January 7th, 2008
03:55 PM ET
8 years ago

Clinton gets emotional at New Hampshire stop

Watch Obama react to Bhutto's death

Watch Clinton get emotional at a New Hampshire stop Monday.

PORTSMOUTH, New Hampshire (CNN) - Hillary Clinton became visibly emotional at a New Hampshire campaign event today after a friendly question from a voter.

At the close of a Portsmouth campaign stop, Marianne Pernold-Young, 64, asked Clinton: "How do you do it? How do you keep up... and who does your hair?"

Clinton began noting that she had help with her hair on "special days," and that she drew criticism on the days she did not. Then she added: "It's not easy, and I couldn't do it if I just didn't, you know, passionately believe it was the right thing to do.

"You know, I have so many opportunities from this country, I just don't want to see us fall backwards," she said, her voice breaking a bit. The audience applauded.

"This is very personal for me, it's not just political, it's [that] I see what's happening, we have to reverse it," she said emotionally, adding that some "just put ourselves out there and do this against some pretty difficult odds.

"But some of us are right and some of us are wrong. Some of us ready and some of us are not. Some of us know what we will do on day one, and some of us really haven't thought that through enough...

"So as tired as I am - and I am. And as difficult as it is to try and keep up what I try to do on the road, like occasionally exercise and try to eat right - it's tough when the easiest food is pizza - I just believe so strongly in who we are as a nation. So I'm gonna do everything I can and make my case and you know the voters get to decide."

The New York senator is under pressure after some weekend surveys showed opponent Barack Obama with a sudden double-digit edge, with less than a day to go until the New Hampshire primary.

At a New Hampshire campaign event, presidential rival John Edwards told reporters he was unaware of Clinton's emotional reaction and would not respond to it, but added, according to CNN's Dugald McDonnell: "I think what we need in a commander in chief is strength and resolve, and presidential campaigns are a tough business, but being President of the United States is also a very tough business. And the President of the United States is faced with very, very difficult challenges every single day, difficult judgments every single day."

- CNN Senior Political Producer Sasha Johnson

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • New Hampshire
soundoff (926 Responses)
  1. Paul, NJ

    She's the best one for the job. Obama is too green and naive. If you people are upset at the fact that she is a human, then you are proving that you are not.

    January 7, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  2. Anthony

    How is Hillary more qualified than Richardson? Biden?

    Vote for whom you want but if qualifications were the main issue Joe Biden would be winning, so let's put away the qualifications qualifier.

    January 7, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  3. Steve, Landing, NJ


    Do you even realize how biased your list of Clinton's accomplishments is? You cite a variety of causes she supported or did pro-bono work for as a lawyer or political consultant, but pretty much dismiss Obama's work as a community organizer as "he was active in his community". You tout Clinton being in her second term as a senator, but ignore Obama's years as a state senator–between state and national senate, he's held elected office longer than she has.

    You create a long list of *things* Clinton has done (and, well, she's 15 years his senior, she's done more *things* in her life than he has) but some of them are hard to pass off as accomplishments. I mean: "Served on Five Senate sub-committees: Committee on Budget, Committee on Armed Services, Committee on Environment and Public Works, Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, Special Committee on Aging.

    She's in the senate, and she served on five sub-committees? Fantastic. What did she do with them? I mean, one's the special committee on *aging*? And, look, Obama serves on at least four himself. I notice that you didn't mention that–padding his resume wasn't on your agenda.

    Clinton has done good and admirable work, and I respect her for it, but the idea that she has this long list of achievements and important experience that outstrips the other competitors is fantasy. Again, if experience is such great shakes to a Clinton-supporter, where were they when Joe Biden dropped out of the race last week?

    January 7, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  4. Terry, College Station, TX

    Don't cry Hillary, in South Carolina I'll give you some of my votes to comfort you.

    January 7, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  5. nightmare in New York

    Just to let you know, Hillary Clinton ignored New Yorkers' concerns when they called her office. For two years now others and myself have tried to get a responce from her. Guess what nothing no letter of acknowlegement, no return phone call nothing. Now she on tv talking about what she has done for 35 years.
    Give me a break. This is an insult to the most dumbest of peoples' intelegence.

    I am still waiting for someone to tell me what has she done for the past 35 years never the less for New Yorkers.

    I really would like to know.

    January 7, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  6. tennessee gurl

    Oh please. I am a woman. She has got to toughen up. Stop using her gender as an excuse because her campaign is failing. Clinton cant win because she is Hllary Clinton. Her time has pasted its time to move on. Give it a rest.

    January 7, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  7. Anthony

    And also no true Democrat would switch and vote for a Republican just because a biracial man was their nominee

    January 7, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  8. WJR

    Hillary deserves to be President. She is human, which is what America needs now. When I see Obama I just think of two things, ( two planes, twin towers).
    Obama says there needs to be a change. What???????

    January 7, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  9. Joe

    "I'm sick of hearing she's acting. She's as much a woman with feelings as any of the other politicians out there applying for the job. I've NO doubt they've cried into their wives big shoulders or their pillows from time to time. Emotions are funny that way..when they're genuine, you don't PICK your moments, THEY pick their own moments."

    Leaders cannot and never should show that they're breaking down in front of the people they're leading. It is a sign that you are weak and the people that depend on you lose their faith in you.

    No doubt that other candidates cry and have feelings of hopelessness, but they do it in private not public.

    Clinton is doing a classic "crying for an A" that many women try to pull off for sympathy.

    January 7, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  10. Amanda

    Wow. Did you people actually watch the speech, or did you simply decide to crucify a woman for displaying a little bit of humanity and power at the same time? She was responding to the question of, "How do you do it?". You really should watch the speech - it's not as hard as reading, so maybe you can handle it.

    I think of all the stupid things politicians have done over the years. I think to myself right now, "Wow. If Bush had shed one single tear when he thought about killing thousands of our troops in the name of avenging his father...hmm..."

    And a President who sees us as living, breathing people is BAD?

    You can deny it all you want, but Hillary has done amazing things for healthcare, and opportunities for the poor and underpriviledged in this country. She is also the reason why women in the 90's went from making 40 cents per dollar to 75 cents per dollar when compared to men. She fought for maternity leave and additional help for single mothers.

    Yet, she's calculating? If Obama, in the middle of one of his fluff-filled speeches and vapid promises, decided to let his voice crack, everyone would clap and whistle. The same with Edwards. He has compassion! He's for change! It came out this week that Obama has lobbyists on his side, and that he flip/flops twice as much as Kerry, but no one wants to listen to that. No one wants to listen that he voted for 300 BILLION dollars to go towards this war; even though he knows that this is nothing but a travisty. He voted to CONTINUE it. How can someone who wants to pull troops out enable huge funding to keep them in???? No one wants to see this, and it saddens me that our party is allowing themselves to be sedated by a pretty voice and pacified by what they *want* to hear.

    These comments have nothing to do with politics – they have to do with mysogeny, ignorance, internalized sexism, and fear of women in power.

    January 7, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  11. Kyle G. Columbia SC

    If yall buy that as her crying cause she wants to lead the country then I got some land down in Flordia (which I DON'T) that I can sale YOU!! Hillary if you want to act like a child then DONT TRY AND RUN THIS COUNTRY!! Crying is a sign of weakness especially if nothing or no one has given you a reason to cry

    January 7, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  12. bobr


    You state unequivocally that Obama is the one that can unite the country. What has he done to show that he can unite Democrats and Republicans, Liberals, moderates and conservatives?

    Having all the right answers in a stirring rhetorical speech is not the same as making decisions under fire.

    There was an interesting story about JFK and the Bay of Pigs that was in one of the 200, or so, books about him. When it came time to make a decision and he had all of his advisors in a room he stated that his preference was to go through with it. No one offered any dissent. Apparently this was typical, at least according to the person that gave this account, because his advisors had all "believed in the dream" and were more caught up in the man and therefore not serving him well.

    The question will be: Would Obama's advisors be syncophants caught up in the aura of the man or will he put aside his ego (which would be massively larger if elected) and bring in experienced people that won't be afraid to disagree with him and will he listen?

    January 7, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  13. Josh

    And how does she expect to deal with the stresses of being president and she can't even handle the pressures of campaigning. It is ok to tear up, just do it on your own time in private!

    Obama 08

    January 7, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  14. maria

    You are right! the media is being SEXIEST she can't do anything right!
    Please ladies do not let her be humillated.
    Stand up for Hillary

    January 7, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  15. Robert Joh

    The media has decided that women should vote for Obama, as evidenced by their tearing down of Clinton. This tearing up hype is outrageous and insulting to every woman in America.

    January 7, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  16. Rob

    To Mike,MD

    I hope you're right. As much as I would like a woman as president, we need a better candidate.

    There is no need to bash her, she will push herself out.


    January 7, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  17. Spirit of '76

    Vote for John Edwards, the only real agent of progressive change, except for Dennis. Obama is a phoney.

    January 7, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  18. Bukky, Balt MD

    Trying to show your softer side does not mean cry dammit. You are the strongest women in the country at the moment DONT CRY... fake or real.... crying is not what we need to see. If your being tough will not allow you to be president, screw it and give the repubs ABSOLUTE HELL in the senate. Be an ally for change in the senate, you have the connections that Obama does not, he can get the people to act as one, and you can put a boot up the behind of people that dont act right.

    Dont sell your self short by playing into the sensitive woman role. GIVE EM' HELL where ever you go. You are a role model for women everywhere... DONT CRY BECAUSE THEY TELL YOU YOURE SUPPOSED TO....

    January 7, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  19. parforthecourse

    I had to laugh - Obama cannot stop smoking - a true sign of weakness. Robin, as a former smoker, you are soooo right.

    January 7, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  20. sally duplechian


    January 7, 2008 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  21. No Obama. No way.

    Obama can barely contain his smugness – not a great quality for a supposed “uniter.”

    His comment about Hillary being "likeable enough" was childish. And then coming back to it later in the debate was even worse.

    Civil rights icon Andrew Young and so many other are correct - Obama is too immature for the presidency.

    January 7, 2008 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  22. Tom Davie

    How about instead americans just vote for who would be the best president.

    we NEED him /her or whomever.

    No. 99% of all these replies are about personal attacks, issues that have nothing to do with running the country, and playing favorites.

    They ALL get speeches written for them. All the candidates.

    They are ALL lying sacks of you know what. Every one of them . We all know deep down inside.

    How about we just vote for who the best person is. This is what americans are SUPPOSED TO DO.

    Not Vote Hillary in cause Bill was a good president.

    Not Vote Obama in cause he tap dances very well at being 'not one of them' .


    Obama does NOT have the real expereince for miraculous wholesale changes . Its wishful thinking that doesnt exist. He has never proved that he is capable of ANY of it.

    Chit. I would vote for Edwards. Execpt we know he is really running for vice president again.

    January 7, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  23. Anthony

    Edwards could not win in a general election, I agree he is a progressive, that is exactly why he would lose.

    I will vote for whomever the Dem nominee is, I find it strange that these people will vote for a Republican if Obama is the nominee. Very strange....

    His policies really are not much different than Clinton's

    January 7, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  24. Philip

    What really gets me, is all of the Americans that are anti Muslim, are ready to vote one in as COMMANDER IN CHIEF!! CNN just did a story on his grandmother and Obama's home land of KENYA!!! NOT AMERICA HE IS MUSILM, DEDICATED TO
    A-F-R-I-C-A... in the name of Jesus, you people would vote a muslim into office as President of the United States! This surely is the end of the world!

    January 7, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  25. Becky

    EXPERIENCE, Give me a break NO CANIDATE RUNNING has EXPERIENCE as a PRESIDENT. Hillary was 1ST LADY NOT PRESIDENT and alot of things she is taking credit for over the 35 YEARS are her husbands accomplishments not hers. SOO maybe you supporters better wake up. She is a great big Phony and dishonest and you will live to regret your vote when she goes up against the GOP because they will spare her no punches.

    January 7, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
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