May 21st, 2008
08:06 PM ET
14 years ago

Bill Clinton says race card allegation 'revolting strategy'


[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Bill Clinton had some tough words for the media and the Obama campaign."](CNN) - Bill Clinton says that he thinks most people in the media are in Barack Obama’s demographic, telling People magazine “There have been times when I thought I was literally lost in a fun house."

In an interview hitting newsstands Friday, the former president said his wife Hillary Clinton has been “outspent, dismissed, denigrated, declared dead” this primary season.

Asked whether he likes Obama, Clinton responded that he did not know the Illinois senator very well – but “I think I understand him. There are enough similarities in our childhoods and things that I think I get what he is doing.”

Clinton said the allegation that he and Sen. Clinton played the race card was a “cold-blooded, calculated, manipulated, and a revolting strategy,” and that his only campaign season regret was speaking “late at night when I was tired, ‘cause if you are tired or angry, you shouldn’t be talking.”

Clinton told People that after her mother lost the Iowa caucuses, daughter Chelsea “was upset, bawled, went to her employer and said, ‘Look, you got to let me go or give me an indefinite leave of absence. I’m not letting my mother go down like this.’”

Does the former president think Chelsea Clinton would consider a run for elected office? “I don’t know. If you had asked me this before Iowa, I would have said ‘No way. She is too allergic to anything we do,” responded Clinton. “But she is really good at it.”

Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (448 Responses)
  1. obamamama

    I find it odd that when a junior senator with a few months experience in the senate run for the highest office in the land,it is somehow something to be admired..HRC on the other hand could have done the same ,instead she devoted 1 full term and did her job in the senate.After that she was re-elected by 68% of the people she served.Obama,ran against a last minute candidate picked by the GOP because they needed someone to run against him.furthermore the guy lived in Virginia!!!! instead of doing the job he was elected to he decides to run for another office,one that he really wanted to.If he doesn't get the nomination,I doubt that he will go back to the senate.Because that would mean that he will have to really work(like legislate).and that lazy bum will never do it.I hope Hillary will launch an independent run,that way I don't have to vote for McCain.

    May 21, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  2. Winny

    They Clintons are to be celebrated for the contribution they have made to this country. But behavior in this primary says a lot about their character and might cause some of those contributions to seem dim in comparison to their undercutting, stab in the back, and cut throat manners.

    It is obvious they are more interested in winning at all cost instead of bringing the country together. The Clintons behavior has really help to divide the Dems. The more she stays in the race the more divided it will be. I hope when all is said and done they won't lose their soul. God have mercy on them.

    I believe that once Obama becomes the nominee or even before he should go to some of these very towns and talk to these folks no matter how difficult it may be. Spend time there and deal with issues that are common to all Americans. These people are hungry for change too. I believe we can turn all this division in our country.

    May 21, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  3. Peter

    It is very obvious that these strong opinions regarding "race" and MI & FL are from Republicans! I include the Clintons in their number!
    The Clintons have been lobbying the Democratic Party since February to allow Hillary to be Nominee at the cost of destroying the Party. At this point, today, that is really beginning to happen. These folks who are supporting her exclusively or "I will vote for McCain" are crossover Republicans, many or most are women and they were enthralled only with the chance of voting for a woman, the policies were and are irrelevant to them. The Democrats will lose with them as a "new" base and by alienating the traditional base, would destroy the Democratic party PERMANENTLY!!!
    Anyone who thinks the issue will be settled at the convention is insane! Hillary, Bill and Chelsea would have a snowball's chance in H_ll of remaining as Democratic insiders after such a Gong Show!

    May 21, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  4. Kevin

    I always felt that Obama is just like what Bill Clinton was in 1992...Young, energetic and a change agent. It was refreshing.

    After 16 years- even Obama will be a headache- just like what Bill Clinton is today.

    May 21, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  5. Maya

    I am an african american and I am proud to say that I am a Clinton loyalist who is very grateful for what the Clintons had done for african american in this country.

    My heart broke in pieces as I was watching the harshness in the media against Hillary Clinton. I never thought that I would leave a day to see that kind of treatment against a person who served our country so well.

    To all the Clintons, you will be for ever in my heart.

    May 21, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  6. jeff - Dallas

    The Clinton's are like the political version of "The Emperor's New Clothes". They are totally delusional about how they act, what they say, and what reality is.

    May 21, 2008 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  7. Joseph Adewole

    Some people are not really what we thought they were; Bill knew he brought racism to the campaign; they so much underestimated Barack that they thought he would be a work over..but when Jesus say YES, no one can say no.
    Hillary's slang was 'I AM IN IT TO WIN IT', very arrogant! she never put her God first; this is God that is able to do all things for those that put their trust in Him.
    Bill, say the truth, Americans will forgive you but only the truth and don't mis-speak

    May 21, 2008 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  8. Texmex

    This is the most racist country in the world. The majority of the Racists are in the Democratic party. That is why they are being torn apart and that is why Obama will not win in November. Decent people of all Races will reject his ideology and his alliance with the Radical left wing of the Democratic party. Obama and his followers have destroyed our parent"s party. So good luck getting him by the American voters in November.

    McCain will get our votes. Our America is not based on color or country of origin it is based on ability to perform. My doctor is from India. My accountant is a Gringo and my barber is a woman.

    By the way I am a staunch Republican and proud of it.

    May 21, 2008 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  9. Gary Peterson, MN

    Well. One of the people who has lost the most credibility and prestige during this primary season is the former president, Bill Clinton. None of these latest words changes that. Bill and Hillary are not dumb. They know full well of what they speak - and not. They have repeatedly played the race card, and have had not one word to say about Ferraro's mindless charges of misogyny. The height of hypocrisy: If Hillary was a man in the same position, there is no way anyone would indulge his staying in the race these past many weeks.

    May 21, 2008 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  10. LT for Obama

    He is doing this just to try and make Obama look bad. The last time he brought this up he made very stupid remarks and then the very next morning said he did not bring up the subject again.

    Honestly, the race card keeps coming up because Bill and Hill's supporters keep bringing it up.

    Also, why does Bill think that saying, "I have an office in Harlem." think that it exonerates him from making racist remarks, it just means that he has an office in Harlem. Yet another stupid thing that came out of his mouth that he tried to use to show he relates to the black community.

    May 21, 2008 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  11. get with the program

    "sophia nyc May 21st, 2008 9:21 pm ET

    Guess what, McCainiac?

    Israel is meeting with Syria. How's that for diplomacy? Guess Obama's ideas don't sound so bad to thinking people."

    I agree. Obama is a true leader and the world is inspired. Hillary and McCain just threatens to blow sh** up. You gotta give respect to get respect.

    May 21, 2008 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  12. USAF Sr. Airman

    The Clinton's sure do play the gender card though. But I guess that's okay in their book. Then again, anything they do is ok with them.

    May 21, 2008 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  13. Denial

    First it was sexism now it's "race card allegation 'revolting strategy'"

    Obama had nothing to do with this ......

    The Clintons should stop blaming people for their loss ....... the only people that do this are sore losers ....

    They are getting too desperate ...

    May 21, 2008 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  14. Jill

    Having supported the Clintons and lived through the Clinton years, I have no desire to listen to them blame, complain deny and lie again.

    I find it ironic that John Fitzgerald Kennedy and Ronald Reagan are icons and both beat far more experienced candidates. Same with Bill Clinton.

    Having a candidate to run against John McCain rather than arguing endlessly is critical.

    I am also tired of the lies. It would be very unwise for our Country to start down the path of letting people outside the state pay for the elections.

    Hillary's friends and their offer to finance the election is suspect and sleazy. Anyone who has integrity no matter who they supported would not go for either candidates' high roller out of state supporters financing an election. In Florida there are both people who did not vote and feel that they should not be punished or denied that right since they followed the rules and others who feel they voted and should be counted even though they broke the rules.

    The world according to Hillary is neither democratic nor sensible.

    This campaign was over when Hillary did not win by double digits in Texas it is that simple. Sesame Street Math. It is an ego trip for her and the money could be better spent if she dropped out. Obama would get the same crowds running against McCain. And at least we could hear the real debate which is the difference between McCain and the Democrats.

    May 21, 2008 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm |
  15. KJ

    We LOVE Bill Clinton! Bill was a great President, we MISS the wonderful 90's, the peace, the prosperity, the surplus, it was nice while Bill was President.

    We LOVE Hillary Clinton! Hillary will be an even BETTER President!
    Hillary Clintons detailed grasp of domestic and international issues is unmatched. Her qualifications and electability should earn her this Presidential Dem nomination. The Democrats would be foolish to fail to nominate the finest candidate we've ever had. Obama is unqualified and unelectable.

    Hillary has won ALL of the must win states for the Dem in November b y wide margins. Obama has won exactly NONE of these states and won't win them in a general. Last night, Hillary won more than 200,000 more votes than Obama! She's crushing him in every voting group except aa.

    Hillary MUST stay in this race through the DNC convention in August where she will prevail. The fact is the delegates are not really "pledged" to anyone, they can vote whomever they wish. Their job is to nominate the electable candidate who can win in November, that person is and will continue to be Hillary Rodham Clinton!

    May 21, 2008 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm |
  16. Rose

    Bill Clinton is running scared because he has done a lot of dirty things and he knows his days as a free person may be in question. Just ask any Arkansas. The Clintons are no longer in charge. They will kill to get what they want. Bill and Hillary have a partnership and not a marriage that is why he is always some where with other women. He misses his room where he was down the hall having sex "with that woman". I would like to see these people prosecuted for all the evil they have done in the live of thousands of people. They will not get back in the White House. This is a new day Bill and Hillary. The one great thing that has come out this campaign is the revealing of the Clinton Machine. READ YOUR CLINTON CHRONICLES BILL AND HILLARY. IT'S YOUR LIFE.

    May 21, 2008 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm |
  17. Fonzi, an independent.

    Another midnight tale from Bill. Soon we shall hear that when Hillary signed the DNC rules that will purnish erring state democratic parties, she did so late at night when she was tired and could not think straight.

    May 21, 2008 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  18. Linda31

    Is Clinton trying to ruin their name completely?

    May 21, 2008 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  19. Chelsea for Prez


    Hillary and Bill are both known for pandering, lying, falsely accusing, blaming and everything else under the sun!

    What did daughter Chelsea do when mama was telling her war stories about Bosnia? Absolutely nothing! She let mama repeatedly lie to the public. Chelsea was 13 when they were in Bosnia.... any 13 year old would remember getting shot at!

    May 21, 2008 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  20. Marty

    I liked Clinton as president but even before he was elected he was always a do anything to win politician and so is Hillary. They have thrown a lot of stuff out there hoping it would stick and it really has not. Is the media against them? maybe.. Would it matter? No...

    Race is an issue. I don't think Hillary played any race card it is just a matter of fact in this country. That is why she is winning the same demographic that tends to vote republican. Those that can not relate Obama or liberal democrats. That is not really the base of the party anyways.

    I respect Hillary but she has lost fair and square any way you look at it. Even with Michigan and Florida she still would lose. Time to face reality and quit trying to skew popular numbers and pretend like you won Michigan when many people such as me did not vote because it did not count.

    May 21, 2008 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  21. Over the Hill(ary)

    But it's ok for Hillary to use the 'sexist' card? What a bunch of pandering power-mongers. But alas, it matters not, for the wicked witch of AR, PA, NY, or wherever she claims to be from has been handily defeated. No amount of 'whining' is going to overturn the fact that Obama has all but secured the nomination. Sorry SWEETIES!!!

    May 21, 2008 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  22. gretchen santa cruz ca

    If not given the nomination can Hilary Clinton be a write in candidate??? Keep going Hillary!!!

    May 21, 2008 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  23. KE

    It's obvious Hillary Clinton has more votes.

    How could anybody talk about not counting the votes in this day and age? Yet, we see it in the international news coverage.

    Obama says he is the candidate of the future. But he's campaign reminds me of old times.

    Hillary supporters don't need big rallies. We live in the internet era. We get all the information in the net and it's effective.

    I sometimes smell Imperialism behind house listening to some people talk. I know Imperialism is a big word. But when its ugly heads show up, we've seen it so many times countries always headed in worng directions.

    May 21, 2008 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  24. Amazed

    Everyone who will vote for McCain if Obama is the nominee deserves whatever is brought into our country if he wins the general election because of ignorance. Just make sure that nobody in your family joins any armed forces because they will not return before year 3000!!!

    May 21, 2008 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  25. Bobby tray

    C'mon Bill you know the race and gender card is being used. You just want the media to get off her back. . . smart move. It worked last time.

    May 21, 2008 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
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