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. Dena

    Interestingly, a lot of people blame CNN for reporting this story, but every internet news site is reporting it.

    February 5, 2008 08:54 am at 8:54 am |
  2. Rosa

    As a woman, we feel deeper, we protect our dreams, fight for our rights, respect others decisions, listen better. That's why woman live longer than men. We have coping mechanisms, patience, not afraid to show our emotions, and fight like hell when we have to. We want the whole picture and wait until the time is right to reach a final decision. Who can better run this country for all of us? This intelligent woman, who is organized, tough, fair, a great listener, who has fought all her life us, will bring this whole country back together to fight for the American dream and work with all world leaders. Hillary Clinton is my candidate for our future and for ALL AMERICANS to untite once again and to once again wake up to the goals we once had. It's time to wake up from this nightmare we've been living in for almost 8 years and put a true American back in office....HILLARY!

    February 5, 2008 08:55 am at 8:55 am |
  3. Sue

    Unless I saw a different clip I believe she was making a joke about crying?

    February 5, 2008 09:01 am at 9:01 am |
  4. davidvoter08

    I get a laugh out of Obama and his "change" message. Obama is a product of the Daley Machine out of my hometown of Chicago, one of the oldest, and most corrupt political organizations in the history of mankind. He is part of the old guard of here which also includes Daley, Durbin and the Democratic house of thieves. St. Obama is no fresh face kid, but a skimmer and scammer of the highest order. The only "change" from Obama we're seeing is his desire to now trade up his lies for a new job title.

    February 5, 2008 09:02 am at 9:02 am |
  5. Caroline

    It's really about the issues. Most would say they care about children but fund allocation doesn't equal the talk. The overall welfare of children has a tremendous impact on the United State's short and long term expenditures.
    As a productive and happy person who survived very challenging times in childhood, in the care of the "system" I'm grateful for people like Hillary. She took a stand for children, long before anyone wanted to address the impact on society of a poor start in life. Through nature AND nurture, children grow up to be adults who have a propensity for either neediness or strength. The long term effects of Hillary's advocacy results in stronger more stable, responsible, and self reliant adults who are able to more often contribute than take.

    February 5, 2008 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  6. jdk

    You guys really need to relax with the claims that Senator Clinton is being fake for getting a bit misty when she was meeting with the folks at Yale. At this point, I'm not voting for Hillary but rather Obama, but I think it's important that we vote because of the issues instead of resorting to this ineffectual banter. I say give her a break! She was meeting with some old friends and she received a very sincere and warm welcome that obviously meant a great deal to her. Let's not look into this so much. Sometimes we need to accept things as matter of fact or at least give people the benefit of the doubt. Enough already with this nonsense! Regardless of who wins, I think the Dems are in a great position to reclaim the White House. I'm very surprised to read these blogs only to find this division amongst the Dems. I do hope that this sort of myopic reasoning doesn't reverberate across our country as it would be a disasterous shame!

    February 5, 2008 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  7. Rex, Toledo, Ohio

    Rex, Toledo, Ohio February 4, 2008 7:25 pm ET
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    O.K. that seals it for me. I never did like the criminal Clinton, and I now realize that voting for Ron Paul would be my first choice, but wouldn't help to defeat Hillary Clinton. I have to place my vote where it counts, and that is why, I, Rex from Toledo, Ohio, who reads the Ticker half a dozen times a day, announces here that I will be placing my vote for Barack Obama. To vote any other way is disrespectful to every American that truly wants change for our Country.
    Obama '08

    "I never thought I'd say that"

    CNN, can I come out of time out "moderation" now.........???

    February 5, 2008 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  8. Rep

    How would it look if, God forbid, America comes under attack again and our President can't hold it together and cries instead of taking control of the situation? This country will be in real trouble if the public votes for Clinton.

    February 5, 2008 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  9. KC

    As others have said, the timing & set up (again, with a women's roundtable) were WAY to convenient...virtually identical to the NH exchange.

    /Why is pointing that out equated with "hating Hillary"?...though I certainly understand how people could dislike her for such compromising tactics. Those of us who think critically are entitled to question, especially given her shady say anything/do anything track record.

    I've long supported Obama for his policies & unique ability to bring people together...and I was very concerned when Hill pulled this stunt in NH...but it won't work this time. Momentum is with Obama & you can't hold back inspiration indefinitely. It's contagious & spreads like wildfire. So tears or no tears...I expect him to keep the delegate count close today & go on to victory in the weeks ahead.

    Obama '08 YES WE CAN (AND WILL)!!!

    February 5, 2008 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  10. Barack Oprah

    What's wrong with it?
    I think it much better than using OPRAH and KENNEDYS to buy votes.
    Do not use my OPRAH.

    I vote for OPRAH!!!

    February 5, 2008 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  11. Anonymous

    What about CNN?

    February 5, 2008 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  12. Laurel

    Sexism is thriving in america. This is a news story ???

    I'm voting for Hillary. Not because she's a woman...but because I am one. And she's the best of the available candidates.

    February 5, 2008 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  13. Anthony / Maryland

    So is this what Centrists do now when in dire straights...cry,weep, moan?
    Hope she keeps a box of Kleenex handy...and I hope she has a new leash to keep her PitBill in check.

    February 5, 2008 09:47 am at 9:47 am |
  14. MM

    The day CNN publishes one of my comments, the world is going to end. You publish such unbelievable garbage all the time from just about anyone. Things that matter, you do not. I am really loosing faith on you as a "news" agency. We can write whatever we want to write as long as we write what you want to publish. What a "democratic" behavior. I will believe in you the day there is no censorship to comments anymore. The fact that you select what fits your agenda is reason enough not to believe in your "freedom" of press. Way to go, CNN. Everyone in the planet knows of your flaws but you. You are not good in disguising it anymore like you used to. Welcome back to Venezuela.

    February 5, 2008 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  15. Mike

    I don't understand all the hatred on here for Hillary. Even if what many of you are saying is true – that she is attempting to manipulate the public with fake displays of emotion – so what? In one breath you'd have us believe she is a cold, iron woman. Then you deride her for displaying emotion. Which is it? And I suppose you also believe that no man running for president has ever done or said anything to manipulate us into voting for them. What do you think campaigning is?

    I, for one, welcome tears from a candidate. It's about time. With our children dying in an unwelcoming, ungrateful foreign land, with our economy falling down around us, with a government perfectly willing to abandon our national morals by abandoning the very basic freedoms we hold dear and have codified in our constitution, with dissent being crushed, with human beings being tortured, quite admittedly, by our government, with the rapid and purposeful erosion of the separation between church and state, with the blatant dishonesty which has become commonplace in out goverment – yes, somebody please start shedding some tears before it's too late.

    February 5, 2008 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  16. Duane SC

    There is a certain level of pressure that comes with running a presidential race. With that being said there is also a certain level of poise a candidate should have. Shedding tears once is a human emotion, but twice is just a sign of an EMOTIONAL person. Face it wether it's a man, or a woman. The role of the President is the be a sign of strength, stability and sound judgement. I'm not inclined to vote for someone who cannot control her own emotions, but wants to control the country.

    February 5, 2008 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  17. demwit

    She'll be crying herself to sleep tonight too. But not as hard as Bill!! 8)

    February 5, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  18. jerry

    I can' help but wonder why it is so heartwarming when a 250 pound professional football player cries when he wins a "game" and when a women gets emotional about having some heartfelt support in the "game" of politics, that the she factor is played up to be weak , while the he factor goes unmentioned as being a weakness. What a truly bias news media this country is subjected to every day.

    February 5, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  19. bgonzalez9

    I don't believe this crying from her. I don't believe she is the type of person who gets all emotional about anything. She is trying to do what it takes to get votes.
    So far all I've seen is a Clinton that has not been herself. I don't see her as true and ernest ,
    Bobbie in Chicago

    February 5, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  20. Jen

    Boo Hoo.. lets all vote for a teary eyed president that cannot hold it together!!

    GO OBAMA!!

    February 5, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  21. Gina, CA

    She didn't cry. She smiled throughout a touching moment. She was genuine in her reaction. She showed herself to be human. She showed us that she has a heart.
    Best of luck, Hillary! I'll be rooting for you all day and into the night and celebrating tomorrow!

    February 5, 2008 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  22. CJ

    Well Billery, tears again. What will you do if one of the leaders of another country call you an old bag? CRY!!!

    February 5, 2008 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  23. Nikki

    Why should I leave a comment you wouldn't print my last one, all I can say is it is time to have a smart woman president. Go Hillary

    February 5, 2008 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  24. ABB

    These Hillary haters show more emotion in their predictable rantings than Hillary has ever shown in her "supposed" tearful moments. But,she is not allowed to show emotions, according to the self-righteous postings. Get a grip, people, these are human traits...just as your desire for spewing hateful comments every chance you get.

    February 5, 2008 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  25. sly

    come back down to earth sky or we will never be united again..

    February 5, 2008 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
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