April 23rd, 2008
10:26 AM ET
12 years ago

NY Times slams Clinton's 'negativity'

 Clinton celebrates her Pennsylvania victory with Gov. Ed Rendell.

Clinton celebrates her Pennsylvania victory with Gov. Ed Rendell.

(CNN) - Fresh off her victory in Pennsylvania, Hillary Clinton is facing a stinging rebuke of her campaign tactics from her hometown paper, The New York Times.

In the paper's Wednesday edition, the editorial board which endorsed Clinton's White House bid earlier this year says the New York senator's "negativity" is doing "harm to her, her opponent, her party and the 2008 election."

"The Pennsylvania campaign, which produced yet another inconclusive result on Tuesday, was even meaner, more vacuous, more desperate, and more filled with pandering than the mean, vacuous, desperate, pander-filled contests that preceded it," the board writes.

The paper finds fault in Clinton's latest campaign ad, which includes an image of Osama bin Laden, and asks, "Who do you think has what it takes?"

"Mrs Clinton became the first Democratic candidate to wave the bloody shirt of 9/11," they write, adding that it is a tactic that is "torn right from Karl Rove’s playbook."

"Mrs. Clinton does more than just turn off voters who don’t like negative campaigning," the editorial also states. "She undercuts the rationale for her candidacy that led this page and others to support her: that she is more qualified, right now, to be president than Mr. Obama."

The paper also says Barack Obama deserves some of the blame for the negative tone. "He is increasingly rising to Mrs. Clinton’s bait, undercutting his own claims that he is offering a higher more inclusive form of politics."

But the editorial makes clear the paper thinks most of the blames lies with Clinton. "If she is ever to have a hope of persuading [superdelegates] to come back to her side, let alone win over the larger body of voters, she has to call off the dogs."

soundoff (917 Responses)
  1. e forrest

    poor america if they get clintons in the white house,she hasnt won anything worthwhile ,she acts as if she won the nomination, the woman lives in cloud cookoo land, her nasty nature is hoping for a chance to find something ,anything, about obama to win, maybe obama has to dig to find the goods on the clintons,shouldnt be hard, shame that he may have to play her rotten game,then watch her whine about it not being fair, shes twisted,

    April 23, 2008 01:18 am at 1:18 am |
  2. Viki

    I'm right there with ya "ALL THE WAY HILLARY?" It's the NY Times, and most media these days who are negative. The very media who are supposed to be unbiased are continually giving their "opinions," making up fodder to sell papers, and have absolutely NO shame in just plain making things up sometimes. It's sad. The only negative thing I can see about Hillary is that she now has a backstabbing newspaper trying bring her down. Good luck with that. Have they not been paying attention?

    April 23, 2008 01:18 am at 1:18 am |
  3. common sense

    It's about time someone said it right!! Who started all this negativity?? HILLARY!! Who continues to be negative? HILLARY!! We would be in serious trouble if we had a witch for president. I'm sorry that most people can't spot liars when they see them but I can and she has no problem lieing to ALL OF US! I didn't need to hear about bullits wizzing past her to know she was a liar. It's all in the eyes. Obama is the only one telling the truth. Obama is the only one that truely believes in a better country AND THAT"S ALL YOU NEED TO ACCOMPLISH ANYTHING!! We've been told all our lives even as children if you believe you can, then you will. The ones who actually do believe are the ones who end up getting things done. No candidate is even close to being on Obama's level. This country will suffer another G W. Bush era if we get this wrong again. So for all the slow people out there...Lieing BAD, Truth GOOD. To all the intellectually challenged people out there do me and everyone else a favor and STOP VOTING!!

    April 23, 2008 01:18 am at 1:18 am |
  4. obama all the way!

    Hope is harder to sale than fear...and Hillary uses exactly what Bush uses...it is scary...she is scary.

    April 23, 2008 01:18 am at 1:18 am |
  5. john

    I think cnn overall has done a good job in this election. sometimes they tend to emphasize the divisions or arguments within the democratic party, but overall have been fair. They are just representing the majority of democrats and americans who support obama, and those who support hilary until the end are not being smart because she has no mathematical way to win

    April 23, 2008 01:18 am at 1:18 am |
  6. bill

    Job's, Job's, Job's.......Hillary Clinton promised 500,000 Job's, Job's Job's to New York voters when she ran for the Senate. Since the election New York has lost, lost, lost well over 30,000 job's, job's, job's....She blames other for not hetting the 500,000 jobs in New York, but Bush was President and Hillary still promised 500,000 job's.

    Hillary will say anything and hype it until you vote for her and then she will Lie, Lie, Lie......

    April 23, 2008 01:19 am at 1:19 am |
  7. Oreo

    Interesting read. Interesting comments too.

    I think everyone fails to realize the truth of what is going on: Hilary has NO CHANCE OF WINNING. She is losing the popular vote, delegate count, and state number. There is no democratic way for her to win, let alone convince enough superdelegates to her cause, which would simply undermine the entire process and bring shame to the party. The only thing Hilary has managed to do is tear her party apart, and most likely cost them the nomination in November. She can spin it any way she wants, the media can say anything they want... At the end of the day, either one of the Democratic candidates will be so bruised from Hilary's negativity that they will be no match for McCain and the Republicans.

    Yet again, in an election where the Democrats could run a tree stump and win, they will manage to lose.

    So congrats Hilary on your win, and on destroying your party. You should be proud.

    April 23, 2008 01:19 am at 1:19 am |
  8. Mirani

    The New York Times endorsed senator Obama , not Clinton!

    April 23, 2008 01:19 am at 1:19 am |
  9. hanyou23

    You know, at the beginning of this election, I was really excited. Now I'm just plain exhausted... really tired of it. I've donated my money, watched closely, but it has dragged on for just too long! Instead of a party going against eight years of George W., another potential 4-8 with John McCain and the 100-year war, rising prices on everything, job losses etc... bickering, bitterness towards each other, tearing down one-another, all for what?! Just too loose to John McCain in the General Election because either Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton couldn't get off of their ego trip for the better of the party. I don't really care who wins anymore... all I'll do is wish whomever wins good luck after the primary – you're going to need it.

    Just my two cents...
    Lincoln, NE

    April 23, 2008 01:19 am at 1:19 am |
  10. mb

    $12 million < subtle race baiting and underhandedly invoking Farrakhan and Hamas in front of small-minded, scared blue collar workers.

    Good for the Times. Sure they endorsed Hillary, but you'd have to be blind not to see that she is running a scummy campaign.

    April 23, 2008 01:20 am at 1:20 am |
  11. JerryDTX

    What Timing!! NYTimes!!

    You waited until Senator Clinton won Pennsylvania and then had the nerve to release this Anti-Clinton article on the night of her election and rain on her parade.

    Well at least Senator Clinton knows she cannot count on the NY Times to be a true friend at crunch time.

    This smacks of political pandering to the Obama campaign. People are finally seeing that Senator Obama is not all sugar, sweetness and light. and they are voting for Senator Clinton. She is the best "hope' to lead this country out of it's current troubles and on to greatness. Senator Clinton has faithfully served New York. What has Senator Obama done for you??

    April 23, 2008 01:20 am at 1:20 am |
  12. Rachel

    The New York Times finally wrote something wothwhile for a change. Good on you.

    April 23, 2008 01:20 am at 1:20 am |
  13. Tupac

    If she was so concerned about Bin Laden she should have authorized for war in Afghanistan not Iraq... you know the area where he's still hiding.

    Doesn't matter anyway she will not win the popular vote or delegate race so who really cares how negative she gets.

    It is time for a change no more Bush or Clinton's... bring in Obama or McCain.

    April 23, 2008 01:20 am at 1:20 am |
  14. BN in CA

    The Clinton's are beholden to the same group of political insiders and lobbyists that have driven our country to the brink of economic ruin. Expect more of the same if Hillary somehow gets the Democratic party nod. That in itself would tell you that the system is corrupt beyond repair, as Mr. Obama will end up with more delegates than Mrs. Clinton – There can be no justification for her to get the nomination – if she does it would only prove my earlier point.. She should drop out now otherwise she will split the party and give the election to McCain.

    April 23, 2008 01:20 am at 1:20 am |
  15. Henry

    The truth is that despite her small victory in a state she was supposed to win BIG, Clinton will quit the race with the upcoming contests.
    Let's be clear Hillary supporters, when your candidate will announce she resigns, I hope all of you will not betray our party ???

    The NYT is right, this woman has run the most hateful, negative, shameful, distracting and lying campaign ever seen in our history !!!
    How many lies deos she still hide ? After NAFTA, the Bosnia trip, the young lady of Ohio, Mark Penn, what's the next lie ???

    Now half of the nation sees her as a lier, a dishonest woman, a cheater and a very bad woman. She can't win in november with such a baggage, my mother who was her supporter and Bill's supporter for decades doesn't even wanna see them or hear them on tv, imagine that !!! (My mum is 56). The end of that woman is near, in 2 weeks we're gonna start to focus on the general election and everybody will have to get involved.

    Bill and Hillary are the most dishonest and lier persons of the last 10 years, maybe more !!!

    April 23, 2008 01:21 am at 1:21 am |
  16. SeanFromCanada

    And what did she win exactly? A longer drawn out loss for Clinton? She's doing more harm then good making this long painfull process of waiting to find out who your even voting for come Nov. Clinton should just give up before she takes down the whole Dem party.

    April 23, 2008 01:22 am at 1:22 am |
  17. Fran Says

    Fear is a powerful tool. It is usually best wielded by the weak. You've gotta give it to you Hill . . . she wields it well!

    Hillary's sword of fear is cutting the ones who are afraid to take a step outside of the ordinary and become involved in something bigger than themselves.

    Hillary is taking us to a place where we will all stop and wonder about the choices that have been made. It's time to stop dealing fear and mis-statements. If you have to embellish your accomplishments, what have you accomplished??

    April 23, 2008 01:23 am at 1:23 am |
  18. Jdowns

    People continue to vote for Hillary and it is her fault? Obama can't connect with blue collar white voters and it is Hillary's fault? Obama can't win a primary election (not caucus) in a battle ground state and it is Hillary's fault? Obama can't defend his vulnerabilities and that is Hillary's fault? The Super Delegates can vote for Obama at any time and have not yet moved entirely Obama's way and that is Hillary's fault? With an election this close do we really believe if roles were reversed that Obama would just pack it up and bow out?

    Obama supporters are just as blinded by their candidate as the Clinton supporters. In the end, this is how politics plays out and there may be fall out in August. However, if there is and the general election is lost to McCain it will be because Obama was not a strong candidate and did not address the issues raised in the primary. But everyone will think that to is hillary's fault.

    April 23, 2008 01:23 am at 1:23 am |
  19. Tim

    With such a close race might the loser run as an indepentant?

    April 23, 2008 01:23 am at 1:23 am |
  20. Aaryan Schubert, Portland, OR


    So very sad to see our country men/women being swayed by some farce called Barack Obama.
    When will we see the true person that he is...which is a mean, ugly hearted liar. With Hillary we have no surprises and I have goosebumps when I think of the ugly, very ugly surprises that will come up with Barack.

    What gets to me are his hippocracy, his holier-than-thou persona. From experience these are the very people one has to be truly aware of. He has just been plain lucky, being the media darling that noting has scathed him...YET.

    Wake up countrywomen, countrymen, Superdelegates....NOBAMA! Let us not make a mistake we will be terribly sorry about. Obama will prove to be even worse than Bush...

    Where are all the professional body langauge guys? Why dont we hear from them about how very deceptive everything about Barack is!?!

    Hillary, you are an inspiration to 1000's and a TRUE LEADER.
    God Bless You and God Bless American's who cant see through the farce of Barack!

    April 23, 2008 01:23 am at 1:23 am |
  21. David Virginia

    "If I'm going down; Obama, I'm taking you with me." ...I'm still waiting for the famous quote to come out.

    Way to unite the Democratic party. I would never vote for someone who has such high ego. This election isn't about us, It's about her. She has also been stealing his speeches and regurgitating them at her rallies. Just you watch, this proves she WILL say anything to get her nominated, and she WILL go through Obama's trashcan every day and every night, all day long.

    Being this so called "fighter" (Aka. Stubborn) is the politics we need to leave behind. It's childish and unethical.

    April 23, 2008 01:23 am at 1:23 am |
  22. M Cantey

    It is of even GREATER horror that the media has (from the beginning) come down adamantly opposed to Hillary Clinton's campaign for Presidency.
    I beg ALL so called journalists...report the facts of the election as they happen...not your personal opinions.

    Journalism is reporting on unbiased FACTS.
    Americans do not care what you, the media, think.
    The media is making this much more of a fight than it needs to be between the 2 capable Democratic candidates.
    Let the people of America decide who the best candidate is.

    April 23, 2008 01:23 am at 1:23 am |
  23. Marc PDX

    Well, the NY Times may not have liked it, but once again negative campaigning worked. I think we can expect it to remain this way from now on.

    April 23, 2008 01:23 am at 1:23 am |
  24. An American in Canada

    New York Times is bias. They support Obama 110% if that is possible.

    They have all these so called reporters on television news shows throwing negative comments towards Hillary R. Clinton.

    So, New York Times, you have nothing to say about negativity since you are suppost to be reporting the news not making negative news.

    Citizens of American, those who still buy your paper read your rubbish and want to vomit.
    Women especially are turned off by your anti-Clinton rhetoric and you fool no one with your bias articles and your bias polls.
    We do not believe in any political poll anymore, we will wait to get the voting results the night of....
    And remember Obama and his campaign stole most of the caucuses and regardless of what you write, New York Times, Hillary Clinton will be our next president!

    April 23, 2008 01:23 am at 1:23 am |
  25. Ray H Gainesville VA

    I think some of yall are missing the point. Sen Clinton was ahead in PA, "her" state (the 2nd oldest state in the country after FL), early on by what 20 + pts and Sen Obama cut that in half or more. She was supposed to win PA, not the other way around. However, she was supposed to win it by 20+ points...or did we forget that?

    April 23, 2008 01:23 am at 1:23 am |
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