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. Steve H

    Voters should take note of how candidates back up their claims. The South Carolina debates heated things up for Obama and Clinton. Instead of evaluating the candidates at face value, ignoring the comments between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, by April 1st, voters will have the veil lifted from their eyes and will give credence to what Bill and Hillary are saying.. it's not just hot air and smear tactics. Seriously Obama talks a good line, but like it or not, Hillary has an ace up her sleeve.

    January 22, 2008 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  2. Big Wave Dave

    When I see dishonest attacks on Obama I have to wonder what guarantee Bill offers the American public that if Hillary becomes president his sexual acting out will not go center stage again and distract the country from making real progress. You may accuse me of being unfair, mean for asking the more Bill does this, the more we are going to hear this somewhat legitimate question – and not from me a reasoned liberal democrat.

    January 22, 2008 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  3. NE

    This process is really sad and disheartening. I would like to remind people that we are getting a taste of HRC's White House. Do we want this again? America wake up. I thought this was Hillary vs. Barack vs. John. I know it is very tough for us to dispense with our old ways. I don't want us talking about the Clintons for the next 8 years. If we elect HRC and have to go through a bunch of scandals again, I don't want American poeple to complain because we have an opportunity to change the political landscape. Barack's and John's candidacy is about the future and we as Americans have an opportunity to change the future. If we don't, we have only ourselves to blame. This battle is no longer about the candidates. It's about us. WAKE UP!!!

    January 22, 2008 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  4. kuntol

    Bill, please stop these nonsense. Please don’t let me loose the little bit respect I have left for you. We should have a least amount of civility in our act.

    January 22, 2008 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  5. Mike

    "Before we elected this moron we had No war, No debt, the economy was doing great, and oh yeah everyday more jobs were NOT leaving the U.S."

    Hey Brad – I got news for you – look it up – jobs WERE leaving the US under Clinton. a) He signed in NAFTA. b) He expanded the H-1 and L-1visa programs to allow millions of foreigners to come here, mostly from India and China, and take millions of US jobs, mostly in computers, telecommunications, and IT. c) Both Clintons favor outsourcing – your girl Hillary brought the #1 outsourcer of US jobs to India into NY – TATA Consulting. They employ 10 people in NY. They outsource $4 BILLION in US jobs annually. All FACTS. Look them up.

    So don't give me how great it was under the Clintons. I'm an ex-IT professional, thanks to the Clintons.

    January 22, 2008 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  6. Mike

    And as far as the great economy under Clinton – he inherited that economy and his budget surplus from the 12 years of Republican presidents that came before him: Ronald Reagan and George Bush Sr. Reagan inherited a defecit from Jimmy Carter that he turned into a huge surplus and passed on. The Clintons didn't hit a triple, they were born on third base.

    January 22, 2008 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  7. Sandon

    Bill Clinton has gone from being my idol to a totally swarmy politician in the matter of three weeks. He needs to stop running his mouth and let Hillary win or lose on her own merits.

    I really hope the Democratic party will close the door on this and choose a different direction in '08.

    January 22, 2008 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  8. Ceo_Randy

    Bill Clinton has every right to fight for the woman that stood next to him in trial and tribulation. Its what any and every spouse should do for each other. Anything else would be unamerican.

    January 22, 2008 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  9. chris

    It's kind of a tough choice for me between these two. So much of Hillary's behavior seems to be posturing, I'm not sure I can trust her. On the other hand, I'm not too comfy with Obama's lack of experience. He was a State Senator only four years ago!

    I do think Hill would make the better Prez. Oh well . . . I guess I don't have to like her to vote for her.

    January 22, 2008 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  10. Mike, Fort Washington, MD

    If hillary can't handle Barack on her own, How is she going to handle Chavez and Putin? Is bill going to attend all foreign policy meeting with other heads of state. Obama needs to tie Bill and Hillary together and start blasting Bill on his very good character!!

    January 22, 2008 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  11. abdu

    Please let obama lead this country 'cause he is more than good enough and we don't want a president who already sereve this country.

    January 22, 2008 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  12. Andrew

    Bill Clinton is being ridiculous. This just shows how great Obama did in the debate that BOTH Hillary and Bill are comming out with more lies and spin in two different statements at the same time. Horrible politics.

    This is why we need someone like Obama.

    January 22, 2008 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  13. Owl

    Last nights arguments were awful!!!! For the democrats, as a party, this looks bad.I do not completly blame the candidates. I blame the moderators.

    Did any one else notice that almost every question in the 1st half, contained another candidates earlier remarks. Every question was set up to start the arguing, and then was left to run amuck for way to long.

    The last two democratic debates have been the worst debates I have ever seen. The networks are going way to far to CREATE news.

    January 22, 2008 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  14. Tony

    As a life long republican and hispanic, the thought of voting for a democrat has been the most out of my mind possibility until this election. Ronald Reagan inspired me to become an american citizen back in 1986 and I've voted in every election since then. His inspiration made me feel proud to be an American not necessarily his political ideas. I do not want to be put into a situation this election cycle where I'll find it impossible to vote for a democrat and that is exactly what I and thousands of us across this country will be find ourselves should a Clinton or Clintons be at the head of the ticket. What good will it serve our nation at this critical moment in history to dial the clock back in time and begin with a President who on her 1st day will start with a deeply divided Congress and people. Negatives are important in this election more than ever and the Clinton's bring a tremendous amount of that to the next administration and this country. For those of you who support Hillary, if you want to hand the republicans a victory they do not deserve, then just insist on refusing to take notice of the comments on these boards. The is just the bare facts. I believe this country needs a new beginning a freshness of spirit and of hope . What specific piece of legislation has the name of Hillary Clinton as the author after 7 yrs in the Senate? Obama is the future believe it and let this country heal after the division of Bushes and Clintons...

    January 22, 2008 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  15. Jill

    Bill, you're not running for president - your wife is! So stay out of it! You've had your power, now your power-hungry wife is grabbing for more.

    I for one have had it with these presidential "dynasties." Let's get rid of the Bushes AND the Clintons. It's time for some new blood in Washington.

    Go, Obama!

    January 22, 2008 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  16. Mscarol13

    You know what would be funny and shameful to the Hillary camp. If Obamo was to come out and say who whe would choose as his running mate if he was to win and indicated that It was going to be a woman. Hillary and Bill would fill like crap. Yes Hillary is getting a lot of women votes but just imagine if he chose Senator Barbarb Boxer as his running Mate. Ms. Boxer is class and very well liked by a lot of women. She has been in the Senate for over 10 years. That would put Hillary to shame. There would be someone with more knowlege than her.

    I am a black woman that live is NC and I have really appreciated what Bill C. has done for african americans but enough is enough. I also look at it this way. This country has been ran by the Bush's and Clintons for 20 years now (Bush sen 4 yrs .... Clinton 8 yrs and Bush Jr 8 years) It is time for a change. I am not choosing Obama because he is black, I choose him because he is really rallying for the people as a whole and not for race, creed or gender.

    What baffles me over this whole thing is that so many people are endorsing him from the senate because they like him. No one appears to be endorsing Hillary and she keeps saying she is doing this and that in the senate.. Evidently she is not doing to well in the senate herself. Therefore, in my eye if you have some of the most influential people in the senate and they all appear to be endorsing him, that tells you a lot about hillary. And you can never get her to answer a question, she only tell you what she wants you to hear but never directly answers the questions asked of her.

    January 22, 2008 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  17. Roger Miller

    Obama seemed to have difficulty explaining his health care plan or even the 120+ votes he voted as "PRESENT". Unfortunately, he made a mistake of running this year. With little bit of experience, he would have had a real good shot in 2012 or 2016. I think he blew it.

    January 22, 2008 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  18. Debra Austin, Texas

    The most hilarious part of all of this is that until old bulbous nose Billo got into the attack dog mode on behalf of his dear wife, she was losing the race. But the passionate husband (who cheated on his lovely wife) comes to her defense to beat up on the bad guys. Truly touching. So, for all the women who support Hillary, I have one question. Can't she do it without a man? Apparently not! What a great statement about leadership for women. What a crock!

    January 22, 2008 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  19. Trannon

    I agree with aisha.

    Obama and his backers are throwing temper tantrums because Hillary is winning and Barack can't stand the heat.

    Even though, the MEDIA candycoats him while making Hillary out to look bad no matter what she does.

    If she laughs, "she's a cackling witch"

    If she frowns, "she's cold and calculating"

    If she cries, "she is weak"

    If she raises her voice, "she is shrill and angry"

    If she does ANYTHING, she loses to these people. They hate her for NO REASON, but pure hate.

    Hillary Clinton has never done anything to anyone that would warrant that much hatred and ill treatment.

    GO HILLARY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I hope you wipe up the map with the Republicans on Election Day.

    January 22, 2008 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  20. Mary

    I think I will vote for the GOP if Billary gets the nomination.
    Bill Clinton just go away.

    January 22, 2008 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  21. Brian

    From the New York Times (Hillary's 'home state' paper)
    "The strategic shift intensifies a new dynamic in the race: Mrs. Clinton’s campaign this week in South Carolina is essentially running Mr. Clinton against Mr. Obama."

    The Clintons are taking a page straight out of the George W. Bush campaign handbook and are waging war in the form of attacks against their party rival. This seems very familiar to Dubya's handling of McCain in 2000.

    Bush, Clinton, Bush...Clinton?? Doesn't America deserve a change from politics as usual?

    January 22, 2008 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  22. Disappointed

    Obama please leave Bill alone. He is starting to look crazy, please don't join him.

    January 22, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  23. gtalkspolitics

    After the debate last night, I'm sure I WILL NEVER VOTE FOR ANOTHER CLINTON AGAIN! Hillary was caught in lies and false attacks, This intentional attempt to distort Obama's charater has lost her a lot off support in the African American Community.

    January 22, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  24. Ande

    The same people who put George Bush in the White House for 8 years are the same people trying to put Billary in there. I use to really admire the Clintons but years in politics have changed them for the worse. They are horrible people and they are not anyone I would ever vote for. Bill can't keep his mouth shut. Someone needs to remind him that he was the "former" president. And Hillary is so good at her evil tatics it's scary. What's more scary is that she seems to enjoy it. Notice her smile at the debate. She's scary. I'm afraid that they only thing that the Clintons have done at this point is suceeded in dividing the democrats and ensuring that a democrat will never make it in the white house in 09. I'll vote anyone but Hillary if she is on the ticket. What a liar and a disappointment she has turned out to be.

    January 22, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  25. CARL NY

    THIS IS THE PROBLEM WITH DEMS>. THEY ALWAYS CROSS PARTY LINES TO VOTE A CRONY. EVEN IF I HAVE A CRONY IN THE HOUSE, I WILL STAND BY. LIKE YOUR KIDS, YOU ALWAYS SUPPORT THEM. NO ONE IS PERFECT; BUT I HAVE SEEN THE CLINTONS VERY REASONNABLE ABOUT THE COUNTRY BUSINESS. EVERYONE HAS DIRT IN THE BAG; INCLUDING YOU. FACE YOURSELF IN A MIRROR AND REVIEW ALL PERSONAL THINGS YOU DID WRONG IN YOUR LFE. I AM SURE YOU ARE ASHAMED OF A LOT OF THEM LKE I AM; BUT ALWAYS I WILL FIGHT FOR MY CHILDREN BECAUSE THEY REFLECT ME.

    BUSH AND CO WILL STAND BY THEIR MEN NO MATTER WHAT AND WILL BEAT DEMS AS THEY DID!

    POLITICS IS NOT LOVE OR FAMILY. IT IS COUNTRY BUSINESS!

    January 22, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
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