July 23rd, 2008
12:00 PM ET
10 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. wilfred

    Osama Hussein Obama ,as usual, tries to build his resume on lies.
    Must have went to the Bill Clinton school of B.S.

    July 23, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  2. Mike

    Wow, Obama is such a liar. He does this ALL the time and Obamanites try to defend his lies.

    Obama resume is essentially blank.
    Obama was a community organizer, whatever that is.
    And he's the most liberal Senator in the Senate. period.

    Get ready for higher taxes and higher gas prices.

    July 23, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  3. PUMA 4 HILL

    Here he goes again... copying, stealing ideas and mis-speaking.

    Truly... how can Americans think this puppet is qualified for anything as he has no record of accomplishments. He continues to use others ideas, speeches and is so awful arrogant and cocky he makes my stomach turn.


    July 23, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  4. Daniel

    Obama lies again surprise surprise

    July 23, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  5. Jim

    Oh, did you guys hear that Mr. Obama has been tied to the Communist Party in Hawaii? I just heard on the Sacramento Radio station 1530 this morning ~ 8:20.

    If you think that Obama is your candidate of Choice, please think again. If you want to know more about the Communist can be very destructive to this country, please look at what the Communist has done to Cambodia from April 17th 1975 to January 7th 1979.

    I hope that you make a right choice for this Greatest Nation on earth.

    Thank you for your time,

    July 23, 2008 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  6. Kris from AZ

    Well ok...not sure why he would say that. I am a democrat that admits mistakes when made. Does this make him an insane person. No. We all make mistakes......MCcain is not excempt from this "my friends" I hope there is a clip of sound bites some where we can look at and just watch all of Old man MCcain's gaffes.

    July 23, 2008 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  7. Glenn, Cary, NC

    Isn't it fun to see all the Obamabots excusing this blatant and inexcusable lie – especially after the insults they heap on anybody else that makes a mistake?

    July 23, 2008 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  8. Lisa


    You see everyone? Obama IS NOT GOD! He makes mistakes.

    Obama is just a magnificent and inspirational leader that should be sworn in as PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA in January 2009!

    Please stop looking for minor slip ups, they are bound to happen when mortal humans are involved.

    July 23, 2008 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  9. Independent in Iowa

    Jeff D, South Bend, IN:

    They are just stating the facts (for once). Even CNN's golden-boy 'mis-spoke'.

    July 23, 2008 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  10. maggiemae

    WE, meant the United States...he is in a foreign country! So "WE" would be us, the United States.

    It's "foreign policy speaking for dummies", now in paperback!

    July 23, 2008 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  11. Deb

    Oh you try traveling to over 5 different countries in one week and see what comes out of your mouth. Give the guy a break!!! If this is the worse he does I don't see the issue!

    July 23, 2008 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  12. Sacto Joe

    Geez, Louise! After the million and one gaffes from McCain I think Obama is allowed at least one!

    July 23, 2008 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  13. Annie

    Too bad ardent Obama supporters can't respond with anything more than they decried the republicans for doing – forgetting the point at hand and trying to deflect with the fact that somone else did something wrong so....
    Can we finally admit at some point in our lives that Obama is NOT perfect and live with it!! Trying to excuse his every mistake no matter how slight is making him less likeable to me every minute.

    July 23, 2008 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  14. Honest Black Man

    LOL. More air time means more gaffe exposure.....


    July 23, 2008 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  15. Nate, MD

    Had it been Hillary making the mistake or even John McCain, the Obama-idiots would have had a field day. But since the messiah Barack Obama made a mistake, its ok. Give me a break, the man is a moron. Get your facts straight Obama!!!!!

    July 23, 2008 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  16. Ratgurl

    Compared to McCain's daily blunders, this is a minor gaffe. But it is a credible misspeak.

    July 23, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  17. Bryan, Michigan

    At least Obama knows that Pakistan doesn't share borders with Iraq.

    July 23, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  18. Sylvia

    Obama proactively works with all committees, and in the article he pointed out the Sanctions Enabling Act of 2007 included provisions he offered back then. I think he participated in the drafting of the Act and rightly taking credit for it. Call it what you want but its not a gaffe. At least its not a huge dumb mistake like McSenile.

    July 23, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  19. Amy

    no achievement, no record, thin resume. The only thing left is himself — his family, his daughters, his great uncles, his parents, his grandparents. What else haven't we heard?

    Obama is confused with the fact that electing a president is to serve the country not to make him a symbol for admiration. His ego is to explode soon,and the MSM bias is to backfire!

    Annoy media, No obama

    July 23, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  20. mollygonz

    He's tired..that's all. Flying from country to country can do that to you.

    July 23, 2008 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  21. Tim, Seattle

    @ Mike from NY

    I am sorry that Obama having a good week in the eyes of the world trumps McLame's bumbling senility and makes you angry.
    I know it also kills you that Obama is leading your state by more than 10 points and that your vote will be for naught come NOvember.
    Yeah, its sucks to be a loser, huh Mike?

    But, we enjoy your toxic posts! The more Obama [pulls away from McCAin, the more pathetic and desparate you and your posts get.
    Dont be bitter, get on the Obama train...before it runs you down like Bob Novak in his car!

    July 23, 2008 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  22. Latinos for Obama

    RNC should worry about the mess McCain has caused in his campaign...gaffes McCain let me count the ways!

    July 23, 2008 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  23. ml

    what is wrong with u.s. politicians? They make these mistakes.....
    can they be more accurate, honest to people?
    Politicians – especially the ones who run for president should be very well informed, accurate, honest. Each of them. Especially in serious things – like belonging to committee, or naming the countries, or people and their titles..... don't you think?
    Maybe it is the nature of campaign which is wearing them down and causing to make mistakes? But then- we need a person who withstands enormous amounts of stress without breaking down and making major mistakes.....

    July 23, 2008 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  24. Rick

    lol...what a nitwit. Maybe if he showed up for work once in a while he'd know what committees he's on. I wonder if he told them that the bill had been ratified by representatives of all 57 states.

    July 23, 2008 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  25. Independent-Minded American

    HOLD UP!!!

    Look, these guys (both Obama and McCain) talk 20 hrs a day, and every moment is captured on camera.
    Let's be fair to them... One gaffe every now and then just shows they are human.

    July 23, 2008 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
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