September 16th, 2008
03:00 PM ET
14 years ago

Fiorina: Palin not qualified to run a company

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Carly Fiorina spoke at the Republican National Convention in St. Paul."]
WARREN, Ohio (CNN) - Carly Fiorina, the former Hewlett-Packard CEO turned John McCain Victory chair, said Tuesday that Sarah Palin isn’t qualified to run her old company.

Appearing on a KTRS Radio show in St. Louis, Fiorina was asked by the host, “Do you think she has the experience to run a major company like Hewlett Packard?”

“No, I don’t,” Fiorina answered. “But that’s not what she’s running for. Running a corporation is a different set of things."

"I would just remind you that it is Barack Obama who is running for president," she continued. "John McCain who is running for president.”

Fiorina contended that while Palin may not be up the task of running a multi-billion dollar IT company, she does have more relevant governing experience than Obama.

“I find it quite stunning actually that the Barack Obama campaign is questioning Sarah Palin's experience,” Fiorina said. “She’s got more executive experience than he does and she is the vice presidential nominee, Barack Obama is the presidential nominee.”

UPDATE: Asked about the comment during an MSNBC interview, Fiorina replied: “Well, I don't think John McCain could run a major corporation, I don't think Barack Obama could run a major corporation, I don't think Joe Biden could run a major corporation.

"But, on the other hand, a major corporation is not the same as being the president or the vice president of the United States. It is a fallacy to suggest that the country is like a company. So, of course, to run a business, you have to have a lifetime of experience in business, but that's not what Sarah Palin, John McCain, Joe Biden, or Barack Obama are doing."

The response was immediately circulated by Obama's campaign:

Listen: Obama spokesman Bill Burton on Fiorina's comment

“If John McCain’s top economic advisor doesn’t think he can run a corporation, how on Earth can he run the largest economy in the world in the midst of a financial crisis?" said Obama spokesman Tommy Vietor. "Apparently even the people who run his campaign agree that the economy is an issue John McCain doesn’t understand as well as he should."

Filed under: Carly Fiorina • Sarah Palin
soundoff (295 Responses)
  1. Matt

    I wonder if they are leaving out another question "Do you think Obama could lead your company?" Her answer would of most definately been "NO".

    Libs will twist an argument in their favor just to have something negative to say.

    BTW.... since the abortion thread is locked, those who are saying a woman has the right to choose... doesn't she have a right to choose if she ha sex or not? Shouldn't that be the real choice and not whether she should have the right to choose an abortion as birth control?

    September 16, 2008 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  2. Chris

    Oh wait, so Carly Fiorina thinks that running Hewlett Packard is a tougher job than Vice President (or potentially President)? Is she talking backwards through her gastro-intestinal tract?

    September 16, 2008 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  3. RDS

    So she has 1 thing in common with Fiorina b/c she couldn't run the company either! I don't know if the McCain campaign knows this but America is the biggest corporation in the WORLD! I mean this speaks volumes for itself...can't run a company and can't run America

    September 16, 2008 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  4. Jim, IN

    The McCain campaign just makes my head hurt when i read this stuff. I used to be stunned when they first started doublespeaking. Now i just shrug.

    September 16, 2008 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  5. McCain is losing his bearings again

    Oh SNAP!

    September 16, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  6. ATLian

    I'll take intelligence and knowledge over executive experience any day. I'll take a Harvard Law Grad and Constitutional Law professor , civil rights lawyer,COMMUNITY ORGANIZER, state senator, and US Senator who sits on the foreign relations committee any day over a sports caster, small town mayor and almost two term governor of the 47th largest state with NO foreign policy experience any day.

    September 16, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  7. Brian

    Fiorina wasn't qualified to run HP either.

    September 16, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  8. Nick - Arlington, VA

    Funny...cause Barack never leading a major company is part of their argument against his executive skills....hahaha

    September 16, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  9. Claude

    The title of the article misleads what's being said. A better version would be: "Palin not qualified to run company - Obama even less"

    September 16, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  10. FL Obama Supporter


    September 16, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  11. darko

    And its a bold fact that democrats are responsible for the de-regulation of the credit companies in the 90's. Yet, Obama and Biden are somehow trying to link it with McCain.

    If Fannie and Freddie went under investigation (why haven't they?), half of Obama's staff would be in court.

    September 16, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  12. Becky in Vegas

    My she for real??? She just helped prove the point that neither McCain or Palin...can help us get out of this financial mess this country is in.....they just don't get's like they live in some other world!!! At least Obama came out this morning...with a comprehensive 6 point plan to help get this country going again on the right track....all McCain wants is ANOTHER COMMISSION to study the problem...he will probably put Carly or Phil Gramm in charge and they will both concur that we the American people are just whinning again....GOD HELP US!!!

    September 16, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  13. CE

    Yeah, neither was she. the GOP is absurd... but those willing to vote for them are even more questionable.

    September 16, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |

    Who is this women
    And why am I concerned about her statement
    Our country is in a finacial crisis!!!!! We need Barack Obama as President!!!!!
    Would McCain have any supporters if Barack was a white man????

    September 16, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  15. Eddie

    You democrats are so full of hate and you republicans are so full of something else. Is there any wonder that millions cry for the need of a real third party?

    September 16, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  16. Concerned Citizen, IN

    This is true, under McCain's new campaign of regulating shouldn't he be regulating Fiorina on her multi-million dollar severance package? My mind is boggled...

    September 16, 2008 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  17. L

    Just like Barack Obama could not step right into a CEO job, because his experience of running things is very limited

    September 16, 2008 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  18. Bill

    There is virtually no Politician capable of running a major corporation. If they could they would be doing so. The proof is look at how much more money a corporate CEO makes compared to even the President.

    September 16, 2008 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  19. Steve, Madison WI

    Considering the announcement today that HP is laying off a large part of its workforce and based on it's performance during her reign there, I don't think she can run a multi-billion dollar company either.

    And based on her "lack of understanding" (or was she just lying?) of the Obama tax plan – she may have the same management ability as Palin. In other words, less than zero!

    September 16, 2008 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  20. Tim

    The Obama camp is clueless. Keep talking about Palin's experience. Don't worry, when the average Joe and Jane hear you talk about Palin's experience, the though of Obama's experience never enters their mind.

    It would be funny if it wasn't such an obvious comparison. Can't they see the wart on the end of their nose? And these are the guys you want to lead the country? They miss the most blatantly obvious things, even when they are repeatedly reminded about it?

    There goes that tingle up my leg and spine again, all the way to my gag reflex.

    September 16, 2008 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
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