February 21st, 2008
09:27 PM ET
13 years ago

Schneider: Clinton backs off the readiness question

AUSTIN, Texas (CNN) - Clinton appears to only want to draw distinctions on the healthcare issue.When asked if she thinks Obama is ready to be commander-in-chief, Clinton avoided answering it directly. Instead, she gave her standard line: she is ready to lead from Day One.Meanwhile, when Obama was posed the question, he returned to his initial opposition to the war in Iraq - an issue he has raised at least three times tonight. It’s the cornerstone to his argument that he has better judgment than Clinton.

- CNN Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider

Filed under: Bill Schneider
soundoff (186 Responses)
  1. Eric Keller, Detroit, Michigan

    It is important to notice that many of the issues that we are all faced with are only part of a problem, and each one is a variable to the solution. So if you don’t deal with each variable, and in the right way, you will not get the right solution. Obama has the right solutions to the problems. From the war to Iraq, and all of the issues involved in dealing with not only Iraq, but Iran, our troops, healthcare, green energy, diplomacy, …. I can keep going, but what does Hilary have? … I’m still waiting.

    February 21, 2008 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
  2. clc

    She backed off because she isn't ready. I said this in response to another post: Clinton's experience comes from being a lawyer (like Obama), a senator (like Obama), and a spouse of the President and Washington insider (unlike Obama). Other than an age difference, the experience with helping real folks that Obama brings is way more important to me than Hilary's backroom good ol' boy political experience in Washington.

    February 21, 2008 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
  3. Victoria

    Barack was right .... this war in Iraq has mostly benefited Iran ... and our disconnect from Latin America and Africa has opened the door to the Chinese, and others.

    We have become a one trick pony with disasterous results by moving all our eggs in to Iraq, when it has been totally proven that that particular sovereign nation had no connection with 911 on any level ... the war was, and therefor is ... illegal!!! Millions dead on our watch ... on our collective souls!!!

    ... and personally I think our own hemisphere would take priority.

    February 21, 2008 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
  4. James Andre

    Wow – those negative remarks keep coming back to bite Hillary – even though she's getting pitched softballs to explain them!

    February 21, 2008 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
  5. Dr Roy Creasey

    So far, I'd give it 50-50. Obama started off weak. Hillary is holding her own, but has not made that big leap.

    February 21, 2008 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
  6. Willa

    Clinton sits there with a smug, sarcastic grin on her face all the time. Where have I seen that cocky attitude before? Oh yeah, it was George Bush.

    February 21, 2008 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
  7. Eileen

    First of all, I wish Hilliary would point out it was easy to oppose the war from the Illinois House as a rep than it was as a Senator in Washington – she had the information given to them and she had the responsibility to protect the country. Second of all- let him answer some hard questions first instead of letting him answer after Clinton and ramble on– I'm going to start timing and see if he is getting more time.

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  8. Marguerite Devaurs

    My concern is about the economy. I worked for a major company who is continuing to outsource employees including myself. I was outsourced 3 years before full retirement. While I was offered a job with the vendor of choice; I am actually doing the same job for less pay while the corporation receives higher profits.

    I want to know what the candidates are going to do to bring jobs back from outside the country.

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  9. Jason

    Clinton did nothing more than just read off a few issues that the next President will face abroad and state that she was ready to be the Commander in Chief.

    I could read off the top 10 scorers in the NBA and proclaim that I'm ready to join them but it doesn't make it true.

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  10. whitman

    neither is really ready to be commander in chief

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  11. connie

    Bill, are you listening to the same debate?

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  12. fancygirl


    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  13. Rob

    It's important to note, Obama's only reply to that question repeatedly is "I did not vote for it".
    Yet again, there are many issues Obama has not voted on in his nearly four years as senator.
    His lesson was learned from Bush. If you don't vote on it, you can't be questioned for it.

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  14. trevor

    It's obvious can't debate. He has absolutely nothing to say.

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  15. Andrew from Florida

    Obama said he is willing to attack Pakistan, a NUCLEAR armed country where at least 70% of the country hates us as it is.

    Ironically, words here, are quite important.

    Talk about a lack of judgment!!

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  16. luvhill

    schneider, you are as slanted as the people who write your paycheck. get in the game. listen to what is being said. she gave several reasons why she would be ready to be commander-in-chief and you have just plainly ignored them.

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  17. Wynn

    Clinton was not avoiding this question. She was only responding to Obama's failed healthcare program and drawing specific details about hers. If a woman speaks up to make her point, she's often ridiculed instead of respected. Obama smiles and smoothes things over while applauded and Clinton is booed. Really Fair Reporting and Responding!

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  18. Catherine

    How can he say he has better judgement? Everyone who voted for the war did so based on the best information they had at the time. How did everyone know President Bush would manipulate information and mislead this country.

    Maybe the only reason he voted no was because he wasn't ready to make such a decision due to his INEXPERIENCE.

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  19. Grace

    Bill, your comments are a little one-sided...

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  20. Susan

    Am I incorrect? Either Obama was not a SEnator at the time of the start up of the Iraq war or he took a walk on the vote.

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  21. KMB

    Maybe that is because she is only ready to attach someone when they can't respond.

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  22. julie

    He is owning her on this issue..........she can't respond to the truth. He is ready and the American people are ready for him to be our Commander in Chief. Judgement is critical to the Presidency.

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |

    throughout this whole debate he has just been copying her answers in a differet way... he is not ready...

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  24. Tonya T

    I dont think she needs to criticize Senator Obama. I respect that he encourages a number of voters that do not usually participate in the process and that he is an eloquent speaker, but he is simply NOT as experienced as Senator Clinton. That is the bottom line.

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  25. Anonymous

    Obama is mere rhetoric with no solutions, no relevent experience, and with no idea of what the word "change" really means becuase it means something different to each individual. Why are many issues not questioned with the candidates, i.e., Mid-East peace process and other foreign policy issues???

    February 21, 2008 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
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