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. Jose Anguiano

    You have the right to your individual opinion and personal preferences, but not to the facts and ideas to are out there universally and are the property of not one human being, male or female.

    April 23, 2008 12:13 am at 12:13 am |
  2. Dee

    Apparently it is working for her. It will get hotter than hades now and Obama will have to drop publicly his Mr. Nice persona and demonstrate himself as a typical politican or decide to be honest and nice and hold on for the tidal wave. He really does not understand religion. He needs to get a NIV BIBLE and read. He also needs a spiritual advisor to teach him THE WORD. If he really knew...
    He could had depicted himself as Joseph in Eqypt but you have t know the story to get it. Joseph was there at the right time and the right moment to change the course of history. He must know too one can't praise the Lord and curse out of the same 'mouth'.
    There is a change coming and he will lead it but he had better get that BIBLE an get some Understanding.

    April 23, 2008 12:13 am at 12:13 am |
  3. Roberta, NC

    Senator Obama said it, and I quote..."50% plus 1 is a win!" Congratulations Hillary, our next President! She has proven once again that you can knock her down but she will not stay down. The polls are already narrowing in North Carolina! We are going to deliver for Hillary on May 6!

    April 23, 2008 12:13 am at 12:13 am |
  4. v.ananthan

    If democrats are smart they will elect a candidate who can beat Mccain and that is "Hillary Clinton".
    -Hillary 08.

    April 23, 2008 12:13 am at 12:13 am |
  5. Montana is Obama Country


    She cannot be trusted for her ethics.. She was expected to win PA.. So that is no surprise.. only to the people how voted for her because she is sooo untrust-worthy..

    The couple of delegates she wins will be easy for her to count. HA!

    Yes... We.. Can.. is the Best for the Rest...........

    April 23, 2008 12:13 am at 12:13 am |
  6. Paul Thornhill

    The reality is that she was ahead by 30 points a few months ago, a win by 10, and Clinton will not win the majority of reaming contests.
    I just finished watching Obama's speech, he inspires all Americans from the heart, soul and mind to be a forward thing country again, first time in 40 years. Clinton was ol time politics, it is time to change the way Washington works, only Obama is trying to do so.

    April 23, 2008 12:13 am at 12:13 am |
  7. John

    Just because Obama spent 2 or 3 to 1 on ads means nothing, she was leading by 30% at the start of the race at the end she might win by maybe 10% what happen to the other 20% support she had. So by Obama ads he showed their was another choice other then Clinton. Her negative comments on him will not help her either, Why did she laugh when the media asked her about why President Clinton received $800g from Columbia. I would have ran that as a negative ad against her. From where I sit I think she is hurting the Dem party, but then why should it matter to me I live in Canada. Good luck in electing a GOOD President. (She is she provoking Iran with a treat of nuclear attack?)

    April 23, 2008 12:14 am at 12:14 am |
  8. Noncorrupted Illinoisan

    Yes, Obama's campaign spent lots in PA BUT most importantly he didn't pay "street money" which likely cost him a lot of votes.

    From what I understand, the Clinton machine did pay out "street money," To Noah's point the, $12M in legitimate money could not buy PA but apparently "street money" did. If Clinton becomes President you'll see more of that in Washington ... more of the same. It'll be even uglier than it is now.

    April 23, 2008 12:14 am at 12:14 am |
  9. Misty

    At least somebody gets it right. New York Times– you have my support and I will buy you over LA Times– which is turning into a useless newspaper.
    Hillary Clinton is SLEAZE

    April 23, 2008 12:14 am at 12:14 am |
  10. Meave

    Noah, 12 million wasn't enough to educate PA!

    April 23, 2008 12:14 am at 12:14 am |
  11. Pradeep

    There is considerable meanness against Sen. Obama in the right wing media. It is not difficult to see they are busy making a mountain out of a moe hill and tearing Obama apart. Naturally, some of it is making its way into Hillary camp. At the end of the day the democratic party will be the big loser, so big it would alienate a whole segment of voters for a long time to come. Hillary needs to quit if she must rely on such negativity to win a few delegates amounting to nothing important.

    April 23, 2008 12:14 am at 12:14 am |
  12. Il Teacher

    Does anybody really care what the media has to say anymore?

    April 23, 2008 12:15 am at 12:15 am |
  13. blake

    Hillary is a strong woman, yet a very desperate one. She has done and will continue to do whatever it takes to win the nomination. The Clintons care more about their ego than the country's well being. She is a bitter OLD woman who feels we owe her the Presidency. She is a whinning, OLD fool who has to win because she will not have another chance to try if she looses. Hillary is pathetic

    April 23, 2008 12:15 am at 12:15 am |
  14. Hillary for president

    When Obama was asked about what he would have done about the Iraq war, his answer at the time was "I don't know". All he knows is to preach about hope and change. I guess that did not get him PA nor will it get him the nomination. So people for NOBAMA, say AYE.

    April 23, 2008 12:15 am at 12:15 am |
  15. elyce ellington

    Hilary is self serving and evil.
    She's willing to embed her bloody nails in the face of the democratic party and overturn our democratically nominated candidate by calling in favors. Obama 08

    Unbelievable he got so close with just about the entire democratic machine in pennsylvania foisting her on the undeucated blindly trusting voters. PHENOMINAL Barrack! He is beating the machine, because...
    Barrack has the people behind him $100 at a time.

    April 23, 2008 12:15 am at 12:15 am |
  16. Justin

    Finally the Times grows a sack. Maybe you should retract the endorsement of Clinton. Oh wait nm the Republicans would love that.

    April 23, 2008 12:15 am at 12:15 am |
  17. apple

    Q: How can you tell when Hillary is lying? A: Her lips are moving. We can only hope the people of Indiana & N. Carolina are smart enough to see this.

    April 23, 2008 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
  18. Dan from Illinois

    Clinton won by 10%. How is that inconclusive? How did they COMPLETELY ignore Obama's negative tactics? What is up with that? They are so going to get a lot of hate mail for this one, and rightfully so!

    April 23, 2008 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
  19. DemocraticBaron

    O wow, SENSE!

    And please, to all clinton supporters- yes she WON– in a state she was EXPECTED to win – by a margin that did NOTHING to the delegate count, NOTHING to the popular vote, NOTHING to the margins of victory for either candidate in the upcoming primaries. All she did use a Kitchen-sink strategy to belittle Obama and twist his words and use the very tactics she as a Democrat should vehemently oppose.

    A democrat charging another as elite?
    A democrat waving the bloody shirt of 9/11?

    Wow, and you call this a win....and WHAT expense?? and with WHAT gains

    April 23, 2008 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
  20. Mike

    You guys are crazy here. Obama only needed to minimize the loss since everyone knew she would win and she did win. Maybe she picked up what? 10 more delegates? Oh big deal. She is bankrupt now and entering territory in IN and ND that will teach her a lesson. All her gains in PA will be zero there.

    The needed to win by MORE than 10 points, just10 points does not cut it. Hillary is only campaigning now to to raise more money to pay of her debt, not to win. She does not want to spend her own money.

    And when she loses, perhaps Mr Wright will make her happy again....just like he did after Monica!

    April 23, 2008 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
  21. Ostriches burying our heads in the sand

    So what will Clinton campaign's Terry McAuliffe say now about NY Times?

    This evening McAuliffe said about Fox, "You were the first ones to call it for Hillary Clinton....Fair and balanced Fox. You beat them all."

    What's next- praising Karl Rove for his intelligence!!!!!!!!

    April 23, 2008 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
  22. wolfsbane

    So Hillary wins PA, but Obama is still the front runner, and it is nigh impossible that she can overtake him.

    Sure, the DNC can go insane and choose Hillary, but that is as likely (or less likely) than Hillary spitting off and forming her own party. Call it Party Clinton...which is the party she's been running for all along.

    April 23, 2008 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
  23. Daniel

    We democrats need to realise how badly her negative attacks is dragging us down.Its like "its gonna be HILL or nobody else"
    If your child behaves this way u will chastise/ground and do all sorts, how much more a supposes Presidential Candidiate.

    Most of the people urging her on are Republicans in disguise.

    McCain's Pastor,Bhudist, and Voodoo men are all praying for Dean & Co to overturn the trend and give the nomination to Clinton because that means GOP wins.

    April 23, 2008 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
  24. bad idea

    Isnt this the same newspaper that said Mccain as have affair with that lobbyist lady in 2000 without a shed proof on it?So,what gave them a creditble right to said anything...
    My,my,my Obamaites are sure a loser huh.If you guys think that Hillary will not make it,remember Obama cant be a nominee without that number.After all the states has vote,he is still havent reach that magic number so thats why the superdelegates comes.So dont try and try and try to discredit Hillary.She won by 10% tonite eat your heart out baby.

    April 23, 2008 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
  25. sfgirl

    Tonight before the results CNN showed the primary popular votes counts with Senator Obama leading by 1-2% (48-49% to 47%). With a 1-2% different - a near tie! - we keep hearing that Senator Clinton "should drop out" and that she's "dividing the party." Tonight she wins by nearly 10% and CNN describes the vote as "competitive" and focus on Senator Obama's "closing the gap" from a 20% lead she held weeks ago (in a poll decried as innaccurate.) Guys, this Democratic party is split about 50%-50% over which candidate they think is best. Let the people decide without these ridiculous headlines!

    April 23, 2008 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
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