January 1st, 2008
04:31 PM ET
15 years ago

Elizabeth Edwards 'disappointed' with Michelle Obama

Elizabeth Edwards isn't happy with Michelle Obama.

Elizabeth Edwards isn't happy with Michelle Obama.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The sharpened rhetoric between Democrats John Edwards and Barack Obama isn't just limited to the candidates themselves - the two hopefuls' wives are also getting in on the action.

Elizabeth Edwards isn't happy with what Michelle Obama is saying on the campaign trail about the effects of John Edwards' decision to accept federal matching funds for his presidential campaign.

"I'm surprised and disappointed in Michelle," Mrs. Edwards said at a campaign event Monday night.

Mrs. Edwards comments were spurred by a voter recounting a conversation Mrs. Obama had with his 17 year-old daughter, claiming the Illinois senator's wife told his daughter not to support Edwards because the spending caps he is subjected to for accepting federal campaign money will seriously hinder his chances in a general election.

For his part, John Edwards discounted the argument that his limited campaign funds are hurting his presidential bid.

"It scares them to death, because what they know is, what this candidate and this campaign stands for is working," he said. "Can I ask you a question? If they have more money, and money's what matters, then why are they worrying about me?"

- CNN's Kevin Bohn and Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Iowa • John Edwards
soundoff (211 Responses)
  1. DJ, new york, ny

    both loud mouth wives

    January 1, 2008 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  2. greg,new york

    WOW I did not know OBAMA had such a huge lead this morning.
    I just learned about through some of the comments on here.
    WOW thanks guys for letting the rest of us know.I guess I i was waiting for CNN to tell me the news I might be waiting until friday morning.

    January 1, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  3. Let the Leaders Lead, Arcadia, Iowa

    If the campaign is only about the dollars, then Obama and Hillary will win hands down. It is about more than that, substance. Although both have outspent John Edwards three to one it is still a dead heat. John has substance and a clear plan for America. He has laid his plan out in an early publication and has held to it. The choice is clear, elect a president who is controlled by the insiders and big money interests or elect John Edwards. Easy choice for me and it should be for you. This race is not about a man versus a women or a black versus a white yet each candidate has used their role as a crutch. It is about electing the best person president of the United States.

    January 1, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  4. MAH

    Folks, help me undersatnd!!

    Isn't voting Hillary means voting Bush again? I was not quite able to figure out how they differ from each other on any issue that matters most for the country (iraq war; stance on iran; funded by lobbyist group, typical politicians, and interest groups; lack of intelligence, unable to comprehend the complex situation...)...i think she will even be worse than Bush (i.e., big government, tax increase, flip flop, etc...)

    January 1, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  5. alessandro

    From a foreigner point of view, edwards will be your next president, he's the quintessential american, republican discontents will not vote either hillary nor obama, your country isn't ready for a black or a woman president, just face it, America it's a socially backward country still in it's core, otherwise you wouldn't even think about having a serious candidate like huckabee who is, for god's sake, a "creationist"!
    a debate that is put to rest even by the church a hundred years ago.
    Not to mention that you were able to RE-ELECT bush, no comment....
    Alessandro, italian living in Canada (where I happily emigrated after bush 2)

    January 1, 2008 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  6. PW Va

    I think Elizabeth's biting remarks on the campaign trail will cotinue to be a liability for her husband. She should just pack it in, go home, take care of herself and their children. This would probably be more beneficial to the candidate at this juncture.

    January 1, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  7. Daniel, NY

    A just released Insider Advantage poll from Iowa has Edwards keeping his lead, up 11% when second-choices are thrown in.

    January 1, 2008 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  8. Ajay Jain, Garland, TX

    "Former" Senator Edward can honk/attack and suggest ALL the programs all he wants from the "outside" and Hillary will get things done from the inside by becoming our President in 2009!

    Thats called a polite political SLAP in the FACE Mr Edwards! Edwards can run all the 527 third party ads, but with public money he is no match for Hillary and/or Obama in 2008.

    Go Hillary44 08! http://hillaryis44.org/

    January 1, 2008 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  9. Jen Cedar Falls, IA

    I wholeheartedly agree with WM in North Carolina. Even if Edwards were a Republican, as I am, I would NEVER vote in a person whose spouse has terminal cancer. I feel bad for her, for the whole family. But during these next few years John needs to spend his time with Elizabeth and their children. I don't agree with his political views, but with all that aside, I am frustrated at why he thinks he should be President while his wife succumbs to the suffering of such a horrific disease. Our country desperately needs someone who will be able to commit 100% to the job of President. If he chooses that over his wife and children, well that speaks volumes to his character. We all know that in the USA, family comes first (except for the Clintons and the Kennedy's).

    January 1, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  10. John TN

    Catfight!!!! Yeah!!!!

    January 1, 2008 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  11. melissa

    Barrack Obama does not have enough experience to lead this country with so many problems we face. Edwards was wrong with taking the federal money, I agree, but at least he cares about the main things that affect us all. Clinton has made some terrible choices, but she has also done some very good things. We all know she has the experience and that she can withstand attacks from Republicans, she's been doing it for years... Exactly how would Obama ride out the negativity he would face in the general election? My guess is not very well. He says he has lived in a foreign land, so therefore has foreign policy experience..... What I see happening with that is the Republicans will turn it into him being of muslim decent, I mean come on when you look at his name even it's so similar to Osama, that type of a name.... He will be a mistake and if nominated, you can just look forward to another repulican president. And another 4 years of turmoil.

    January 1, 2008 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  12. Tia

    Don't worry about what Michelle says, All I want to know is what is she going to bring to the table to support her husband, instead of worrying about what others are saying

    January 1, 2008 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  13. E. C., Houston, Texas

    What a stupid, nonsense article. You call this newsworthy? Forget it, Mooney!

    January 1, 2008 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  14. Steve DeMaio

    Michelle Obama has also been making a more subtle attack on John and Elizabeth Edwards. On Monday at a campaign stop in Grinnell, Iowa, Michelle Obama lied and said that she and her husband are not millionaires, even though their millionaire status has been widely reported. The remark seemed to be a subtle dig at John Edwards and an attempt to cast the Obamas as the more authentic political couple, closer to the people, than the Edwardses. True, John and Elizabeth have many more millions than Barack and Michelle do, but the Obamas are indeed millionaires, and Michelle's lie about that fact needs to be exposed.

    Incidentally, I think Obama would be a better president than Edwards (though there are several in the Democratic field who are better than both of them). I still believe, however, that Michelle Obama needs to be called out on the merits of her lie.

    January 1, 2008 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  15. Jen Cedar Falls, IA

    melissa, with the right Republican President, our country may just get OUT of the turmoil that the Clinton's and Bush got us into. Just like Reagan did.

    January 1, 2008 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  16. Gil - California

    Lizzy can say or do anything she wants, it is not news and nobody cares. If Edwards is on the ticket it will be as VP again with Obama filling the top spot.
    If Lizzy wants to help her husband she should be attacking the Former First Lady, or the Former First Lady's husband.

    January 1, 2008 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  17. Lillz

    Hey Jen in Cedar Falls. Explain to me how family comes first with all those out there who kill their kids and spouses. Singling out two (democratic) families and stating the family comes first with everyone else other than them in the face of recent news stories of daughters slaughtering their families on Christmas Eve and dead babys in plastic bins is NOT making your party of choice look all that bright with folks like you in the ranks.

    January 1, 2008 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  18. E. C., Houston, Texas

    What is so disgusting in this Caucus? The fact that the Democrats are ignoring the two most prominent and experienced Senators in the race who should be 'leading in the polls.' Biden and Dodd are the two who should be leading the race and these well qualified men to lead this country are not even in the race. Why? Instead, the Media has chosen the three candidates.......the Clinton and Obama Roadshow that is ONLY qualified to 'entertain.' Neither should be President nor are Either Qualified or Presidential Material. Of the three in the news, Edwards is the Only Viable Candidate in the race. It's shameful and disgusting that Voters have rejected two strong men of character, experience and integrity who have served this country the longest. Why are these men given some space on 'the Ticker?' Because, the Media has chosen 'the Road Show!'

    January 1, 2008 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  19. Adam, Pittsburgh PA

    CNN must be bored.

    January 1, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  20. jay

    In other "Making of the President 2008" news, Mike Huckabee's dog doesn't much care for John Edwards' dog, who has lately been snippy with John McCain's dog. And all three run away just as fast as they can whenever Mitt Romney approaches.

    January 1, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  21. Lynn, Reno, NV

    Edwards does have a problem with money which he seems to be countering with a half a million dollar contribution from Oak Springs Farm LLC for a 527 that is running ads for him. I don't understand how he can be slamming corporations and then turn with his hand out to one. Obama is the only candidate not getting all this 527 last minute, who-knows-where-it-is-coming-from dollars being spent. And how will Edwards directly respond to Republican attacks if he has spending limits in each state. He will have to rely on 527's, which completely trashes his claim to want campaign finance reform. It is a big problem for Edwards and Clinton too. She is getting a huge amount spent through 527's as well. So how are they going to really change the system?

    January 1, 2008 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  22. Adam Smith

    Edwards will win the Democratic nomination for president and defeat the Republican nomineee by exposing the worthlessness of corporate owned polititians

    January 1, 2008 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  23. julie slc ut.


    What kind of shoddy reporting IS this?

    I can't believe you posted this without verifying it.

    January 1, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  24. Jen Cedar Falls, IA

    Hey Lillz, so you are blaming the Republicans for the Christmas Eve slaughter? Oh, you are bright!? Speaking of dead babies, the Dem's throw thousands of babies out with the trash before they're even born. You make no sense here blaming the Republicans when your Dem's are actually in control (can you spell Pelosi?). btw, I tried to keep it short, so Presidents while in the White House that slept with women other than their spouses was my closing point. You must be too bright to 'get that'. And yes, with Elizabeth dying of cancer, I stand by my opinion that even if he were MY candidate, I promise you I would not vote for this type of turmoil in our White House. John's young enough to run in the future. His kids and wife need him these next few years more than our country does. My point? He's a husband first, a father second and a politician last. You argue that?

    January 1, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  25. Mario

    Who cares what Obuma's wife said!! Edward's old lady likes to stick her nose into everyopne's business, sticking up for her old man. Gutless John or the Breck girl as I've heard Rush Limbaugh call her always looks for his old lady to stick her nose into this election, she isn't running for office, Johnny boy is! What will happen if he wins to be president then? His old lady will be another Hitlery, that is all we need. Old lady Edwards go back to the pasture and chew your cud!

    January 1, 2008 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
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