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. Danny G. Boca Raton, FL

    For all of you Obama-Extremist, you obviously do not understand his message, not one of you has any respect for Sen. Clinton, you spout so much venom with every comment that it is shameful to see. Sen. Clinton is an honorable Lady, she cares a lot for this country and she deserves our respect. Sen. Obama as well I believe has his heart on the right place, however I disagree with some of his ideas, but I choose to respect him and understand that he is also trying to make this country better and I thank him for it. but for people like Joanna to suggest that Sen. Clinton's emotions after a month for 18-20 hour days meeting thousands of people and the streess of running a campaign causes a fairly simple question to spark her reaction that for some reason that means she is weak or less desirable to become president is moronic. perhaps joanna is the perfect person and she should be the next president!!! I cannot stand when people believe they can judge everyone when they have never walked on their shoes. it is pathetic!

    January 9, 2008 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  2. richard

    Wake up, people – the Clinton juggernaut is a FRAUD! Slick Willy was elected with 43% of the popular vote, re-elected with 49% , both numbers lower than GWB for crying out loud! There isn't now and never was anything inevitable about her nomination – all smoke and mirrors! She couldn't even run in her "home" state of Arkansas for fear of the inevitable humiliation.

    Listen to her telling you how important White House experience is (why wasn't it important in 1992?) And just in case you actually believe being married to a president passes for "experience" – let's get the ball rolling for Laura Bush in 2012!

    January 9, 2008 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  3. Susan S., Wyoming

    Glad to hear at least one voter wasn't swayed by HC's fakery. Mind you, the media didn't have to fall for it either so in a way I can't blame HC for shrewdly taking advantage of their idiocy. Please, it was barely a quaver in her voice!

    Jon Stewart was very funny about it on The Daily Show, pointing out how many male politicians have cried a lot harder in public over the years.

    Unfortunately there's plenty of stupidity to go around.

    January 9, 2008 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  4. Phil, Philadelphia

    People in Kenya seem excited for Obama that is good because i'm excited for him too. Its just that some are excited for the wrong reasons. It is true that when Obama become president he will help to control the war in Kenya and bring our boys home from Iraq. However, i don't know about him bringing power to Kenya. Kenya is his ancestoral home but America is his country. The country he obviously love so much and want so much to change from what it has been during the last eight years. I believe in Obama's message of change. "YES WE CAN". Vote Obama 08.

    January 9, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  5. Del, California

    Should Obama become the president, every one of you would be crying every day...

    January 9, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  6. David, Boca Raton

    Something wrong about the potential leader of the most powerful country in the world breaking down emotionally to the point of tears.

    January 9, 2008 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  7. j gannon

    I still cannot beleive that the so-called "educated" women voters of New Hampshire would vote for a candidate because her eyes got teary..... a sad commentary on who are voting for the President of the United States.. Maybe the same teary eyes will work for her in the White House!!

    January 9, 2008 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  8. Kimberly Hopkins

    Has anyone noticed that Hillary didn't beat Barack by a very wide margin, in fact, it's a very small margin. Barack still has more delegates which makes him what...? I dunno...the FRONT RUNNER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    January 9, 2008 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  9. JACK, NY, NY

    The woman said Obama made her cry twice so she voted for him.....now why did she cry? SOmeone must have been playing with her emotions....that is what Obama is doing exploiting people's emotions...talking like some sort gold send angle....it is almost laughable...very soon we are going to hear he is actually Jesus himself.....lol

    January 9, 2008 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  10. Margaret

    You know, wouldn't it be a little more classy for her to not seek publicity. Good grief.

    Glad she voted for Obama. Gives her an opportunity to weep for 11 months.

    What a stupid reason to pick a Presidential candidate.

    January 9, 2008 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  11. Bimmer

    I was an Edwards supporter when he first started talking about "two-america" in 2004 election. Then I got tired of it after realizing that it is all words and no action to back it up.

    I was an Obama supporter first. Then I realized that all he does is give good speeches but not enough substances in there.

    I did not like Bill Clinton that much while he was President. although he is doing good work now.

    I was not sure about Hillary when she ran for the senate.

    Then I read that she won in upstate New York where Democrats do not normally win. Then I also found that she cosponsored by bills with Republicans. Then I saw the debates. She is very intelligent and fit for President.

    January 9, 2008 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  12. Me

    I thought that the reason the media covered this so obsessively was that lizards were not previously known to experience emotions.

    January 9, 2008 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  13. Lisa

    As a woman, I am appalled that women would vote for her and consider it being a feminist. Hillary is playing this game on two levels – saying that she is the most tested and experienced – yet it is obvious that she cannot take what she dishes out.

    Hillary has been much more cruel in her attacks against others, but expect the male candidates to be gentlemen towards her. She is NOT being criticized any more than any other candidate! Gimme a break!

    If Hillary wants to be President she needs to know that criticism is constant. I don't like Bush – but I can honestly say that he is criticized on a daily basis – sometimes even undeservingly. What is Hillary going to do if Castro insults her, or Hugo Chavez? Is Bill going have to defend her? That totally weakens her position.

    Did Castro tell Jeb Bush that he was chubby and could benefit from some exercise because he is a man? (Oh, but if someone said something about Hillary – people would totally make it out it is due to her being female). When Chavez joked about Bush having left the smell of sulfur at the podium – was that because he is male? What would Hillary do if she got criticized the same way?

    Seriously, people say that Huckabee looks like Gomer Pyle, and Romney looks like Herman Munster. People attack all of the candidates.

    Why is it that when Hillary is criticized it is just because she is a woman? I say the woman needs to grow up, instead of acting like a school girl. If she wants to be the President then she needs to present herself in a way that proves that she can handle it. Because the world is not going to treat her with kid gloves.

    January 9, 2008 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  14. Joe Michalak

    Could we please give this story a proper burial. It's tiresome, completely sexist and ludicrous. She was hardly balling, but revealed a more sensitive side, which is more than I can say for all the men that have been President since I can remember–back to Harry Truman. We don't need any more macho posturing from Presidents–please no more "bring it on" nitwits in the White House! We had enough of the men who talk tough, but don't have to suffer the consequences of their words.

    January 9, 2008 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  15. Stan


    January 9, 2008 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  16. Chuck, Miami Fl

    LOL, man you people are haters to the extreme. Get over your self, most Americans dont know what we talk about here. So lets just get along and be happy that the Dems are kicking butt.

    January 9, 2008 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  17. cathy

    Hillary is definately the most qualified candidate and has done more for our country than the others.So she got a little emotional,perhaps she just really cares.The US wants other countries to change because we don't like their ways or how they treat their women;however a huge portion of the US will not vote for her simply because she is a woman.That is sad.WAKE UP AMERICA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!We need something different as of eight years ago.For those who bash the Clinton administration and probably voted for Bush:The best I have ever saw things in the US and the best off this country was happened to be during Bill Clintons administration.What is wrong with People who thnk she will be a bad president because she is a woman?I'll put this in prospective for you.Men have always run this country,look where that has gotten us.Honestly do you really believe that she could do anymore harm to our country than all the men have?We need to try a new approach to a system that is not working and amazingly maybe that is a woman.People make me sick!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    January 9, 2008 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  18. Nate P

    I think Hillary should win. Hillary is a woman, the US has never had a female president. Obama is black, the US has never had a black president, either. However, Obama is still a male, regardless of skin color. I think it would be nice to have a woman's perspective.

    January 9, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  19. Bimmer

    It was heart- warming to hear AP's projection of Hiilary's triumph last night. Like me, a lot of Canadians who are not directly involved in the US election, are rooting for Hillary not because of sympathy but because she and McCain are the two strongest time-tested candidates who should fight it out in the general election.

    This woman has been ostracized and called obscene names even in these supposedly moderated (by CNN) tickers. Apparently all these attacks backfired in NH.

    Aside for the incident when she showed her emotions and passion for the job in the cafe, Hillary won because she won the NH debate on Saturday night by a big margin, despite being ganged-up on by Edwards-Obama's very obvious alliance. She showed strength when she responded to the Edwards' attack with her experience in bringing about changes. She also showed her human-side the way she handled the likeability question with a great sense of humour and tact. She also scored a lot of debate points by saying that electing a woman would be a huge change.

    After watching the debate, I would have voted for her if I were a NH voter.

    As another person commented, Obama's oratory for change and hope is wearing thin as it sounds too preachy — fit for a church pastor not for a Presidential candidate. It is having the same repulsive effect as wjhen Edwards talk about figthing for middle class and poverty. Obama has to find another mantra other than "change" as it has been overused and neutralized by Charlie Gibson of ABC in the debate by pointing out that almost all candidates in past elections talk about change when they run for office. I think he alreay found one in "yes we can".

    Finally, if the Americans cannot entertain the idea of electing Hillary because she is a woman, we would like to invite her to Canada, which has a precedence of having a woman Prime Minister.

    January 9, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  20. Shannon, Minnesota

    The press crucified Hilliary these past few days, and now they won't even accept responsibility for their actions. Now the press, and some of the posters here, don't even give women enough credit to vote on issues. They say we vote on who cries, and who we feel sorry for. I'll tell you what, I've seen George Bush cry and I never voted for him, I never felt sorry for him. I was smart enough to see George as the most corrupt president we've ever had, tears or no tears, and I look to HIlliary to try to get us out of the mess he created. CNN should be ashamed of their coverage of HIlliary, it's what you would expect from FOX!

    January 9, 2008 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  21. Bimmer

    I think it is good for the Hillary camp that she voted for Obama. Otherwise, all will be crying foul that it was set up.

    January 9, 2008 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  22. melvin stewart


    January 9, 2008 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  23. carlo

    People seem to think that Barak Obama's message of unity and hope are lacking substance. You are forgetting one thing-regardless of any plan Hillary may have, none of it amounts to a hill of beans if she can't get the other side of the isle to agree with her. You MUST have unity first to have success. That is the part no one seems to understand. She is terribly decisive, and, apparently, very manipulative. I used to have confidence in Bill Clinton, despite his many indiscretions. My confidence was washed away when I heard him landblast Obama, and refer to any idea of his winning as a "fairy tale." A lot of nerve after everything Black voters have done for him and his manipulative wife.

    As far as his name goes, he, just like the rest of us, didn't get to pick our names, the schools we attend, or the circumstances that lead us to where we are. I certainly pray that women weren't compelled to vote for her because of pity. As a black woman, I know that we have been crying for over 500 years, and have had a much harder way than she could ever imagine, yet most haven't and still don't give a tinker's behind about our tears. All her contrived tears did was anger me because it smacks of manipulation.

    Hillary could NEVER win against any Republican, so if anyone out there is supporting her, they should make sure that none of their children needs to go to college via the G-I bill.

    January 9, 2008 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  24. Jill Fischer

    I am so dissappointed with CNN and your reporting of the Clinton campaign. I have acutally switched my vote to supporting Hillary. Your biases are so transparent and Candy Crowley is not someone I would ever want on my side.

    Hillary Clinton's resilience is a model for all. I'm now convenienced this country needs a woman as a president.

    January 9, 2008 08:08 pm at 8:08 pm |
  25. Lisa

    Experience is not enough when you create a divide so wide – that nothing gets accomplished. Why are Americans more angry with Congress then with Bush? Nothing has been getting resolve with all of this partisan bickering.

    We all want to remember the 90's as the good old days with a better economy – but think harder and remember all of the partisan bickering and how the Federal government was shut down for awhile with the Contract with America. The reason why Bush won is because of all of the baggage that came from Bill Clinton. We don't need the animosity in the White House any more.

    I don't want a President to represent the Rep, or Dem,or Men,or Women, or the Christians. The President should represent all of us.

    Obama is able to bring people together.

    January 9, 2008 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
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