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  25. Aaron Smithsburg, Maryland

    Talking heads like this woman are the reason our Republic has become a Plutocracy. Glitz and glamour, not logic and substance. Who cares who Oprah Winfrey, and Chuck Norris are voting for? They have their pieces of the pie. You people need to start limiting the amount of time you watch television, the subliminal messages have fried your brains.

    December 9, 2007 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
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