March 14th, 2008
08:30 AM ET
11 years ago

Ferraro: Obama camp 'did it to hurt Hillary'

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption=" Ferraro is standing by her original comment. "](CNN) - One day after she stepped down from her role in Hillary Clinton's presidential bid, Geraldine Ferraro said she blames Barack Obama's campaign for the uproar over her recent comments.

In an interview Thursday with CNN affiliate WJAR in Providence, Rhode Island, the onetime vice presidential candidate also said the Obama campaign made a mistake in taking aim at her remarks.

"I do think this was a mistake on part of the Obama campaign," she said. "They didn't have to do this, and they did it to hurt Hillary. I just think that's bad. I think it's bad business, and I think it's bad politics.

"I was accused of being divisive. I think those tactics are divisive," she added. "And the amazing thing is it's not something I started, its something they did in reaction to this."

Ferraro also implored Obama's campaign to turn "the spigot off the hate mail I am getting."

"I find it very, very upsetting," she said. " I've been called all kinds of names, and the attacks are ageist, they're sexist, they're racist. It's been very, very uncomfortable.

Ferraro resigned her fundraising post with Clinton's campaign on Wednesday, after taking heat for telling a newspaper last week that Obama's campaign was successful because he was black.

The Illinois senator's campaign denounced the comments on Tuesday and Obama himself called them "patently absurd." Clinton said she repudiated the remarks, though did not publicly call for Ferraro to resign.

In the interview Thursday, Ferraro suggested she did not regret making the comments, saying she was "talking to the facts," and that the issue of race has been raised several times in the campaign before, including by Obama himself.

"The enthusiasm you get from the black community over this black candidate is wonderful, and I don't think you can deny it," she said. "No more than I remember how people felt when I was running."

Ferraro, who was Walter Mondale's running mate in 1984, was the first woman to appear on a major presidential ticket. She has said she raised about $125,000 for Clinton's campaign.

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Geraldine Ferraro
soundoff (303 Responses)
  1. Carrie PA

    If anyone is hurting Hillary, it's Hillary herself. She was basically handed the nomination but screwed it up. Hillary is a monster.

    March 13, 2008 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  2. Di

    Politics...I tell ya! It all stinks!

    March 13, 2008 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  3. Carlos

    This is unbelievable...she wants to SPIN this as if her RACIST remarks are ok, and the Obama campaign is out to get Hillary. There you go... playing the victim again...

    Where in the world where you when the Hillary campaign started the "kitchen sink" strategy ???? Come on !!! You've got to be kidding me...

    March 13, 2008 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  4. ek

    CNN – why is this woman still in the news? If she wants to turn off the "spigot of hatemail" , my suggestion to her would be to realize what she said was offensive and apologize rather than continue to advocate her racist view. The reader who posted the comment about Lieberman was spot on .

    March 13, 2008 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  5. Laura

    This woman did not say anything wrong. She spoke the truth. And now Obama's camp and supporters are acting like exactly what they are, which is a group of bullying thugs. I wouldn't vote for this guy if he were the last man on earth. And all of his racist followers make me ill.

    March 13, 2008 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  6. James

    CNN is biased.
    I post several posts against the wrong opinion but never shown up.

    Obama is racist!
    shame on you! CNN.

    March 13, 2008 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  7. Madeliene Bolden; Atlanta, Georgia

    Let me just say that I am very disappointed in Ferraro. I thought she was a decent person, filled with a lot of pride in the country. I was so wrong! This lady just does not know when to quit. What is even worse, she doesn't even realize the gravity of what she is saying. Truly, truly pitiful!

    March 13, 2008 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  8. Gerry McGarvey

    It would not be that big of a deal if Bill had not brought up race and Hillary's campaign had not tried every trick she could. Seems like a pattern of deception .

    March 13, 2008 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  9. brody

    well.. it's her fault. this just sounds like a case of unwisely placed anger, it's only hurting hillary's campaign.

    March 13, 2008 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  10. noir

    Off into the sunset with Geraldine, but take heart, little town of Clintonville: her work here is done.

    March 13, 2008 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  11. sacto joe

    Geraldine, I know you'd like to pull something out of this that makes Obama look bad, and help your buddy Hillary, but you're the one that played the race card initially. He had every right to take you to task for it.

    And CNN, it's time to let this go. You also are trying to make Obama look bad for simply defending himself against what was, in fact, a racist comment. Unintentional, to be sure, but racist nonetheless.

    March 13, 2008 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  12. Andrew, florida

    She's not even done yet... Please just shut up and go home.

    March 13, 2008 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  13. Ian, CA

    This is so dumb. Not once did the Obama camp claim what Ferraro said was racist. She and the media just totally turned it around that way. The Obama camp just said it was divisive and insulting.

    Imagine if someone in the Obama campaign had said: "Hillary wouldn't be where she is right now if her last name wasn't Clinton."

    To the Clinton supporters who are up in arms about this and saying that what Ferraro said is true, Obama's only where he is because he's black. think about this statement:

    Hillary is only where she is because he last name is Clinton.

    How is that any different?

    CNN, please post this. People need to realize that if Obama is only where he is because he's a black man, that Hillary is only where she is because he last name is Clinton, and see how that feels to hear it put that way.

    March 13, 2008 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  14. Gerry

    A continuation of the Clinton rascist campaign.

    Pathetic and I question why CNN are even posting it

    March 13, 2008 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  15. john

    2 wrongs don't make a right. I wish Obama supporters could be the bigger people and just let her be.

    March 13, 2008 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  16. John

    You go girl! Don't take anything from that empty suit with the big ears. Scorch the earth. Take no prisoners!

    March 13, 2008 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  17. Cindy from Oregon

    Listen to the truth in her words. You have decided to hear what you wish she had said.. Everything she said is the very thing that is going around in every one elses minds. She has spoken out for millions of people. who feel the same right to be honest.

    March 13, 2008 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  18. Anonymous

    The same statements she make about Obama. She can make about Hillary Clinton. She said that the Black community think Barrack is so wonderful. There has never been a black candidate, since jackson, that made it this far in the election. If your implications is that Black people only vote for black, the answer is no. We voted for John Kerry, Bill Clinton, Al gore, and etc. We did not sustain form voting because someone was white, or a women. It is people like her that are confused because they want a women president, and they will say anything and do anything to get it. They did not expect for Obama to make this far.

    March 13, 2008 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  19. Ryan

    I support everything she said. IF you can't accept what she said is true then maybe it is those of you who are making nasty comments about her the ones that are ignorant. Open your eyes he isnt getting 80% of the African American vote because they like his views. Unfortunately our past presidents have all been White Men, so yes it is because he is black. Get over it. Don't lie to yourself. Time to move on

    March 13, 2008 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  20. Darren

    Unbelievable woman. She started it, and now she blamed others. In the tradition of the Clinton campaign.

    March 13, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  21. Paul

    As usual, so much hate speech from Obama supporters. And I'm certain none of you has done anything in your life worthwhile, yet you feel it's OK to attack a person who has spent their life championing the causes of the Democratic party. You have proven my point I've been saying all along; Obama's supporters are not Democrats. They are a 3rd party all together and if they want the White House, they should create their own party and leave us Democrats to ours.

    March 13, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  22. Vivian

    Ah gees....let me get my violin out!!

    March 13, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  23. Angela

    hmmmm anyone have tokens??????

    March 13, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  24. Linda

    Last comment, what does she honestly think should happen? People should say "okay! Ferraro know her stuff!"

    Her comment is insulting to the American people because it implies that we are unintelligent enough pick a candidate based on the issues.

    March 13, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  25. michael

    If I were Mr. Obama, I would stop fighting against Sen. Clinton, nearly ignore her, but concentrate on the contest with McCain.

    March 13, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
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