December 13th, 2007
01:05 PM ET
15 years ago

Clinton apologizes to Obama for drug comment

Obama brushed off a Clinton advisers comments about his drug use Thursday.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton personally apologized Thursday to rival Barack Obama for an adviser's comment that Republicans will likely make an issue of Obama's past drug use, a Clinton aide tells CNN's Candy Crowley.

In an exclusive interview with Obama earlier Thursday, the Illinois Democrat brushed aside the comments.

"I just think people are feeling a little worried about the polls," Obama told CNN’s Ted Barrett before a Senate vote on Capitol Hill.

On Wednesday Bill Shaheen, a chairman of the New York senator’s campaign in New Hampshire, told a Washington Post reporter the Republicans will likely exploit Obama's past admission of drug use should the Illinois senator win the party's nomination, and may even suggest Obama once dealt drugs.

Full story

- CNN's Ted Barrett, Candy Crowley, and Alexander Mooney

soundoff (146 Responses)
  1. Frank, RTP, NC

    If it happened more than 7 years ago it isn't relevant – at least on government job applications. Appreciate the candor of the guy. No "didn't inhale" or "depends on what definition of is, is" BS. And all of you sanctimonious "its illegal" whiners – grow up or let's talk about your personal perversions that may or may not be illegal.

    December 13, 2007 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |

    Obama's wife sure dances and prances around like she is wired. Did she participate with him with the drugs? Does she acknowledge that she did or state her present status??

    December 13, 2007 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  3. Serena Des Moines, IA

    Barack Obama is the more intelligent of the two candidates and I think we all know it. Unfortunately, Clinton realizes that she is losing in Iowa, NH, AND SC, she feels that the only way to take back the lead is by releasing deceptive remarks regarding Obama. This is SAD, and she has lost my vote. I am now voting for Obama. Sorry, Hillary.

    December 13, 2007 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  4. Jeanne, Washington, DC

    It is pretty interesting to me that no one ever referred to Slick Willy (Bill Clinton to the rest of you) as an alleged drug dealer when his own purported drug use (inhalation or not) came to light.

    Why Obama?

    December 13, 2007 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  5. matt

    Drud use and criticism over old questionnaires are only the tip of the iceberg. Hillary's getting desperate.

    December 13, 2007 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  6. Christine NJ

    Drug user is Drug user, no matter it was past, the record is for ever, if a person did something against US law and there has no clean record in his life, how can that be qualify to run for the USA president.

    December 13, 2007 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  7. joan,newton,iowa

    I am not suprised. Hillary always want to have it both ways and I bet all ways...

    December 13, 2007 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  8. American

    The problem here is, and I think the younger responders either do not know about or have not read the correct version of history, that Bill AND Hillary were BOTH investigated for White Water, and just as quickly as it came to them, it disappeared as if it never happened with all of the question unanswered. To those of you who say Bill and Hillary are not the same person, I agree, but they are certainly cut from the same cloth. To say the country will be better off without GW and WITH another Clinton is comparing Germany pre-Hitler and during the Hitler years. Both were oppressive, negative societies lead by people hoping for ultimate power. As an independant, I can only hope an Obama, Romney, or Guilianni will win over the 'Old Guard' Political cronies. Change starts here folks, Vote you mind, but find the truth first.

    December 13, 2007 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  9. Jamie Lewis IOWA

    What a classy Lady! Even though she isn’t doing these things, she gets the hits publically! Well done! THE SMART CHOICE IS CLINTON, look past skin, gender and oprahbama...

    December 13, 2007 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  10. Chuck, Miami Fl

    We Dem's attacked Bush for his use of drugs in the 04 election and now we want ot over look one of our own.
    We made our bed and now we must sleep in it.
    I know Obama did this when he was a teenager and I can care less about it but, the Republicans are going to have a field day with this because we had our fun with Bush.
    Is Obama ready for this? EXPERIENCE IS WHAT THIS IS ALL ABOUT. Can Obama deal with this. I hope so.

    December 13, 2007 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  11. Anonymous

    obama supporters are blinded by oprah

    December 13, 2007 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  12. Megha, San Antonio, TX

    Dan NJ
    A correction: they were not campaign officials but volunteers. If you don't understand that little of a difference, you should really think and consult ppl. 10 times before you vote.
    Hillary 2008
    Obama 2016
    Let's get the White House for 16 years instead of 8. Let's do it Dems.

    December 13, 2007 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  13. Lisa, Philly, Pennsylvania

    Obama is bad for the American middle class. He recently supported the Peru Free Trade deal that will send U.S. jobs overseas and increase the destruction of the Amazon rainforest. He supports Amnesty for Illegal immigrants. He doesn't even stand up for the African-American community who are most hurt by out of control illegal immigration.

    Now he is supported by Oprah. Pro-Iraq war Oprah. Go back and see her show before the Iraq war began. It was so slanted in support for the war. She wanted to convince folks and our politicans to support it so that her little man Obama could run against it later.

    December 13, 2007 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  14. Taran, San Diego, CA

    What's silly is that Obama's team is using this as a fundraising ploy (on their website - the "victim" card as Hillary had played earlier). On the surface, this seems smart (make Hillary look like a dirty candidate, etc.), but does the Obama campaign really want the idea that Obama used cocaine (quite abundant amounts) to stay in the news cycle? Ultimately, this will hurt Obama more than Hillary (who's team - including her - came out immediately to dissociate and apologize for the comment).

    December 13, 2007 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  15. Bill, Chicago, Illinois

    O'Bama, just say you "didn't inhale." Oops, that quote is already taken.

    With polls showing her in freefall Team Clinton in total meltdown!

    Its an absolute lie to mention an issue now on the premise that "the Republicans" might use it later. Team Clinton wants this "issue" in today's news cycle, why else would they have their New Hampshire Chairman saying it?

    December 13, 2007 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  16. Aaron Smithsburg, Maryland

    If any federal employee is an admitted drug user their position should be stripped and they should have to pay back any medical costs, tax payer funded medical insurance covered. Where is the outrage. If I admit to being a prior drug user in a employment application I'm passed over. If I admit to being a prior drug user if I apply for medical insurance I'm declined. Either legalize drugs like marijuana and cocaine for everybody (Including rich boys who can afford a good lawyer to get them off the hook) or shut up and look for another job!

    December 13, 2007 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  17. Tom, San Leandro, CA

    I can't believe that so many people give Obama an A+ for honesty. His stupid, attention-seeking, admission of prior crimial actions is not a positive thing. For God's sake, he deserves a D- for common sense. And. . .he brought the whole topic up and now, when Shaheen points out all the red meat he threw out to the Republican Attack Machine, he calls the entire Clinton
    campaign "desperate". Yeah, you wish!

    December 13, 2007 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  18. Kevin, Norfolk

    Chris Myers you are you kidding? How can you say, "Can't the Democrats find a drug free candidate? Bill & Hillary and now Obama?" Give me a break!”
    Let's say for sake of your argument that your statement is true, I'd rather have a former drug dealing candidate that has told the truth about his youthful indiscretions, then an elected official who has sex with prostitutes, sex in airport bathrooms, exchanges elicited e-mails with minors, and amongst other things, wage a war illegally.
    At least our guys, for the most part, do their dirt before they get elected.

    December 13, 2007 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  19. Scott, Bethlehem, PA

    Didn't we have a Democractic presidential candidate who admitted to doing drugs and he won anyway?

    What was that guy's name again. Bill something...

    December 13, 2007 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  20. P Brown, OKC OK

    To Ms M and all those who want the world to know they are black, I don't really care. I'm black too, so what. All I can say is since you are black, you better wake up about Hillary. You are being punked.

    December 13, 2007 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  21. manny james marietta ga

    I agree totally with Monte Brown from NY.. His comments are either # 13 or 14 from the top...Great peice Mr brown. You speak for me on this issue..

    December 13, 2007 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  22. Goodstudent

    Do your homework, guys.

    December 13, 2007 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  23. Gordon, Boston MA

    How convenient it "wasn't authorized"...

    December 13, 2007 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  24. Jill, MN

    The problem is not so much in that he used drugs, it's that he said "it helped" and that is not the message our youth needs to hear, whether he thinks it's true or not.

    December 13, 2007 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  25. BJ Philadelphia PA

    Hillary is going to loose so who cares. Her husband needs other woman so can she offer to America???

    December 13, 2007 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
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