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. demwit

    The corrupt media has ordained Obama their progressive messiah, everything is his now.., without question.

    July 23, 2008 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  2. Ivee

    From this picture, Obama sure does look like he could fall asleep standing up. It's not hard to imagine one making verbal missteps under such circumstances.

    July 23, 2008 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  3. slow news day?

    Not a gaffe the "we" referred to Americans.

    July 23, 2008 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  4. Nicholas

    How come you have a misstatement from Barack almost instantly, but it took you a whole day to bring up the Awakening/Surge mistake from John?

    July 23, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  5. proud army and navy mom

    ok , cnn, the man is traveling throughout the country with you all hanging on him. The good senator probably meant my committee, as in the United States senate or maybe he is a little tired, you think?

    it's nothing like mcwar out and out lies on everything.

    July 23, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |

    Just the tip of the iceberg of LIES that Obama has told and will tell. If we elect him, our children and grandchildren will ask us what we were thinking! God be with us.

    July 23, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  7. AMIGO

    OMG, WHAT-A-GAFFE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Obama is F-I-N-I-S-H-E-D !!!!!!!!!!!!
    Bishop McCaine is our new PREZ !

    July 23, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  8. Independent-woman-4-Obama

    Another example of how anything you say can and will be held against you.

    July 23, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  9. I am so cool

    It's true, there are committees, it's also true, Obama likes pancakes, up next: McCain's really old. Like whoa.

    July 23, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  10. 57 States

    It appears he needs 301 foreign advisors......Nice move Hussein

    July 23, 2008 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  11. PJ Independent, New York

    Oh no, how will his campaign get him out of this? Will it be another, 'he misspoke'?

    Obama is a joke! He has no clue when it comes to the issues.

    Was for Clinton, now for McCain!

    July 23, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  12. prefer koolaid than your arsenic

    hahahaha....i wonder if they have enough RNC stationary to respond to alllllllllll of the gaffes Mccain has made this week alone? RNC and McCain reek of desperation, not a good look for them or America. i wonder if Mccain or the RNC will care to respond to the fact the there are some 59 lobbyist on McCain's pay roll. including Mr. Black who is still lobbying....cant serve two Gods Mr. Black.

    July 23, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  13. Ken Pittsburgh

    This is a gaffe McCain makes gaffes lets get to some real news

    July 23, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  14. Mac in Nova Scotia

    The committee consisted of President Putin of Germany, 1 representative from Chechloslovaka and 2 from the Iraq Pakistan Border. All were singing "the surge is working"

    July 23, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  15. seth

    I was totally going to vote for Obama, but after this amazing huge super-duper issue, I will have to completely switch sides and vote for McCain. This is the biggest news of the century!!!

    July 23, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  16. Dems 4 McCain

    Wow, we're actually covering Obama gaffes now?

    Doesn't surprise me though. When you have a resume that thing you need to do a little padding. The man had never done anything except toe the party line all his life.

    So much for bipartisan leadership.

    July 23, 2008 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  17. 57 States

    Quick get this man his teleprompter.........Before he gives away Israel

    July 23, 2008 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |

    My God. Oh, hes everybody's God. The committee is everybodys committed. They represent me so it's my committee too.

    July 23, 2008 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  19. Joey, Philly

    Now watch the media cover this gaffe all day week long. When McCain speaks on something incorrectly, the media conviently lets it go as a matter of age. Anything Obama says or does is magnified 100 +

    July 23, 2008 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  20. thetachialum07

    bottom line is he's a better candidate than mccain...any day..

    July 23, 2008 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  21. Barack the Vote in RI

    this is NOTHING compared to the nonsense that McCain is spewing these days....

    July 23, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  22. Anne, VT

    With all the gaffs McCain has been making lately, he's allowed.

    Obama 08

    July 23, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  23. Capt. Smash, Salt Lake City, Utah

    Ok you got him CNN he made a mistake! So lets make this national news and paly it for the next 3 days.

    July 23, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  24. tigerakabj

    Bitter-gate, now alleged banking-gate = 2 Obama
    Czechoslovakia (3x), Bush tax cuts, Veto-beer-gate, Viagra-gate, etc. = 1,400,345 McCain

    Still voting for Barack.

    Obama/Sebelius 2008/2012.

    July 23, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  25. Nora

    Obama has to be forgiven for this little misspeak, after all he has spent so little time attending to his duties in the Senate, he doesn't know what committees he supposed to be on. Give the guy a break it's not easy being the messiah.

    July 23, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
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