April 12th, 2008
07:00 PM ET
15 years ago

Clinton touts her experience with guns

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/04/12/art.hrc2nd0412.ap.jpg caption="Sen. Evan Bayh looks on as Sen. Clinton greets supporters in Valparaiso, Indiana."]
VALPARAISO, Indiana (CNN) - Hillary Clinton appealed to Second Amendment supporters on Saturday by hinting that she has some experience of her own pulling triggers.

“I disagree with Sen. Obama’s assertion that people in our country cling to guns and have certain attitudes about trade and immigration simply out of frustration,” she began, referring to the Obama comments on small-town Americans that set off a political tumult on Friday.

She then introduced a fond memory from her youth.

“You know, my dad took me out behind the cottage that my grandfather built on a little lake called Lake Winola outside of Scranton and taught me how to shoot when I was a little girl,” she said.

“You know, some people now continue to teach their children and their grandchildren. It’s part of culture. It’s part of a way of life. People enjoy hunting and shooting because it’s an important part of who they are. Not because they are bitter.”

Minutes later, in a slightly awkward moment, Clinton faced a question from a woman in the audience whose son had been paralyzed by a gunshot. The woman asked Clinton what she would do about gun control as president.

Clinton touted her husband's record on gun control during his administration, and said "there is not a contradiction between protecting Second Amendment rights" and the effort to reduce crime.

Noting that many hunters and gun collectors want to keep weapons out of the hands of criminals, Clinton referred to her positive childhood experiences with firearms.

"As I told you, my dad taught me how to shoot behind our cottage,” she said. “I have gone hunting. I am not a hunter. But I have gone hunting."

Clinton said she has hunted ducks.

- CNN Political Producer Peter Hamby

soundoff (548 Responses)
  1. Ran

    This is getting crazy and far. This shows how the opponents in this primaries pick small things and make them big. The truth of the matter is that guns related violence in US is unacceptably high! I wonder who will have courage to help American get rid of gun culture, Clinton's seem to like it? To get votes candidates can do and say anything which are even fundamentally wrong!

    April 12, 2008 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  2. Nate McReynolds

    Bear in mind, when her father taught her how to shoot, they had to duck under the sniper fire.

    April 12, 2008 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  3. kim

    So I guess when someone kills themselves because they can't pay for their house,lose their jobs after years on their jobs, lose their cars due to job loss and can't feed their family that's not bitter hah (GUNS). Or what about the young person who doesn't have a mother or father to turn to and feel like they can't go anywhere for help that turns to gang violence that's not bitter hah.(GUNS). Or what about the woman who get's raped or abused and they feel so dirty and lonely and turns to Jesus for peace that's not frustrating hah(FAITH). You people get on my nerves because you don't care about people like me with real issues. Obama just spoke the truth and it hurts doesn't it!!!

    April 12, 2008 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  4. Jason

    I wonder whos got more experience Hillary or Romney? Id say neither.

    April 12, 2008 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  5. Derek, Phoenix, AZ

    She may try to make her stories harder to verify, but it's only a matter of time until this too is exposed as a lie.

    April 12, 2008 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  6. Mikel Taylor

    "I have gone hunting." I sense another whopper coming on here. Soon we will be hearing about her trophy wall. Maybe she and Dick Cheney can go hunting together!

    April 12, 2008 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  7. Tony


    April 12, 2008 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  8. Patrick, Indianapolis

    Too bad there isn't video evidence to prove that this story is a lie. Hillary Clinton doesn't know how to say anything truthful. This story is a lie but there isn't anyway to prove that it is.

    April 12, 2008 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  9. Jack - Miami

    Pandering to get votes. What's knew? Say anything to win rather than the truth. CNN – did you confirm this story with her father or the ducks that were hunted?

    McCain will win in November.

    April 12, 2008 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  10. MAy

    Indeed! She dodged bullets in Bosnia!

    April 12, 2008 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  11. Bob LaRatta

    Hillary is so anti-gun and yet she tries to have voters believe otherwise. Hillary and her husband Bill, are both liars and have no crediability. She is the true "Manchurian Candidate" that would destroy this nation.

    April 12, 2008 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  12. Mom Dem

    Exhibit C:
    Furthermore, the religious right likes to ponder the question: "What would Jesus do?' Indeed, what would Jesus do if he came down from heaven and became a US citizen? He would administer to the poor, sick, and lowly, enlightening people as he always did. Wow, Jesus would be a democrat!

    April 12, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  13. Vituperator

    Obama lays a rotten egg and the best Hillary can do with it is launch another fairy tale. The woman is a pathological liar.

    April 12, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  14. Weldeab

    When are you going to abandon with the love of a gun culture you have Americans, a free society is when they respect each other indeed a free society.

    I think Americans they should have a srict control of gun or if not abandon it for good

    April 12, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  15. Jack - Miami

    BTW HRC – how can you propose a $4 billion dollar crime abatement package and be supportive of all of the laws and loopholes that allow handguns to kill police officers and innocent citizens.

    Liar and panderer!

    April 12, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  16. Sarah

    I grew up in a small town. My parents still live there. Based on my experiences I'd say Obama got it right. Unfortunately, he speaks honestly and not in carefully crafted soundbites. It takes more than reading a headline or watching a 30-second blurb to understand his point. Clinton's distortions are shameful and her quaint picture of smalltown life is incredibly condescending.

    April 12, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  17. John

    Clinton's stance on firearms is only marginally better than Obama's. She really knows very little about firearms except they go "bang". The Second Amendment isn't about hunting. And wasn't it her husband who mistakenly said something about protecting our ability to "hunt ducks with rifles"? Hello! You don't hunt ducks with rifles, Bill! Sorry, but this latest gambit of hers holds about as much water as the sniper lie.

    April 12, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  18. FrankSmith

    For the uneducated Hillary supporters, here are other words that you can easily use in place of "bitter" if you have been harmed:

    hostile (as the Clinton supporters might want to feel when Obama gets the nomination)
    cheated (as Hillary feels about Monica)
    strong feelings

    Let us not waste time on words because Hillary says words are "empty; only solutions matter." I love you, just simple words!!

    April 12, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  19. Linda

    Obama must be tired. Why are Demcrats so good at screwing up the best chance? With Hillary kind of politicians manipulating people's minds, the strongest will be doomed bleeding and faint by their own family member.

    April 12, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  20. R

    8 articles in a row about "bitter", then this one. Obama's bitter comment is getting much more coverage than outright lies by Clinton ("sniper fire" and a pregnant woman denied care because she couldn't pay).

    If Clinton knew anything about guns she wouldn't support blanket bans on guns and would understand that criminals get guns illegally in the first place. All gun control does is disarm the law-abiding citizen from protecting themselves from an attacker.

    April 12, 2008 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  21. john smith

    she also has the experience of being fired upon by snipers. AHHHHHHH

    April 12, 2008 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  22. Mom Dem

    The missing middle (Exhibit B) isn't worthy to be posted, I guess...

    April 12, 2008 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  23. The Rock

    Water Guns don't count

    April 12, 2008 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  24. Mary Lentz

    Well, at least she now says she has hunted ducks. The last time she told that story she said she shot one on the first try. Or..maybe she thought the snipers in Bosnia shot it.

    April 12, 2008 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  25. BrokerDealer

    Next thing she will say is that she went big game hunting with Mitt. What a liar.

    April 12, 2008 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
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