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. James

    Oh my God, I hope voters actually wake up and realize that Obama is not going to lead this great land to change. What has he actually changed as a senator? Oh wait, he'd actually have to show up and vote to change anything. Also, do you not find it ironic that the biggest support for Obama has come from the female crowd in the 18-50 year old range. Oh, and let's not forget that would be the same crowd who watch Oprah and since Oprah decided to jump on the Obama wagon then he must be right because Oprah only touches things that turn to gold.

    It is amazing how people do not really look at the issues and what has happened but base it on the garbage reporters throw around and whether a candidate "welled up with tears" or "looked tired" or any other line that a reporter uses to try and sell their article.

    Bottom line, neither Edwards or Obama have the practical experience to do much of anything as president and sending either of those as the Democratic nominee will only help the Republican nominee win the presidency for another 4 years. God help us all if that happens. I don't know about the rest of you, but this country has went to hell in the last 8 years and I hope you all are bright enough to make the right vote to change that.

    January 7, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  2. Paul

    Tough crowd! You all act like she got into a disagreement with someone and started crying. I've never seen her flinch - in a debate or otherwise.

    I'm neither anti-Hillary nor pro-Hillary and haven't decided who I'll be supporting (or even which party at this point), but I appreciate seeing some genuine humanity, passion, and emotion in our candidates and I guess I'm not so cynical as to believe that everything Hillary does is scripted and artificial. She has a good sense of humor when she isn't trying too hard, can be tough when she needs to be, and, yes, can show a little bit of her softer side to her supporters.

    I appreciate the passion and emotion I see in many of the candidates.

    January 7, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  3. John New York, NY

    I find it refreshing to see Hillary Clinton in an unscripted moment. I believe her words were spontaneous and genuine this time.

    Still, I can barely imagine Margaret Thatcher starting to cry if asked about her hair.

    January 7, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  4. Brooke, Philadelphia, PA

    You guys are ridiculous. Nothing she does will ever get people to accept her. I am so sick of the Clinton hate, it's been 16 years. GET OVER IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! She's probably exhausted and she didn't break down, she just choked up. Big deal. She's not calculating and awful like you people think she is.

    You're all just upset because she actually showed the real Hillary she is: warm and can get emotional at times.

    You all should be ashamed of yourselves for having such hate towards her. Let it go.

    GO HILLARY!! I'm glad to see her show emotion like this, it means she's HUMAN. I'm behind her all the way!!!

    January 7, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  5. kaycee

    Obama has the best judgement of all the candidates on a lot of issues, especially foreign pollicy issues which other so-called experienced washignton insiders do not have. He made the right judgement by speaking out against the Iraq war, and he has a clear shot at what we need to do to send a strong signal to parkistan so that they can start acting and stop habouring terrorists and Anti-American extreemists. He spoke about his plans to act if Musharaf will not act when there is sufficient intelligence of Alquida opperatives in pakistan, and he was right. Obama was criticized for his comments and judgement especially by hillary Clinton, who blasted him as being "Naieve" and a someone who deals with hypotheticals. But now with the current political unrests in Pakistan and the exposure of the corrupt musharaf adminstration and how the US has aided the pakistani government with billions of dollars is steaming, the general puplic now knows the truth about what is going on in washighton, which washighton insiders like Hillary clinton are not willing to make known to the American people. It is very clear that we need change in America, and there is a "feirce urgency" for that change. That is why Obama, who "change" has been his motto from the begining, is the candidate to vote for. VOTE FOR OBAMA.

    January 7, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  6. Joe Morgan

    You see, the thing you have to realize is that, being the Hall of Famer and World Champion that I am, I really don't know about all this soft and emotional stuff. With the Big Red Machine, we never had to worry about that mushy stuff becasue we were too busy winning. I do know that the only time I shed some tears is when some champagne was shot into my eye after one of our many many victory celebrations.

    January 7, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  7. thomas Scully, St.Petersburg, Fl

    Look where the John Wayne "tough cowboy" mentality has got us. There is an old expression "the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world". How many more cowboys do we have to endure sitting in the presidential office before we realize that a person can be smart, sensitive,strong,and sympathetic and be just what this country so desparetly needs to get us back on track. How about a woman in thier for real change and this is coming from a real man. yes! there are pelnty of us out there with plenty of testosterone that can and will support Hillary for president. WAKE UP AMERICA!!!!!!

    January 7, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  8. Jane Buchanan, Dallas, Texas

    I really don't think she has what it takes to be president. She can blast people, get angry if they disagree with her but all in all she is just not capable and that is the cold, hard truth. Whoever thought she was?

    January 7, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  9. Bill W - PA

    YUK! Puh-lease. I guess the polls this week indicate people want to see her "softer side." This woman truly disgusts me. he will truly stop at nothing.

    Get her an emmy.

    January 7, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  10. Nomad

    True that, Mike!!! Exactly what I was pointing out!!! Neither Edwards nor Obama are respected Senators. But I do disagree they have "no" record – that have a "terrible" record!!!

    January 7, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  11. kris

    this is why clinton is crying.

    January 7, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  12. Josh Maloney, Oakland, CA

    As an Obama supporter I admire Hillary Clinton very much. I think she is genuine and would be an outstanding leader. I would like to see both she and Obama have some role in the next administration.

    January 7, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  13. lyn - South Africa

    I wish I was an American to be able to vote for the next president, I think most of you dont even appreciate how advanced and professional your political system is, what worries me is that the average American has the audacity to call someone like Hillary Clinton uneducated! Do you even read up on what these candidates believe in and are all about. Irrespective of your personal feelings towards a woman president – think with your brains for once and elect a competent person with years of experience – and that can only be HR Clinton. Go Democrats and HR CLINTON 08!!

    January 7, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  14. Cove

    Unlike Clinton Governor Bill Richardson is on the record condemning torture. 60 photos, pictures and images of Richardson at

    January 7, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  15. Mark, Toronto Ontario

    A planted question, a rehearsed response..all dutifully recorded ..maybe Hillary can explain sometime how being a "First Lady" qualifies as experience..unless she is counting years of pillow talk with Bill.

    January 7, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  16. Wayne, Greenville TX

    PSK Lakeside, AZ January 7, 2008 1:50 pm ET

    ... I demand decency from a candidate- I demand truthfulness & honesty.....

    I guess that means you'll be voting Democratic in November. None of the republicans by definition are decent, truthful, or honest.

    January 7, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  17. Aidyn

    I saw the moment and it was not fake. I almost cried myself. She was not crying about how she does her hair, she got emotional talking about how much she loves this country.

    January 7, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  18. jo

    I whole heartily agree with Adam from New York and Nomad! Why are people buying into this notion that experience means nothing. We need to look at the accomplishment of the candidates to see what their lives work has been about...what have they done to help and serve our country. People do get motivated by a great speech but that is only words! I want to see action.....What have you done and are going to do for our country. We are in a BIG mess right now because of our leadership for the last 7 years...lets not base or decision on the next president on saying they will make "change" but someone who has the capability of bring about those changes. We can't afford another 4 years of BAD leadership.....give me experience over words any day...especially when it come to choosing the next president. Hillary has my vote!

    January 7, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  19. parforthecourse

    One additional item on the issue of sexism from this Obama African American Supporter:

    As mentioned earlier.....the disrespect shown for Mrs. Clinton is appalling.....
    If we want change...let us change our discourse and began to respect her right, a woman's right to run for President..........just as we respect Mr. Obama's right.

    January 7, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  20. Wayne

    You can play misty and wounded and get out the pants-suit crowd to vote but I dont see that routine playing well with Putin or Musharif. Obama is winning because we want change and not someone so transparently lusting for power.

    January 7, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  21. HH, NY

    Fred, Washington, dc: do you know how to read? The lady asked her how she held her self up...and THEN asked about her hair (a personal compliment that women seem to appreciate...no harm in that). If you cannot read properly, don't comment. You only look like the fool you obviously are.

    January 7, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  22. Supporter of truths teller

    Emotional? It is both funny and crazy.

    January 7, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  23. Kelly

    Duncan Hunter is the only one way to go!!
    Secure Borders
    Stop dealing with China
    Keeps jobs in the USA
    Pro Life
    Pro 2nd Amend


    January 7, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  24. Ennis

    Its just PMS. Quick someone get her a Hershey bar and a Midol!!!!

    January 7, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  25. Fred Thompson

    I've seen better acting in Die Hard 2.

    January 7, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
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