January 5th, 2008
09:31 AM ET
13 years ago

Clinton out of it, Edwards suggests

ALT TEXT

John Edwards is hoping to transfer his Iowa momentum to New Hampshire. (Photo Credit: AP)

(CNN) - Democrat John Edwards seemed to suggest Friday Hillary Clinton's third place finish in Iowa may have rendered the New York senator effectively out of the presidential race.

Speaking at an early-morning campaign rally in Manchester, New Hampshire, Edwards pointed to entrance polls indicating Iowa voters overwhelmingly listed "change" as the most important attribute they are looking for in a candidate. That means, he added, there are now only "two choices."

"What is clear is that [voters] are not interested in status quo," Edwards said. "They're interested in change. They want to see a candidate of change, and so they now have two choices in making that decision, and this choice is somebody who will fight for the change that makes America what it's capable of being.

Edwards also continued with his campaign’s standard populist pitch in the Granite State, telling Manchester voters, "I am not the candidate of glitz. I am not the candidate of glamor; nor do I claim to be. But what I am - I am the candidate for president of the United States that is the peoples' candidate."

The former senator struck a similar chord at a Nashua event later Friday. And in an interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer, Edwards sought to distinguish himself as a fighter for change while rival Barack Obama's approach is more "philosophical" and "academic."

Most current New Hampshire polls were taken before the Iowa caucuses, and show Edwards a distant third behind Clinton and Obama in the state. It remains unclear what effect his second-place showing on Thursday might have among Granite State primary voters.

Meanwhile, Clinton downplayed Friday her third-place showing in Iowa, saying the Hawkeye State was always a difficult one for her to win. She also dismissed Iowa's ultimate effect on determining the party's eventual nominee.

"Iowa does not have best track record in determining who the parties nominate, everybody knows that," she said at an event in Manchester. "You know, New Hampshire is famously independent, it is a place where people want to make up their own minds - they're not interested in what anybody else has decided.

"They want to look us up and down, make that judgment, and I welcome that," She added. "I think that's exactly what the New Hampshire process should be about."

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • John Edwards
soundoff (528 Responses)
  1. Nick in Atlanta

    I spoke to a man from Somalia recently, who said to me that as a child in school he quoted Abraham Lincoln on the necessity of freedom and inalienable rights, in a report. He then asked me, "What became of that country? What happened to the country who inspired me as a child and made me long for the freedom that the Americans have?" Dumbfounded, the only thing I could say was "I'm sorry."

    Today, America is seen as a 'great evil' throughout the world. As a former soldier, that embarrasses and hurts me. I joined the military to serve this great nation, because I BELIEVE it is the greatest nation in the world. I didn't join for the travel or the training (as so many quoted youth of today have done), I joined because I felt in the depths of my heart that it was my duty to return to America what she gave to me daily. I felt a few years of my life were nothing compared to the inalienable rights I am guaranteed by our Constitution. I believe we have such a blessing from God. And a great man once told me that "Freedom is NOT free...", it's the core of every soldier's existance, no matter their reason for joining.

    I, too, remember as a child learning about the greatness of our country. I recall how elated exchange students were for the opportunity to come to America and learn in our schools. These students always told me how amazing a country America is and how the other kids in their school back home were so jealous. They said that while they missed their families, they loved every second of their schooling in America.

    Where is that ember of hope we offered the oppressed of the world? We were the guiding light who offered hope to those in stormy seas. We were the big brother, who wiped the tear from their eye, patted their head, and told them everything would be ok. We were so widely respected, foreign countries built monuments in our honor. And now we're considered the great evil?

    I believe Obama can restore our image of greatness. He hasn't gone soft in Washington's stew. What does Clinton have to offer us? Another 4 to 8 years of the Bush-Clinton dynasty? Another 4 to 8 years of unaccountability? Another 4 to 8 years of partisanship and failed foreign policy and inexcusable neglect to our nation? She says she'll be ready on the first day, but those of us who remember the Clinton dynasty will also know that until the opinion polls are published, Mrs. Clinton will have no opinion. In times of emergency, our country can't wait for the opinion polls to be published to find out what our President will do. We can't have a President who deceives us to make us believe she was with us in our time of need, to only find out later she was nowhere around.

    I say give me a President who can stand up for what's right! Give me a President who can look me in the eye and say "Here is what I believe and why..." We don't need a charasmatic personality, we need a leader. We need someone who's willing to open that tough dialogue with other nations and say, "Lets figure out what we can do together to make our world a safer place..." The Republicans all say they're "Reagan Republicans" but none of them want to open the tough dialogue with enemies and "bring down this wall..." There are some very tough obstacles ahead for our next President and we don't need someone who's been part of the Washington machine for decades attempting to jump those hurdles. We need someone who's fresh, who has the chance to make it over those hurdles and smile about it.

    It's time for a change. 2008 can either be the year when Americas greatness was returned or the year when the status quo was followed yet again. I, peronally, am sick and tired of the status quo. I'm fed up with the "same ole, same ole" in Washington. I don't know about everyone else, but I'm not looking to vote for a candidate solely based on their race or sex. I'm looking for a candidate who UNDERSTANDS the issues that are important to America. Someone who hasn't forgotten what its like to be a normal American. Who is looking to resolve issues with the climate, Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, Somalia, Kosovo and Russia? Is there a candidate who can force Congress to tighten their spending on budgets and knock out some of the fluff (so we don't spend a million dollars per painting of an Alaskan Salmon on Alaska Airlines tailfins again)? Who will make America a great nation that is safe for our children and our grandchildren? Who is willing to stand up and say "Enough already..." and get to work on a new plan, a new foundation upon which to relight that beacon of hope? Who says NO to ammending the Constitution to add discrimination at the foundation of our country? Who is offering EQUAL representation to America; whether your white or black, Muslim or Christian, gay or straight? How do we restore the image of a great country that children in schools throughout the world will want to write about? It's not continuing the status quo, it's CHANGE. And the only candidate who offers CHANGE is Barack Obama. I hope America agrees. I hope we'll "Just say NO..." to the status quo and say "YES" to change.

    January 5, 2008 04:20 am at 4:20 am |
  2. Sholbo

    "Iowa does not have best track record in determining who the parties nominate, everybody knows that," she said at an event in Manchester. "You know, New Hampshire is famously independent,"...Typical Hillary and come Jan 9th,it's going to be "NH does not have best track record in determining who the parties nominate, everybody knows that," she said at an event in SC. "You know, South Carolina is famously independent,".....What an idiot.

    January 5, 2008 04:35 am at 4:35 am |
  3. Dave,TX

    The "status quo must go!" Thats all the Republican candidates plus the lower tier Democratic candidates and Hillary! Obama and Edwards are the best candidates for real change!

    January 5, 2008 04:40 am at 4:40 am |
  4. Jim Richards

    Hillary Clinton couldn't even prevent the domestic affair of her own milquetoast husband when she was first lady. How, then, is she going to control Putin and Hu Jintao in foreign affairs?

    January 5, 2008 04:47 am at 4:47 am |
  5. Jeff, Sparks, Nevada

    Let's see, Clinton and Edwards voted to invade Iraq even though Joe Wilson had demonstrated that evidence was being fixed. Clinton and Obama have continued to vote to fund the illegal invasion of Iraq and refuse to address the warranted impeachment issue of Cheney. They also voted for the unconstitutional Patriot Act and against your and my civil liberties. Yet, the one person who had the foresight and principal to vote against these measures and has always had the vision and the courage to think independently and stand up for what is right (Isn't that what leadership is?) is excluded from the New Hampshire debate. Dennis Kucinich's passion for America's growth economically and movement towards world peace and away from perpetual war is unmatched. He is also the only candidate that actually wants to implement a true not for profit universal health care system in America. It is a real shame that Kucinich who started as a 21 year old councilman in Cleveland after an impoverished childhood gets such little respect, even though he is the true progressive among the Democrats in the race.

    January 5, 2008 05:04 am at 5:04 am |
  6. Steve MI

    I do not believe Hilary is out of it. However, I also dont believe she is the right choice. The loyalty she has shown for ONE state has been very disappointing. How will she treat the whole country? I think Obama is very interesting, and he is gaining more and more support from the American people as a whole every day. You may call him "unexperienced" or "too young" but have any of you listened to his speeches or watched the way he interacts with the people? Do we really want someone in office who loves America while its doing good, but then blows off the people when things dont go her way? The way she has acted has given me the impression of a 10 year olds temper tantrum. JUST Iowa? Is it JUST Massachusetts, JUST Vermont, JUST Maine, JUST the United States? Are the only states she respects till the end the ones with the most electoral votes in the election? All very interesting questions to me, and they should be to the rest of the country. Im undecided thus far, but leaning towards Obama.

    January 5, 2008 05:08 am at 5:08 am |
  7. Sam IA

    Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina are just small states where the candidates get thier tires kicked. It is a good warmup but Super Tuesday will tell the tale.
    While I supported Biden in the caucuses it is pretty silly to count Hillary out. I realize the koolaid drinkers have had 16 years of Pavlov's dog treatnents to get them salivating when the Hillary word is used but they are a small minority with closed eyes and thier ears only hear the negative. CNN's headline on this webpage has the question will Hillary nominate Bill to the Supreme Court? The koolaid drinkers will go ballistic. Anyone with a brain over the size of a pea knows it just wouldn'y happen,but when you are selling toothpaste and tennis balls you have to get Buzz .
    Obama, Edwards, or Hillary would make a fine leader and I for one ignore rumors, innuendos and petty newsroom watercooler buzz.

    January 5, 2008 05:46 am at 5:46 am |
  8. Rod

    clearly she is out of it. Obama has momentum. People just don't want clintons in the White House anymore. We also don't want any Bush family members either. Something new is the status quo and its clearly time for change.

    America knows this. Why hasn't Clinton received the memo? We have had enough of these families.

    January 5, 2008 05:58 am at 5:58 am |
  9. Richard, Mckinney, Texas

    Clinton's got money and dirt...now that's a platform to run on...

    January 5, 2008 05:59 am at 5:59 am |
  10. Richard, Mckinney, Texas

    So you like the clinton policy of no action and let thinks get worse....maybe you and you're fellow muslims can clean up your own mess....

    January 5, 2008 06:04 am at 6:04 am |
  11. Anon

    Please, if you're going to leave a comment. Do the world a favor and use spell check. It's free on ALL computers and prevents you from looking like a fool when describing how "Stupid," someone else is.

    Too bad Biden quit out. I guess America isn't interested in voting for somebody that could actually do the job instead talking about doing the job.

    January 5, 2008 06:18 am at 6:18 am |
  12. one_wilson

    I continue to support Sen. Clinton, and most likely will do so as long as she stays in. When all is said and done, it's primarily about a proven record of sound, moderately progressive policy positions over many years, the proven ability to fight for them against spirited, organized opposition, and the ultimate ability to move them up the field. To simply go hell-bent for "change", with no fixed idea of what that might actually MEAN in its specifics, or whether or not that advocate has the skill to impement his plans on the big stage, seems needlessly risky and slightly misguided to me.

    January 5, 2008 06:20 am at 6:20 am |
  13. Jake

    I'm Hispanic and I am voting for Obama.
    Hillary thinks Hispanic and Domestic are the same thing.

    January 5, 2008 06:22 am at 6:22 am |
  14. Ken

    I hope Edwards is right!

    Agent for change!!!! Did you see Hillary's line up at her speech – Bill, Madeline and several other Clinton administration cronies too scarey to mention.

    DEFEAT HILL-BILL-ARY!!!

    January 5, 2008 06:24 am at 6:24 am |
  15. CR

    It's totally insane for any of the candidates to drop out after the ONE race in Iowa.
    Iowa does NOT represent the nation, and the so-called "winners" may not fare so well in all of the other states who have yet to vote in the primaries. That question as to who the nation wants for their candidates, will be answered on Super Tuesday-and not before.

    January 5, 2008 06:27 am at 6:27 am |
  16. Susan

    I truly hope that Hillary is out of the race...but she won't go down without a fight..I hope dearly that John can hang in there in New Hampshire...He is truly the peoples candidate as far as I am concerned. Obama is my second choice. I see in John Edwards a sort of honesty that I don't see in Hillary. I truly admire the man and his family. I would vote for him in a heartbeat.....Talk about family values?????...Just take a look at John's dedication to his own family and children...speaks volumes....I used to be a Republican.....not anymore....GO GET THEM JOHN....THERE ARE MANY HERE IN MAINE THAT WHAT YOU TO BE PRESIDENT!

    January 5, 2008 06:45 am at 6:45 am |
  17. Glazed, Detroit metro

    The Dem's are working really hard – It is starting to look like 8 more years of BUBBA's (may nt b from Texas, but not too far from it)

    January 5, 2008 06:56 am at 6:56 am |
  18. Harvard Woman

    Issues of the day- Why is Harvard moving to Brighton? Is it because there are no toilets in Emerson? That is a valid issue for Harvard women. And why do Harvard men not put the seat down in the unisex bathrooms? How do the expect to stay married without that basic skill?

    Or- have others noticed that Obama has done his homework and is giving the same speeches Bill Clinton gave when he first ran for the Big House? Remember Bill's theme was hope? Was he not from a town called Hope? Did we not see an inspirational video about that? Maybe Hillary should be giving Bill's old speeches. I wonder if they were copyrighted. Will we see a picture of Obama meeting JFK?

    As for negative campaigning, where is the media? Was there something about Huckabee commuting lots of sentences and some women getting killed? What about Romney saying whatever people want to hear? It looks like the media follows the candidates’ lead. Where is their initiative? Instead of talking about Britney Spears or whatever her name is – could we please have conversations about the candidates’ track record ourselves? Do we have to make the candidates attack each other to get this stuff on the table? We need a serious deconstruction of what these people have been doing for the past 25 years. There are zillions of women in the media. They should be talking about this Huckabee-dead women issue. I am an evangelical and I find that quite disturbing. (Yes – there really are evangelicals at Harvard. Don’t believe me? Check out the bulletin boards at HDS.)

    January 5, 2008 07:00 am at 7:00 am |
  19. Jim

    How's that LOVE BABY doing John? Moved her again I understand. The Clinton's will find her.

    January 5, 2008 07:26 am at 7:26 am |
  20. Travis Sugarland, Texas

    She will say something crazy at the debate. Edwards and Obama just need to sit back and allow her to talk.

    January 5, 2008 07:28 am at 7:28 am |
  21. roger, conway sc

    Edwards has spent 4 years in Iowa and came in 2nd place, what is so great about that, apparently he does not represent change either...I also think the method of conducting primaries in the US is crap, I do not like Iowa, NH & SC choosing the president of the US, it is not about grass roots, I have sense enough to choose a candidate without seeing or talking personally to that individual. It is all about the media giving all of their attention to the winner of these states which is unfair approx 300,000 people in Iowa cacused that represents a very small per centage of the total people in the US yet you would have thought by watching the media it was a general election...NUTS

    January 5, 2008 07:58 am at 7:58 am |
  22. mark wilkes barre pa

    Carole,, I mean no disrespect,,,,, one more comment on the bush fiasco years is just that,, as I respect your intrest in our political process I can only say move to america become a citizen and then voice your oppinion. history will decide how much of a fiasco the bush years were and what damage or good is the result. the war is not over by a long shot and what lasting impression on foriegn affairs will be is no where near a reality. What you see and hear today could be totally different 5, 10 years down the road. I can only speak for my self ,,, but terror to me and how it should be delt with changed on 9-11,,, along with our policies of the past in foriegn affairs with countries who condone or support terror

    January 5, 2008 08:09 am at 8:09 am |
  23. Harry bossman

    Edwards is so bitter and angry about Hillary and it's not making him look good.

    He should talk about his issues and stop worring about Hillary.

    If Obama wins the democratic primaries,america is going to see another 8 yrs of republicans in the white house b'cos Obama wil not be able to stand the fierce republican attack machinery.

    Already,the republican chairman has said that they will use his inexperience to attack him.

    Obama's inexperience is his major weakness.

    Hillary is been proven and tested.There nothing about Hillary than the republicans has already not attacked.

    Also the media should stop being biased towards Hillary.

    January 5, 2008 08:10 am at 8:10 am |
  24. wil

    I wonder why so many people talk about 'change' as though it were a reality when it comes to politics. Yes there can be some change but people have to remember the president is only one branch of the governmental tree. The president may have a good deal of power but the system of checks and balances can completly counter any huge change they wish to make. Remember WHY Hillary Clinton's first attempt at universal health care didn't work? Remember WHY Clinton couldn't deliver on his promise for gays to serve openly in the military? It came down to many other branches did not want those changes and would throw wrenches in any bills President Clinton tried to introduce. Ensuring they would not pass. Obama and Edwards may claim change but if they do not work within the current system to give it a new direction, like how Edwards wants to fight, then the rest of the 'good ole boy' club will rally against any 'change' the new president wants to bring about. You may think the public would scream against such actions, but sadly we (the public) tend to swallow most of what Washington feeds us with little protest. Also, bait and switch always works on us. Make the public pay more attention to economy while they (the government) quickly blocks a presidential attempt to throw lobbyist out and there ya go. Besides, someone mentioned how an African American in the white house was ultimate change? Obama is still a rich man, part of the 'good ole boys'. A woman would be a greater change.

    January 5, 2008 08:15 am at 8:15 am |
  25. William Johnson

    I must say that I agree with the exsurp that correct puctiuation of the name of our' country would be nice. I am appaulled that once again we really do not have many to choose from. The groups both republican and democratic leave alot to be desired. I think everyone is right about repackaging but, the reality is that each and everyone of them have repackaged themselves time and time again. We can not have a president with no experience in politics. We can not have a president that will create such a radical racial war in our' country and so that leaves to front running contenders.....Edwards and Huckubee. It will ultimately be between them. I hope that Hillary comes through and really gives the change we need . We need a woman to lead us. That would be real change.

    January 5, 2008 08:18 am at 8:18 am |
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