December 10th, 2007
12:43 PM ET
8 years ago

Clinton camp answers Oprah with Angelou

Poet Maya Angelou is the star of a new radio ad for Hillary Clinton.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - On the heels of media mogul Oprah Winfrey's high profile Sunday visit to the crucial primary state of South Carolina for Democrat Barack Obama, rival Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign is launching a new radio ad there featuring noted African American poet ­ and Winfrey pal ­ Maya Angelou.

Angelou, who first announced she was backing the New York senator's presidential bid earlier this year, calls Clinton a "strong woman and a protector of families," in the 60-second spot running on stations across the Palmetto State.

"Each generation of African Americans stands on the shoulders of those who came before," Angelou also says in the ad. "Today, the challenges facing us threaten the dreams we have had for our children. We need a president with the experience and strength to meet those challenges."

The ad comes in the wake of Winfrey's wildly popular tour of early-voting states with Obama over the weekend. The pair drew the biggest turnout in South Carolina, where African Americans make up more than 50 percent of Democratic primary voters.

While Clinton once held a double digit lead in South Carolina, a Mason-Dixon poll released Sunday seems to show Clinton beating the Illinois senator by only 3 percentage points, 28 percent to 25 percent.

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

soundoff (132 Responses)
  1. Bob, Seattle

    One should check into whether the Hilliary campaign PAID for this endorsement. I am sure that Obama did NOT pay Oprah.

    December 10, 2007 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  2. Steve in SC

    For all who think Oprah is supporting Obama only because he is black, does that opinion apply to Maya Angelou supporting Hillary and thus making her a sexist? P.S. I have great respect for Ms. Angelou! Could it be people are supporting candidates they believe will make the best leader? Which is it or do you want to have it both ways?

    December 10, 2007 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  3. TB, FL

    hahahahaha what a joke!!! How much did she charge you Clinton?? She's old and crazy!!

    December 10, 2007 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  4. Amanda Orlando, FL

    While Angelou is a well-known, respected author, I think a lot of younger voters are going to say, Maya Angel-who?

    The other problem with this endorsement is that the HIlary camp probably had to solicit it, while I doubt Obama had to ask Oprah for her support. Again, I don't know that for sure, but it still looks like a counterstrike on the Hilary camp's part, and therefore looks unoriginal, insincere, and calculated.

    Babs didn't work, so let's try Maya. It's like she's going to keep throwing endorsements and attacks and accusations at Obama until something sticks.

    It's getting tired, and no one's falling for it. I wish she'd do something proactive for a change. So far, her campaign has been entirely passive-aggressive.

    December 10, 2007 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  5. David, Dallas Tx

    Maya who?

    December 10, 2007 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  6. BlueGoose

    Maya Angelou knows about the electoral college.

    December 10, 2007 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  7. Ginny, Byron, CA

    Oh, thank you Maya, for your voice of reason and balance amid all the recent hooplah. You are a woman of depth, decency, and wisdom. Your endorsement of Hillary packs weight indeed. She is truly a strong woman and a protector of families and children as she has proven time and again. Her strength and knowledge in foreign and domestic policies puts her at the top of the list. She understands our country's problems and has the drive, intelligence, and and specific agenda to get our nation back on track.

    December 10, 2007 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  8. Marty NH


    December 10, 2007 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  9. Ike Woodbridge, VA

    I am African American and I hope that every Democrat that wants to win back the WhiteHouse, and let the good times roll again would know that Hillary Clinton is our best choice and only hope. I like Obama as a V.P to gain the experience and ready up for 2016. This is a very serious time, and Hillary is who we need. Forget the race issue. Hillary has more experience and a better chance.

    December 10, 2007 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  10. Jerry , Adams Center , NY

    Hillary is the leader we need if we want to see change in the white house. She has the fortitude to make changes for the best.

    December 10, 2007 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  11. la'Kitgum, NH

    Hillary will still win the Whitehouse. Those who know and understand her, know America's future better than risk it to a trial-and-error Obama policies – if any.

    December 10, 2007 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  12. Eric, from THE Republic of Texas

    "I'll see your Oprah, and I'll raise you an Angelou."

    "Wait, wait... we're digging up MLK's bones now..."


    I'll vote for a person of color when his/her skills and resume are better than his/her opponent... in other words, the color of the skin doesn't matter, but the quality of the skills/resume does. In a theoretic matchup, Powell would win in a landslide over this joker Obama, even with help of Ms. Dopey Wind-bag.

    But, alas, Powell will never run, because he's too smart and he knows what would happen in the process: his entire life, and his family, would be torn apart by the media and his opponents, all seeking dirt.

    December 10, 2007 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  13. Claude, Mesa AZ

    I'm African American. Maya Angelo supporting Hillary Clinton is a JOKE! This will not overshadow the underhanded, deceptive approach that is imbreaded into Hillary Clintons soul. She will not get my vote. She needs to go home and focus on being a wife.

    December 10, 2007 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  14. Jesse, Burnsville, MN

    I've seen multiple times where Hillary supporters are saying "shame on you" to Oprah. What is that all about?? Shame on her for what, not supporting the candidate that you support? Grow up!

    Oprah is inspired by Obama (as am I) and his different brand of politics. If you aren't inspired, that's OK (even though it is probably because you're not listening), but that's your right.

    I'm not really a fan of her show (just because I'm not really into daytime TV), but if Oprah sees some of the same qualities in Obama that I see, then that's fine by me.

    Obama '08

    December 10, 2007 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  15. Tom R. Tampa, FL

    Talk about pandering!! How obvious Hillary – I can't believe how obvious you are!!

    Hillary Clinton is clueless about Iraq, clueless about Iran and clueless about how to work with anyone that's a Republican. She doesn't even carry the platform of the anti-war left.

    She will cause us to lose the house and the senate again.

    If Hillary becomes president we will see four years of the most intense political fighting we've ever seen. If you think the republicans were after Bill, just wait until they see Hillary's bone-head moves.

    Even though she is a war hawk, she will be fighting and dividing this country even more than George Bush has.

    This will be nightmare – four years of our history lost. Rush Limbaugh and Fox news are drooling in their lap s hoping she gets elected. Their audience will grow 10-fold.

    December 10, 2007 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  16. Eyzwidopn, LA,CA

    Sounds like a lot of venting going on here without much clarity of thought, sensibility and realism. Oprah is supporting Obama because he's the most inspirational candidate (which is usually the first thing she looks for before endorsing anything/anyone), and because she believes that he can effectuate real, positive change in Washington unlike any other candidate running. Would those of you throwing the race card around embrace the silly notion that all of HRC’s white supporters are only backing her because she's white, or that women are only backing her because she's a woman? How about showing some intellectual evolution and stop the hate-mongering. And for those of you who believe that Obama can't win because of the tired, ill-conceived arguments that he's not experienced enough or tough enough, do the math. Obama has more elected years in office than HRC and more practical years working in the community at a grassroots level on issues affecting everyday Americans. His stated aggressive policies towards terrorism along with his forward-thinking diplomacy approach were once ridiculed and then embraced by foreign policy experts and military officials alike ("google" and do the research). Obama helped to deliver the first significant campaign finance reform law in Illinois in 25 years. He brought law enforcement groups around to back legislation requiring that homicide interrogations be taped and helped bring about passage of the state’s first racial-profiling law. He was a chief sponsor of a law enhancing tax credits for the working poor, played a central role in negotiations over welfare reform and successfully pushed for increasing child care subsidies (NYT, 7/30/07). As a Chicago community organizer, Obama notched accomplishments ranging from job-training programs to a successful attempt to improve city services at the Altgeld Gardens housing project, chaired a voter-registration drive that helped carry Illinois for Democratic presidential candidate Bill Clinton in 1992 and led an effort to acquire state money for a dropout prevention program that still operates today (any Obama bio you can find online). Toughness? Considering Obama's weathered HRC's petty, below-the-belt and comical attacks on him with flying colors (kindergarten ambitions? Come on!), I think it's safe to say that he's more than capable of withstanding any right-wing Republican shots. Here's the bottomline that folks should be focusing on. Can HRC get elected with her high negatives? Yes, but it won't be with a 50+1 majority but more than likely something closer to a 46-43 edge at best. With that kind of deficient win, HRC will not be able to govern or lead effectively because of the animus and distrust she generates from those "red states" and the other side of the isle that will bog down the legislative process in even nastier partisanship. That's why Obama's maturity, intelligence, vision, and skills as a proven leader, coupled with his broader appeal over that of HRC and lack of combustible "political baggage" in comparison to HRC, will allow him to do just as he says as President of the United States… bring both sides of the aisle and independents together to address and find solutions for the vital issues facing our country.

    December 10, 2007 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  17. Johathan J. Dallas, TX

    Quoting from another post similar to this one..."STOP BASHING BAMA, IT WILL NOT CHANGE OUR MINDS." Back to ya fool...STOP BASHING CLINTON, IT WON'T CHANGE OUR MINDS!."

    December 10, 2007 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  18. AJ, IL

    Maya Angelou? Just kidding. I know of and admire some of Maya Aneglou's work. But this announcement of Maya Angelou radio ad endorsing Hillary is just to try to counter Oprah's endorsement of Obama. I'm sorry but Maya Angelou has a biased view of the 2008 Presidential race. If memory serves me, Maya was a poet laureate of Bill Clinton and is a native of Arkansas. Maya read one of her poems at Bill Clinton's 1993 inauguration address. Here we go again with the Hillary riding the coat-tails of Bill Clinton. Maya's loyalty is to Bill and not Hillary.

    There is a difference between someone like Oprah who is inspired to help Obama as opposed to Bill/Hillary requesting Maya (we did you a favor now do us a favor attitude) to do a radio ad.

    December 10, 2007 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  19. Mark, Shreveport, LA

    She calls Clinton "a strong woman"????

    Hillary stood by her man despite the fact he cheated on her REPEATEDLY! A strong woman would have kicked him to the curb!

    December 10, 2007 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  20. Julie - Albuquerque, NM

    Same goes for Clinton as I said for Obama – no one, and I mean NO ONE has the "power" to influence me to vote for a particular candidate. I might enjoy their talk shows or movies or poetry, but celebrities (with an inflated perception of self-worth) who think that their mere endorsement of a political candidate will sway the voting public are in for a rude awakening. My personal opinion is worth more.

    December 10, 2007 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  21. J. McKinney SW MO

    For those of you who don't know who Maya Angelou is, check this link.

    And to those who think this a "Hillary trick" because Oprah backs Obama–Maya threw her suppport behind Hillary a couple of months ago. It was on the ticker. She is a brilliant woman. We need Hillary!

    December 10, 2007 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  22. Monte Brown, New York, NY

    Maya Angalou is an excellent endorsement for Hillary Clinton. Maya understands the changes we NEED that will make life better for Americans.

    Oprah Winfrey can sell her ideas of change all she wants. Oprah does not care for Americans the way she say she does. Oprah just wants Obama to win so that Oprah can say that for her first time being involved with politics Oprah has made the difference. AMERICA IS NOT VOTING FOR OPRAH. AMERICA IS VOTING FOR CHANGE.

    The change we need begins with Hillary Clinton. We knew this way before Egomaniac Obama decided to enter the race. We don’t need Obama as leader. He is just trying to eat off of Hillary Clinton's plate. He doesn’t offer anything but ying yang. WE CAN’T EAT HOPE. Obama is selling us the Brooklyn Bridge. OBAMA CAN’T BEAT THE REPUBLICANS. A vote for Obama is not a vote for change; it is a vote for a REPUBLICAN.

    Hillary Clinton is still the most qualified candidate, the most experienced candidate and she’s READY TO LEAD ON DAY ONE. Oprah can shoot her chops all she wants. It won’t change the fact that Obama is not ready to lead on day one as Hillary Clinton is.

    December 10, 2007 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  23. Get Real, Vermont

    Let's see Andrew Young's endorsing Hillary and says Bill knew a lot about dating black women. Streisand's endorsing Hillary and now Maya. Get serious, most of this country is under 50 and if they've heard of this troika, they haven't heard a lot.

    Call you troika and raise you one Oprah! Enough said.

    December 10, 2007 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  24. Yolanda, SC

    What a Classy endorsement from a great teacher and well respected and an inspirational lady. We will rise with you Dr. Angelou finally for equality in America for all women.

    December 10, 2007 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  25. Brian, Chicago IL

    Echo the thoughts of your own minds and not the words of the media nor the themes of the political organizers. Research their backgrounds and mind tells me that our policical system has been in dire turmoil since the 1960's and to continue down this path is bad for not just the country, but the world. Watch the eyes, the body movements, and trust your gut....are you truly inspired by who you're listening to? Obama happens to be my candidate because he truly cares about what he's trying to do. I ask .... listen...really listen to his message and despite whether you agree with his policies, you'll be inspired by his drive and commitment.

    December 10, 2007 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
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