February 4th, 2008
04:50 PM ET
15 years ago

Clinton holds emotional meeting at Yale


Watch Clinton get emotional at a campaign stop.

NEW HAVEN, Connecticut (CNN) - Hillary Clinton became teary-eyed during an event at Yale University Monday - a moment that harkened back to her much talked-about display of emotion on the eve of the New Hampshire Primary.

Holding a campaign meeting at the Yale Child Study Center, the New York senator welled up as she was introduced by Penn Rhodeen, a public interest lawyer who worked with Clinton when she was in college.

Rhodeen praised Clinton's efforts as a college student and said, "Here is the abiding truth we know - you have always been a champion for children. Welcome home, dear friend. We are so proud of you."

Though it is difficult to see her reaction in footage of the event (see her reaction by clicking the play button on the right), Clinton's eyes appeared to grow misty during the introduction, according to CNN producer Sasha Johnson. When it was the senator's turn to speak she said, "Well, I said I would not tear up; already we're not exactly on the path."

Clinton's last teary moment on the trail occurred after an undecided voter asked how she was holding up. The moment instantly became the most-covered event on the campaign trail on the day before the critical New Hampshire primary, drawing both praise from some who said Clinton had finally bared her true self to voters, and criticism from those who thought the moment was calculated.

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- CNN Producers Alexander Mooney and Sasha Johnson

Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (1,203 Responses)
  1. ernest

    CNN , your capture of what happened is really, really troubling to me, she was no where near teary, you are dangerously close to becoming a tabloid not a news organization

    February 4, 2008 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  2. Katherine Weathers

    Oh give me a break!!! Do not be deceived by these tactics. We do not need a president that breaks down and cries every time things are not going their way!!! We need a strong leader that is about change.

    Give her a box a tissue and send her home!!!

    February 4, 2008 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  3. michael

    To garner sympathy and improve her standing, did Margaret Thatcher tear up a little bit? – I am sure she didn't need to tear up to show conviction. This not Presidential, it's silly.

    February 4, 2008 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  4. aware

    Authenticity and transparency demonstrate character which denotes strength! Hillary listens, cares and answers tough questions. BO just holds pep rallies, photo ops and media events. 🙂

    A vote for the Pied Piper is a vote for the Republicans. Obamamania will not produce practical results. That takes work and courage.

    Hillary 08

    February 4, 2008 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  5. bret

    c'mon lady.

    you are the person who wants to send my children and grandchildren into a heated conflict with the enemies of our country?

    what are you gonna do at the diplomatic meetings? are you gonna squirt a few in the face of our enemy and show them how weak you make us?

    are you gonna cry and whine and get all teary-eyed when congress holds one of your bills or one of your nominees up in deliberation? at least with a "retard" we got results. with a cry baby all we get is attacked and killed.

    wake up and smell the defeat of your candidacy, crybaby.


    February 4, 2008 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  6. angelina_

    I am sorry but her tactics as a woman are so awful that is shameful. she acts like a men, attacks her opponents with the most awful racists, shameful things then she says i didnt say it, my husband did....... now she is crying. I am sorry but we women are smart, we can act respectuflly , and gain high places in office with respect and dignity without looking down on others, as she does, or using people as she does, and we dont have to cry when we are defeated ................

    Give me a break, I know voters are smarter than that, she did get away the first time with this but not the second, .............

    OBAMA WILL WIN 08 !!! (keep this email)

    February 4, 2008 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  7. Drew Pritt

    Hillary Rodham Clinton is truly the most qualified candidate running for President....bar none....even more than John McCain. This obsession and differing standard she is held to is not helping the process. My goodness people in the media why are you so intent on her. Wheres the breaking news that Barack Obama has a sniffle. Or the live shot of Mike Huckabee drinking a diet soda and eating a salad. Or Mitt Romney's expose of a desire for coffeee. Come on people get serious.

    Hillary Clinton is what this nation needs. I look forward to voting for her tomorrow and supporting her through November. I also will welcome 8 more years of a President Clinton Administration!

    February 4, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  8. Sam

    Wake up America. Remember many of us voted for Bush in 2000 and again 2004. Let's not make the same mistake with Obama. Go Hillary 08.

    February 4, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  9. junebug

    Give me a break! This woman had someone say some very nice things about her . . . she's HUMAN, for gosh sakes! Neither Clinton nor Obama would be my first choice, but of the two, give me Hillary Clinton any day. Most of you folks are taking your cue from the media . . . Obama is a very intelligent, very nice YOUNG man with NO experience at anything except making very eloquent speeches. He's got great potential for the FUTURE, but unless you want 4 more years of "on-the-job" training for our President, I'd rethink my choice.

    Wake up, you are being manipulated by the media.

    February 4, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  10. Joe

    I almost couldn't believe when I read that Hillary cried again. What a joke! How odd that it happened the day before Super Tuesday. I don't think it will help this time! Personally, I think (and it seems like most agree) that the emotion was fake and calculated. But even if those were genuine tears, crying twice in a primary election is just WEAK. How will you react when you face tough times as President? We don't need our mom in office, we need a strong leader!!!

    February 4, 2008 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  11. Bill Adams

    I predict Hillary Clinton will all but wrap up the Democratic Race on Super Tuesday. Your Biased reporting and Polling showing the so called Dead Heat will be brought to bear its false underpinnings to try to help Obama because most rich right wingers think him easier to beat than Hillary so why shouldn't you use your very biased reporting to lead people to vote for the most potential Demo loser. Tommorows vote will reflect Florida and NewHampshire and I predict you soon will see your high level lies and false poll reportting will come back to haunt you.

    February 4, 2008 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  12. koreanpower999

    you sexist Obama supporters need to take a break...your comments show what Obama supporters think of a woman in charge

    February 4, 2008 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  13. Bonheur

    I don't think I want a President who cries. How can she handle and stand up to the leaders of other countries. She lost my vote here in California... I don't believe the crocodile tears anymore.

    February 4, 2008 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  14. Jake

    Uhhhhh, if she's crying now when the going gets tough during campaigning, then how is she going to handle the rigors of presidency? Enough of this dynasty! Bush, Clinton, Bush and Clinton??? What next, 2012, will it be Chelsea Clinton or Jenna Bush? Ohhhh please.

    February 4, 2008 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  15. Mary

    Champion for children? Leaving her child with baybysitters and nannies while she built her career is testament to how much she truly cares for children. If it came down to working for a vote or working for a child, she would focus on the almighty vote.

    February 4, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  16. Hispanic Voter

    You got to be kidding CNN. Don't you have better things to report. Like what Hillary Clinton talked about at Yale University. Of course CNN is going to report this, which they think it's a bad characteristic to tear up. Hillary Clinton is the most realistic candidate, not because she teared up, but because she has the hearts on all the American people.

    People should make their decision based on facts, not endorsements, not all of the contributions and unfilled inspirational messages. You should vote for the most qualified, the most prepared. The one who is actually talking policy now.

    GO Hillary Clinton 2008!!!!!!!!!


    February 4, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  17. Missouri

    Young or old, like it or not , she shows she ha s got a heart.

    Bet you never shed a tear ? Best we put you on the front lines,

    No Obama,

    February 4, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  18. juju

    sure, the timing is coincidental. but perhaps she was actually moved again. sounds like a potentially moving occasion.

    and just because she teared up doesn't mean she's a weak woman; she didn't weep or bawl; she teared up. male politicians do the same thing all the time. only when men do it, it's called *getting all chocked up*

    go hillary! we need a woman like you in charge!

    February 4, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  19. mleh l. wilson

    Hilary is great and she is going to win. Obama has surrounded by who's who in America: the kennedys, the Kerrys , G. Cloney, Oprah and the list is endless.

    February 4, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  20. Rick

    Do we honestly need a president that gets teary eyed every time it doesnt go her way......NO, we need a strong leader who will make the necessary changes and not go crying everytime she is losing.......

    February 4, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  21. Aaron

    Great timing for the ol' girl. Crying once was enough; Crying twice was too much. She is in the reverse of some other politicians who act first then get into politics, i.e. Reagan and others. She gets into politics then starts to act.

    If people werent sure if Clinton was fake, now you know! She's just as fake and deceptive as Bush. Obama is at least honest.

    February 4, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  22. Ty

    To Mark in Mo,

    Indeed, there is no conspiracy plot for Hillary Clinton to fake crying to win the election. It is merely a tactic to slow down news media in spread the news of Obama closing-in on the poll numbers, hence, his momentum. It is not the tactic to win any state.

    As for South Carolina primary, Clinton has deployed a different strategy which has backfired (if a candidate cried twice on the road even a moron will know the spurious). If you understand the political campaign, you would know the importance of calculating moves.

    Apparently, Hillary's attempt is to headline the media. Nevertheless, for people who think with their emotion rather than their logic, they will probably vote for her.(that is why I said "she under-estimated the average intelligence of voters", but that statement probably excludes you)

    February 4, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  23. Hillphil

    Hillary is much better than McCain

    February 4, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  24. See the Game

    Understand the meta gaming going on here...

    Hillary crying will both help and hurt

    1) HURT – people that are upset at this are likely to not vote for her anyways

    2) HELP – people that this helps with are likely to be women, who's support has been shrinking.

    So this is an effort to shore up support with women voters that have gotten to know Barack and might believe him to be the better candidate. This is a clever move that might pay dividends tomorrow...

    February 4, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  25. David

    Again, I don't see how this is crying. For me, crying = tears streaming down face, and again I don't see it. A fragile moment, maybe. A tender episode, perhaps. But tears? Come on.

    February 4, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
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