January 7th, 2008
02:35 PM ET
14 years ago

Obama says Clinton campaign getting 'depressing'


Obama is taking issue with comments Clinton made at a recent Democratic debate. (Photo Credit: AP)

(CNN) - With only a day until the New Hampshire Democratic Primary, Barack Obama says the manner in which rival Hillary Clinton's campaign is being run is getting 'depressing."

In an interview that aired on ABC Monday morning, Obama said Clinton does not make him angry, but the Illinois senator took issue with how her campaign is being run.

"I find the manner in which they’ve been running their campaign sort of depressing lately," he said.

Obama specifically took issue with a comment Clinton made at a debate Saturday, when she suggested Obama and John Edwards were raising "false hopes."

"We don't need to be raising the false hopes of our country about what can be delivered," she said. "The best way to know what change I will produce is to look at the changes that I've already made."

Obama has derided Clinton on the campaign trail for the statement, and in the ABC interview, suggested it runs against the American "tradition."

"Sen. Clinton saying, 'don’t feed the American people false hopes. Get a reality check.' You know? I mean, you can picture JFK saying, 'We can’t go to the moon. It’s a false hope. Let’s get a reality check.' It’s not, sort of, I think what our tradition has been," he said.

Meanwhile, Clinton maintains she has a record of change, and said repeatedly over the weekend that she is a "doer" compared to Obama and Edwards who are "talkers."

The back and forth comes as several recent polls indicate Obama's win in the Iowa caucuses last Thursday has given him a bounce in the Granite State. A new CNN/WMUR poll released Sunday night shows Obama 10 points ahead of Clinton, 39 percent to 29 percent.

Related video: Clinton: 'I am a change agent'

soundoff (823 Responses)
  1. Michael

    I don't like Obama. I feel he doesn't answer questions with enough specificity and I just don't believe he is up to the job. I like Edwards. If Obama is the democratic nominee for '08, I will vote republican regardless of who the republican nominee is. If Al Gore gets into the race, then I will vote for Gore.

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

    First, whoever brought up Howard Dean, thanks for the reference – I was waiting on that comparison to surface – what a mess that was. And to Linda who brought up people voting for Obama only b/c he's black (true) but that the media is sexist towards Hil – believe me, they are both going over those demographics as much as they can, so they are indeed milking it for as long as it lasts. Hil thought she had the women "just because" and found out otherwise. When the real fight comes in the months ahead, none of that will matter and competence will rule in the end – ask Kerry of neither category above. 🙂

    January 7, 2008 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  3. I see Evil People

    Brenda, you are an ignorant person. I bet you are a high school dropout. Though, I am not an Obama fan, how dare you tell him to go back to Kenya – HE IS AN AMERICAN you stupid imbecile.

    Jerry Oldham – weren't you peddling this same rubbish on MSN? Get a life.

    January 7, 2008 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  4. kevin from alaska

    I read the first 30 posts or so and I swear that EVERY pro-Clinton post had at least one grammatical error, many of them sounded like they were written by a 5th grader. Obama's base support in the Democratic party is with intellectuals and the youth. Those two groups are pro-literacy and pro-education. Maybe they can help rebuild the education system (Hillary voted for No Child Left Behind) and then with a better education people won't ever support Hillary.

    Also, right now Hillary and Barrack's job is to run for President. At first, Hillary had the "experience" and Barrack was "inexperienced." Okay, he "messed up" a little bit in the beginning, but he hasn't messed up since 2 months before Iowa and nobody can even remember his last "mess up", meanwhile Hillary's "experienced" campaign keeps "messing up." What's up with that?

    January 7, 2008 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  5. Erin

    People need to stop being ignorant. Just because someone may have a "funny" sounding name (in Barack's words) doesn't mean he is automatically less American than the rest of us.

    First of all, Obama is not Muslim. His father was Kenyan, but he only met him once after the age of 2. Who even knows if his father was Muslim. Obama was brought up by his mother and her parents, Kansans, and Christian.

    In addition, Hussein is a common name in sub-saharan Africa and the middle east, presumably where his parents got the name from, considering his father's background.

    Regardless, none of this makes Obama more or less qualified. No wonder America is the way it is, people are much too judgmental.

    January 7, 2008 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  6. Wilberto Jimenez, Monmot, MD

    How is Barack Obama a "polarizing figure" – I don't understand it.

    His leadership abilities are as roughly well-formed as all of the presidential candidates, and he has a message of hope, rather than defending poor positions in the past. The notion of "executive" experience is a crock, because no senator (Clinton, Obama, Biden, McCain, Thompson) can ever truly be said to be an executive, just as one can easily diminish being a governor (G.W. Bush, Romney).


    Obama is clear in presenting evidence of what he has accomplished, in terms of bills passed and positions taken, as has McCain, Thompson, Romney and others. Even George W. Bush extolled his "feats" as governor of Texas, when he was running his 2000 campaign: education, crime, economy.

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

    Hillary is depressing. She is spending too much time slamming Bush (it's our own fault for putting Kerry against that genius- sarcasm) instead of giving Americans any hope.

    If we nominate her we could be in for the second coming of Carter vs. Reagan. The old man gave people hope and that's exactly what Obama is giving us.

    January 7, 2008 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  8. tyler

    im sorry i dont want a man not willing to say the pledge, in the office, Hes a christian man isnt he? Also his pastor of 20 plus year is on the recorde of saying white people wont go to heaven. Sounds like a racist. By supporting Obama your supporting racism

    Again Edwards is the only man who speaks from the heart about issues and tell you ways how hes going to get things done. Hes for the suffering middle class and the poor.

    Edwards 08

    January 7, 2008 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  9. Derek - NY, NY

    Clinton is a "doer". Bill Clinton that is.

    January 7, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  10. Tom Davie

    Steve wrote ......
    ............Mid way through reading Audacity of Hope, I was leaning Obama. But after viewing the prime time debate, it was clear that Senator Clinton was the only one on the stage with an actual grasp of issues and an ability to clearly articulate her points. But it went beyond the ability to close the sale or being a good debater. ......

    Anyone who is truey objective and gave them all a FAIR CHANCE has to fully admit that Clintons answers were on a totally different level due to experience.

    Does anyone fully understand that electing Obama will surely hand the election over to the Republicans?

    He CANT win a general election on 'hope' alone. He has to have BACKED IT UP.

    He is riding a wave of hopes, but he has to be ABLE TO DO THE JOB.

    Dont americans CARE about their country anymore???????

    Every Obama supporter on this thread all talks about the fact he is CHRISTIAN or something. Or he is 'riding a wave' and NOTHING CAN STOP HIM.

    Not one actually talks about HOW he is actually the best choice to RUN THE COUNTRY.

    Hello ???? Its IMPORTANT that he can RUN THE COUNTRY . Not just put on a good show during elections.

    No. Every Obama candidate on here AVOIDS proving he is the BEST candidate to actually run the country. We cannot afford ANOTHER FOREST GUMP in office.

    I would much rather as a democrat have Guilini ro McCain win as at least I can go to sleep at night knowing they are CAPABLE of running the country.

    Obama needs more experience . He is a far better choice in 2012 than he is now.

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

    CNN is unbelievable..they just removed the hillary crying thing because people are not buying it...but here is what some people thinks about why she's crying...i found it very interesting..take a peek...haha


    January 7, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  12. Erin

    Obama also has a lot of front-line community experience that I think informs his ability to lead the way he hopes to. He defies the status quo, while Hillary encourages. Frankly, we need to get rid of the political Elite in this country. Bush, Clinton, Bush, Clinton? Enough already.

    January 7, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  13. Scott, Royal Oak, MI

    Since we are on the topic of starting wild religious rumors, I submit to you this:

    George W Bush is not even CHristian. He successfully EXPLOITED the Christian religion to win the 2004 election. Try and analogize Bush's personality and decisions in office with the behaviors and teachings of Jesus Christ. You can't do it. Bush's behavior is the OPPOSITE of Christian. We can start with creating a war and ignoring the needs of the poor and devastated (see Katrina). Yet, because he claims that he prays, he was able to CON people into believing that he was "God's choice" for president.


    January 7, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  14. rw

    Howard, from Westport.
    You must have been asleep in history class: JFK did 3 terms in the House and 2 terms in the Senate. That is a total of 14 years in Congress before his 1960 presidency. And we can also mention that his father and grandparents had positions in the world of politics.

    In terms of Hillary, she was a career woman before she came to the White House. She also ran Bill's political life in Arkansas, she wasn't just the Governor's wife. And remember the '92 headlines, "will she get to the White House with him or without him?" It is safe to assume that as First Lady she did plenty of politicking while she was attending her "tea parties" (to use Obama's condescending, boarding-on-sexist, words).

    January 7, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  15. stan pitts pa

    hrc lost in iowa and when on to bad-mouth iowa voters, is this the person you want as president?

    January 7, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  16. demwit

    Hillary is so depressed that she is now seeing Bush's face in Obama's TV ads..

    January 7, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  17. Alex

    Is it strange or does any else notice that every single news media story about Hillary has been negative. I believe that the media is trying to set the debate for this race and unfortunately we all seem to be buying into it. For example, I watched several news reports that said if independants show up to vote in N.H. than this is good for Obama. How can they claim this. Do they know something we don't? Or is this an effort to sway the campaign a certain way? Just thoughts. I feel that often times Democrats tend to vote on feelings. In this case voting for Obama because it feels good will be a hugh mistake. If he goes on to win the nomination I guess I will vote for him. I can be certain of one thing however he won't win. At that point Democrats will look like idiots for not choosing a candidate with substance. Go ahead Dems throw away another election.

    January 7, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  18. Tom

    Experience is what got us into the mess we're in right now. From the Bush's, the Cheney's, the Rumsfeld's. These are people with the so-called Washington experience like Hillary. If this is the experience that Hillary is talking about, then it should be re-labeled as "incompetence".

    January 7, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  19. Robert Pensky

    Hillary Clinton touts herself as a, "change agent".
    She's right.
    She changes herself to accommodate the convictions of whatever group she is addressing at the moment.
    Just like the political chameleon that she is.
    (But not as good as Bill)

    January 7, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  20. pam

    when did obama embrace the christian faith and what year did he join his church? and why did he choose to use the koran over the bible when sworn in to congress? just questions, please present fact not opinions. just want real answers to real questions, something the media does not do.

    January 7, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  21. Mike

    Papers across New Hampshire have declared Hillary the best choice for president and I have to say I completely agree them, she is the best choice.
    Check this out:

    January 7, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  22. Jim, CT

    Hillary is the Ice Queen, and Obama is the Manchurian Candidate. Giuliani 08!!!

    January 7, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  23. Jim, Carbondale, IL

    Nomad (and others)
    Form and substance are not seperate, to imply that they are would be a reliance on form. It is inherently contradictory. Talk and action go togther. Change happens through inspiration AND hard work, not one or the other, and Obama has repeatedly said this. Obama has done substantial things in his life, and inspired others to do substantial things as well. Being governor or first lady is not the only way to gain experience. He was a street organizer in Chicago, went to law school and was the first African American president of the Harvard Law Review. He turned down a big time legal career to teach constitutional law and help organize locally in Chicago. He brought people together in the State Senate (even former adversaries admire him and have endorsed his candidacy). He was a state senator for eight years before he became a U.S. senator.
    Being able to do substantial things and also inspire others in the process is not a bad thing. If you focus on smearing him as a mere "talker" when he himself has worked to help people for years, I find it really hard to consider such a characterization "ethical" on your part, and I would find it nearly impossible to ever support a candidate who resorted to such tactics (as Clinton has) considering that is a major reason why I have been so opposed to Bush. We need a new approach to politics, and Obama is the one who can break through the cynicism and bring people together.

    January 7, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  24. Bob - Florida

    “…We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. –That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”
    Declaration of Independence of the Thirteen Colonies.

    Do you understand what this means:
    ..deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed!

    "I'M ASKING YOU TO BELIEVE. Not just in my ability to bring about real change in Washington ... I'm asking you to believe in yours."Barack Obama

    Seize the moment!

    Obama '08!

    January 7, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  25. rochelle stein

    January 7, 2008
    As for Obama, he is not qualified, no experience in anything,
    Just a lot of "hot air" emerging from him. No experience in Foreign Affairs,
    He is not qualified to be President. He voted to "fund" the Iraq war, now he
    is condemming those who participate. He wants to pull all troops out,
    leaving a country in chaos, he sounds very anti military.

    January 7, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
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