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. Doug, Brentwood, Ca

    By playing the race card again, Obama just lost my vote. What a hypocrite!

    January 17, 2008 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  2. Lawdog90, Chesapeake, VA

    Obama is not steady, at all. He will do and say whatever is expedient for him. You would think that Obama would have warned the Culinary Union not to run any ads on his behalf after the stink he raised over the 527 ad for Edwards in Iowa. But, suddenly he defends 527 ads.

    Now, combine this ad incident to him giving credit to Ronald Reagan: He will do and say anything for a vote.

    Finally, it needs to be said that his stance on fighting against negative corporate interests is a farce. He WILL NOT AT ALL take that fight on. He can't! That's why he avoided the question asking whether his oil and health care investors expected something from him.

    January 17, 2008 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  3. tepa

    i'm with you druie cavendar. know how to make that happen? sadly, i dont 🙁

    now, i support ABH (ANYone but Hillary) Billary put that crown down. Shout on high from down below: dynasty has got to go!!!!!

    January 17, 2008 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  4. Happy Conservative

    Pay attention people. Obama's campaign is not behind this. Created by a separate group who at least didn't distort the truth like the Clintons do. Those that support Hill & Bill can't see facts no matter how much the dots align. They sound like Bush/Rove sheep the past seven years. Do we really want that attitude trying to bond our nation?

    January 17, 2008 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  5. East Side Love

    It seems that Obama will rip off anyone's slogan to get elected. He has John Kennedy's former speach writer to help with those great speeches of his....now he is using Cesar Chavez's slogan?? (By the way, Cesar Chavez's brother, endorsed Hillary Clinton.) TOO MUCH FLUFFLY FEEL GOOD Speeches – NOT ENOUGH SUBSTANCE! Go Hillary!

    January 17, 2008 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  6. olubunmi Fabiyi

    The funniest thing is that American people are yet to understand the gimmick of most politicians, they will always pretend to be fighting for the people but on the long run we will realized they are actually fighting for their own pocket. As human beings we need to watch what we say or do, who knows it might come back to bite us in the back. Nevada politics is not going to be the end of this negativism we are likely going to see more of “do me and I will do you” kind of politics but does this benefit our country at this stage of our development when we are trying to fight terrorism and economic recession. It is high time both parties should call their candidates and their surrogates to order, and let act maturely and leave negative ad of our opponents and think about how they could help bring back the glory of our great nation. “A word is enough for the wise”.

    January 17, 2008 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  7. anna

    GO OBAMA!!!! The Clintons have been lying and manipulating for months, glad you finally got them at their own game!

    OBAMA 08

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

    oh cool cnn screens stuff...

    January 17, 2008 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm |
  9. Jose Card - Independent

    I thought Hillary said she stands for the working people.
    The question is which working people?
    The one making more money and contributing more to her war chest?

    January 17, 2008 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm |
  10. dennie

    Hillary and Bill are the biggest opportunists I have ever seen! I am sick and tired of hearing Hillary talk about her 35 years of experience. Let's just look at her experience – she hasn't done anything. I know for a fact that she has built some real enemies on the Childrens Defense Fund where she was on the board of directors because her position in support of children changed for political reasons when she and Bill were in the white house. So can she be trusted? Absolutely not! She is just spouting what she things people want to hear, but people read between the lines. She is fake.

    January 17, 2008 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  11. Adam, Los Angeles

    OK so 99% of you who responded above, obviously did not read the article. Please READ THE ARTICLE IN ITS ENTIRETY BEFORE POSTING A COMMENT. Perhaps then we won't have so many boneheaded remarks.

    January 17, 2008 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  12. Kim, Dallas, TX

    It would seem that Clinton supporters turn a blind eye to her shenanigans. They only see the times when Obama stands up for himself. I have to admit when I read this it surprised me. This appears more like the manipulation of the Clinton smear campaign than the dignity we are used to with Obama. Although, I did stop to think that the only way to beat the Clinton's is at their own game. I don't necessarily agree with this type of campaigning, but I really don't care for what HIllary and Bill have been doing these past two weeks. They will stop at nothing to manipulate and smear. Is it starting to feel like a fairy tale to Hillary now?

    January 17, 2008 10:14 pm at 10:14 pm |
  13. Jaime Scottsdale,AZ

    OBAMA= An embarrassment and discrace to this party, this country, and to his folks.

    SAD, SAD, SAD.

    For good news and real facts check out the HRC page. I would type it out, but CNN would censor more of my first amendment rights.

    HRC in '08 PERIOD

    January 17, 2008 10:15 pm at 10:15 pm |
  14. Biz Wax

    The best man for the job is a WOMAN –
    Give'em Hell Hillary

    January 17, 2008 10:16 pm at 10:16 pm |
  15. Jaime Scottsdale,AZ

    One more thing CNN, why do you have his arrogant greasy smug on any headline that has his name referenced? I can see why other canidates and supporters are going after this idiotic press.

    HRC in '08 PERIOD

    January 17, 2008 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |
  16. me

    It is amazing how certain Obama supporters will sit blindly and distort what is factual with the same old garbage! First off, former President Clinton was not Impeached, the US Senate said there was not enough substance for impeachement! True he lied like any other person who was being attacked in the way he was by the Republicans were would lie on a personal matter as would 00% of the people blogging here would! Yet Obama supporters ignore his association with a corrupt and charges extortionist Obama aided in funding pojects that were never realized and even bought and sare land as neighbours!

    During this campaign many say Obama has worked on his job in all the Senates, that is impossible considering he spent 5 of his 11 years as State and US Senators campaigning for higher office and avoided controversial bills continually! Clinton on her first US Senate run said she would not seek the Presidency, and she didn't!

    Obama lied to his constituants when running for the US Senate stating he would not seek out the Presidency if elected to the Senate but would serve his FULL term for his Electorats! That is a lie of POLITICAL nature!
    Obama continues to say he is against the war, yet forgets when asked if he was privy to the Senate confidential information before voting how would he have voted, answered by an "I don't know how I'd of voted" conviction of flip flop again not mentioned by Obama! Clinton stands on her vote based on the facs presented, which scares off Obama supporters, who prefer pie in the sky rhetoric to judgement based on provided facts!

    The more and more you learn about Obama, the more and more it becomes apparent that slogans are all he has, the substance is well nothing!

    In the times of Mortgage failures, war, the economy downturn and America's reputation in the world failing at every turn, no one needs someone who has caused divide, lied and instilled hatred into a campaign for the highest position in the land! Obama shouts out Uniting, Change and Hope but has only proven his ability to Divide, Change for his gain and Hope the majority are ignorant enough to give him a free pass to the Whitehouse!

    And the Republicans are salvating at tearing Obama to shreds and winning the Whitehouse if he is the candidate they run against! Simply based on one simple fact, a $3000 empty suit is just an empty suit! They proved it in '04, the easiest election to beat out a sitting President in modern history!

    January 17, 2008 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  17. John, Lincoln, NE

    The only decent Dem candidate left is Kucinich and he may not even get on some of the ballots the rest of the way out. Not rock star enough I guess, eh?

    This nation's obsession with celebrities is going to cost us big in November. Everybody is so busy being lemmings they forgot what the heck they were supposed to be voting for to begin with.

    Clinton is scary evil. Obama is not even remotely qualified. Edwards is either too stupid or to too dishonest to be elected to anything. Two of the three candidates who actualy had a clue were Biden and Dodd and look what happend to them.

    January 17, 2008 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  18. candice

    go OBAMA your the best one out

    January 17, 2008 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  19. Political junkie

    Obama's holier than thou' attitude is getting a little old. He's running a slicker campaign than Hilary and people are buying it up.

    January 17, 2008 10:26 pm at 10:26 pm |
  20. EES

    Obama is just another politician playing dirty tricks and using people to play his game. Hopefully Nevadans are smart to see him for what his true color is, Obama has to apologize to both Clinton and Edwards for this dirty, slimy political ads that he is promoting and advocating. Go Hillary ..... all the way.

    January 17, 2008 10:26 pm at 10:26 pm |
  21. sam yathrob

    Obama should surely stop this add. But the people who did this add were right. One year after knowing about the location of these votes in Nevada, the Clinton couple never objected until few days before the election. There is no way that they both didn't know about the lawsuit before, even if Mr.Clinton objected to this fact. They were so sure that Hillary will be always the Democratic front runner and now that they have some real competition they are more than scared.
    Even if Obama doen't win it is not going to be easy for them.
    I say them because they are two running, one is behind who is always backing the other.

    January 17, 2008 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  22. Fred

    One Chance for this country to trully change. One chance for the wrong of slavery to right it self in one country at least. This country as others, is rich with free labor. However, it can be reformed with the support of each other. Clinton can't be black, nor his wife. One chance for a legacy to be broken. All white men have come before, however we have one chance to make history for ourselves. Vote for who you believe can change this country; we have one chance to do so. People you know who I am talking to. Break the mold of all the prisons being filled by a majority, when they are the minority. One Chance!!!!

    January 17, 2008 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm |
  23. Robert

    It is sad that after 8 years of mis-governance, again Republican are going to win. There is no good candidate from democrat. Obama...........a fluent talker but not somebody who has capacity, idea and experience to lead america! Hillary.........a woman. America is not ready to elect a female president, mark my word. There would be a lot of coup in various title. Edwards...........a possibly a good enough candidate for lacking stardom, so pretty soon will be out of campaign because of money and so on!
    Congratulation Republicans, once again country is YOURS!

    January 17, 2008 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  24. Laura_Chicago

    Another successful trick from the Obama campaign, just as they do it here in Chicago.
    Btw, where is the Obama record in helping Latinos? What he has done for the huge Latino community in Chicago? NOTHING! Does he really marched for them, supported his issues in Illinois? NO, never! So for him to suddenly start saying he is with the Latino community or representing the latinos is a BIG LIE. Latinos in Nevada or elsewhere should not be listening to him. Where is his record? Enough of manipulation from that fake campaign that want to portrait his candidate as the one who knows everything and the one whos records is best in everything. I don't buy it. I am not stupid.
    Obama no te creo nada, aqui no has hecho nada en Chicago eres un impostor con una sonrisa grande e hipocrita, y reseinto que tomes el slogan de Cesar Chavez "Si se puede" esto es manchar la memoria de un gran hombre, eres un impostor Obama, no te creo!

    January 17, 2008 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  25. Sid G. C.C. Tx.

    hugh,tx. As a native of this land, I am amused that you are calling to have yourself deported to whatever european country you come from.

    January 17, 2008 10:43 pm at 10:43 pm |
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