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. RJ

    I'm sure she does'nt t want an answer to that question......
    because she's got ALL the answers.
    Thats the problem!!!!!
    We need a TEAM of experts and Obama to answer our Phone

    February 29, 2008 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  2. John

    Timmy two faced B word she demands Obama denounce and regect one of his supporters. However she said that the racist Latino lady could say what she wanted right. Left it to her useless campaign to denounce and reject. come on Hillary lets see you denounce and regect this ladies support on CNN or are yoyu afraid of losing the racist latino support.

    February 29, 2008 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  3. Clinton 08

    Clinton or McCain, no question about it.

    February 29, 2008 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  4. Maira Juarez-Ramirez

    I know Obama will make a fine president. I want him to be my President.

    February 29, 2008 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  5. Lisa

    Was she in office when the schip program was started for children. Was she a sen. or not? Because if she was not in the office as a sen. How can she say she start the Health Care program for children? That's the same thing that she says about Obama for the Iraq war. From my understanding not one of her proposals made it to the floor for her health care.

    February 29, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  6. Jenny


    This is shameful.

    I want Barack Obama answering all those calls in the White House. Hillary has way too many personalities for me to deal with.

    And for all you who say, "Who cares that Obama opposed the war?", it took A LOT of courage to be against it.


    I was in the midwest with no intelligence reports in 2002-2003, AND EVEN I KNEW that going into Iraq WAS NOT THE RIGHT THING TO DO.

    If I can make that judgement, and Hillary can't, then I should run for President.

    And yes, Obama has voted to fund the war. He cares about OUR SOLDIERS. Not funding the war with Bush in office is leaving them as sitting ducks.

    OBAMA '08

    February 29, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  7. emmy

    when my children are asleep at night and chaos in the world happens..i want Hillary Clinton to answer the phone with her clear head and mind that she has always had and never abused with drugs or even cigarettes..for the children of America i want Hillary as Commander in Chief

    February 29, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  8. Letha, Sioux Falls, SD

    WOW, what stupid people and stupid comments. Obama should be a blond because he doesn't get it but has a good line and you fall for it every time...it's politics people so of course he is saying whatever makes you idiots happy.

    February 29, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  9. This could be a reality

    What people need to understand is (this is a scenario that could and probably will happen in the next adminstration). If you aren't thinking about the future of our children then you're being naive. This is not fear mongering, it's about competence.

    Hillary may not be perfect and she may not be slick, but she has the experience to address a foreign or domestic crisis at 3 a.m. or at any other time of the day.

    Barack doesn't have the experience or the common sense to safeguard this country. Listen to what Bush and McCain are saying about his foreign policy ideas.


    February 29, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  10. D

    George W. Bush would approve this Ad "FEAR, FEAR and FEAR"

    February 29, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  11. I.D.

    The phone isn't ringing at Hillary's White House anyway. Under her leadership, they're short of cash and haven't paid this month's phone bill; but it's OK... She's gonna give them a loan from her personal account to cover the expenses... first thing in the morning.

    February 29, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  12. Ellie

    In looking back over this entire primary election, I find it interesting that Hillary Clinton, a Yale college graduate, a lawyer (and by the way - she flunked the first bar test she took) just NEVER GOT IT ! Her campaign WASTED MONEY, WASTED TIME, LIED TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, AND USED BILL CLINTON TO MAKE HER CASE!! SHE COULD NOT STAND ON HER OWN MERITS!! This campaign was about BILL CLINTON winning again!! She is just a pawn in the mix!! At 3:00 a.m. on ANY morning, I doubt the American people would trust HER to be the Commander in Chief! We need JUDGMENT in the White House!! With the many personalities Hillary Clinton displays, I WOULD NOT EVER FEEL SECURE AS AN AMERICAN CITIZEN ! She certainly is not grounded!! In my mind I can vision "DISASTER" not only in foreign policy, but in healthcare, the economy, poverty, child care, . . . . and the list goes on!! We had one 911. We certainly don't need another!!

    February 29, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  13. Mike J.

    Mutombo has experience too, but I'll take Dwight Howard over him anyday. This ad is tawdry; I would rather have the police answering the phone.

    February 29, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  14. Jennifer

    Thank you Hillary.
    I support Hillary all the way. I still believe that the media does not want her to win. For a while it was getting better but I just saw a spot with McCain and Obama campaigning and what no Hillary. Nothing.
    So for me I see a much stronger woman,, human being in Hillary. She has had to fight the media and is still at the very least in a dead heat. Wtih the media on Baracks side, well of corse that will sway voters. Thankss CNN and other new media for electing our president and showing how biased you really are.

    Go Hillary

    February 29, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  15. Lisa

    Obama 08!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    February 29, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  16. Anonymous


    February 29, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  17. Emily Coletta

    I want Barack Obama to answer the phone.

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


    Hold on, so she thinks she thinks that at 3am she will have better judgement then a man who defeated her 11 states in a row?????

    If she was so capable why did she loose 11 state elections in a row? It can only mean Barack is more capable, smarter and has better judgement.

    As for scaring us by using our kids, that reminds me of the WOLFS add run in 04 by Bush. Shameful then and even more shameful now coming from a defeated democrat that will DO ANYTHING to become president.

    February 29, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  19. Rocky

    Wait a minute. In my last post I said Hillary Clinton polarizes people for some unexplained reason. Then I watched her "Children" ad, and realized THAT was the reason.

    Fear. Division. Desperation. Lies.

    After 8 years of it...do we need any more?

    February 29, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  20. Eli

    We ALL know that what this ad says is the TRUTH. We can not let Obama get the nomination because the REPUBLICANS will tear him up on the issues that are being leaked a little at a time about Obamas friends and him being the most LIBERAL in Congress. Bill OReilly has been saying for the last month that he has information about Obamas relationships with these shady people but they are checking them out more, because OReilly is waiting hoping he can hold off until Obama gets the nomination then they will come out full force.

    February 29, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  21. Shame on You HRC

    Shame on you HRC. How can you resort to using kids in your ads to win? This is more than desperation, this is evil! I WILL NOT VOTE FOR YOU IF YOU WERE THE ONLY ONE RUNNING!

    February 29, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  22. lk

    margaret – the fact that you would choose someone who is in his forties over someone older shows your inexperience.

    I think many of you missed the crux of the ad – while your children sleep peacefully someone competent will be answering that call. Lets hope it is Hillary.

    As for all this side stepping about the name Hussein – like it or not it is a muslim name and he will make sure he uses it. Before you know it the USA will be signing trade agreements with Iran !

    Lets start exposing his ignorance slowly we have until August!!
    Hillary all the way!!

    February 29, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  23. richard, Coweta Ok

    Most of you idiots don't understand. A vote for Hillary, Obama, or McCain is going to be a vote for 4 more years of the same. The only thing that separates the Democrat's and Republican's this year is how much more can you afford to give up in Tax increases. That is the only thing that the Democrat's have shown they are willing to do. They have never met a tax increase they didn't like. Hope? BS.

    February 29, 2008 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  24. EL NNINO

    To tell you the truth, and I am a democrat, I'd rather have John McCain answer the call, rather than Mrs. Meltdown Clinton.

    Having to chose between Obama and Clinton, I would chose the former. I don,t think vision, judgment and diplomatic skills have anything to do with experience. You either have it or you don't. It doesn't get more experienced than Donal Rumsfeld. Did he display any judgment!??! Hell Not!

    February 29, 2008 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  25. LostFigs

    WoW! this is a very powerful ad; just reading it made me think twice. This is for real people. It is too important and we have to go with our heads on this, not our hearts.

    February 29, 2008 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
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