January 7th, 2008
03:55 PM ET
9 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. Tin

    either obama or bilalry After they are done done taxing you, it will be the bunch of coins left in your pocket.

    DEmocrats or mc caine just want put Illegal alien in big welfare and put american middle class sucker pay for .

    This how democrats Win election too .

    This for repbulics,
    If you support amnesty for illegal immigrants, you have only ONE clear choice in this election: AMNESTY-JOHN McCain and obama billary

    You can rest assured that after another half-hearted effort at "securing our boarders", AMNESTY-JOHN, if elected president – or otherwise – will do everything in his power to p*ss on those legal immigrants awaiting for citizenship, and immediately grant full citizenship status to all those that illegally entered our country (with the usual BS that they "learn" English 😉 and pay a "fine" ;)). Don't be fooled by cheap imitators like the Huskster – who will only use your tax dollars for more benefits for illegals, or Rudy "Sanctuary City" Giuliani, who just looks the other way whenever an illegal approaches. So, if 1. you've always wanted to have to learn spanish, or 2. you really want your town to achieve the coveted "barrio" status, or 3. you enjoy lower wages, or 4. you want all those empty spaces in the local prison filled, or 5. you want to pay even more hospital costs for ANCHOR babies - THEN AMNESTY-JOHN IS YOUR GUY!

    Hurra para la amnistia

    January 7, 2008 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  2. Matt

    I think Hillary was really "crying" because of all the mindless fools out there that think this election is about "change" or "hope" or some othe load of BS that Obama or Edwards or apparently even Mitt Romney can spew out there mouths faster than you can blink your eyes. This election is not about Hillary Clinton, or Barack Obama, or John Edwards. This election is not about "Hope" or "Change".This election is about one thing and one thing only, keeping guys like George W Bush out of the White House. This election is not about the next four years. But a bunch of narrow minded fools who are geting all soppy and touchy feely over the hollow promise of change that Obama has slicked their feebeled minds with seem to think so. Barak Obama will be todays equivlant of Jimmy Carter. A nice guy but an incompetent leader. Four and he's done! Remember what happened after Carter? Ronald Ragen, Bush Sr. 12 years worth in fact. Chew on that. Think about what is at stake. This election is about Supreme Court Justices, balancing a budget, cutting taxes for the middle class. This election is about every American having acess to high quality affordable health care. This election is about repairing our standing in the world so we don't have to fight a war on terror. If you want America to change for the better you vote for experience, if you want to be a "progressive" that sits around and complains for 12 conecutive years about Republican Presidents vote for Obama.

    January 7, 2008 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  3. Mike

    >>>>>>>>>parforthecourse January 7, 2008 3:46 pm ET











    Sorry "parforthecourse", respect is something that one has to earn and Mrs. Clinton trying to manipulate voters with a few tears isn´t in my book going to be respected for this...

    January 7, 2008 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  4. john williams san diego, ca.

    parforthecourse...you need a companion, not a fantasy love affair with 'her royal highness'.

    January 7, 2008 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  5. Mary Di Antonio

    What I am reading from all you MEN is sick. The only thing that you have a problem with is that a woman could be stronger than a man. Sorry guys but in certain circumstances a woman is stronger. Sen. Clinton is a very smart lady and has what this Country needs. If you can't see that then you are blind through and through. Sen Obama? Common he won't even salute our flag. Or salute our Milirary, He shows total disrespect for this Country. You really want him to be your President? Think long and hard about this folks. I think he is a good man but has his priorties mixed up.

    January 7, 2008 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  6. AndrewR

    I heard about her 35 years experience on Saturday night – Does anyone remember the healthcare she proposed? She is taking credit for the Irish peace accord....what? She is not an agent of change, we will have Clinton retreads on day one...what was the first issue that her husband when after...gays in the military...do remember our African adventure....expect more tears on Tuesday night.

    January 7, 2008 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  7. Susan

    Hillary will be an excellent president - not only because of her intelligence and dilligence, but because of her humanity. What scares me most in this election is the unfairness and mean spiritedenss which has been directed at here. Our country has lost the decency and respectfulness that is key to democracy. I'm glad Hillary let us know who she is, how it feels and why she cares so much. God knows the pundits have tried to paint her as something she is NOT, cold and inhuman. This is a woman who had dedicated her entire career to promoting and protecting the rights of others, especially womena nd children. I believe Hillary is a person who has been through the worst this country has to offer in political cruelty and, when she is president, she will help us restore dignity to our country and to the political process.

    January 7, 2008 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  8. Kitty, Denver, CO.

    I am an educated 43 year old Brown woman. I am a womanly woman too. I absolutely love to be treated like a lady-in my personal life. In my professional world (and personal) I want respect. When those emotional times hit (as they do for both genders, they'er just handled differently) my instinct tells me to take a personal moment. I don't want to drip on camera because it gives the wrong impression. Given the nature of the "game" it seemed like a spontaneous flow of....

    I had a great deal of respect for Hillary until that moment.

    January 7, 2008 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  9. Julie

    I agree with you Linda..I'm Canadian too and just can't beleive my eyes, ears and brain!!

    What's wrong with our american friendsY?? George bush twice and now they don't want the best they ever had??
    We canadian Loved the Clinton's they did a great job and you looked a lot better around the world with the Clinton's.
    She is the only one with the stature of a President.



    January 7, 2008 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  10. Nadine

    I think Hilary's "emotional" breakdown is ridiculous. She claims that it is "personal" for her as well, but when Edwards and Obama were speaking about the Health care plan at the New Hampshire Debate, she told them to get "realistic." Crying in front of national television is a pathetic way to get sympathy for undecided voters. She has to try harder then that!

    January 7, 2008 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  11. Scott

    linda hemmingsen: I agree with you, It is so embrassed to see those many stupid and mean comments about Hillary's little emotion moment. I am an American and I was shamed to see many people act like that way. I never vote in any vote becuase I feel this is wast of my time to vote when people would being mean and etc. I wish people would be more respectful and share their voice and opinion rather than insult or called people name.

    January 7, 2008 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  12. Louis

    The of our country now boils down to the lesser of two democratics evils – Billary or Obama?
    Billary may have more experience than obama but today she proved that she's only a snivling cry baby b i t c h who doesnt have the emotional stability to be President, or for that matter, even a flunky white house aid.

    January 7, 2008 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  13. Julie


    BARAK HUSSEIN OBAMA..humm maybe it doesn't sound american enough..

    January 7, 2008 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  14. hal b

    Wow, there are some real cold-hearted cynics out there.
    So what if she is exhausted and a little bit emotional? I'm not supporting her for President, but I actually think that this was genuine emotion - showing the softer side that we all know she must have (even the hardest/toughest human beings have one). The fact that it started off with a question about her hair? - so what? I don't think this was scripted, and I actually find it a bit refreshing that she is able to let her guard down and show that she is a human being, not some cold-hearted political machine. She was actually making a good point about how some of the candidates are ready to be POTUS, and some are not. Some have experience, and some don't. Some would hit the ground running, and some would stumble from the very start. The fact is: NONE of us know if any of the candidates are going to make a good President. NONE of us can predict who among the Rs and Ds would truly become an effective national and world leader. The best we can do is look at their records of public service, look at their campaigning, the way they present themselves as both leaders AND as human beings. The way they respond to questions, including - yes - even stupid ones like 'who does your hair?' Of course, no one would ever ask one of the male candidates that question, now would they? Well, maybe they'd ask it of Edwards! 🙂
    Give Hillary a break. She's not going to come back and win the Democratic nomination (or at least it seems very unlikely at this point), but please cut her some friggin' slack! I, for one, believe that she truly does care about the future of our country... she's just not the best person for the job, IMHO. But God help us all if a fundamentalist/evangelical who doesn't believe in Science (evolution) gets in the White House. We need a voice of reason, of temperance, of patience and good judgment. I happen to believe that voice belongs to Barack Obama, despite his lack of extensive foreign policy experience...
    Time will tell...

    January 7, 2008 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  15. Joe

    boy...a weeping commader in chief? WEAK!

    January 7, 2008 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  16. caywen

    I want a president who executes in an emergency and, if he/she needs to, cries later and in private. Hillary is in an emergency right now. Her campaign has gaping holes and is taking on water after Iowa. She is the captain of that ship and she's crying instead of fixing the problem. No – it's even more perverse – she's crying believe that crying *will* fix the problem.

    A campaign crisis reflects how a candidate will react in a real crisis – or at least reflect the mentality of the candidate. In this case, Hillary's mentality is either despair, or acting primarily to sway public opinion. Either is bad.

    January 7, 2008 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  17. Lynzey

    I am a young, middle-class woman from Des Moines, Iowa and working my way through law school. I don't know how I'll pay off my loans when I'm finished or where I'll find the money to pay for health care when my coverage runs out on my 25th birthday in two weeks. I am troubled by the results of our caucus and feel compelled to reach out to the young, first-time, or undecided voters in New Hampshire.

    Hillary Clinton gets it - this isn't a pep rally or election for student body president. It's for President of the United States of America. I saw Barack Obama during his first stop in Iowa and I WAS fired up. But when I met Obama after the event, he only stopped and turned to talk to me when I said I was a former staffer of a politico in Iowa. I walked out that night disappointed. When I met Hillary Clinton, she listened to my story and was only interested in what troubled me - not who I was or which student groups I could bring to her campaign.

    I'm afraid Barack Obama's feel-good message is just that: the modern-day opiate of the masses.

    New Hampshire - choose wisely. The pep rally in Iowa is over. Hillary Clinton's tears reflect what those of us that have worked in politics already know: hope is not enough. It's part of it, to be sure. But experience navigating the minefields is what will sustain that message. I suggest you all witness the phenomenon that is Barack Obama. He is no doubt an effective orator and will be a critical part of spreading the message about America's desire to re-build its image. But I urge you to vote for the woman that is recognized and respected around the world. Hillary Clinton will be the well-known, experienced and strong leader that America is in desperate need of to actually change our image around the world

    January 7, 2008 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  18. Kimberly Peacock

    A Chance to make History

    If you like me are a supporter of Hillary Clinton, our backs are up against the wall. With every challenge we have an opportunity. Tonight it is our chance to make history. Against the odds if we can all collectively reach one voter in NH, write one positive article for a blog, or if in NH help one Hillary supporter to the polls we can make history. We can put the first woman in the white house. We can break the glass ceiling that every woman has felt. We can turn back the men that say that a woman can never be trusted to be the President. Think of the message that this will send to our daughters. We can repudiate 12 years of lies and slander aimed at Sen. Clinton. We can make a difference together. A United States that finally respects women. That a young woman can grow up and do anything a man can do. To have a President that will be compassionate. Hillary will be a President that will fight for a better America. An America that has a bright economic future, with a detailed plan and team in place to achieve that future. Sen. Clinton would truly be an education President. We know this because she has spent most of her life as an advocate for children and education. That is the change we need in this country. You know this, and it why you support her. Tonight, we need to let other people know it. We need to take back our country. We need to show those who have slandered Hillary that in the long run their lies will cost them. Put yourself in her shoes. How would you have handled it? I am sure it has not been easy to see people try and destroy your good name. Sen. Hillary keeps fighting on. Not for herself but because she wants the power to effect change. I know she did not want to initially run for President. It would have been easier just to stay with her senate seat. She is running for us. Let’s do something for her and try to create the upset that will be talked about 50 years from now. No one thinks we can do it! So we have nothing to lose and everything to gain. I intend to post this in every blog and every op-ed place I can find. I am going to work all night long and with a little hope and luck we may get a miracle.

    January 7, 2008 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  19. Na-hakyung

    I’m a Korean student living in Korea.
    But I everyday have watched CNN in my TV because of Hillary Clinton.
    Sometimes I asked people about which do you like one of American Hillary Clinton, and Obama.
    And my parents says,”I like Hillary Clinton. I want to see Hillary Clinton’s victory..^^”
    and most of my friends said,"Hillary Clinton is the best lady!!orHillary Clinton really has to win."
    But we are Korea,,
    So sometimes I think I want to American person,,Because I can't have the american vote..so I'm very very sad..
    And when CNN anouncer and reporter said,"Obama have gone New hampshire's victory!!"in my computer and TV. But I think not obama,,Hillary clinton will be going to win in New hampshire..obama has not win,,Hillary Clinton has very many chance yet. Please Don't cry..Although you have very hard story, you must suffer it....

    January 7, 2008 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  20. Scott,Tupelo,MS


    January 7, 2008 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  21. shyril beck

    Crying? Already? This is just the second test. Give me a break. What exactly got her emotional. The question about her hair?
    Save your tears. I am betting there will be more to cry about later on.

    January 7, 2008 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  22. Eric U.-Minnesota

    To MIKE posting @1634–Just wanted to say that I liked your candid and honest opinion.–Eric

    January 7, 2008 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  23. Susan

    Although I am not voting for Ms. Clinton.....I do detect a sort of sexism in the language being used and splashed all over the news.."Clinton gets emotional"...Like real feelings are a bad thing? and why pounce so quickly over it? Women have been so labeled as "too emotional" Enough already......Please..... shes been crucified enough....let her go down with some dignity....She has done much for our country and the status of women....and will continue to do so in the future....
    I am a homemaker and I can still remember and wince when I think of her comment about how she could have stayed home and baked cookies and had teas in 1992...and at the time I found that comment highly insulting and still do ....I am not a village idiot because I am a homemaker......BUT that being said.......I do passionately care about the needs and equal rights of women and and the well being of our nations children...and she has done much work in that area.. and she deserves some respect...she is and was a trailblazer...and sometimes trailblazers have to tough....It must be hard......

    January 7, 2008 06:35 pm at 6:35 pm |
  24. Ann Cannon

    Didn't tears ruin the Muskie campaign many years ago?

    January 7, 2008 06:36 pm at 6:36 pm |
  25. S. Paujlus, Knoxville, 'TN

    I think her response to the question of "how do you do it?'is very valid. Campaigning is very hard work. I watched to video clip several times. I don't think she appears weak. I've seen so much of macho, blustering men who put on a facade but we typically don't penalize men who speak cancidly and emotionally.

    January 7, 2008 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
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