January 20th, 2008
12:45 PM ET
15 years ago

Clinton surrogates go to church in South Carolina

COLUMBIA, South Carolina (CNN) - Chelsea Clinton and Vernon Jordan, a longtime adviser to President Bill Clinton, quietly attended two African-American church services in South Carolina on Sunday, six days before the state's Democratic primary.

The appearances are part of the Hillary Clinton campaign's outreach toward the state's black voters, who are expected to be a crucial constituency in the primary vote. Barack Obama holds an edge over Clinton among African-Americans according to recent polls.

Chelsea Clinton attended the 11 a.m. service at Bible Way church in Columbia, whose pastor, state senator Darrell Jackson, is a member of Hillary Clinton's South Carolina steering committee.

Jordan and his wife Ann attended services at Brookland Baptist Church in West Columbia.

Hillary Clinton will make her first post-Nevada appearance in South Carolina tomorrow morning in Columbia, while Obama will hold a rally at the Columbia Convention Center tonight.

UPDATE: The Obama campaign points out that Michelle Obama also attended 11 a.m. worship services at Bible Way Church on Sunday.

- CNN South Carolina Producer Peter Hamby

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • South Carolina
soundoff (264 Responses)
  1. Nick

    I meant "I like Clinton O.K." (by the way) but was also thinking to write "I think Clinton is O.K." which is why I have the funny mistake there.

    January 20, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  2. BRG

    Hillary received a very public endorsement today from Pastor Butts of the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem. I wonder whether CNN will headline this story, or bury it along with the rest of the postive news about Sen. Clinton. Come on, CNN, report news about the candidates equitably.

    January 20, 2008 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  3. Deborah Tytler

    I have to agree with Sunny, it does appear that the CNN pundits are predisposed against Hillary and for Obama. I'm not sure why this is so, but it certainly appears to be the case. The reporters seem to find and write about trivialities when it comes to Sen Clinton, almost as if they think her campaign a joke? The one exception appears to be Donna Brazile who seems to have a genuine respect for both Senator Clinton and Senator Obama and appears to be fairly weighing their performances against the issues facing the American public. BRAVO Ms. Brazile! You are as a journalist should be, soft spoken, considered and impartial! As to the "race" issue, I have a serious problem with Sen Obama implying that Sen Clinton is in some way defective in her understanding of the issues facing African Americans. The Clintons have been civil rights advocates since the late 60's. And civil rights issues are not just African American issues as Sen Obama seems to be implying, but women's issues, latino issues, poor single partent issues....all of these have a civil rights component regardless of the "race" issue.

    January 20, 2008 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  4. Bimmer

    Is Obama really African-american?

    Did he go through the same life experiences and injustices as other African American went through whose forefathers were brought to America in shackles against their wishes?

    Obama's dad came from Kenya when the race relations in the US have improved because of works of MLK and Rosa Park to the point that he could marry a white woman.

    In graduate school, I had many friends who came directly from Africa and they were somewhat offended to be called African American because their forefathers did not come as slaves.

    If they did not feel comfortable to be called African American, why is Obama identifying himself that way now?

    To get votes?

    January 20, 2008 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  5. Sabrina

    My comment was the first at 1:18 , why is it still awaiting moderation? Is it because I used Madame President? What gives?

    January 20, 2008 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  6. Viki

    Thank you, Sunny Erikson for your post. It is excatly what I am thinking. How can anybody call Chelsea Clinton “ surrogate”, especially CNN. Shame on them!

    Hillary and Bill Clinton have long friendship with Areracan-American community.
    Media is trying to make SC voters think differently, because Obama is desparaite to won Sauth Carolina. He is not united people , he devides us.

    My vote is going to Hillary.

    January 20, 2008 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  7. kalliope

    Charlotte, the time for Hillary is not now, not ever. Not because she isn't qualified, doesn't deserve it, isn't experienced...it's because she CANNOT win. Hitting the ground running where? It won't matter.

    She will unite the currently disjointed Republican party with the same hate and vigor we know they can muster. We need someone who can unite across party lines, that is Obama. I have met so many Republicans who feel that their party abandoned them who are voting for Obama. None of them are behind Hillary. It's like one of us voting for Huckabee... that's how strong the feeling against her is. We need to win this one.

    January 20, 2008 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  8. AJ, IL

    South Carolinians take their religious beliefs seriously. With the ill-advised comments and personal attacks against Obama, African-Americans will look hard at the Clintons, especially Bill. Both Barack Obama and his wife are members of the church community in Chicago, IL and have fellow church members as advocates. Hillary Clinton and Bill are members of what church? No personal attestments from fellow Clinton churchgoers will be present in SC. Sending Chelsea to attend services in a black church? That is weak.

    Obama's campaign has tried to remain positive but the Clinton's play hardball. As one Democratic political strategist said, when you take on the Clintons you better watch your back and knees.

    Obama needs to play up the fact that he was a community organizer and civil rights attorney and has always supported civil rights, but at the same time point to the fact that Hillary Clinton was a Republican who supported Barry Goldwater for President when he was AGAINST the CIVIL RIGHTS ACT of 1964.

    OBAMA in '08!

    January 20, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  9. Karen P

    Everyone joked during Bill Clinton's administration that it was really Hillary running the country. Now for Hillary to be president, wouldn't Bill be undue influence on her?

    Our forefathers stated no one would hold office more that 2 terms. At that time women did not have the right to vote and didn't hold political offices. If the forefathers could've foreseen today, husband and wife team would count as one. As far as I'm concerned....it is unconstitutional for Hillary to even been considered. Especially after all the hype during Bill's presidency. Or is that why her documents are kept under lock and key until after elections? By Bill saying it would take that long to get the papers out of the archives...well, FEMA acted faster.

    Hillary using her time as First Lady as "experience" running the country is a RED FLAG. Something smells fishy.

    I have no problems with children running later...but husband/wife? NOPE

    January 20, 2008 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  10. jim alston

    Obama has the capacity to positively impact every aspect of America's existance: national reconciliation, international awareness, youthful involvement and connection with/to politics, education, industrial and social opportunity, the environment... Hillary, dispite all protestations to the contrary, represents the status quo.

    January 20, 2008 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  11. Boom!

    Actually, I'm 32 and I like being called "Black" just fine (as opposed to African American)- it's less of an apology and besides I know less about Africa than I do Mexico & the same goes back at least 5 generations on both sides of my family tree. I support Hillary because people are crazy to assume that simply because she is a Clinton that she is a part of some tactical dynasty.
    -Point is, this election is so umpredictable because of the way that this country has effected ALL of us. The Presidency is a job- refusing to select a candidate that can do the job simply out of protest for US politics as a whole is irresposible and that's where the Obama agenda is going. If Obama were a female of any color with the same campaign, he would have been out weeks ago.

    January 20, 2008 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  12. Jen Cedar Falls, IA

    kalliope has it right (above)!

    If Hillary is the Dem candidate, you can rest assured there will be droves of multi-party Anti-Clintonites (Dem's & Indies) voting right along the Newly Re-United and Re-energized Republican Party!

    Anybody But Clinton! Again!!!

    January 20, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  13. Rico

    Obama is running scared.
    Nevada is the carbon copy for the rest of the west.
    He needs the Latino vote plain and simple guess what he aint going get it.

    January 20, 2008 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  14. Mark, B'ham., Al.

    I listened to Obama at church in Atlanta and it was a political speech for promoting a socialist/welfare state. I saw Hillary in Harlem leaving church and it was a political speech promoting a socialist/welfare state. I bet Chealse and Vernon got to give political speeches in balck churches too. I guess there is only "Seperation of Churc and State for Republicans". These churches should lose their tax exempt status like the Christian Coalition did during the Clinton Administration for promoting specific candidates, not just a certain party.

    January 20, 2008 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  15. Bill in Montgomery, AL

    Wow, everyone needs to know that Hillary is a decendent of Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings, and because of that Hillary is Black! I'll bet the Clintons ALWAYS attend a Black church every week, don't they?? Another case of pandering for the votes. Hillary and Billary are always telling people that some of their best friends are Black. You can tell that Billary is Black because of the rhythm he has playing the sax.

    January 20, 2008 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  16. Danny G. Boca Raton, FL

    when I hear ignorant people say "anyone but Hillary" it makes me so sad, to knock people down because of gender is just pure racist, if you believe there is a better candidate with better ideas then be my guest and vote for them, but when you try to suggest that because she is an ambitious woman and because she is a very savvy politician that this is somehow a bad thing; then we have bigger problems in this country, to elect the first woman or the first africa-american citizen for president of the United states is a sign of progress, to whish them ill because of some ignorant mis-informed rumors is callous and irresponsible.

    I support Sen. Clinton, but I would never say "anybody but Obama" it shows no respect for the person and for the sacrifices he/she have made to be in the election and to put themseleves out the way these candidates have... so have some respect you jerks!

    January 20, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  17. Hillary HATES CATS

    Hillary Hates CATS

    I love cats, so bye bye Hillary and quit using yuour kid.

    January 20, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  18. ella

    So if Jesse Jackson and Hilary were running for the nomination..who would Jacqueline Lavinia Jackson vote for. I am just curious to know.

    January 20, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  19. Marie in Arlington Tx

    Gee...Chelsea when to a black church service and it makes the news. I wonder how many times she has attended a black church n the past????? Who cares really, and why does it make the news? Ummm...now who is it that's playing that race card? So much pandering to black America; I hope it is seen for what it really is.

    When Wolf Blitzer asked a Clinton spokesman "would a presidential running mate for Hillary be Bil Clinton", he didn't rule it out. Too bad Obama isn't running against just one Clinton at a time. Tag teaming; good cop/bad cop dirty politics is all they know. Very unpresidential in my opinion...but then we are used to having Bill Clinton embarrass America. That time old entrinched Clinton machine is hard to beat, but I'm so proud of Obama. He just keeps on keeping on.

    Bill Clinton is truely seeking his third term and America just doesn't need it. As for me...a white indpendent who always voted Republican...Obama has my vote.

    January 20, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  20. Dwayne-New Jersey

    Boom! I agree with your comments. If Obama were a woman with the same campaign he would have been out of this election a long long time ago! Hillary has proven that she can withstand the heat and pressure even as she is a woman in a male dominated field. She has a proven track record and a fighter! Strong on national security, champion for our children & women, an advocate for civil rights for women and the minority, champion for the middle and lower class and last but not least a loyal and faithful wife and mother!

    This praise is coming from a Conservative Christian (of strick religion) who happens to be a 25 year old Black male in New Jersey!


    January 20, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  21. fred pierce

    why didnt you show hilary in church also. you sure are doing everything you can to get obama elected. however there are 50 states. if left up to you guys this was over the very first primary. come on quit trying to influence the outcome and report the facts. just my observation.

    January 20, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  22. Connie, Richmond, CA

    Anybody but Clinton!! I make no apologizes. I will stay home in November if she wins the primary race. For the first time in my life. I am 53 years old.

    Danny G. You have no idea how angry I am. My anger even surprises me. When this race started, I had every intention of voting for Hillary if she got the nomination.
    But after I what I've witnessed, I just cannot vote for her. And I cannot show any respect her.

    I think it's about time that Hillary paid attention to folks like me. If she doesn't, she will win the battle but lose the war.

    January 20, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  23. Bill in Montgomery, AL

    Why is this such big news, the Clintons alway attend Black churches, every Sunday!!!. And while they're at home by themselves, they love to speak Ebonics. Don't you just LOVE the Clintons. I just get goose bumps thinking Hillary and Billary will one day be back in the White House. Then Billary can chase those young impressionable interns all around the White House to his heart's content

    January 20, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  24. pops

    I NOW REALIZE HOW BIAS CNN IS. Thank you for erasing my point. No wonder America is now what it is. If you have any decency you would air all 3 candidate's speeches.

    January 20, 2008 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  25. 1971guy

    All the Hillary haters, get over yourselves, move on – or better yet leave the country!

    And, furthermore, the Hillary supporters are actualy doing something to improve this country! Rather then whining about Obama;

    January 20, 2008 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
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