January 11th, 2008
05:45 AM ET
9 years ago

Karl Rove takes aim at Obama

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/images/01/10/art.rove.gi.jpg caption="Karl Rove had some tough words for Obama."]

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Karl Rove is getting tough on Barack Obama.

The man behind President Bush's two successful presidential bids, who once offered advice to Obama on how he could defeat Hillary Clinton, is now taking direct aim at him - calling the Illinois senator "lazy" and "given to misstatements and exaggerations."

"Mr. Obama has failed to rise to leadership on a single major issue in the Senate," Rove writes in a Wall Street Journal Op-Ed. "In the Illinois legislature, he had a habit of ducking major issues, voting 'present' on bills important to many Democratic interest groups, like abortion-rights and gun-control advocates.

And in a rare move, Rove praises Clinton for her "humanizing" moments on the campaign trail, and calls Obama just "as calculating" as the New York Democrat.

"For someone who talks about a new, positive style of politics and pledges to be true to his word, Mr. Obama too often practices the old style of politics, saying one thing and doing another," he said.

The comments are the latest musings from the man often refereed to as "Bush's brain" on the Democratic race for the White House. In an "open letter" to Obama last month, Rove suggested he "Blow the whistle on Clinton when she tries to become a victim."

"Find a way to gently belittle her whenever she tries to use disagreements among Democrats as an excuse to complain about being picked on," he said then. "The toughest candidate in the field should not be able to complain when others disagree with her. This is not a coronation."

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

soundoff (938 Responses)
  1. Buddy Schow

    Karl Rove should be embarassed to describe any of the current possible nominees as lazy. Afterall, he helped to elect the most mentally lazy, least accomplished, most despised (both in the U.S. and around the world), dumbest, most narrow-minded, self-righteous Presidents (and I use that term loosely) in the past 100 years. When you take into account that GWB also benefitted from Affirmative Action, Karl Rove really out-did himself. The only difference was that Georgy Boy received preferential treatment due to being from what's called the Good Old (Rich) White Boy Network. If anyone doesn't believe that statement and you come from an average income family and make average grades (like Georgy Boy), just try getting into Yale and see how far you get. If that isn't a form of Affirmative Action I don't know what else it could be called. One more thing. Georgy Boy has shown on more than one occasion that he is against Affirmative Action.

    January 11, 2008 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  2. Tikka

    I just want to remind the middle class, this is our opportunity standup for the real change of the new generation, so we don't have to safer, most of people they can work but the gevornment give them a choose to sit and get pay from our income I mine ( the middle class) pay check . I'm the frist time regester voiter I'm looking forword to voit lower the wolfer so we all move forword .Please Hilry don't propose wolfar think again.

    Dream team,
    From mississipi.

    January 11, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  3. Jon

    "Wake up Jon!!!!!! Cheating on your wife is a far cry from casuing a lot of innocent people to die!!!! No matter what, you will take up for Bush and what he's done. I guess you think Craig really does have a wide stance!!!!!!!!

    As for research………..I can see clearly as to where we are today in the US and where we were at when Clinton was President!"

    Wake up?? Oh, I see, you think the worst thing Clinton did was cheat on his wife. I think the worst thing he did was nothing, as in he did nothing. He rode an inflated economy driven by exagerated corporate earnings brought about by lax IRS & SEC auditing and enforcement, not to mention a .com boom that went bust just BEFORE he left office. He was in office when the recession started, not Bush. He did nothing when we were attacked throughout the 90's by terrorists. He did nothing to stop the spread of a multinational terrorism organization. He did nothing when Sudan offered bin Laden on a platter. Hey, why doesn't someone seriously ask Sandy Berger exactly what top secret memos he stole from the national archives, bet it was something that would have made Billy boy look awefully bad. But you know what, I don't agree with everything Bush has done. I wish he would have just told the truth why we were going into Iraq. I wish he would have just admitted he wanted to get the SOB that tried to assinate his dad. I wish he would have just said he wanted to stabilize the region to protect our oil supplies. I wish he would have told all the environmentalists to jump of a windmill and just drilled in Alaska and along the coast, that way maybe we could extricate ourselves from the middle east. Please, don't lecture me about waking up and spare us all the ideological drivel. You think that if the world just liked us things would all be better. I don't really care if the world likes us or not. You show me a president that cares more about the American image abroad than national security, and I'll show you a president that is leading us further down the rabbit hole.

    January 11, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  4. matt wong

    The old style of politics. Obama doesn't look like Rove to me. Did the architect just proclaim himself as old? I would think so. Why is Rove still even breathing into papers or media. No lasting legacy that I can see. America despises him and the only good he ever did was inspire americans to realize that the old ways of government are just what they are. Old and corrupt. Were on a path for great change from the old and Rove could never build on that because thats one area he could not comprehend as a human being. Rove knows that he is as futile as his own death bed. Why he decided to take America down with him his beyond my comprehension. When is the last time Rove had lunch with Bush?

    January 11, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  5. Anonymous


    Keep your friends close but your enemy closer...that's why most all country have spies

    January 11, 2008 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  6. Yash

    I would rather see a headline of "Rove and Cheney Indicted"

    January 11, 2008 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  7. Truthteller, Pensacola, FL

    Karl Rove is precisely what's WRONG with America. He is THE agent of divisiveness, smut, dirt, and everything foul. People who listen to and agree with him should be tired of harboring so much hate and evil in their hearts; which is what he does. He always acts like the ANTI-CHRIST!

    January 11, 2008 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  8. GaryO Virginia Beach

    Well, at least K C Seri and I can figure out what is going on.

    January 11, 2008 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  9. Todd Hovenden

    The architect behind the most disastrous presidency in American history has something to say?

    After he says it, can we shoot him?

    This man along with President Bush should be hanged by the neck until dead. They are traitors.

    Todd Hovenden
    Cedar Rapids, IA

    January 11, 2008 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  10. VDRPhill

    Robert Bell, I think you are on to something. Maybe I'm too cynical....nah! I keep asking, "Why is Rove helping Obama? Why is Rove spanking Obama?" I think he wants Hillary to run too because she might be beaten by a Repub. Notice the name nobody mentions, the person who could really put a big hurt on the Repubs.: John Edwards. He's smart, he fights for the little folks like me, he's a good person, he's truthful, transparent–I have looked him in the eyes twice talking with him one-on-one and I feel like I know him. Edwards is real. If he gets screwed it will be like another Al Gore crucification. Dumb, dumb, dumb.

    January 11, 2008 11:14 pm at 11:14 pm |
  11. Al

    Karl Rove should be put in front of a fireing squad and SHOT:


    January 12, 2008 02:27 am at 2:27 am |
  12. Hilda Gladys

    No one should listen to a man that put Bush in office. Look how far America has fallen!!

    January 12, 2008 09:29 am at 9:29 am |
  13. Duop Chak, Colorado

    Karl Rove was lonely in his residence looking for something to throw in the air-this is not enough but a declaration of your unknown feelings.

    January 13, 2008 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
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