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. Sam

    CNN – What's wrong with my comment below ? It's taken from one of your own shows?

    February 5, 2008 6:38 am ET
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    Men hating Hillary hate women.

    Women hating Hillary just hate themselves.

    Maher was on Larry King saying just this. People hating Hillary have something going on in their own psyche that they just need to deal with.

    February 5, 2008 11:07 am at 11:07 am |
  2. kevin from alaska

    Did anyone ever see Benazir Bhutto cry?

    I never did.

    February 5, 2008 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  3. enomisa

    I am tickled pink that Oprah and Ted and Caroline and Maria have jumped on the bandwagon. There were millions of Americans too stupid to know who they wanted to vote for for president. Now somebody rich and famous and important has told them who to vote for. Those same folks apparently don't know how to click on a button to actually VIEW the video that they comment on. Please people get informed and know the facts before spilling your ignorant opinion all over the internet.
    I don't care who you vote for- but please know WHY you are voting for that person.
    Media fueled hatred of a fine public servant should NOT be the reason.

    February 5, 2008 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  4. gianis

    Hillary, dont worry, if you dont make it to the white house, the ease which you shed tears befits you well for a stint in Hollywood..."Those lying eyes"

    February 5, 2008 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  5. Kathy in California

    I just get a kick out of voters that are threatening to give their vote to the Republicans if they don't get their way. It's like, "if I can't have my way, I'll take my toys and go home."

    Both candidates are good people their platforms are so similar you just have to decided if you want to live in the past or the future. Never have I been so inspired by a candidate as I have been by Obama. I have read everything I can get my hands on for these two and come away confident I am an informed voter who has voted for the right candidate

    February 5, 2008 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  6. Bob The Builder

    I think it is important to take a look of the circumstance and put this event in the right context. She was visiting Yale where she graduated years ago, and touched by the words of people who knew her as a student. The topic was concerning children who have been always dear to her heart. I think many of us, as human will have the same emotional display. If this is a calculated event, then she should have selected an event of thousands of people. The bottom line is, if the news organizations did not report it, many of us will not know. Why should her emotional display affect your votes? President Regan teared up numerous times.

    The question is, do you want a machine or a human as president?

    February 5, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  7. Ryan

    If Obama wins today I and everyone I know will vote for Mc cain!!!!

    February 5, 2008 12:23 pm at 12:23 pm |
  8. Ted in Chicago


    Did you watch the Video? To say she cried is wrong.

    To say she used her left hand to wipe what appeared to be one tear in one eye is more accurate

    Facts do matter –

    February 5, 2008 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  9. douadavid

    Hello people ,
    I wish you know that the brightest and smartest couple on earth is Bill and Hillary. They deeply love and care about their people and country more than any politician that I had ever seen or heard in my life. Of course , nice people always had emotion about happiness or sadness . After a few tears , life go on for a better change. Love Bill and Hillary. Vote for Hillary in 2008.

    February 5, 2008 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  10. Lisa, Austin, Texas

    Re: Here in Britain

    I think misogynistic is a bit harsh. I think the media tends to favor the candidate who has momentum on his or her side. Early on in the election CNN was accused of favoring Hillary.

    I think we should wait for the comparisons to Tony Blair until after Obama is president. It is unfair to criticize him based on a positive message. He and Tony Blair are both politicians, but have nothing else in common. They are of different nationalities, generations, and backgrounds.

    February 5, 2008 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  11. ao


    February 5, 2008 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  12. Charlotte

    Hillary has a lot of goodness in her, I would be more upset if she never showed she cares, she can be humbled by a heartfelt introduction. Why are Obama supporters so affraid of her show of emotion.
    How many Obama supporters have been able to ask him a question? He holds RALLYS, not town hall meetings. He has a pulpit to inspire from. He excites from prepared speeches. Has he held a single question and answer event? I'm not talking about debates, I'm talking a group of average people being able to ask him anything? Almost ever event held by Hillary is a question and answer event. When he allows average people to question him, I might be able to support him. Take away the hype and what is left? Anyone who believes he is the answer to their prayers, I would say that depends on what your praying for? If it is gender/race you are blinded by bigotry. We had Rallys in high school to get the students hyped up for the game. That is all I've seen, if someone knows of one event that was not a Rally, please tell me when that happened. Hillary puts herself on the line time and time again, and is asked tough questions. Hillary will be a President who can talk and listen to anybody, anytime, about any topic.

    February 5, 2008 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  13. Anna, IL

    In response to Marcelo: "As an very strong Obama supporter, I'm ashamed of the negative comments against Hillary. We are trying to run a positive campaign here folks. If we continue the negative remarks, then we're really not for change in our politics are we?"

    I agree. My comment was harsh and regret posting it. However, this is precisely why I believe the Clintons are dividers, and we need a real change. They're like poison, and they bring out the worst in people. Every step of their campaign has made me angry. I don't want to see them anymore. I had been open-minded, but their campaign tactics have stirred up all kinds of negative feelings I've forgotten about. In many ways, I'm glad that they ran a negative campaign. It served as a good reminder why they should not be elected.

    I also don't believe that CNN made this into news. It was Hillary that tried to make it into news by saying "I said I would not tear up. Already we're not on that path." She wasn't even crying. When she teared up in New Hampshire, I bought it even though I'm not a Hillary supporter. This time, it just seems too calculated to be something spontaneous.

    February 5, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  14. AMBER

    You people are ignorant! Do you really think her tears are fake?? Don't be stupid! This is where she graduated LAW SCHOOL!!!! Helllllllllllloooooooooooooo....going back after 35 years and receiving the welcome she did is enough to make anyone get misty eyed, even the manliest of men! Stop being ridiculous, grow up, and leave her alone. Has anyone forgotten that Mitt Romney has teared up 3-4 times on his campaign trail.....does anyone pay attention to that? NO. See the bias here??!!! Yeah....uh-huh... thats what I thought!

    February 5, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  15. Sal

    Obama now


    McCain 08

    your choice of an electable change.

    Look at the larger picture,

    As Bill Clinton saind in 1992, The same old experience is irrelevant today.
    That applies to Hillary's, Same old...

    Vote for war with Iraq, War with Iran 2007,

    Experience shold make you get it right.

    Obama 08

    February 5, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  16. Bob

    I cried last week, too. It was at the end of the movie Pan's Labyrinth. I made a video of myself crying and put it on youtube. You can find it if you go to YouTube and search for "Bob cry".

    Where's my coverage, CNN? WHERE'S MY COVERAGE!!!!

    February 5, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  17. Michiel

    So what! She's human. This is totally a non-story blown way out of proportion. The opposition to her, is of course, portrayed as super human. What a crock! Think carefully before putting the fate of this country into the hands of a dreamer without substance. This will be my last post (if it makes it into print) as it seems to be increasing difficult to post on this site.

    February 5, 2008 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  18. Joe

    What extraordinary power does Hillary have that she "made" CNN report on this with such bias???

    As you said yourself, she didn't even cry. She chuckled about it and moved on. Shouldn't that be the real point.

    But when you drink the Obama kool-aid, best to just leap to conclusions, why even view with your own eyes. Talk about lofty goals, coming together, moving forward . . . and then trash your opponent's integrity.

    That is a sad and sorry strategy.

    February 5, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  19. Willie

    How can any voter in their right mind both trust Hillary's integrity and find confidence in her emotional stability. Hillary Clinton is simply not fit to be President!

    February 5, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  20. Billy

    So Hillary teared up again and it made all the major net works news room.I heard Barack broke wind 3 times on the stage in NY and nothing was said about it on any network,Get off the ladys back and report to Us not how many tears are shead but what the candiates are going to do for america.When Blitzer intervied Obama on the 16 month end the occupation Obama sidesteped and said as President he'd reserve the right if he needed to make adjustments..BUT he Says 16 months..So which is it tell the people what they want to hear and make his own ruls as he goes..This latest plan of Obamas is the same plan Hillary has only sh'e more honest about it..Obama says hes been against the war from day 1..He's wrong if he'd been against it all time he'd have the same voiting record as Ron Paul and Dennis Kucinich on funding the war..Obama wants his cake and eat it to..I just wiss CNN was more like it use to be ..The NEWS Station you could TRUST and not as bias as it has become

    February 5, 2008 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  21. Jay Lowe

    Yale seems to produce alot of white collar criminals.

    February 5, 2008 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  22. Alonzo Demetrius, FL, USA

    Tired, Hillary? Is that why you cried again?

    Gee, maybe you should take a few minutes and decide how it would look for the President of the US to cry or throw lamps/ashtrays, etc, when things don't go just right.

    What a fake feminist, after all.

    February 5, 2008 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  23. mike

    Obama is the one to vote for – Hillary is great, for sure, but in the end he is a fresh face to show the world, and one that coule turn around the way things are going. Obiously republicans are going to drag on more of the same. and Hillary, as great as she is, played politics when whe voted yes for an invasion of Iraq. She was too afraid at the time to look "unpatriotic". in the end she put pollitics ahead of American and Iraqi lives, and ahead of doing the right thing, which was to go full-steam after Bin Laden and not waste time anywhere else.

    February 5, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  24. Ratgurl

    February 4, 2008 3:55 pm ET
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    Crying? Please! This is a contest for power, and Hill's trying to manipulate with tears? Seriously, does that work on educated people? Because while it might garner some sympathy, I have significant doubts that it will garner votes. Go back to your plotting & scheming, Hill – this time the tears won't work.

    Uh, why is this comment STILL awaiting moderation? CNN picks & chooses its reader feedback?

    February 5, 2008 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  25. Sultan Saini

    I watched that video. I didn't see her cry. I didn't see her wipe any tears. The man introducing her was a lot more choked up than she was. What's with all the here-come-the-waterworks comments?

    I'm Canadian, but if I could vote, I'd support Obama. However, Hillary is getting unfairly treated in this particular instance.

    February 5, 2008 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
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