December 18th, 2007
05:50 AM ET
14 years ago

Clinton gets emotional

The Clinton campaign is aiming to show a softer side of the New York senator.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Democrat Hillary Clinton got visibly emotional at an Iowa campaign event Monday morning designed to showcase a softer side of the New York senator.

Flanked by childhood friends and constituents who each offered testimonials on the Democratic presidential candidate, a glassy-eyed Clinton spoke noticeably softer than most past appearances on the stump.

"It is very exciting for me to have so many of my friends from my entire life who have come out here, to talk with Iowans, to answer questions, to give you some insight and information about our relationships, about what I've been trying to do my entire life, and particularly as an adult," Clinton said at a campaign event in Johnston, Iowa Monday.

"What I try to do every day is figure out how to help somebody,” she said later in the event. “You can try to help somebody every single day, and I’ve tried to do that as a public servant, as an activist, and now as a senator."

The event coincides with a new campaign Web site - - that includes videos for several friends, colleagues, and constituents of Clinton's speaking on her behalf.

The event and Web site are all part of an effort to convey a softer image of Clinton, as polls continue to indicate Democratic primary voters view her as less likeable and more like a "typical politician" than her chief rival, Barack Obama.

A spokesperson told CNN the site will help round out what caucus-goers don’t know about Clinton. “You want voters to have the fullest portrait of your candidate possible when Election Day comes around and that’s what you’re seeing us doing right now.”

The surrogates from the Web site will be fanning out across Iowa and telling their stories over the next three days on Clinton's "Every Caucus Counts Tour."

Earlier: Clinton campaigns with mother, daughter

- CNN's Alexander Mooney and Alexander Marquardt

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Iowa
soundoff (477 Responses)
  1. Mishagothe Denver Colorado

    They must have used pepper spray to wring a few drops of moisture out that crocodile.

    December 17, 2007 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  2. Andy, New York, New York

    Gather your comrades of past years,
    And cry us a river of crocodile tears.
    You've always wanted to help somebody,
    But we know it's about you or nobody.
    In '92, we got two for the price of one,
    And in '96 it became twice the fun.
    Then you made a dash for the Senate,
    After heading to New York State.
    Asked about plans to run as President
    After becoming a New York resident.
    You made us all to know,
    The Senate was as far as you’d go!
    But now the truth is out,
    And raw power is what you’re all about!
    Like Bill, you’re so full of lies,
    They even come as tears in your eyes!

    December 17, 2007 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  3. Sam, Chicago, IL

    The tears were real - they were her reaction to realizing that the bunch of opportunists around her might think she's capable of actual friendship.

    December 17, 2007 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  4. Douglas, Winnetka, Illinois

    my, my, my, aren't we a bunch of little haters today. You can hate until you are red in the face, the cows come home, and your blood pressure soars, but this good and decent and yes, powerful, woman is going to be our next president. Try to adjust.

    December 17, 2007 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  5. Howard, Chicago, IL

    Good, Please cry, make it that much easier for us not to vote for you. That's what I want in my President. Someone who cries when friends say something nice about her. Right on. OBAMA 08

    December 17, 2007 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  6. Let the Leaders Lead, Arcadia, Iowa

    And the show goes on. Anyone want to bet on the 99 county tour? Hold her up to the light(or sharp critism) and you won't see a thing. Wake up people before it is too late. She is NOT presidntial material. I will vot Republican before I vote for her.

    December 17, 2007 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  7. rbrooks, Charlottesville VA

    This is the most revolting focus-grouped Hillary Moment yet.
    Every time she makes an appearance she looks more calculated and rehearsed. And she can even summon up a tear – go for the Oscar, Hillary!
    Thanks, but I'll just keep in mind how you vote and who you listen to.
    This is insulting, frankly. What a ridiculous person.

    December 17, 2007 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  8. John rehoboth Beach Delaware

    Geez what is all this venom about? In High School there were always the girls who were driven and calculating and abrasive. They planned the dances and ran the paper and eventually trotted off to good colleges. These girls were not my favorite people. Sometimes I thought they were fake but the one thing I couldnt deny was that they were tireless and got stuff done, whatever their motives and strategies were. I want stuff to get done in this country and frankly I dont think any of the men, as much as I respect all of them, have the where with all and stamina that she has. Save all this nastiness for the general election...we're goon NEED it democrats.

    December 17, 2007 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  9. Gil - California

    "Democrat Hillary Clinton got visibly emotional at an Iowa campaign event Monday morning designed to showcase a softer side of the New York senator."

    So even their campaign admits it was all a show. Boo Hoo.

    December 17, 2007 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  10. Troy, Seattel WA

    If you don't like her fine- but don't trash her. I think the people with her are a testament to her fine character. If you need to hate that says much more about you than her.

    December 17, 2007 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  11. Sean, Elkridge MD

    Let's talk about Ron Paul again.

    Oh wait... this is Mainstream Media. My bad.

    December 17, 2007 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  12. Will Boston

    oh good grief.
    nice that she and romney agreed to have their scripted shows of emotion on two different days...would hate to see them step on each others' news cycle!! you know you have problems when your campaign has "planned" events to show your softer side. aren't those things supposed to be unplanned and...dare i say: natural??

    December 17, 2007 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  13. A. J. Freeman Globe, Arizona

    I find it outrageous that the CNN Producer of this story states as, if its objective fact, that Clinton's visible emotion was "designed" to showcase a softer side of the New York senator, sic. That's not a fact, Mr. Mooney, it's your opinion. Your bias is blatantly obvious, and very unprofessional.

    December 17, 2007 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  14. dan, Denver, CO

    Most of you people need to think for yourselves. A whole lot of you sound like bad Rush Limbaugh clones. There's a reason why Hillary is so's because the right wing has been lampooning her for over a decade. She's become the caricature that they have tried so hard to make her out to be. I'm not saying that Hillary isn't some of the things that they claim. But just because Rush Limbaugh says something doesn't make it so. Remember people, he is an oxycotin/viagra addict. Not exactly the person you should be basing your life decisions on.

    Think for yourselves and come up with your own conclusions about the candidates. This way when you post your enlightened comments you won't sound like a talking-point spewing blowhard.

    December 17, 2007 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  15. TN Sympathy, Pittsfield, MA

    "Give the woman a break…She IS the one to hit the ground running from Day 1…She can fight off Republican attahces better than anyone out there now…Remember she was "Ken-Starred" to death and came out intact at the end. To me, a candidate who talks about Two Americas and then splurges on a $400 hair cut just isn't that viable; and a candidate who comes accross as a speechifying, polkitical-version-American Idol is just dreaming a little too much and needs to be pulled back down into reality.

    Posted By Diane, Whitestone, New York : December 17, 2007 5:01 pm

    Sorry. I don't want a weepy president who cries when she doesn't get her way. I doubt our enemies would be sympathetic – why should we. If you want to be president, be prepared to fight for it – it won't be handed to you. She needs to heed the words of another democratic president: Truman.

    'If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen'.

    Just like 'There's no crying in Baseball", there's no crying in running for president'.

    December 17, 2007 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  16. John Petty, Aurora, CO

    OK, big talkers, here's a question for you: If Hillary Clinton wins the Democratic nomination, will you vote for her or not?

    Will progressives did as they did in 1968, and sit on their hands while Nixon was elected? Will they flake off and vote for somebody like Ralph Nader, as they did in 2000, and throw the election to Bush?

    December 17, 2007 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  17. Tim Syracuse, New York

    No matter what she says or does, the Hillary-haters will go after her.

    Ease off - those of us who grew up in the '60s know a good one when we see one.

    Please use your talents to improve the country, not waste your time pounding her.

    December 17, 2007 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  18. James, Chicago, IL

    The tears are real, folks. They were brought on by the latest poll results she saw before going on stage...and they're not tears of joy!

    December 17, 2007 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  19. greytmom in Cypress Tx

    Oh for god's sake – why does she have to be held to higher emotional standards then the other candidates? Because she's female? And what about her being a politician – they all are no matter what they say. And she is the most experienced candidate. I say she should be president & Bill should be Secretary of State.

    December 17, 2007 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  20. Mario Preston ID

    Oh PLEASE!!! the wicked witch is trying to play everyone and show she is a bigger liar that could have been thought of before. She is a cow and can keep her award losing performance to herself. She has to lose in Iowa, NH, SC and everything else. She sucks!!

    December 17, 2007 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  21. Robert Winstead, Alexandria, Virginia

    Crocodile tears, get on the bad side of the Clintons' and it will be you doing the crying.

    December 17, 2007 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  22. ao, Ann Arbor MI

    I love her – she is the most sly fox in current presidential politics.

    December 17, 2007 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  23. PAPA, IOWA

    well , she said she has been in public life for over 30years or whatever the campaign says. So if that is true then why does she need people to come and testify about her softer side. One would think that for someone who has been in public life we should have known that side already. So if we don't know that. Then what else don't we know. This is a load of crap. She is calculated and poll driven. I guess the campaign realised the famous cackle (laugh) is not working so now polling says lets trying some tears.
    Hahahah. She wants be president by any means necessary.

    December 17, 2007 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  24. Ron Poal

    She's only tearing up because of the GARLIC. Vampires hate Garlic! HA!

    December 17, 2007 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  25. Ada

    Is Barak going to sit down and let this witch get her way? Bill and Hill, if you think African Americans are going to vote for you after hurting Barak, you must be dreaming. They will sit at home on the election day, if Barak is not the one (Good news for GOP). Shame on you Bill for attacking Obama. You are not any different from your wife (Pretenders, who would do anything to get their way). I'm sure African Americans know now that the Clintons are nothing but fraud. America is no different from third world countries ( Ruled by the same corrupt people)


    December 17, 2007 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
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