January 9th, 2008
06:30 PM ET
11 years ago

Voter who made Clinton teary picked Obama

The CNN Ticker

Marianne Pernold Young looks on Monday after asking a question that led Hillary Clinton to tears.

(CNN) - Many political observers are crediting Democrat Hillary Clinton's surprise win in New Hampshire to the New York senator's rare display of emotion at a Portsmouth Coffee shop Monday morning.

But Clinton's tearful moment failed to win at least one Granite State voter - the very woman who prompted her response in the first place.

Marianne Pernold-Young told CNN Wednesday she ultimately picked Barack Obama in Tuesday night's primary because of the Illinois senator's performance at a recent rally she attended.

"I was moved to tears. Not once, but twice," she said. "And he has this enormous electricity. And I was just taken aback. And I just had to go with my feelings." (Video: Young speaks on American Morning)

On Monday, Young asked Clinton how she was holding up under the rigors of a presidential campaign - an inquiry that cause the presidential candidate's eyes to well up and voice to tremble.

"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," a teary Clinton said. "You know, I have so many opportunities from this country, I just don't want to see us fall backwards." (Video: Clinton gets emotional)

The moment instantly became the most-covered event on the campaign trail on the day before the critical New Hampshire primary, drawing praise from some who said Clinton had finally bared her true self to voters. The next day, Clinton won among voters who said a candidate who "cares about people" is most important (a category John Edwards won in Iowa.)

Young told CNN she herself was touched by the event, though it was not enough to convince her to support Clinton.

"I was very touched and I was totally in awe that she would open up to us, all of us there," Young said. "But it was a delicate matter."

On CNN's American Morning, Clinton wouldn't speculate whether the moment had put her over the top in the Granite State the night before, but said, "I'm really glad that I had a chance to say what I believe with all of my heart, that politics isn't a game, it's not a horse race. It's about people's lives." (Video: Hillary Clinton on American Morning)

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

soundoff (816 Responses)
  1. Mary

    As a women we naturally have a soft side and tears flow easily so if you were running for president and not doing so well and a room full of women asks you how your holding up of course your gonna tear up at one point or another but for women to vote for her because she teared up is just dumb! I am a woman and former supporter of Hillary but because I supported her I followed her on the news and on during her campaign only to find out about the real Hilliary sides with Bush, who ducks questions, throws fits and is all about the money and fame she would have as first woman President NOT WE THE PEOPLE. Those were tears caused by stress, pressure and fear NOT tears from the heart because of her concern for the people!

    January 11, 2008 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  2. James

    Matt says he is confused. I agree. You are confused Matt. We all know what experience means and so do you if you just try a little, Matt. Do the other candidates have 35 years in politics under their belts? No. Does that matter? Yes of course it does! You are not fooling anyone but yourself when you suggest that Hillary Clinton is the source of unfair criticism coming from other candidates.

    January 11, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  3. oscar yao doe

    There is no dought in my mind Sen. Obama is the man at the moment base on his mesage of hope?but Sen. Clinton is the best to lead America to Lead the World again for this simple reason:she has been tested over three decade,she has been verted over over and again.

    yes there is urgent need for a change in direction in Washinton and that that's not mean we have to change all the waiters and waitresses in all the Restaurants,cap drivers,house owners etc.in Washinton before America get back to her feet again.The change needed is all about prooving capability,Maturity and deep anderstanding of Political Diplomacy and Governance.

    The next President will definately leave and operate from Washinton and soon intergrate in Washinton let's not forget about that, and will have no orther choice than to accomodate Business and lobbies interest.the Presidency can't funtion proper without doing business with the people whom elected her into office.




    January 11, 2008 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  4. sunmuse

    Barack Obama said he would consider bombing Pakistan.

    Wow. What does that say about his experience?

    And by the way–we don't need another maverick in the white house right now.

    January 11, 2008 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  5. ysh08

    I thought the "experienced" candidate was my choice until i saw the tears of manipulation and Bill's attacks on Obama. I thought we would get two great leaders.....only to see Bill point his defiant fairy tale finger at us again. They are a team.

    I would rather have someone with an innate sense of integrity, diplomacy, intelligence, and hope that would respond correctly in difficult times. We have already seen that it has inspired Hillary to soften her approach, even borrow some inspirational phrases as she criticized the power of words.

    Obama with his inexperience has global leaders, corporate leaders and the world paying attention. His inexperience has people lining up with curiosity and interest. He has connected us in debate. Hopefully as we dialogue, we understand ourselves better and vote responsibly. Most important, let's listen, respect, and trust our decision.

    January 11, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  6. Mary

    The people in New Hampshire who changed their minds from Obama to Clinton are flip Floppers Just like her....what message are you sending to the masses?

    January 12, 2008 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  7. anon

    Marianne Pernold Young should be fired!

    January 12, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  8. Matt

    James you really aren't expecting me to believe Hillary has 35 years experience in politics. She has held exactly 1 elected office, her current role as senator – which she was elected to one term before Senator Obama. That's 4 more years experience than Senator Obama. Feel free to point out her years as first lady, but what votes did she cast in that poistion, what budget did she need to get passed, what military decision was she faced with? None. The plain and simple fact is that she hasn't held elected office for 35 more years of experience than anyone. That's fact, and can't be argued otherwise. Now, if you want to say she has 4 more years experience, I'll concede that fact.

    As for the unfair criticism leveled at her, again, I think you are mistaken. In your own message you:

    1. trumpet Hillary's valuable experience making her the best candidate
    2. suggest she is best equipped to make change because she hasn't been President (no other candidate has either, right?)
    3. tell us her opposition would like to make us believe she HAS been President

    You write, "Hillary Clinton would be an enormous change for America in many ways but first and foremost because she has NEVER been president. Her opponents would like to make us believe the opposite, but they can't."

    What does this even mean? Has Edwards or Obama been making speeches telling Americans to remember some fictional Hillary Presidency? If so, shouldn't these tactics actually HELP her if her incredible experience makes her more qualified? I guess when I said I was confused before I was trying to find a nice way to say this makes no sense. You simply can't have it both ways, claiming her experience is invalubale to her candidacy then discounting it to show how she's ready to be the change America needs.

    I hope that Hillary continues to find her own voice and whatever convenient thing it happens to be telling her at any given moment. Meanwhile, I'll continue to support the candidate I trust to say what he means and mean what he says, the candidate who doesn't need to find a new voice but has had a clear and consistent voice and message, one that I can hope for and actually BELIEVE in.

    January 12, 2008 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  9. Yen

    You are so selfish Mrs. Clinton. You will never make a good president till you learn to respect the will of the majority. How many more times shall you cry as president. You really do have to grow up, do you know that. You cannot do anything better than Mr. Bush!

    January 13, 2008 08:44 am at 8:44 am |
  10. ~meticulous~

    Why are we worrying so much about this. The woman who asked the question, asked it to get a response, she got a response from a human being who does care about this country, who has worked non stop for the last 35 years to make this country grow and prosper, Hillary is not only the best candidate we have but, she is the only candidate with a detailed plan that gets us out of this whole that we are in but, shows just how much she has worked on her candidacy, and on the American Economy that incase you have forgotten has become non existent from the time Bill Clinton to the end of the Bush Administration.

    Are you forgetting that President Clinton never made a salary when He was in office, are you forgetting that Bush not only took the presidential salary but doubled it to make himself richer? Come on folks the choice is obvious but, the woman in N.H. that brought out Hillary's emotional side obviously only did so in order to make her look bad, it obviously didn't work, and the woman I guarantee never intended on voting for Hillary in the first place.

    Stop making these stories out to be more than what they really are, most of CNN's coverage is only half true to begin with, God only knows if the actual story is true, it could have just been someone posing to be that woman from the original question.

    GO HILLARY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! She's got my vote and many, many others!

    January 13, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  11. Mariam

    Sincere or not, I don't care!

    I just want Bill back in the White House so he can help put this country back on track.

    Go Clintons!!! I am voting for you

    January 15, 2008 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  12. Mike, Fort Washington, MD

    How come know one is really questioning the poll numbers and the results? Obama was clearly ahead in the polls and exit numbers but somehow Hillary won.

    January 16, 2008 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  13. Melissa

    I think Hillary's tears were passionate and real. She has done so much for our country and I firmly believe she will be the one to help our country get back on track. I have been fortunate enough to see her speak a number of times and she not only speaks with convinction, she resonates with those of us who are ready to be led by an individual who embraces change.

    Vote Clinton 2008!

    January 16, 2008 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  14. Hans van den Berg

    The US has never shown ANY equal rights for African Black Americans.
    In the US a president who doesn't get the majority of the votes can become a president (Bush re-election) how's that for "democracy"sounds more like Dictatorship.
    The US should choose a woman OR a black president, maybe they should become the winning team. But Clinton hasn't shown much I can build on, and the world is tired of Bush and Republicans and the US stands on Iraq, Kyoto protocol and many other issues.
    With Obama winning, the US will gain respect again here in Europe that is for sure.
    We're glad Bush will be out anyway,
    it should have been a black woman running for president, that would have been even better. But we'll do with Obama!!! Go for it!

    January 17, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  15. TheGuy

    bush-clinton-bush-clinton.... lol...

    As for Obama's lack of experience with foreign policy. It's looks like the Republicans with their years of experience really did this country good these last 2 terms, huh? This is a whole other issue i could go on forever.

    Bottom Line: I believe it's good for someone who hasn't been around long enough to let himself become a true politician, to run for president.

    I know he has my vote.

    As for McCain no thanks to spending the next 4 years in Iraq. Good luck with the draft, because i know i'm not reenlisting if you win!

    January 18, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  16. Tom

    CNN has gone to far regarding their bias for Obama in this campaign.

    When HIllary wins it "doesn't mean anything". Tell that to the over 1 million people who turned out to vote in Florida.

    CNN is almost as bad as Fox now in biased reporting, this time for the Democratic candidate.

    We get it CNN, you want Obama to win. Thankfully the citizens of the United States of America get to decide who's president, NOT the biased cable news network.

    February 1, 2008 11:15 pm at 11:15 pm |
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