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. CG

    Hillary needs to tell this woman to basically shut up about this already. If Ms. Ferraro really cares so darn much about Hillary and her campaign, she needs to know when to quit when she's way, way behind! Seriously, she's only making herself look incredibly dense and bitter, as well as hurting the Clinton Campaign further.

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

    Hillary your soooooooooooooooo done.......what a loser you are....... pack it up and take Bill and go home..... DESPERATE YOU ARE..... HOW SAD..... Your making a bigger fool of yourself than you already are...

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

    she was picked by Mondale because she is a woman. Who picked Obama?

    March 13, 2008 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  4. Geraldine You Have Guts!

    Geraldine you have guts and I admire you for saying what everyone is thinking anyway.

    March 13, 2008 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  5. Ellie

    Trust me Geraldine, the support and excitment that Obama is getting in this campaign is nothing compared to your campaign yrs ago. Your's was dull, and not impressive at all. I believe Obama has the experience, inspiration, needed to be pres. Please go away and take Hillary with you.

    March 13, 2008 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  6. Henry Miller, Cary, NC

    Clinton and Obama remind me of nothing so much as a pair of bickering children. Do we really want a bickering child as president?

    March 13, 2008 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  7. Miles

    Wow, she just can't stop talking. This reaction came from the Obama campaign? All her emails came from the Obama campaign? The Obama campaign attacked HER? What about when she opened her mouth, did the Obama campaign make her do that? What about all the voters and bloggers and CNN readers who reacted to it? Did the Obama campaign tell them what to think? Did the Obama campaign fake Elvis's death, too? What other conspiracies are they in charge of?

    March 13, 2008 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  8. Anonymous

    Welcome to the real world Gerry. Now you know how the minorities in this country have been made to feel for 200+ years. Stop your whinning. It wasn't the Obama Campiagn that did this to you. You did it to yourself. It's not the Obama campaign that is causing all the uproar. It's the people in this country, all people, men, women, white, black, brown, democrate, republican and indepentant that believe their is no place for that kind of retoric.

    If it were the first time this type of thing has come from your lips, it would be something else. Unfortuneately, this is nothing new for you, Gerry. You've made the similar types of comments repeatedly for twenty years. You say you are not a racist, and I'll take you at your word. But your insensitivity on this issue astounds me. Now catch a clue and shut the f**k up already.

    March 13, 2008 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  9. D.Kimbro OHIO

    Is this lady still talking?? I don't understand why anyone cares what this lady thinks. She hasn't been relavant since the 1980's why all of the sudden she wants to be in the public eye. I had respect for her but now she just appears so pathetic. Don't be bitter be better..

    March 13, 2008 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  10. Gary in CT

    Stepping down from the Clinton campaign sure hasn't stopped her from degrading Obama every day in the media, has it? NO ONE can convince me this was planned by the Clinton campaign from the beginning.

    CNN, Geraldine Ferraro is not in this race. Quit giving her so much media time!!!!

    March 13, 2008 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  11. Tony

    Makes you wonder how those politicians from the past ever got elected for anything.

    March 13, 2008 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  12. Kathryn

    Absolutely unbelievable is right. Covert racism, institutionalized racism-whatever you want to call it, it makes you wonder if she really is that out of touch. If Clinton wins with this kind of distortion, it will only speak to Senator Clinton's character. Somewhere, sometime people have to have some decency, some character. If this is how the political "game" is played, I want no part of it.

    March 13, 2008 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  13. barthexderosa

    Ms. Ferraro, the more you keep talking, the more YOU are hurting Hillary's campaign. Also, you need to distinguish between Obama's campaign and Obama's supporters...any of this 'hate mail' you may be receiving is coming from average Americans who support Obama and are extremely hurt and angered by your inflammatory and racist comments. Obama's CAMPAIGN has responded to your tirade in a very civil and restrained manner.

    March 13, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  14. Patrick Smith

    Please Ferraro, just shut up. And CNN, please stop giving her any more attention than she deserves. The story is over now and we do not need to hear any more from this old woman.

    March 13, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  15. Jeff

    She just doesn't get it, meaning she never will. This is not Obama reacting to her racist comments, but a whole nation that no longer will tolerate this kind of ugly invective.

    I agree – CNN – don't post anything more from her. It just stirs the pot. She'll learn more by being ignored – than by being reacted to.

    March 13, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  16. Cecilia,Calgary,Canada

    Just stop digging woman!We have heard you!

    March 13, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  17. DP

    May be nobody gave you this advice before:
    Learn the difference between the sound coming out of your mouth and the one from your back hole.....

    March 13, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  18. Ross

    That's right, Ferraro yaps off ... and it's Obama's fault.

    Why is this still news? I think most people understand by now Ferraro is a little, well, funny in the head.

    March 13, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  19. Murry

    Ridiculous. Ferraro is attacked because she made an insulting remark, irregardless of whether she is attached to Clinton. We are attacking Clinton on a separate charge - she fails to reign her surrogates in and she fails to run a clean campaign.

    March 13, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  20. Thomas

    Man, she has become delusional and bitter in her old age. She even looks crazy now.

    March 13, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  21. Anonymous in Texas

    This woman has done nothing but remind me of why it was good that she did not become the vice president of the United States of America.

    March 13, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  22. LC

    The part that is Obama's fault is that Ferraro made those comments a week before Obama reacted to them. He waited until the day of the Mississippi primary to react, a state that has been called racially polarized. I do find his timing suspicious.

    And it is also true that the Hillary Haters on this post immediately called Hillary a racist when she hadn't made the comments.

    All the sexist comments that have been made here in response have been no more appropriate than Ferraro's original comments.

    And I'm still waiting for Obama's surrogate, General McPeak to apologize for his sexist remarks about Hillary.

    March 13, 2008 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  23. I used to be a Democrat

    Ferraro is 100% correct about Obama and his people. Do not back down Geraldine! YOU ought to be Hillary's running mate.

    March 13, 2008 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  24. The Jac

    "And the amazing thing is its not something I started, its something they did in reaction to this." Ummm..... I'm not even sure how that logic works.

    In her fall from grace, Hillary and her crazies are not only ruining her chances, but the entire Democratic party's ability to stand up to John McCain. Get her out of here!

    March 13, 2008 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  25. Val, Pennsylvania

    Let me restate that previous comment......I'd like a woman for our president if she were good, honest, level-headed and didn't manipulate people like they're stupid.....i just don't want one anything remotely like Hillary Clinton.

    By the way, another clinton CNN article quotes Hillary as using the word "transparent" in relationship to how our leaders should be...

    A: she stole that line from Obama who's been saying it all along.
    B. She couldn't possibly be more opaque.

    March 13, 2008 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
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