July 23rd, 2008
12:00 PM ET
12 years ago

Obama incorrectly claims membership of Senate committee

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/23/art.obamasderot.ap.jpg caption=" Barack Obama claimed to be a member of the U.S. Senate Banking Committee, which he is not."]

(CNN) – Responding to an Israeli reporter’s question Wednesday on his commitment to protect the Jewish state, Barack Obama pointed to a bill “we passed” in the U.S. Senate Banking Committee that tightens sanctions and authorizes divestment from Iran. “My committee,” he called it.

Except that he isn’t a member of the Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs.

“Just this past week, we passed out of the out of the U.S. Senate Banking Committee – which is my committee – a bill to call for divestment from Iran as way of ratcheting up the pressure to ensure that they don’t obtain a nuclear weapon,” Obama said at a press conference in Sderot, Israel.

In a press release from Obama’s Senate office the day the committee passed the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability and Divestment Act, Obama applauded its passage and pointed to provisions included that he had offered in the Iran Sanctions Enabling Act of 2007.

The Republican National Committee quickly responded Wednesday morning with an e-mail highlighting the gaffe. Obama’s campaign has not yet responded to CNN’s request for clarification of his remark.

UPDATE: An Obama spokesman tells CNN “it was his bill, not his committee,” referring to the Iran Sanctions Enabling Act that the Illinois senator sponsored and introduced in May 2007. The measure was then referred to the Banking Committee, and passed a vote of 19-2 on July 17.

In a meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu Wednesday, Obama told the former Israeli Prime Minister, “I could fall asleep now standing up,” after Netanyahu asked him how his whirlwind trip to the Middle East and Europe is going.

soundoff (474 Responses)
  1. Richard

    I don't know why people bring McCain into this . . he's no better. The finger pointing might divert attention away from the flaws of the media's darling, but the sad truth is, people in this country have their brains shut off.

    Obama is a prolific liar.

    July 23, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  2. pam Eugene OR

    adm 3:50
    I agree 100%. Poor sad Lisa is the most negative person on the blogs (unless you count the incredible Texas Trail Dog...what a complete moron).
    Isn't obvious that Obama meant we, me, my as speaking of America. I can't believe the people still harping about the 57 states. That was a long time ago and McCain has had dozens of gaffes since then. He make a mistake almost every day now.
    Obama does not lie. That is McCain's game.

    July 23, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  3. Michelle

    correction: MAGGIE Gallagher: Obama's Fake Tour

    July 23, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  4. poli

    HUSSEIN Obama's gaffes get worse and worse.

    HUSSEIN Obama is too stupid to be president.

    July 23, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  5. E. Scott

    Lets get this over with so obama can go back to what he was doing before, being a Senator.

    July 23, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  6. DKW

    Lier,lier pants on fire. He's so full of it. It just pops out of him.

    July 23, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  7. Jim in Michigan

    Now, if this were McCain's error, this post would be filled with Obamabot bile about dementia, age, post traumatic stress disorder, and other clap trap. Were we McCain supporters to stoop to the same level, you'd see speculative posts about BHO pot use, crack use, nicotine withdrawal, etc. But, we won't. How about doing the same, Obamabots?

    July 23, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  8. Mike 4 Obama

    we/my, etc = all refering to our/his country.

    July 23, 2008 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  9. NotFallingInLine.org

    Hey, CNN, who moderates the biased moderators?

    July 23rd, 2008 3:44 pm ET
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    When speaking to the American people, Obama's claimed credit for everything else that isn't his and for the products of the hard work of others for over a year now.

    Why should he try to fool the Israeli media with the same nonsense?

    Even his empty slogans have been lifted from others.

    Knoxville NFIL

    July 23, 2008 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  10. Connie


    Another Obama gaffe.

    I think all the drugs are catching up to him.

    July 23, 2008 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  11. EC

    adm- now let's be fair!

    As president one will be under much more than a political campaign. OO i nodded off while talking on the red phone in the oval office JUST WON'T DO! I flicked ashes and burned a document, ain't gone to get it. his game is to get elected so he, his wife and kids can make history, NOT true LOVE of country.

    July 23, 2008 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  12. The truth will set you free!

    He is pulling at straws....don't have an important enough background, make one up. And the blind will continue to follow him over the cliff.

    July 23, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  13. William

    I really couldn't care less about any "gaffe" that either candidate makes. Since when is everyone supposed to be mistake-free 24/7? And that goes for both parties.

    By reading some of the comments of the Obama supporters, it's easy to see why the Dems have lost the last two elections to a clearly unqualified candidate: you have no policy other than saying, "no, you did!" or "yeah, but you once said blah blah!" Take some responsibility and win an election or please keep quiet.

    July 23, 2008 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  14. linda from South Dakota

    igree that mccains partry cant wait to jump on anything they can,, but mccains messed up so many times ,, we cant keep it straight,, anyone once think that pbama meant "we" and american??? the people,,,,,??? geezz, how things get so blown outta proportion here and on cnn,,, the tiniest bit of news gets so much attention,,,, but my votes still for obama!!!!!!

    July 23, 2008 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  15. Vote McCain

    In my experience blacks are always trying to take credit for things that aren't theirs.

    July 23, 2008 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  16. Tom

    "You must be kidding.. we all know that Obama knows how many states there are. He was very tired that day and made a slip of the tongue."

    7% of Americans don't know how many states America has, the most common wrong reply is 48 or 51 (not 57).

    87% of Americans think Checkoslovakia is still a country.

    July 23, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  17. EC

    Q: does obama speak a foreign language, for example Spanish?

    July 23, 2008 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  18. Lillie

    CNN, pleeeeease let it GO! And if not, then, I bet Sen McCain will!!!

    July 23, 2008 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  19. Really

    If I were the RNC, I would be happy Sen. Obama is making a gaffe here and there. I mean, Sen. McSurge lately has turned into a gaffe machine!

    Obviously Sen. Obama was pointing out "his contributions" to the bill which made the final cut. I wonder what contributions Sen. McSurge has made to any bills since the surge?!

    July 23, 2008 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  20. Clint

    To: John Powalski:

    Obama called it "my committee," sorry, no wiggle room for the One, just another blatant bonafide Obama lie.

    July 23, 2008 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  21. James Hussein, SC

    Shawn – Ga,

    There are 57 primaries and caucuses total.

    50 states +
    D.C. + Guam + USVI + Puerto Rico + Democrats abroad + Samoa Islands + Texas = 57 TOTAL!

    July 23, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  22. g seveer

    So Obama made a little slip up. What do you expect when he is in the middle of a 57-state campaign!

    July 23, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  23. Ridgeway

    Oh, we love you Obama. We know you could have walked across the ocean to the Middle East but you didn't want to show off.
    Keep making things up you flop eared goober. You've done nothing in Congress so just make it up.
    Hurry home so the adms of the world can lick your feet clean.

    July 23, 2008 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  24. 17 year old future politician

    Speak with more thought next time Barack, but Republicans definately can't use this as an attack, due to the fact McCain gaffes once a week or more
    Obama/Sebelius 08'

    July 23, 2008 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
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