April 23rd, 2008
04:05 PM ET
12 years ago

Clinton camp launches Obama 'Debate Watch'

(CNN) - Hillary Clinton’s campaign has increased its efforts to pressure Barack Obama to agree to more debates.

On Wednesday, they sent reporters a press release titled “Debate Watch: Day 1,” as part of their continuing effort to focus attention on Obama’s reluctance to schedule more primary season showdowns.

During a rally in Hillsborough, North Carolina Wednesday afternoon, former President Bill Clinton, standing on the back of a pick-up truck, told voters: “I think I know the answer to why one candidate wants to debate, ‘cuz I saw the debate in Pennsylvania. And afterwards, 41 percent of the voters saw it. And by 55 to 22, they said Hillary won.”

Earlier this week, a proposed North Carolina debate was cancelled after Obama’s team said the Illinois senator would not be able to find time in his schedule.

“It's not clear that another debate is going to be the best use of our time,” Obama told CNN’s Roland Martin Wednesday.

The Obama campaign says that the candidates have met in more than 20 primary season debates. But the Clinton camp counters that only four of those meetings have been one-on-one.

“Hoosiers are going to be disappointed if [the debate] doesn’t happen,” said Sen. Evan Bayh, a Clinton supporter. Clinton herself told an Indiana crowd that "some people" think the voters are tired of debates but she disagrees.

Hillary Clinton was widely viewed as having a stronger performance at last week’s debate than Obama, which her campaign said contributed to her success with late-deciding voters.

Both North Carolina and Indiana vote May 6.

soundoff (368 Responses)
  1. Paula

    As far as this primary is concerned Hillary has said enough-=-I wish she would just spend her own money and shut up!!

    April 23, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  2. Former Obama Supporter

    Obama is so scared of doing another debate. How sad is that?

    April 23, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  3. Kathy O'Malley

    Are we really going to be subjected to Day3, 4, ad nauseum? Let's get something going to get the media to shut down the Clintons' blatant demands for free advertising.

    April 23, 2008 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  4. GL

    Hillary- you're political lynching won't work this time.

    April 23, 2008 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  5. April in Texas

    I agree, I am debate(d) out.. I will say my views on debates were crushed when it took ABC 45 minutes to finally get to a real issue. I think ABC did a bang up job playing the american people by that tabloid issue of a debate..

    If CNN would expand on that war comment you made yesterday instead of talking about more debates that would be news..

    Obama 08

    April 23, 2008 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  6. Houston for Hillary

    Obama has the depth of a wet paper towel! Anyone who really believes he is the better candidate needs to explain in detail what his plans are to revive this pathetic economy. Hopefully some of you will be able to sell some of his speeches to make ends meet when he has taxed you out of house and home and can't afford squat!

    April 23, 2008 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  7. SLO Bear

    Her shamefulness is undebatable.

    April 23, 2008 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  8. Bridgette

    If you don't know what they stand for by now you never will. The reality of it is we don't need anymore debates unless it is Obama and McCain. Why does she need another debate. We know what she believes and we know what he believes. I won't watch another debate that is enough. She is not that great at debates that she needs another one. It's enough already.

    April 23, 2008 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  9. Tom

    If you can't stand the heat, get out of the pulpit Barack Wright.

    April 23, 2008 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  10. Shirley

    The last debate was a farce so why have them? Hillary wasn't asked about her support of NAFTA or the Columbian Trade Deal, she wasn't asked about her support of the war she wasn't held accountable for a single thing she has said or done while the moderator's quizzed Senator Obama for 40 min. about what someone he knew said and the word bitter. The media is beginning to look like part of Hillary's campaign. Who owns CNN, MSN and Fox that this kind of 'National Esquire' reporting is encouraged? Are they Republicans who want John to run against Hillary, then her skeltons will come out of the closet or are they just Democrats for Hillary. Disgraceful reporting.

    April 23, 2008 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  11. Jo

    Obama doesn't want to debate because he would have to answer hard questions. At rallys he just spouts opinions - not substanance!

    April 23, 2008 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  12. Nevada voter for Obama

    If she meant a "debate" meaning a substantive handling of the issues it would be one thing...however, given the televised "lynching" of Obama by Clinton and ABC that the last debate amounted to, I vote NO MORE DEBATES, as well! We have seen enough of HRC's ugliness to last us ten elections!

    April 23, 2008 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  13. Tejano

    Americans cannot handle the truth about Obama. Hillary and McCain are villanized when they try to bring out the truth. He is the most liberal Senator in Washington. Has ties to Africa and Islam. Has never served in the military and never will.

    Thank God he cannot win in November. The states he has taken with a small minority of the Democratic party do not vote for Democrats and those states that Hillary took will all go Republican in the Fall.

    April 23, 2008 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  14. Tim

    Obama can only communicate when he is reading a speech that someone else wrote for him!

    April 23, 2008 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  15. Hattie / Chicago

    Why would Obama want to debate Clinton again. After the ABC debate in which Clinton and her friends Charlie G. & George S. ganged up on him.. Since that debate, there has been a Cable news & television news backlash against Obama.. From Larry KIng giving her free airtime right before the PENN election to Lou Dobbs talking out of the side of his neck in a most negative manner against Obama.. What more can be said...How can he fight and win against the powers that be.

    April 23, 2008 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  16. Shirley-Ohio


    April 23, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  17. Ron

    You are right Sen. Hillary coz at every debate its no substance. Sen Obama is more comfortable giving speaches. Hope and Change? till now there has been no substance to it. Why won;t he just say something on that subject. Oh yes because he does not have any? or may be he is too busy distributing negative flyers and then crying fowl?

    April 23, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  18. Nando, Florida

    she can debate these nutzs !!!!!!!!!!

    April 23, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  19. Tango

    I've got a complaint for you... whats the deal with bias Blitzer??? He clearly favors Clinton, heck so does CNN in general, don't believe me?!? take a look at the current CNN front page, and look at the largest (main) picture on the political page; both are heavily dominated by Clinton. each story I've heard while watching "the situation room" tonight has had some comment about how Clinton is catching up and how Obama is losing ground. only the middle guy of "the best political team on television" had the nerve to tell the story like it is, and when he did Wolf was quick to jump in and save Clinton, no agreement or even acknowledgment that i wa feasible she would not get those supper delegates.
    I've watched Wolf for about 14 years and he has always had a thing for the Clinton's, I just think its time he show a bit more professionalism about his personal political views and work to make his show more even handed. He should accept that while he is on air he should not use that as a platform to further his candidate above others.
    Thats what Fox is for 🙂

    April 23, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  20. Jesse

    for some reason, people keep telling Hillary to drop out because she's "lost" the race. If no one has noticed, she's right behind Obama and is only gaining momentum. A 10 point win in a state as huge as PA shouldn't go unrecognized; just wait and see how well she'll do in Indiana and North Carolina. Bring out the boxing gloves!

    April 23, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  21. John in Iowa

    Obama is afraid he'll be asked about more of his friends.

    Hillary or McCain '08! NEVER OBAMA!

    April 23, 2008 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  22. CG

    Please-no more Hillary-I can't take it anymore! Even if she manages to swipe the nomination-and yes, I will vote Democrat regardless-no more debates please!

    April 23, 2008 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  23. Brenda

    The Clintons (Bill and Hillary) have shown me a side I never knew they had. SHAME on them for the LIES, LIES, LIES and negative campaigning.

    Obama, do not DEBATE with that liar!

    April 23, 2008 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  24. ben two

    Obama was disgusted by the silly questions. He was not alone.

    Fox and CNN have been "all-hillary-all-the-time" for two weeks before the OH and PA primaries. Things that make ya go hmmmmmm.

    Of course lesser informed votors are easily manipulated. Negative campaigning WORKS.

    If Americans can't see through the bull**** then they deserve what they get. Let's face it, an overwhelming majority of them couldn't find PA on a map if you gave them half the states.

    April 23, 2008 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  25. AZM

    He doesn't want anymore debates because they hurt him... he's not very good at it. At least according to every major political analyst.

    He should get ready though... if nominated he will have to have some major ones against McCain... and the Republicans will be vicious! as will the democrats... it's the nature of the beast!

    April 23, 2008 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
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