January 22nd, 2008
11:22 AM ET
14 years ago

Bill Clinton: Seems like Obama's running against me

COLUMBIA, South Carolina (CNN) - Barack Obama said Monday he felt as though he were campaigning against both Bill and Hillary Clinton. On Tuesday, former President Clinton said he felt the same way.

“I thought he was running against me for a while there in Nevada when he said that Republicans had most of the new ideas, and you had to challenge the conventional wisdom of the 90s. I thought we challenged the conventional wisdom of the 90s,” said Clinton.

He also hinted again that Obama specifically targeted Nevada Republicans in hopes of securing a win there - a charge that has been denied by Obama spokesman Bill Burton.

Clinton said Sunday that his wife Hillary Clinton had “won a victory in spite of a very well-organized, and I might say a very well-executed, strategy by the Obama campaign. Which included doing well in the north of Nevada, where his demographic of upscale voters lived, and by making an explicit effort to get Republicans to come and vote for him in the Democratic caucus."

Related: Watch Bill Clinton's latest remarks regarding Sen. Obama's campaign tactics

- CNN's Alexander Mooney and Rebecca Sinderbrand

soundoff (294 Responses)
  1. M.Lewis

    Like many liberals, their true colors come out when certain groups of people try to take certain positions.....

    interesting...

    what about healthcare during the Clinton administration, well they could not pass it because Bill could not work with other people.....so why should another Clinton get into office....

    January 22, 2008 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  2. blue

    I had a feeling Obama was going to lose it at the debate lastnight,
    because he has such a angry look on his face. His mannerisms were were
    showing hostility. Then he proceeded to do opposite of everything he
    claims. 'Let's move on, but first.......' 'Stop attacking, but [I'll
    slander Bill Clinton for claiming he's lying'] let me attack Bill Clinton
    and you'. Like a child having a temper tantrum, he went way beyond
    anything he could ever claim 'other Washington politicians' to have done.

    "Obama: Is Bill Clinton really a 'brother'? I'd have to see him dance"

    I was surprised that it's ok for Obama to make that comment, but if
    someone else, like Lou Dobbs, Imus, or HECK EVEN BILL CLINTON himself made
    that comment , everyone would be screaming RACIST. But it was OK for
    Barack to make that stereo typical comment, huh?

    Hypocrisy runs deep with him.

    And then his comment that John Edwards would receive the "white mans vote".
    Nice, huh?

    Now reports are that he is breaking a campaign promise and will campaign
    in Florida. Check please.

    January 22, 2008 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  3. mona

    On Obama's voting record, " present," my grandmother always used to say, " If you can't stand for something, you will fall for anything." We don't need a president who doesn't have conviction and a foundation to stand on.

    On Obama's comment about Clinton having " dance" abilities to be considered a " brother." He should be so ashamed of himself. How can black's be considered equals when your own presidential candidate defines them as dancers. It tells me alot about how he views his own black community. He could have chosen something more successful. Shame on you Obama!!!

    As for all the Obama camp claiming Barack Hussein is above the dirt in politics...it was always there except the American public wasn't buying it and now they see Barack Hussein's true colors. Well it’s about time. Enough with the holier than though persona, you are a politician, dirt defines you.

    All I know is Barack Hussein and Hillary keep this up, they are going to put another republican in the white house.

    January 22, 2008 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  4. A. BLAIR

    ALL THE WORLD PROBLEMS WE HAVE TODAY WERE CAUSED BY PEOPLE WITH EXPERIENCE-WE NEED A PRESIDENT WITH NEW AND YOUNG IDEAS,
    THAT PERSON IS OBAMA..

    January 22, 2008 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  5. virgie

    I TOO, WAS GLAD TO SEE OBAMA STAND UP TO HILLARY AND YES BILL-WHO WANTS TO BE BACK IN THE WHITE HOUSE SO BAD-HE CAN TASTE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    AND HAS DIPPED A LITTLE TOO LOW, I THINK.
    3 CHEERS FOR OBAMA- WE NEED NEW BLOOD IN WASHINGSTON.
    I ALSO FEEL THAT OBAMA WOULD DO MUCH BETTER THAN HILLARY ON THE FOREIGN FRONT. THE FURTHER YOU GO EAST THE LESS THEY REALLY RESPECT A WOMAN IN POWER–THEY WOULD,AT LEAST, LISTEN TO OBAMA -A FRESH NEW FACE.

    January 22, 2008 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  6. epsec

    I'm a registered independent and am souring on the Dems fast, especially after last night. Where's the talk of change and moving past politics of old? That's all I saw last night.

    As far as Bill and Hillary go, I have no problem with his comments, he's a citizen and has the same rights as anyone else, but he's been caught lying several times.

    How can I trust or endorese a party that stands by and allows this? I want better health care, to keep jobs in the US and repair our foreign policy but how can I trust that Hillary or any Democrat will do this when they allow such blatent lying?

    Why isn't someone in the Democratic party doing something?

    January 22, 2008 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  7. HELEN

    I'M GETTING VERY TIRED OF THE MUD SLINGING, COMING FROM THE CLINTONS.
    I USE TO LOVE AND ADMIRE THE CLINTONS, BUT THEY'RE SHOWING SOMETHING THAT I NEVER SAW IN THEM BEFORE. HILARY NEEDS TO RUN HER OWN CAMPAIGN. I WILL VOTE FOR OBAMA, AND WILL BE VERY HAPPY TO DO IT.

    CLINTONS ,NOTICE I'M SAYING CLINTONS YOU CAN'T HAVE IT ALL,
    GROW UP!!!!!!!

    January 22, 2008 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  8. JRJD

    I voted for Bill twice, and thought he did well in office. Now I second guess him. He is showing that he and Hillary are still the old style Politics. Kudos to Obama for TRYING to rise above it. What else can he do besides defend himself? I'm sure he's not perfect either, but it sure seems he's the RESPONDER to these attacks, and has to throw a punch here and there to stay on his feet. Come on people........we need something different. The Clintons are showing that they are the same old thing. Bill, you should be ashamed of yourself, your credibility has just tanked with me!

    January 22, 2008 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  9. Denise

    Erin and George are right on target. The Clinton Campaign is already chafing under former President Clinton's lack of control. Reports of complaints that he cannot be reigned in or controlled are all over cable news plus the concern of how to control him should Hillary become President. We don't need a former President second guessing the President. Bill Clinton's legacy is partly that of an Administration mired in deceit and scandal. I do not want to revisit that time in our recent history.

    January 22, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  10. BeFair

    On Obama's comment on Reagan, some analysts sad it shows that he is the uniter and not divisive. He reaches out to Republicans too.
    Obama's gave this statement exactly knowing how 'Analysts' think. He knew that these Analysts would not see the divisive point he made about Richard Nioxon and Bill Clinton in the same statement.
    C’mon, just because he praised someone from the opposition party does not mean that he is Uniter. See the second half of the statement where he criticizes about someone from his own party. Give him the presidency, and he will say, ‘Clinton/Bush and previous presidents were wrong. Bin Laden did what he had to”. Well, trying to unite the world.

    January 22, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  11. angelo

    former president clinton is simply pointing out the fact that obama continues to flip flop his positions on the war ,health care,ect,ect.president clinton is not the only one who has noticed.so far ,in my opinion,obama has presented himself as a typical say anything to get elected,politician.did you hear his explaination for his present votes?wow.bill clinton did not help the black community by flip flopping or pandering.as president he held his ground and fought for the poor.his reputation as an advocate for the poor and middle class will always be above reproach.especially from a say and do anything to get elected politician like obama.

    January 22, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  12. Grace

    The problem with this is that it makes me feel very, very uncomfortable with the Clinton hydra. This started as HILLARY running, but now I'm not so sure. Who's going to be running the country? I resisted it at first, but now I can't help but see how much of Hillary's platform is some weird form of Bill osmosis.

    She claims his record as her own, he campaigns for her in the traditional role of VP, and there are even voters out there who vouch that they're voting for Hillary as a way to get Bill a backdoor third term. What?! That's not how democracy works! This is insane!

    As for Hillary in isolation, her attack-oriented, divisive politics make it clear that she's looking for that same slight, partisan edge that we've so disparaged Republicans for. I have no idea how she claims she'll be able to work with people, when she's shown herself incapable of actually LISTENING during debates (it kills me how she just talks right over everyone, no matter what - and that's no double standard, the other two at least allow opponents to get a word in).

    Hillary exhausts me, and not in a good way. I don't want her (or her odious, blowhard husband) representing me. That, and given the divisive nature of their politics, I truly, TRULY don't believe she can win. One problem with her "I've been handling incoming fire for 16 years!" line is that it's true - people at this point are pretty solidly sure whether they like her or hate her, with very little wiggle room.

    January 22, 2008 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  13. Bob

    To Mike.

    "The Clintons have done more for this country in 8 years of their lives than Obama will for the remainder of his."

    You got that right what a discrace........ Law Suits, Pardons, Coruption, Lying under Oath, Impeachment just to name a few. I hear Osama Bin Laden is endorseing Hillary because her husband was so tough on him. Lets See

    Khobar Towers
    USS Cole
    Tanzania
    Trade Ceter
    Somalia was a great one as well

    Wow what a legacy ,thanks for pointing that out to us Mike

    January 22, 2008 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  14. john seigel

    I give the following points to the candidates of last night:
    Barak Obama 20
    John Edward 20
    Hillary Clinton 20
    Bill Clinton 40
    Therefore the president and the vice president is Bill Clinton

    January 22, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  15. James springfield mo

    Is it true that hillary campaigned for obama and got him on good committees and raised money for him.

    January 22, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  16. Todd

    I do not agree. I think Bill Clinton is taking heat because he was president and his vocalization are publicized a bit more because of it. I have seen several articles and read several message boards to know that Mrs. Osama is out there spewing her on rhetoric. I thought the comment in the debate, where Hillary ackowledged this was a kind way of saying touche.

    Sorry, but Bill Clinton IS Hillary's biggest threat, but in a positive way. If Obama was not worried about the weight his words carry, he would not be tossing him under the bus, only to have praised him a couple of years ago.

    January 22, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  17. Clare

    Obama is the spin doctor of the century. Here's a guy who is basically to the right of most Democrats, but because he is a good orator he gets people to believe that he is for whatever the listener wants. Skills, yes, presidential, no. It is insulting that Obama keeps on saying that he doesn't know whether he's running against Hillary or Bill–this is sexism, pure and simple!

    January 22, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  18. Jim in Orlando, FL

    "Psssssst ..... Errrr .... Bill ...... you are the one people are looking at shaking their heads ..... the door is over there ... yes, that's it ... you know about the door – butt thing. OK. Great. Buhbye."

    January 22, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  19. Smiley

    Barrack called Bill Clinton out with his comment (comparing Reagan to Clinton..read the entire comment folks). Barrack invited him into the "ring", don't cry now about being verbally attacked, Barrack. You played right into their hands, they were looking for an excuse to bring Bill into all this and now you got what you asked for on this one. Welcome to the big leagues.

    January 22, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  20. Bob

    If Obama was smart he could rip the Clintons forever. He needs to rehash ALL of the Clinton Scandles of the pat decade to remind us of what good times we had under the Clintons. I would first come out and say "We know Bill's track record when it comes to the truth" remember he was dibarred for lying under oath. Yhat would make his red face explode and he would make a fool of himself. Put me in charge Obama .....

    January 22, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  21. Bradley Schaubs, Greeley, CO

    Wow, looks like Obama really is running against both Clintons.

    January 22, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  22. Dave

    It certainly seems as if Bill is running again. I wonder if Hillary will be able to control him if THEY get in the White house again.

    Another note, I like John Edwards a lot but I think if he is going to have any impact on this election he needs to take a long hard look at where he is. It seems to me that his say in this is slowly fading. If he wants to be involved he should withdraw and back one of the other candidates. That way he will have a very powerful say in who gets the nomination.

    January 22, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  23. o j mission

    To think I was stupid enough to vote for Bill Clinton once makes me sick. He is without a doubt one of the sleaziest, dishonest, power-hungry people in history....that makes him dangerous as well....it is win at any cost.

    January 22, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  24. Barbara Mathiewson

    It was Michelle Obama who opened up the spousal comments in this campaign.

    I'ved e-mailed them twice asking to be removed from their mailintg loist and they wohn't do it.

    I heard Obama say with my own ears that Reagan was a transformational President something thast Nixon and Clinton were not. Doesn't Bill get to defend his administration?

    Obama has made a calculated turn to Republicans and Independents, who after the primaries will return to their original nests. He sacrificed any connection with Latino voters and many Democrats. Too bad, Obama. Come back ij 8 years.

    January 22, 2008 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  25. lorraine

    loving the debates, Hillary comes across with a good straight message while I find Obama talking in circles, it seems he has trouble spitting the words out, frankly I would like to see a Clinton – Edwards ticket. I just do not think the Obama is ready yet and in a few years he might be – this has nothing to do with Race and I also am proud of the fact that Obama is in the contest, simply stating – he is not ready this time around, My all time favorite is Al Gore and for the life of me I do not understand why he is not in this race.

    January 22, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
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