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. Kathy

    Clinton used that commercial to remind everyone who will be the best commander in chief. The times has it wrong with the spin, spin, spin. Did Obama write it?
    She won, because people know she will help our economy, health crisis and world affairs.
    Everyone knows negative advertising works. Obama did it first, but still it is what you do. What do you think the republicans are going to do? Play nice?

    April 23, 2008 03:52 am at 3:52 am |

    I'm canadian who follows the CNN news; By all means I'm not an expert in your politics in the US,but how come the Hillary support
    don't understand math.....she can't win,or are they "BITTER".
    If the superdelgates change the outcome what kind of message will they be sending to the world?....Not to bring up the race card but that is exactly how it would seem and blacks would think if he doesn't win.

    I really like to hear my comment express on the news for someone to clarify this for all Clinton suporters,pls.

    April 23, 2008 03:53 am at 3:53 am |
  3. Liliy

    A few weeks ago Hillary was beating Obama by 20 percent in Pennsylvania polls. Now her lead has been cut to 10 percent
    Has the sum 100 years experience between Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, and Wolfowitz helped this country at all? They are all the same including Hilary and McCaine

    America has a chance left – Obama

    April 23, 2008 03:53 am at 3:53 am |
  4. one guy trying to talk

    People just want to focus on the money aspect to make up for the fact that Clinton lost 15% points of the 25% lead she had a month and half ago. Well Clinton has 8 years of first lady experience, 102 of the most powerful elected officials in the state and name familiarity that money can't buy. The money was not to beat Clinton it was to introduce Obama to PA voters for the general election. And how much money would you pay for the negative media coverage on the "bitter" comments and to have an hour of the debate in your state to be about your opponents weaknesses. If Bittergate never happened the spread would have been less then 5% and Clinton would be in trouble. Not to discredit Clinton's win it's good but just not enough, so accept the win but the spin is getting old.

    April 23, 2008 03:53 am at 3:53 am |
  5. Paul L.

    Obama deserved to loose Pennsylvania.... given his lack of sensitivity the week before election towards the "little" people.

    April 23, 2008 03:55 am at 3:55 am |
  6. Bye Bye Obama Hooray for Hillary

    The longer the electoral campaign lasts the better the american will get to know the real Obama and realise his hope and change movement is a phony. The longer this campaign lasts the more we'll hear his racist comments, get to know his acquaintainces, his poshy habbits, and so on...
    And one last thing shame on you Michael Moore for getting involved in Pennsylvania's primary, the american people are smart enough to determine phonies... Way to go Hillary !!! All the way to Pennsylvania Avenue !!!

    April 23, 2008 03:55 am at 3:55 am |
  7. PAC

    America! a sinking nation. People who vote 4 Hillary should go for brain check up. Americans neva learn- the majority of them. I neva thought that there was a large number of uneducated people in America. I mean those who have voted for Hillary. Hillary is very manipulative. Americans should follow events to know her better not just vote. Anyway if you need another shameless war then I can say go Hillary.

    April 23, 2008 03:56 am at 3:56 am |
  8. one guy trying to talk

    Correction the people want Obama, the people of PA want Clinton that's why Obama is ahead in popular vote, pledge delegates and total delegates. Clinton needed to win each remaining state 63% to 37% to even it up. So a 55% win only means she needs to win by more to catch up in the remaining states. So unless your saying PA is the only state in the US you are mistaken.

    April 23, 2008 03:57 am at 3:57 am |
  9. Peter H, San Diego

    Sen. Clinton claims that her years of experience make her the candidate that will be ready to take charge on day one. If you look at her performance, however, you have to ask what that experience really adds up to. She set out to make universal healthcare a reality at the start of her husband's presidency, but after eight years in the White House as First lady and seven years as a Senator, she's gotten us no closer to that goal than we were when Bill took his first oath of office. The childrens' health initiatives that she boasts about, while no doubt great for the kids that they help, do not even come close to the kind of comprehensive reform that we so desperately need. Maybe if she can't get it done in fifteen years, it's time to step aside and give somone else a shot.

    April 23, 2008 03:58 am at 3:58 am |
  10. Honest Phil

    Waving Bin Laden is Karl Rovish. Has Hillary hired him under the table to run her campaign? She's looking more like Bush every day. Please, Hillary, go back to Scranton and retire !

    April 23, 2008 03:59 am at 3:59 am |
  11. Jay

    Sigh. I just hope you zealots are able to put aside your distaste for the other candidate and stay within your party come the general election. I get the feeling that spite will play a large part in the election and I find all of you pitiful for the infighting and win at all costs mentality you are displaying.

    April 23, 2008 04:03 am at 4:03 am |
  12. NEPA

    Clintons evoking of 911 fears have been to me chillingly reminiscent of the 2004 Republican presidential campaign. I found that troubling and disturbing in 2004, and I find it even more so now. The difference is, as a life long Democrat and former Clinton supporter I now also find it disappointing – hugely so. I had come to expect that behavior as "the low norm" amongst Republican candidates, but when it became employed by someone I looked up to, admired, and supported, it was devastating and one decisive factor in my vote.
    Please don't tell me to "stuff it" or "get over it" -this isn't a high school football game and we aren't Republicans. Instead, give it some consideration. It may have a bearing in Novembers election if she is our nominee. At least it may to this over 50, white, Northeast PA, female, Catholic Democrat.

    April 23, 2008 04:04 am at 4:04 am |
  13. Who can America trust?





    April 23, 2008 04:04 am at 4:04 am |
  14. Ken

    After reading a lot of these entries, I can see that there are a lot of Obama cry babies! Get a Life! All of the money he spent and the time giving it his all, Could not pull it off! Does that tell you something?

    Obama out spend Hillary by 3 to 1 and has been fighting for some 6 weeks, and still could not pull it off. It shows the American people that Hillary Clinton is the right one to beat McCain in November and go on to become our next President.

    It is time for Obama to get out of the kitchen. He is just making a mess for Hillary to clean-up after him! And you Obama cry babies, you all need to stop following the "Pied Piper" blindly and get behind Hillary and push her over the finish line.

    April 23, 2008 04:05 am at 4:05 am |
  15. BCarlisle, San Ramon CA

    Congrats Hillary, your win was much deserved and all your hard work worked! Obama just tried to throw some money at PA and hoped he would win or at least come close. Thank you PA for actually voting for the person best qualified to lead our country.

    Ok Indiana and NC your turn now, Mya Angelou you can bring the african americans back for Hillary where they belong.

    Hillary 2008
    (CNN Pls post this, and by the way the NYT article was also criticle of Obama why Clinton in the headline????Biased I suppose. I suppose Jamal or Roland Martin have a hand in this!!!)

    April 23, 2008 04:05 am at 4:05 am |
  16. tim in seattle

    A noble defeat is better than an ignoble victory. Therefore, morally speaking, Obama won in Pennsylvania. Congratulations.

    Hillary should do the right thing for her party and her nation and now withdraw. Therefore she won't.

    Some will mistake her arrogance for courage. Most can see the difference. May God forgive her.

    April 23, 2008 04:05 am at 4:05 am |
  17. Marjon

    Now it is clear to me why PA is a state with so many people out of jobs! Look at who they choose? Annie Oakley! That is pretty stupid!

    Her so called win means nothing because she will still loose! She will not be the nominee. Clinton only helps McCain at this moment.

    Obama '08 & '12

    April 23, 2008 04:06 am at 4:06 am |
  18. Cat

    Clinton is so disgusting and desperate that she absolutely stops at nothing to get what she wants. It makes me sick to watch this ugly evil skank spew her garbage all over people. She has zero regard for an average citizen and has no interest in serving the country or the public. She only wants power. Why? One can only imagine..... Typical crooked corrupt politician...

    If the American people actually elect this witch to be the next president of the United States, then they deserve all the misery that will accomany her presidency.

    April 23, 2008 04:07 am at 4:07 am |
  19. Gavin

    The Times may be right about this but I say it is about time! What kind of campaign do you think the Republicans are going to run against the candidate that wins the nomination? If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen! It is about time the Democrats stop taking the high road and play as dirty as the Republican. Keep up the good work Hillary!

    April 23, 2008 04:07 am at 4:07 am |
  20. cj66

    So Obama giving Hillary the finger after the ABC debate was not being negative ?

    Just go to YouTube to see for yourself !

    I can't believe how biased the MSM is against Hillary and how blind all the Obamamaniacs are !

    April 23, 2008 04:09 am at 4:09 am |
  21. Kyle

    To Hillary supporters like T Paine: Hillary said that the Michigan vote would not count...until she realized she needed them. Really, it's not taking away their democratic right; there's nothing in the constitution about primaries. The state violated the DNC rules and they need to live with the consequences

    April 23, 2008 04:10 am at 4:10 am |
  22. Joe L .A

    It is so sad that "all " the American people can't see that they have a chance to save America with Obama.
    Ignorant cowards and uneducated people vote for people like Bush and Clinton. You let her get away with lies.

    April 23, 2008 04:11 am at 4:11 am |
  23. Markos

    On my payday Obama will get the second ever donation I have ever sent to a politician. The first one went to him also and I am Republican. I will not presume to say who God's choice is. I do believe, however, that who we get will be who we deserve. Think about that.

    April 23, 2008 04:14 am at 4:14 am |
  24. Emily

    As a "democrat abroad" living in Europe, I can accept ,and will vote for, either candidate. Due to the drawn out, increasingly expensive and vindictive primary campaign; the USA and the rest of the world may end up having to live with John McCain for 4-8 years (please God, not another Republican). Remember, my dear fellow Americans, and candidates, how you vote and behave has a big impact on the ROW.

    April 23, 2008 04:15 am at 4:15 am |
  25. American Veteran

    Tonight was a sad night for America, Senator Clinton waved the flag of fear. She force feed this down the throat the the voters of the people of PA.

    This will not fare well at the Texas convention in June.

    Hillary your negative Ads has seal yor fate in Texas.

    You may have won vote count but the delegate count as well as the Texas Delegate victory went to OBAMA 08

    April 23, 2008 04:16 am at 4:16 am |
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