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. christi

    I think he should debate her. Now that all the "flag pin" flap is out of the way, maybe this time he'll debate her based on ideas.

    And maybe someone could ask her what she meant by "USA blanket of security over the Middle East" and "obliterating Iran"????????????

    April 23, 2008 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  2. JD

    Maybe this time, Howard Wolfson can be a moderator. How about Jim Carville?

    April 23, 2008 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  3. get real

    Can't stand the Heat, Get Out of the Kitchen.... Or better yet, run to the Virgin Islands and tell your pastor to go on a cruize!

    Hillary '08

    April 23, 2008 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  4. Erik

    Enough debates. We know exactly what both candidates are going to say.

    The Clinton Camp should instead launch the "American Voters who Grow Weary of Democratic Party Infighting and Instead Plan to Vote for an Honored Has-been Watch."

    April 23, 2008 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  5. Ed, Fl

    Clinton, Your time is counted. N.C & Indinna are the finnished line. After that you have got to go because you are destroying the Democratic party. If you persist you will loose your NY senate seat.

    April 23, 2008 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  6. Ron, TX

    I'd hardly call that Karl-Rove-esque Gotcha Contest a "debate"...

    April 23, 2008 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  7. Nicholas, CO

    Really? Senator Clinton, this is pathetic. I am ashamed of your entire campaign. Who cares about a "Obama Debate Watch?" She seems to be more content with playing silly 'gotcha' political games than running for the nomination. The bottom line: Obama Debate Watch, Rev. Wright, Sniper Bullets, or taking shots in a bar does nothing for the rising costs of gas, food, and the war in Iraq. Get on subject Senator Clinton or get off the campaign.

    April 23, 2008 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  8. Ken

    Who is going to moderate the next debate? Terry McAuliffe and Gov. Randall? The last debate was the worst and hopefully the last debate we will see until the democrat nominee and the republican nominee trade words.

    If Hillary wants advertising on the public airwave then she should have to pay for it like her opponent. We get it. She is a better debater (BS'r) than Barrack. However, I do not think she is what our country needs right now.

    Get a clue. Bill has already had his run. Just because you elect a Clinton does not mean you will get another four to eight years of prosperty we had under Bill Clinton. That is the past. Barrack is the future.

    April 23, 2008 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  9. wisdom


    April 23, 2008 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  10. Kevin

    Well when the questions are being hounded at you, and not your opponent. Why else would you want to be at a debate. And when a debate has nothing to do with issues, but personal attacks, why else would he want to debate. Hillary Clinton don't mind because she is the candidate on the other end of it. I would like to see a debate where she is hounded about her negative background? Her background is much worse then Obama's. The Republican machine though are not bringing this stuff up yet, they want her to win so they can destroy her. Destroy her they would.


    April 23, 2008 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  11. Scott C

    I would agree with a debate as long as it is a substantive debate.

    We can't send Obama into another debate like before Penn.

    That was ridiculous... spent literally HALF the debate bringing up every single Obama negative... They brought up one of many Clinton negatives and only spent 26 seconds talking about it... and Obama defended her on it...

    She pounced on him like she was the GOP candidate

    April 23, 2008 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  12. OJW

    Yea... and the Obama camp "should launch" a superdelagate watch...

    April 23, 2008 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  13. Red Dog from ND but now in Floida

    If they have moderators ythat are impartial and not asking loaded questions tto make billary seem like she is in control thwen Barak will slap her down like the little cry baby lnow nothing she is.

    April 23, 2008 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  14. real talk tee

    We are tired of the debates, lets use our time to start getting our party ready for the fight to get in the white house. Everyone is moving on except Hillary, please get out of the way all of this trying to bring Obama down to your level is not working, you have failed.

    April 23, 2008 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  15. Sallie Mae

    Some people (Hillabeans) just don't know when it's over! Another rigged debate is certainly NOT what this country needs. Give it up sister!!

    OBAMA '08

    April 23, 2008 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  16. James

    No more debates so Hillary would continue her lies on national TV.

    April 23, 2008 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  17. Dori in AZ

    There's no such thing as a true and fair discussion – much less a debate!!! – on the issues with Hillary.

    She isn't capable. If she were, she wouldn't lie, deflect, and stay off topic – then, whine and project that that's what her opponent is doing.

    World leaders will mop the floor with her....

    If she wants to debate, give her a compact mirror and send her off to the ladies' room for a powder! Have her take Chelsea with her.

    Obama 2008!

    April 23, 2008 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  18. Farrell, Houston, Tx


    April 23, 2008 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  19. Lonnie H.

    Why another debate? So the issues can once again be ignored and/or avoided? After 21, they become meaningless. Honestly, after 10 they became meaningless. And why does Hillary Clinton think she just shines during these debates? You can tell even more just how dishonest, and divisive she is during these debates.

    Lonnie H.- Toledo, OH.

    April 23, 2008 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  20. Joe

    I heard him back out today on radio, he said he wants to talk to the people and talk about the solutions to gas prices and job loss and what he is going to do for them...so going on national tv and telling millions of people at once rather than a couple hundred at a time would somehow not do just that, or is it that he is scared they may actually make him defend his position and explain it. This does not bode well for us if this is our nominee.

    April 23, 2008 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  21. Chut Pata

    Dont fall for the trap Obama. Billary campaign has run out of money and the only way to remain on TV is thru debates which costs her no money.

    Understand this and stay away.

    April 23, 2008 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  22. Paris

    Smart, Obama is not very good on debates.
    It is much easier to read from a teleprompter then have a debate.
    And this is a difference Hillary is trying to highlight.
    Valid point.

    April 23, 2008 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  23. Grif

    I sometimes Wonder if the Women in America, really wan't Equallity with Men... Negative??? You have you're 'Work Cut Out'. Hillary...
    Keep Punching it Home...

    April 23, 2008 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  24. Gilda

    That' s right Obama. Stop debating and start campaigning. Don't feed
    into more of Hillary's traps.

    Yes We can.

    April 23, 2008 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  25. J. McKinney

    I don't understand people who are saying Clinton is playing the "fear" card, etc. she is trying to tell it like it is, and save the US from an inexperienced "rock star" who has the 18 to 25 year olds "crying and trembling" while listening to his empty "hope and change" speeches.
    Going back to my farm background, let me give you an example.
    If you have a dangerous bull in your pasture, and you warn people to stay out of that pasture, is that "fear mongering" or is it trying to make a common sense statement that will keep them from being killed by the bull? And if you have a hot wood stove heating your house, and you tell your children to not touch the stove, it is hot and they will get burned, is that trying to put senseless fear into them, or it is trying to protect them?
    Get your thinking caps on, people. Hillary is telling it like it is. Saying we need someone strong enough to handle the US and the mess we are in is not "fear mongering", it is truth. WE NEED HILLARY!!

    April 23, 2008 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
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