January 17th, 2008
06:47 PM ET
15 years ago

Clinton, Edwards campaigns blast radio ads backing Obama

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/images/01/17/art.obama0117.ap.jpg
="Unite Here is allegedly running pro-Obama ads on behalf of the Culinary Workers Union."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - The campaigns of Hillary Clinton and John Edwards took aim at Barack Obama Thursday over radio ads in Nevada funded by a third-party group that is backing his candidacy.

The spot, running on Spanish-language radio in the state, criticizes Clinton for a lawsuit filed by some of her Nevada supporters that sought new restrictions workplace caucus sites this Saturday. The buy is allegedly being funded by the Unite Here Campaign Committee on behalf of the Culinary Workers Union, which has endorsed Obama.

“Hillary Clinton does not respect our people. Hillary Clinton supporters went to court to prevent working people to vote this Saturday – that is an embarrassment,” says the announcer, according to a translation of the script sent to reporters by the Clinton campaign.

“Hillary Clinton supporters want to prevent people from voting in their workplace on Saturday. This is unforgivable. Hillary Clinton is shameless. Hillary Clinton should not allow her friends to attack our people’s right to vote this Saturday. This is unforgivable, there’s no respect.

“Sen. Obama is defending our right to vote. Sen. Obama wants our votes. He respects our votes, our community, and our people. Sen. Obama’s campaign slogan is “Si Se Puede” (“Yes We Can”). Vote for a president that respects us, and that respects our right to vote. Obama for president.”

On a conference call with reporters late this afternoon, Hispanic supporters of Clinton’s presidential candidacy criticized the union for incorrectly implying that “Si Se Puede” – a slogan associated with the late activist Cesar Chavez – was also the Obama campaign’s official slogan.

The Clinton campaign also expressed frustration with the fact that the spots are continuing to run, even though a judge ruled against the suit today, the ad has continued to air.

John Edwards was criticized by Obama in Iowa for not calling an independent group that supported the former North Carolina senator to demand they pull ads they were running in support of his candidacy. “When Sen. Obama says ‘turn the page,’ he obviously means turn to whatever page is most convenient. He loudly and repeatedly attacked independent ads by unions in Iowa as the product of special interests,” said Edwards Deputy Campaign Manager Jonathan Prince.

“But when a different outside group starts running ads on his behalf in Nevada, there's not a peep from him or his campaign. It must be because he's burning up the phone lines calling the head of Unite Here personally to demand he pulls the ads down right away.”

Late Thursday, the Obama campaign responded to the criticism: “Sen. Obama believes, and has said clearly, that campaigns should fund themselves and discourages supporters from spending outside the campaign,” said campaign spokesman Bill Burton. “But no one should be confused about the effort that was run on behalf of John Edwards in Iowa. In that case, it was not the independent speech of individual union members, each contributing small amounts to amplify their voices. It was a special project of outside donors funding a massive 527 effort run by one of Edwards’ top political lieutenants.

“As for the Clinton campaign's comment, coming from a campaign that is repeatedly launching absolutely false attacks against Sen. Obama, it takes some chutzpah. The fact is their camp clearly would like to have worker's voices silenced and they need to live with that unfortunate position.”

-CNN Associate Political Editor Rebecca Sinderbrand

soundoff (388 Responses)
  1. Randy Slovacek

    First of all, the issue of "at large" caucus locations ISN'T fair to everyone in Nevada. I live in Las Vegas. No one else is being catered to, so why make a special effort to the Strip workers? That simply isn't fair.

    Second, Hillary DID NOT bring the lawsuit. Nor did her campaign. It's easy to see, now that the Culinary union endorsed Obama, that she might have been involved, but she WASN'T. So let it go.

    Third, for Obama to run this slanderous ad is way beneath him and the ideals he puts forth. It speaks poorly for him and his campaign. It's not making him look good.

    No one believes Hillary Clinton wants to disenfranchise any voters. It's simply not true.

    January 17, 2008 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  2. Shelly

    Go Obama! They have been hitting you over and over and you've been gracious and a perfect gentleman. I don't believe this came directly from you but rather from your supporters and why should you denounce it??? IT"S THE TRUTH!!! Everyone knows it the truth. The Clintons tried to play dirty with this lawsuit ....they LOST the suit and now they are crying about these ads??? Yes, that takes some Chutzpah! If that union had endorsed Clinton there would have been NO SUCH LAWSUIT and anyone with an ounce of sense knows this is the case. Are we supposed to believe they had no knowledge of the lawsuit??? Who is going to believe Bill or Hillary??? Bill is a CERTIFIED Liar and EVERYONE knows that!

    Neither Bill or Hillary denounced what Bob Johnson or Charles Rangel-even what Cuomo said about Obama! They just sat there! They want Obama to denounce an ad paid for by a third party group???? That is TRUE????

    He and Hillary would do and WILL do anything to get into the White House! ANYTHING and people are seeing right through them. It's time minorities woke up and stopped giving their votes away to the Clintons!!!!! I'm so happy to see this day! Hispanics and Blacks don't owe them anything. They think they have a right to the Black and Hispanic vote but they are going to see the light very soon!!!

    January 17, 2008 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  3. darrell

    Hillary is being taken to task

    Why prevent a Vote. ????

    Movement For Change has been advanced by the Judge's decission.

    Turn the page Hillary. Obama has the best plan.

    in ten days you may get a one two punch.

    Bob Johnson, your voice, speaks of experience. has he taken a look at the people supporting the Obama 08 ticket. Most of them have a wealth of experience.

    Obama Mission shall be supported by a strong experiece administration.

    Turn the page

    Obama 08

    January 17, 2008 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  4. Ray

    Anyone but Obama

    January 17, 2008 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  5. AJ, California

    What exactly is wrong with letting spanish speaking people know what the Clinton supporters in the Teachers Union tried to do?
    Remember, The Clinton's had their chance to disavow the suit but defended it. So I don't see anything slanderous or out of bounds in it.

    You guys want the truth? Can you handle the truth?
    It's the chickens coming home to roost.

    January 17, 2008 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  6. Dorian, London, UK

    It's funny that the same campaign that distributes diffamatory fliers about a trillion dollar tax increase by Obama has the nerve to accuse him (yet again) because some workers are standing up for their right to vote. The Clintons are a disgrace and have always been.

    January 17, 2008 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  7. teacherjrc

    DEMOCRATS, JUST A REMAINDER. SELECTING THE CLINTONS AS THE RUNNING MATES WILL VANISH YOUR HOPES FOR THE WINNING TICKET.
    REMEMBER, IN FLORIDA THE CUBAN COMMUNITY WONT VOTE FOR THE CLAN.
    NEITHER THE LATINO COMMUNITY IN CALIFORNIA, PA, NJ, NY.

    I THINK SHE GOT HER CHANCE TO DO WHAT GOD DEMAND HER TO DO. SHE DID NOTHING BUT ENJOY A PRETTY NICE LIVING IN THE W.HOUSE. IT IS TIME FOR THE WORLD TO GET TOGETHER AND DECLARE PEACE AND HOPE TO ALL CITIZENS AROUND THE WORLD.
    SHE DID NOT THOUGHT ABOUT US WHEN SHE WAS IN POWER, NOW SHE WANT US TO BELIEVE THAT SHE IS WILLING TO DIE FOR THE POOR AND THE MIDDLE CLASS. NO WAY HILLARON!!!!!!!

    January 17, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  8. Jake

    Clinton is horrible... sore loser. "Aww i'm losing in the polls let me pout about it to get some support". Shes always acting. Obama gets laughs at the debate, Hillary tries to be comedian on a plane. She'll pull whatever it takes including trying to take voting privileges to keep this country on the route its going. Shes stopping us from seeing hope for a respected United States again.

    January 17, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  9. Concerned Citizen, IN

    Actually Paying Attention hit it right on. The same people who praise Hillary for everything will put the blame for this on Obama. Let's face it, both camps have their die hards who will not waiver.

    I think you should read the article again: "The buy is allegedly being funded by the Unite Here Campaign Committee on behalf of the Culinary Workers Union"

    I don't think that says Obama's campaign is paying for it. But what do I know, I'm just a simple mind who can read english.

    January 17, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  10. joy

    I live in the South–what used to be textile heaven. We lost a LOT of jobs because of NAFTA. I am still waiting for someone to realize Bill Clinton did not do us any favors. It often takes time for policies to work their way through the system. By the time Clinton was out of office, we were out of a job.... and our health insurance... and our ability to add to our 401(K). I bet we will not hear Hill mention a word of this when she brags about how great things were during the Clinton reign.

    Also, the fact that more men and women have died from this wack war than were killed on 9-11–not to mention the tens of thousands who returned home with severe injuries–and she still refuses to take responsibility for her vote disgusts me. I should say her votes. There was a bill sponsored by Sen. Levin which would required Bush to come back to congress if he wanted to escalate to war. That one? She voted against.

    I have no idea, with this terrible track record on important votes on the war and economy (because she also voted for a bill that would make it harder for folks to file for bankruptcy) she thinks she will be ready day one. In my opinion, anyone not willing to take responsibility for a war they voted for is automatically unfit to be Commander in Chief.

    January 17, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  11. matthew

    99% of the comments here make me laugh.

    people who are mad at obama: get over it, the clinton machine is so nasty, they are just pissed they didnt think of this first. maybe no one who has posted here is old enough to remember what mr. bill clinton pulled to become president.

    people who think edwards can win: thats so funny im not even sure what to say. if edwards even got close to the nomination, would the republicans start playing tapes of him channeling a 6 year old dead girls now or after he receives the nomination? this guy is a total joke and has zero chance. just accept it and move on.

    people who think obama divides the party: your kidding right? all the dems are running on uniting, not dividing the country. how in the hell does hillary clinton have any chance of uniting. sometimes people need to accept that they are disliked, for WHATEVER reasons, true or fale and need to move on. the clinton era needs to end, just like the bush era, for the good of the country. if you think its a joke that many democrats will vote mccain because they dont want hillary, you are kidding yourselves. she is UNELECTABLE!!!!!

    in conclusion: open your eyes everyone. sure, no candidate is perfect, but which candidate is real? is hillary real? with her changing image every other day and trying to appeal to younger voters when she is obviously out of touch? is the trial lawyer edwards real, with his $400 haircut and his channeling of a dead 6 year old girl in a closing statement in court? if you see nothing else in obama, see how dam smart the guy is, he can run circles around everyone else.

    thats what im voting for, intelligence.

    January 17, 2008 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  12. Brian Des Moines, IA

    SO WHERE IS THE POLITICS OF CHANGE?????

    LOOKS AND SOUNDS LIKE THE SAME, SAY ANYTHING TO GET ME ELECTED STUFF ALL OTHER POLITICIANS USE!!!

    January 17, 2008 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  13. kuhrdan1

    He who inspires is just as dirty and slimy as those he criticizes. Obama and his campaign are utter hypocrites. And I am a Democrat.

    January 17, 2008 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  14. Michael

    There goes that ole Chicago politics again. Obama supporters blinded by his smile and false promises. Enjoy yourselves. Make sure to get his good side.

    Hillary Clinton has proven time and time again to be able to come through on her promise to help middle-class Latino and African-American families. Obama will look to hire someone to do this, and check every now and then to see if they are doing what they are supposed to. This is not the Lottery, people!

    We don't need that kind of leadership in the White House again. There already is a guy like that in there – Bush, and the American people were dassled by his "average guy" persona. What our "short-attention span" society failed to remember is he still had to understand how to do the job – which he didn't, and allowed an extemist faction – Neocons, to create the current mess this country is in right now.
    There is no time to be in admiration of an individual, it is time to pick the toughest, no-nonsense, hold-you-accountable, President we can find. And if she happens to be a lady, BIG DEAL. Get over it.
    Hillary Rodham Clinton will get my vote. The media and the Republicans can continue to attack her, and Obama's Chicago crew can continue to attack her. I WILL STILL VOTE FOR HER, NO MATTER WHAT. Because Hillary Clinton is the most qualified choice out there. Period.

    January 17, 2008 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  15. Rene J.

    Yikes, sounds like the bama camp is getting desperate!

    January 17, 2008 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  16. teacherjrc

    NO WAY HELLARY!!

    January 17, 2008 08:09 pm at 8:09 pm |
  17. Sandra Hadaway-Reaney

    Wouldn't it be nice if the Obama folk got their "facts" straight before sounding off?
    Sanndra

    January 17, 2008 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  18. Alex Basco

    I'm latino, US, citizen, registed to vote, convince me why should I vote for Obama?

    His poetic language will not support my family, I'm a union member, I'll caucus for HIllary.

    Obama was endorsed by Culinary Union, Hillary Clinton was endorsed by the BROTHER of CHAVEZ. Which one carries MORE weight if you're Latino, the brother of Chavez who stand up for all of us or Culinary Union?

    January 17, 2008 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  19. Justice, NY

    For the past few weeks, I sat by and watched how much the Clintons are SORE LOSERS! Like Senator Obama said a couple of weeks ago, when he was down in the polls, Mrs. Clinton had absolutely NOTHING to say about him! But when he gave Mrs. Clinton a literal TROUNCING in Iowa, and lost marginally in New Hampshire, SHE is the one launching the attacks. It absolutely boggles my mind to read some of these comments and see how people tip the scales and actually bring themselves to say that Obama is starting these ATTACK ads. You have absolutely got to be kidding me! Since when is defending yourself running a negative campaign. What I see from some of these comments are people who obviously will find anything wrong with the BLACK guy to have an excuse NOT to support him. I want to hear real reasons you don't support Obama other than the bogus claim of him running a negative (i call it defensive) campaign. Mr. Obama tried to take the high road in New Hampshire, and all it got him was a loss. He as well as his campaign advisors realized that standing by and doing nothing to defend themselves will only result in LOSING!!! But once again, even that is backfiring on his campaign because now impartial individuals are now saying HE is launching the negative campaign. On top of all of this, the former President Mr. Clinton is taking it worse than Hillary. You can tell a campaign is desperate when they allow major fundraisers and contributors of their campaign resort to alluding to Mr. Obama's past activities that he engaged in when he wasn't even a consenting adult!!! All I see are a bunch of hypocrites, because I bet more than half the people who criticize his past could never run for President for fear of their own skeletons coming out of the closet.

    January 17, 2008 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  20. Brian Des Moines, IA

    Thomas from Reno....so what your saying is that Hillary submitted that lawsuit...here I thought it was the Teachers Union!

    As for the spoonful...what do you think any politician on either side is doing...even Obama?

    He says he wants HOPE and CHANGE IN POLITICS...but allows these low down tactics to be used in his name!!

    EVEN HILLARY'S SUPPORTERS APOLOGIZE WHEN THEY ARE WRONG....SO WHO IS REALLY BRINGING THE HOPE AND CHANGE IN POLITICS!?

    January 17, 2008 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  21. Grandpa

    Obama is a divider, not a uniter.

    January 17, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  22. Mia, Stafford, VA

    Why is it the Clinton's can say, misstate and send out false fliers, but when Obama states the facts this is getting nasty? GIVE ME A BREAK! To quote Mr. Clinton "this is the biggest fairytale," the fairytale being that the Clintons are delusional if they think no one is going to call them on their BS.

    January 17, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  23. Grace, Overland Park, Kansas

    oh bob gostworth, such a clever little play on words you came up with. maybe you should fill in for the writers who are on strike. you could take SNL to a whole new level.

    meanwhile, in the real world, how about we focus on the facts. jon edwards did the very thing he is now condemning on a much bigger level. his campaign is going under. desperate times call for desperate measures. simple as that. he's attacked hillary before, so it's no surprise he's going after obama. also, hillary's supporters pulled a shameless trick with that lawsuit...in fact it's almost brilliant because it's so obvious and yet no one is taking her to task for it. i really hope that voters aren't blind to these dirty tricks on the part of clinton and edwards.

    January 17, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  24. ESTHER HORNER

    I was a Clinton supporter that was campangning in my neigbourhood for her, but that was before she showed how low she would go to get elected, as a white woman, I am glad someone is standing up to Hillary, because she is dissappointing us women. She had all the opportunities to win nationally, then she panicked and started slicing Obama at every turn like any other politician, – no class.I would rather vote Obama for the hope he gives of a new Washington, and not politics as usual.

    January 17, 2008 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  25. John

    BOO HOO!!

    HILLARY CANT TAKE WHAT SHE DISHES OUT ON OBAMA..

    THE REAL SHAME ISNT OBAMA, ITS HILLARY USING REPUBLICAN TACTICS TO TRY TO STOP MINORITIES FROM VOTING...JUST GOES TO SHOW THAT HILLARY IS IN IT FOR HERSELF, NOT FOR THE PEOPLE.....

    AND THATS WHY THIS MEXICAN IS VOTING FOR OBAMA!!

    January 17, 2008 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16