January 30th, 2008
02:30 PM ET
15 years ago

Obama hints at a McCain nomination while jabbing Clinton

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/images/01/30/art.obama.ap.jpg caption=" Obama campaigned in Denver Wednesday."]DENVER, Colorado (CNN) – Whoever wins the Democratic nomination for the presidency will be battling Republican John McCain, Barack Obama implied Wednesday in Denver.

Obama also criticized opponent Hillary Clinton in the same sentence, seeming to imply that Clinton and McCain share similar positions on a variety of issues.

"It is time for new leadership that understands that the way to win a debate with John McCain or any Republican who is nominated is not by nominating someone who agreed with him on voting for the war in Iraq," Obama said, taking a swipe at Clinton's 2002 vote in favor of the Iraq war resolution.

McCain, fresh off his win in Florida Tuesday, is now being billed as the GOP frontrunner.

Obama continued the attack on Clinton, implying she also agreed with McCain when it came to giving George Bush "the benefit of the doubt on Iran," and criticizing her for "embracing the Bush-Cheney policy of not talking to leaders we don’t like."

The Illinois senator implied that he "actually differed with McCain by arguing for exceptions for torture before changing positions when the politics of the moment changed."

The Clinton campaign was quick to respond — so quick, in fact, that spokesman Phil Singer emailed a rebuttal to reporters before Obama had even delivered the comments.

Responding to what the Obama campaign sent out as remarks "prepared for delivery," Singer wrote that, with a single exception, the promotion of Gen. George Casey - the two senators have nearly-identical voting records on Iraq.

He also added that Obama is misrepresenting Clinton's position when it comes to the issues of Iran and diplomacy.

In terms of torture, Singer wrote that Obama "couldn't be more wrong." After meeting with various military officials and reading defense reports, he said, Clinton "concluded that torture cannot be part of the American policy, period."

- CNN Producer Chris Welch

soundoff (518 Responses)
  1. Patti

    For some of you who just like to comment without doing any research. Hillary has fought for alot of causes in particular those that helped women and children. First to another posters response Hillary has done the following (yes I did copy and past from other articles):

    Right out of college went to work for the Childrens Defense fund
    She published scholarly articles in the 70's "Children's Policies: Abandonment and Neglect" in 1977 and "Children's Rights: A Legal Perspective" in 1979
    In Arkansas she cofounded the Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families, a state-level alliance with the Children's Defense Fund, in 1977.
    She was on Walmarts Board of Directors but she was the First Woman to be appointed that position where she pushed successfully for the chain to adopt more environmentally-friendly practices and also pressured to the Board to add more Women to management.
    Along with Senator Ted Kennedy, she was the major force behind the State Children's Health Insurance Program in 1997, a federal effort that provided state support for children whose parents were unable to provide them with health coverage

    But what I would like to know really is what has Obama done that has everyone so star struck.

    January 30, 2008 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  2. lw

    I thought everyone told the Clintons to cut out the negative. How comes Obama is allowed to get away with it?

    January 30, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  3. fish

    Obama reminds me so much of Bush - can't talk without a teleprompter in front of him. Both stutter when they don't have one. Both get the "smirk" on their faces. Both walk like something is stuck up their butt.

    To quote George W. Bush (August 2000, his nomination acceptance speech): “A time of prosperity is a test of vision, and our nation today needs vision”.

    They even sound alike. Both had zero experience. Can we afford OJT for another president? I think not.

    Hillary in 2008 – California will deliver !!

    January 30, 2008 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  4. Tim

    The message of Hillary voted for the war is wearing out. The more and more you say it the less and less anyone cares. Yawn. He needs a new line. And if I'm not mistaken, over 80% of the American's were for the war at the time it was started based on the information presented. To borrow a phrase from the '90s...it's the economy stupid!

    January 30, 2008 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  5. James, Toronto

    I am dual citizen including my parents and sibilings and we will make effort in voting for Hillary.
    ABC- eat this
    ABC January 30, 2008 4:18 pm ET

    Toronto Girl
    No one here cares what you think. You can't vote here, you don't live hear and we don't care what you think. Stick to your own country. If we needed your input we ask for it.
    That being said, it looks like Barack is having a good day. He is discussing policy and not attacking personally.
    You go Obama

    January 30, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  6. Jared


    Born in 1947. 61 years old.

    35 years of touted experience.

    This would mean she has been in government since she was 26 years old?

    How is this possible?

    Does she mean that she married Bill Clinton in 1975, which was 33 years ago. What was she doing prior to her marrying Bill?


    January 30, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  7. Matthew

    A candidate who can win debates? I mean, come on! Even the most expeirenced and supportive Obama pundits admit he is a horrible debator! Hillary rocks in this arena. Obama may shine in the canned speeches category, Hillary avoids the 'uhh... ummm...uhh... uhmmm" before every comment.

    And stop using Iraq against Hillary! If you look the ENTIRE Democratic party, you'll find that the list is VERY long when it comes to initially supporting the war. Furthermore, obviously Obama doesn't get it. Americans don't care about the war anymore. "It's the ECONOMY, stupid!" Sound familiar?

    January 30, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  8. A. Harrison

    Are you kidding me?

    That was a sly attack. If HIllary did this or even worse BILL it would be a Media FRENZY...."OMG the CLINTONS are beating up on OBAMA again, make them stop immediately".....

    GImme a break Obama, stick to your issues and keep quiet until Tuesday, super duper Tuesday....

    Hillary 2008!

    January 30, 2008 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  9. Virginia

    I think it's a mistake for the media and others to try to jam Obama down our throats. No matter what time I turn on cable news or which station I tune to, it is the "All-Obama-All-the-Time Show". Very little coverage is given to Hillary who is also on the campaign trail, trying to get her message out. When Obama brought in Oprah, I knew it would backfire on him and it did. (New Hampshire, Michigan, Nevada). Now with Ted Kennedy's very sensational endorsement, Caroline running ads all over the country, (two-year) Senator Claire McCaskill traveling with Obama and speaking for him, and non-stop Obama coverage by the media, people are beginning to suffer Obama-fatigue. The continual ganging up and piling on of Hillary is disquieting to voters. Barack Obama would do well to focus on his own message and the media would do well to pracitice some fair and balanced reporting (if they can remember how).

    January 30, 2008 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  10. Toronto Girl

    I think OBAMABILLIES are getting sheken up!
    The time is coming for CHANGE Obama --It's HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON!
    Go Girl!

    January 30, 2008 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  11. Twinkle Toes Mulligan

    ABC regarding your "not attacking personally" comment to Toronto Girl. Obama doesn't have to he has you to do it for him. So childish. Are you registered? Can you even vote? Have you ever voted?

    Your comments are immature and last time I checked, this is a public blog and (lord knows) you do not speak for me!

    January 30, 2008 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  12. jess

    Obama did not violate the campaign agreement in Florida. It was a national ad on cable. It was across the nation. Get a clue.

    January 30, 2008 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  13. Rob

    Obama is starting to get on my nerve. I look at him and think, how could you be so annoying, to have full knowledge of the Republican spin machine and play right inot their hands.
    Every American regardles of affiliation (D-R or I)knows that the Republican Spin machine is very malicious and cold calculating, they have managed to pin so much false accuasition on the Clintons, it masks their weakness on governance. Don't believe me (well they elected W twice) and with the barage of attacks on Hillary, they will possibly elect a 71 year old hot head in McCain. God help us

    Barack cool your jets dude, don't make things bad in our party, Hillary has the ups on you you in every aspect. Be respectfull and tell your people to cool the race talk, I far as I know the Clintons have done a great deal for people that look like you and me. What have you done for people that look like me and you Barack? show me your accomplishments

    January 30, 2008 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  14. Anton

    Name one american company that hires fresh graduates for senior management position. American way is to work up the ladder and gain experince in doing so.

    Why can't Senator Obama be in Senate for a few more years and build a track record for americans to look at and judge.

    in politics "best record to run on is no record at all"......SC debate Obama was asked why he voted against limiting credit card company rates to 30%..he goes 30% is too high a limit so he voted against it.....but I ask we are better off limiting it to 30 then to give a free ride to credit companies.

    Media DID NOT talk about it. if Hillary even sneezes its plastered all over the media....but hey ,Obama is gonna get a free ride

    January 30, 2008 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  15. palmer

    With 130+ "present" votes in Illinois, Obama isn't well-positioned to accuse Clinton - or anyone else - of "calculated" votes and "poll-driven" positions.

    January 30, 2008 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  16. Hartman in KC

    Mitt Romney looks like the Anti-Christ to me! GO OBAMA!

    January 30, 2008 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  17. pacific_c

    I was once an enthusiastic supporter of Barak Obama. Several things he has said make me shake my head. Last night was the straw that broke this voter's back.

    1.7 million dems voted in Florida last night and while there aren't delegates to be given, I can't agree with him that it was "nothing."

    January 30, 2008 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |

    To all hypocrites that can only seemingly site not voting 130 times to tarnish Obama. Tell me what the 130 issues were and what they involved? Can you? Also, Obama did vote on over 4,000 pieces of legislature while in the Senate, compared to 130 present votes which means he was neither for or against, but the issue itself needed more information, data, or clarification for his vote.

    Also, what have all you people trying to tarnish Obama by citing this rediculous sentiment of voting present 130 times done? Have you writen bills, supported legislation, or done anything to help those in need? Before you call the kettle black, ask yourself how many times YOU showed up!

    January 30, 2008 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  19. Magmystour

    To Toronto Girl: I thought that they spoke English in Canada.

    January 30, 2008 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  20. John in Columbus, OH

    Hillary Clinton claims to have experience. What? As First Lady? I guess that makes her as qualified as Laura Bush and less so as Nancy Reagan to be President.

    January 30, 2008 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  21. gordian troeller

    ABC and others.
    Don't insult us foriegners. Unfortunately your choice of President impacts enormously on the whoe world and therefore some of us at lest are interested ( or indeed very worried) about the choices which seem to be left

    You are probably right that if Hillary wins the Democratic nomination that will hand the White House to the Republicans, BUT, I cannot help but seeing Obama in the same light as Balir.
    Oh I was so pleased when he won back in 1997, but within a year it was all a big let down. That is what will happen in my view if Obama gets elected President, and please don't pretend that he will nt be devoured by the 'machine'; once he gets to the White House.

    Though neither Cnadainas, or Brits can vote in your election, it is impolite and ignorant to pretend we don't have views which matter


    January 30, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  22. Paul in Kissimmee

    Obama takes another cheap shot at Clinton? What a surprise. Yes she voted for the war, just like everyone else did. Maybe he didn't want to because his middle name is Sadam's last name.

    January 30, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  23. Charles, Houston

    i am really tried of the Hillary bashing and the Obama love story!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    HILLARY CLINTON ALL THE WAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    January 30, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  24. Ryan

    Wow- Hillary pulls in over 850,000 votes versus Mccains 650,000 votes! Looks like Hillary should be okay, so all you "if its Hillary people I will vote Mccain" go ahead, as everyone I know will vote for mickey mouse over Obama, at least Mickey has over 75 years experience in uniting us!!!!!!!! Obama is now on the attack, I knew the little devil would show his true colors!!!!! Tell us about your change Obama, Its more than a word buddy!

    January 30, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  25. L in Florida



    HILLARY 08

    January 30, 2008 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21