February 29th, 2008
09:45 AM ET
12 years ago

Clinton raises the stakes in new ad

 Clinton launched a tough new ad Friday.

Clinton launched a tough new ad Friday.

(CNN) - The Democratic White House hopefuls took to the airwaves Friday to battle over national security credentials, with Hillary Clinton’s campaign releasing a tough new ad that pegged her as the presidential candidate best-prepared to take on foreign crises, and Barack Obama’s team responding with the re-release of a spot that painted him as the White House hopeful with the best judgment to be commander-in-chief.

“It’s 3 a.m. and your children are safe and asleep. But there’s a phone in the White House, and it’s ringing. Something’s happened in the world,” says the announcer in the 30-second Clinton spot, which is set begin running in Texas Friday. A phone rings insistently over images of sleeping children.

“Your vote will decide who answers the call. Whether it’s someone who already knows the world’s leaders, knows the military. Someone tested and ready to lead in a dangerous world.

“It’s 3 a.m. and your children are safe and asleep. Who do you want answering the phone?”

The Clinton campaign said the new ad - titled “Children” - is meant to make voters ponder “who they want in the White House during a crisis.”

Within roughly an hour of the ad’s debut, the Obama campaign announced that it was re-releasing “Gulf,” a 30-second spot that first ran prior to the Iowa caucuses. The ad features retired Air Force Gen. Merrill McPeak, a former combat pilot who was the service’s highest-ranking uniformed officer during the first Gulf War.

“As a combat pilot and Air Force chief during Desert Storm, lives depended on the judgments I made,” McPeak says in the spot. “And judgment is what we need from our next commander in chief. Barack Obama opposed this war in Iraq from the start, showing insight and courage others did not.”

McPeak backed John Kerry in the 2004 presidential race.

- CNN Associate Political Editor Rebecca Sinderbrand

soundoff (408 Responses)
  1. Sly Domber

    She'll run the white house as she has ran her campaign or will she run it the way Bill ran it (renting rooms)? No, thank you! I want OBAMA!

    February 29, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  2. PhoneSkills

    3:am Phone Rings:... ... ... ...

    Hillary": "Hello"

    General: We have just been attacked!

    Hillary: Ha aHa Ha (cackle) Ha aha Ha (cackle)

    General: What should we do?

    Hillary: aHa kaHA HA (cackle)

    February 29, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  3. BL-NYC

    Every single time Senator Clinton does anything at all, Mr. Obama follows with something...
    A perfect case of Follow the Leader... No joke people, he can not think ahead on his own... That is why she speaks first... He has even added her speech into his (denouncing the Bush administration) because it was working for her so why not steal it as well...
    AMAZING... Open your eyes people...

    February 29, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  4. JustinA

    Sure Hillary can always answer the phone. The question is what she would do next. If her vote to authorize the war and the way she ran her campaign is any indication, her next move is bound to be a disaster.
    Her claim to know world leaders, based on her role as first lady, is bogus. For starters, all world leaders from the 90's are gone, except for a few dictators.

    February 29, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  5. Ken, Medford MA

    As long as someone answers the phone and doesn't wake me up I'll be fine.
    This just typical "the boogie man will get your children" crap. What experience of Clintons' will make any difference?
    There's precious little to fear out there. The actual risk to individuals is minimal. Getting in your car is more dangerous to me that Al Quaeda. We're just afraid to take a punch as a nation. We'd give up our liberty instead of sacrificing to keep it.

    February 29, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  6. Dominoid

    Is the tag line at the end:

    "This is George Bush and I approve this message"

    Just curious – by the way, the answer is Obama.

    February 29, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  7. Dave

    Barack seems to be the more stable of the two. At least he doesn't have to resort to negative fear based attack ads to get elected.

    February 29, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  8. HP Boston

    John Stevens February 29th, 2008 10:05 am ET

    The real point of the ad is not fear – but that we are electing a President – not a feel good Guy.
    The Barry is not fit to be president, he is a flimflam jiving talking man. No experience , no substance. Just a ham sandwich!

    February 29, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  9. Taylor

    Who do I want to answer the phone? Hillary Clinton. Obama might "push the wrong button" and accidentally hang up.

    February 29, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  10. Daniel

    A Hillary who is" ready on day one " afriad of taking the 1st question in MSNBC debate.How would she is willing to pick up that call? Let your action speaks out.

    Go Obama

    February 29, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  11. Gene, Houston, TX

    And democrats accuse republicans of fear mongering... Shame on you, Hillary!!

    February 29, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  12. Christina

    I want a calm, unflappable voice to answer that phone. That wouldn't be Hillary. Despite having every advantage, she could not even run her campaign competently. Why should webelieve she could handle a world crisis?

    February 29, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  13. Kay Tuner

    Voters be aware!!!
    IF Hillary answer the call at 3:00 AM, she will answer the call and DECIDE WITH BAD AND HORRIBLE JUDGEMENT. America needs a President who will answer the call with courage and determination to solve any problem. Barack OBAMA will do it.

    McCain can do it too. Maybe Hillary will have to ask Bill to answer for her.

    February 29, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  14. James

    I would hate to know that the telephone rang in the white house with a national disaster and Hillary answered the phone. There would immediately be two disasters to deal with.

    Her latest ad is based on fear and certainly not on experience.

    February 29, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  15. Ted

    Clinton's add is a heck alot better than having one of John Kerry 's
    swift boat buddy's promoting hanging a white flag and running with their tails between their legs .McPeak's been practically dis-owned by the military .This was a bad choice by the Obama campaign .If he's going after the military vote he picked the wrong guy which is a statement this guy knows nothing about foreign affairs and it showed at the debate the other night .American's are not that stupid .The economy is going to be the key in this primary Gas is going to $4.00
    a gallon and inflation is hitting a all time high .And their is only one candidate that is credible when it comes to the economy and thats not Obama !!! Americans better be waking – up !!!Because there is no fear about it .Its a FACT !!!!!

    February 29, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  16. Chris

    Fear is what the terrorist wanted the USA to live in....our politicians are using fear tactics and scaring us into voting for them....looks like they won.....

    February 29, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  17. needed tobesaid

    I want HIllary to answer the phone – she has the answers, doesn't stumble and hesitate and look to others for mentoring.

    February 29, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  18. Doug, DC

    Unbelievable!! Hillary, please. How many different strategies are you going to try and use in your campaign to get an edge?? This is why you can't stop OBAMA's momentum because you change with the political wind. Now, it's vote for me or your kids will be harmed!! Yet, in the debates you said America would be fine with either selection as long as a Republican isn't elected. I'm convinced you don't care about the democratic party or the American people. You only care about yourself and your own legacy!! Honestly, I'd rather have no experience and sound judgment, then experience and POOR judgment and based on your IRAQ vote, support for NAFTA and poorly ran campaign you have TERRIBLE judment so your experience counts for NOTHING!!!!

    OBAMA 2008!!

    February 29, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  19. Roye


    February 29, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  20. Brian M. From Fort Mill, S.C.

    It's 3AM at the White House, and the phone rings. Obama answers the phone. The other party says, "It's me, Hillary. SHAME ON YOU for not making me your Vice President!! Bill, not tonight – get back on that couch!". And then she starts crying.

    February 29, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  21. Stephanie - Omaha

    I agree with Erica- Ohio regarding Hillary in a previous comment
    in the politicalticker – Yesterday. Im voting for HILLARY because
    she is a W-O-M-A-N.

    I agree with alberto- Because I am 60 years old and have
    been a Democrat all my life. If Obama gets the Democratic
    Nomination , regardless of party affliation I will cross party lines.
    I always vote For what the person STANDs for.....


    Obama's Rhetoric is a MILE long and about ONE INCH deep.

    February 29, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  22. Andy

    Why do you people think Obama will be clueless? I'm not even against Clinton–she would be a good president. I just believe Obama would be a better president.

    For all of you who is saying "Obama would be clueless" or think that America will tank if he becomes president. GET A CLUE. WE ARE ALREADY IN THE TANK.

    McCain will bring more of the same (in the tank).

    February 29, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  23. Rick

    I want Obama to answer that phone because what of the 10s of Hillaries will answer the phone, Her management of this campaign, her management of the health care bill in 1993, her vote for the Iraq war as a political strategy makes her the real scary one to answer the phone. That is it I can never vote for Hillary even if she was the Democratic nominee. I reluctantly would have but this fear mongering commercial is despicable and I can not vote for her under any circumstance.

    February 29, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  24. david


    February 29, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  25. Grown up in the USA

    I would like to just point out, for the sake of doing just that, has everyone failed to notice that "Mr. I was against the war in the begining-blah blah Obama" voted AGAINST a resolution to start withdrawing troop in July of 08?? You know the one the Democrats got started and were all gun ho for ?? He voted AGAINST it you bunch of ignorant fools!! Obama is not who you think he is!!!!

    February 29, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
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