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. Alice

    Hillary needs to answer the call!
    I don't want to "Hope" my grandchildren are safe. Hillary knows the answers to make it happen.

    February 29, 2008 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  2. RealityKing

    History dictates that a republican is best suited to answer that call...

    February 29, 2008 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  3. Marko, Chicago IL

    Clinton going with fear mongering now. So how is she different then George Bush?

    February 29, 2008 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  4. RS from Califas

    one more thing...i'm tired of Hillary's No You Can't campaign. you can lead a country with the mantra "No You Can't"!

    February 29, 2008 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  5. ABC (Anyone but Clinton)

    The phone rings at 3am at the White House....Hillary picks it up and its the Secret Service telling her Bill is face down in the gutter somewhere with an intern under each arm

    February 29, 2008 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  6. Jay

    Scare tactics as USUAL.

    Enough of her. I was starting to lean...but no....

    Not this time Hillary. I'm sorry, but you're finished.

    February 29, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  7. P

    Frankly, I'm voting for Obama. But if Hillary wins, I'm not sure Ill vote for her given the way she's run her campaign.

    Other than that, I have no problem with the Clintons other than that they're a little more Right than I lean.

    February 29, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  8. Brian

    If i can't win, I don't want my party to win. Truly selfish. Why would I want this person as our president?

    February 29, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  9. js

    It is Bush calling to tell Clinton what to do...since she cannot make up her mind herself......she is a fear mongerer like Bush/McCain and the rest......I don't appreciate her condescending, pandering approach to voters...it is extremely insulting to me.....I cannot obviously speak for everybody else.....she already said she will continue bush isolationism and would not change bush policies....how will this be a change from what we are doing now????

    Russia and China get all the oil we have "freed" from Iraq....no leaders talk to us, Turkey invades Iraq because we don't like them either......and they do not respect us.....calling us hypocrites and they are correct....I have an ad to hillary: "hill, how's our current strategy of doing everything alone and betraying our "friends" which you propose to continue working???, answer: it's not!!!!"

    February 29, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  10. Alex, Dallas TX

    margaret...., you are a very good example of why people seems to put women down and the sad part of it all your name suggest you are a woman...what has age and gender got to do with being a leader. I honestly think Obama is a greater candidate if evrything a president have to do is briing people together...but I believe Hillary will be better in handling crisis.

    February 29, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  11. Mimi

    Of course we want Hillary to be there.

    Obama is a joke.

    February 29, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  12. Mohamed

    if its 3am in the morning and my kids are sleeping why would any1 answer the phone? besides when hillary answered the phone back in 02 she did ok'ed what ever Bush wanted whats going to be so different this time? Obama 08

    February 29, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  13. Wayne, Wentzville MO

    The only person that I want to answer the phone at 3:00am, in the morning, at the Whitehouse, starting in 2009, is President Barack Obama. He is the only viable candidate right now, that's fully capable and competent enough to administer the type of outstanding leadership that this country deserves.

    America can do so much better than where it's at right now, and Barack Obama can show us all the way to a better and brighter tomorrow. Neither will Barack break down and cry at 3:00 in the morning. He will make very sharp and alert decisions that will be in the best interest of this country. We can trust Barack as our President!

    February 29, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  14. SC Voter

    Who's sending out the FEAR? Only Hillary?
    I see that OBAMA is doing the same thing.

    February 29, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  15. Joann

    Hey Mat Erwich, again you're blaming the Victim here!! Hillary of course had nothing to with with her husband's infidelity so stop blaming her you no good chauvanist. We really need people like you picking our president you no good chauvanist! Go to Muslam country and take Obummer with you.

    February 29, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  16. TO

    Obama's "right" judgment over the war is really a myth. He is not the senator at the time, and given his background, it's just natural for him to against the war. The point is, for him, against war is not a tough decision to make. He just has the luck.

    February 29, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  17. OBAMA 2008

    One question, Hillary: Once you've secured the Democratic nomination, will it matter to you that John McCain can then use that same stupid ad against YOU?

    This is really politics at its worst, and fear tactics like these insult every (intelligent) voter.

    February 29, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  18. Mentor

    Stop scaring people with stupid ads. What you give is you get back.

    Obama is right, you really need him in this critical juncture of US history. US is now tainted as a bully in international arena. In global economy nobody is behind in the race. Most countrys are catching up very fast. Disown the arrogance and embrace the reality of global economy, this only helps this country.

    February 29, 2008 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  19. E Popp

    In today's employment market, where the simplest, easiest-to-learn-on-the-job jobs require a resume and multiple interviews, why isn't anyone asking for Obama's resume, and giving it a good look? What if we had an Ultimate White House interview committee that sat the candidates down in the Oval Office and fired hypotheticals and real-time situations at them?

    I wish we had such a vetting system, to keep the emotional, naive, simplistic voters from confusing the presidency with Prom. Oh wait – we do! We have the superdelegates! Pray that they do their jobs.

    February 29, 2008 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  20. dothei

    Clinton and her staff are so pathetic and sad. Perhaps instead of portraying Hillary like she has multiple personality disorder, they could just accept that the reason she is losing to an upstart is because she never had "it" to begin with.

    February 29, 2008 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  21. Rick, Maryland

    I wouldn't trust an Air Force Pilot carrying my groceries, the
    Thunderbird's are a follow the leader, joke kinda flying team
    out there.
    Maybe if it was a NAVAL AVIATOR I'd listen, they lead, first
    and the best Demonstration Team out there.
    Hillery's got former military leader's lining up out the door
    to support her, so Barrack, get a life, don't destroy our"s
    the U.S. deserves the best, Hillery Rodham Clinton.

    February 29, 2008 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  22. Eris Discordia


    February 29, 2008 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  23. JimP

    Who's answering the phone with foreign policy experience if Hillary is President? Bill? Hillary has no experience here. When did she work policy with the Joint Chiefs or the Secretary of State? Did I miss that? Being married to a President only makes you ready to be President in movies.

    If the world's "leaders" are like about half of the American people, they can't stand Hillary. Plus her blind pig-headed way of staying the course reminds me too much of a certain President we have now. We need someone that people like, who is flexible, and who is smart. I'll give Hillary smart only; for the rest we need Barack Obama.

    February 29, 2008 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  24. Carole

    Who did or did not oppose the war is old news. Hillary was not the only Senator who voted to go into Irac. Also, only part of the whole picture for that vote is being pointed out. So put a sock in it already. We need to look to the future. Obama does not do anyting frankly – he hides behind the words – I did not do that. We all know what he did not do, but I would lke to know what he has done!!

    Hillary is the person who puts herself out there. The war is a wrong war yes, but it was not her "idea" to go there and she never felt comfortable with her vote and she admits that. We are there now and we have to deal with the problems of the present. Hillary is the best and most capable person to do that.


    February 29, 2008 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  25. Ted

    The only real test we have of either candidates' judgment is their decision on Iraq. No contrast could be clearer. What else has Hillary done that makes anyone thing her "experience" leads to good judgment? The healthcare debacle of 1993-94? Her vote in Iran? Her views on Pakistan? Her bungled and mis-managed campaign? Not a lot of reinforcement, is there?

    February 29, 2008 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
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