January 22nd, 2008
04:50 PM ET
15 years ago

Obama battles Muslim rumor head-on

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Democrat Barack Obama stepped up his efforts Tuesday to battle back against e-mails that falsely label him a Muslim, telling an interviewer the ongoing rumors were part of a "systematic political strategy."

Full story

- CNN's Alexander Mooney and Rebecca Sinderbrand

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (18 Responses)
  1. Jen Cedar Falls, IA

    When I received this email, I shot right back at the sender and so did a few other people she'd sent it to.
    She didn't fully believe it, but there are too many gullible people out there. Most of them are Hillary supporters.
    They'll stop at nothing to keep the hate alive in this country! It's a sad thing.
    Everyone knows that Hillary in the White House will keep this country divided.

    There are candidates that want to unite people across this country with respect and hard work.
    Those candidates are Obama and Romney.
    For those of you who care about us all burying the hate, vote your party, but vote for the uniter in your party.
    For those of you riding on the Bush/Clinton Rep/Dem hate train, consider jumping off and trying some love for a change of pace.
    Imagine. A fresh start in the White House.............ahhh refreshing!

    January 23, 2008 08:30 am at 8:30 am |
  2. no more cloudy days

    well maybe someone should ask what the beliefs of his church affliation are? certainly that seems fair. as for the e mails, what's new. the political process is filled with professionals and otherwise who spread false rumors. its the only profession where slander seems to be the in thing.

    January 23, 2008 08:31 am at 8:31 am |
  3. Marco

    It's Terrible how the Clinton's try to take advantage with dirty rumors
    about obama.

    They can not defeat him with arguments, only with dirt.

    I hope it falls back on them.

    January 23, 2008 08:38 am at 8:38 am |
  4. carol

    i thought cnn personalized the debate and encouraged backbiting among candidates, as they did before with asking clinton how she felt about people "not liking" her. where are the questions abou barrack's inability to quit smoking, which could cause a mortal illness in a president at a dangerous time when we need the most effective person for the job?

    to "foxy lady" – what an adolescent comment. what does ms. clinton's figure have to do with any of this? and why are you so angry that she stuck with her husband through a difficult time? isn't that what commitment is all about?

    January 23, 2008 08:44 am at 8:44 am |
  5. Hank

    Ok. CNN, without Clinton dirty tricks, looks like you have nothing substantial to report on. Can we get down to what we want to hear from the candidates? Issues and their plans, if I have to remind you that is why they run for a long time.

    January 23, 2008 08:45 am at 8:45 am |
  6. Carley

    I read on the internet that this rumor was started by a reporter at Fox News. If so, where did the reporter obatain such information and how did he verify the rumor as factual?

    January 23, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  7. DP, Jacksonville, FL

    Spanieluvr & the rest,

    I believe there are a lot of people who believe in a Higher Power but just don't believe the God of The Bible quite satisfies that definition. In fact, an intelligent argument might be made that an omnipotent, omniscient God would defy "understanding" by human beings by virtue of those qualities.

    A number of the problems this country faces right now were brought about (directly or indirectly) by an Executive Administration that believes that it acts with the inherent grace of God, and as a result is exempt from rational scrutiny or accountability.

    January 23, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  8. HRC

    CNN & old pals. I would love to this topic a few hundred more times before Super Tuesday. Get back to you after the elections, thanks...

    January 23, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  9. Democrat in NY

    I amazed at the few comments about the war.

    John January 23, 2008 2:12 pm ET

    "First of all, Hillary did take responsibility for her take on the war. She admitted she made a mistake. "
    She did not Mani – never called it a mistake – says she was mislead. She never even read the report that she claims mislead her. Bought and paid for!

    SHE WAS MISLEAD.. Is she a kid???? and oohh I am sorry…weep weep. weep..Who is responsible for so many deaths in Iraq???
    No wonder Hillary supporters are uneducated…Its not me saying..Its the exit polls.

    January 23, 2008 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  10. HRC

    This subject is about to drop off the front page again CNN. Rotate it back to the top again.., thanks,

    January 23, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  11. frame

    One of the first things the Republicans will do is demand that Obama's full name appear on the ballot. His middle name is "Hussein". No kidding! It's so ironic. It won't matter if he is Muslim or not- people will vote against him just on his name alone.

    January 23, 2008 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  12. David James

    Does anyone seem to remember who they are talking about here regarding the Muslim politician? I believe people are confusing Barack Obama with a congressman from MN. Didn't he swear in on the Koran? I believe he was also a black man. Why hasn't any of the media picked up on this?????

    January 23, 2008 10:34 pm at 10:34 pm |
  13. Iowan

    Please keep reporting on this ugly issue. A local (conservative) Iowa radio talk show host read the e-mail as FACT. One of my co-workers confronted another co-worker about how she could support THAT MAN in the caucuses. Some people have received this more than a half-dozen times. AOL has it on one of their discussion groups. I can just imagine someone saying "Hah! His middle name is Hussein – I think I'll take that one fact and make him seem like Saddam himself!" It's sad to say but some people are so naive that they will believe what they read/hear. Especially when it reinforces negative stereotypes about race or religion.

    Fortunately, many of us in Iowa had the chance to meet Obama face-to-face. I helped register people to vote on caucus night. It was amazing! Independents and Republicans changed their party affiliations to support him.

    My hope is that the media will give Obama the same treatment that Mitt Romey had when he gave the speech about religion. He deserves the right to set the record straight.

    January 23, 2008 10:58 pm at 10:58 pm |
  14. Cindy

    Anderson, I saw your report on the negative email smear campaign against Barak Obama. I work for gentlemen who is a stanch Republican and the minute Barak Obama announced his candidacy I receive that email about Sen. Obama being a Muslim just like the one you reported on. It was so outrageous that I decided to contact Oprah to see if she would consider doing a show on these underhanded tactics.

    I knew what was coming because when John Kerry was running for President I would get 10 or 15 negative smear emails a day all-full of the most outrageous claims. All I can say is hold on to your hat Sen. Obama it will only get worse.

    As you can see the Right wing of the Republican Party will do or say anything to hold the White House “Swift Boating” is the despicable way they operate. Just like their one-sided way of justice in an attempt to impeach Bill Clinton. What a bunch of dishonest, corrupt, hypocrites.

    And by the way Bill Clinton is right it the media that can't keep the reporting to the issues. They seem to think that making it about race is much more interesting.

    January 23, 2008 11:52 pm at 11:52 pm |
  15. Cindy

    I can't believe some of you people are stupid enough to think the Clintons had anything to do with this.

    January 24, 2008 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  16. Bridget

    The "Clinton Empire" is the same as the "Bush Administration"!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Former president is not being a diplomat and former president has no respect for any community!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    The"Clinton Empire" does not need to replace "Bush Administration"!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    January 24, 2008 12:31 am at 12:31 am |
  17. Foreign National

    The emails are not from Clintons, either Republicans, or anti Islamic radicals in the US! Obama has to undertand that every time something happens he cannot blame it on Clinton! He can only blame her for things she does and says openly, and the fact that he continues to blame Clinton without proof, only shows he is a kid!

    All they have to do is find IP signature of the emails and they can find at least the location it came from, then etc.....!

    January 24, 2008 03:39 am at 3:39 am |

    When somebody who is Bill Clinton , I can say he is who brought prosperity to this country during his administration and left a surplus and Bush destroyed the economy . I hope Hillary be a president GO HILLARY

    January 24, 2008 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |