October 29th, 2008
01:12 PM ET
14 years ago

Palin blasts Obama for ties to Palestinian professor

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/29/palin6.jpg caption=" Palin's criticized Obama's ties to Palestinian professor Rashid Khalidi."]
BOWLING GREEN, Ohio (CNN) - Sarah Palin thrust Barack Obama’s relationship with a Palestinian academic into the national spotlight on Wednesday at a rally in Ohio - a tactic reminiscent of her repeated attempts to tie Obama to former radical William Ayers.

Palin kicked off her rally in Bowling Green by stressing, as she always does, that “it is not negative campaigning to call someone out on their record.” In recent weeks Palin has used that line to open up an attack on Obama’s tax plans. On Wednesday, she tried something different.

“It seems that there is yet another radical professor from the neighborhood who spent a lot of time with Barack Obama going back several years,” Palin said. “This is important because his associate, Rashid Khalidi, he, in addition to being a political ally of Barack Obama, he's a former spokesperson for the Paliestinian Liberation Organization.”

Khalidi - whose name Palin mispronounced - is currently a leading scholar of Middle Eastern Studies at Columbia University, and was a contemporary of Obama’s while on faculty at the University of Chicago.

Khalidi has been a stern critic of United States foreign policy towards Israel and has accused the country of “occupying” Palestinian territories, but he has denied acting as a spokesman for the PLO.

The Los Angeles Times reported in April that Obama praised Khalidi at a 2003 going-away party for the professor when he left Chicago. The McCain campaign has pressured the Times to publicly release a videotape of the event, but the newspaper has refused, citing the request of a source.

Palin said the public has a right to know what Obama said at the event.

“And the twist here is that there's a videotape of a party for this person, back in 2003, a celebration of him, and Barack was there, and we know some very derogatory things were said there about Israel and America's support for that great nation,” Palin said.

“And among other things, Israel was described there as the perpetrator of terrorism instead of the victim. What we don't know, what we don't know is how Barack Obama responded to these slurs on a country that he now professes to support, and the reason is the newspaper that has the tape, the Los Angeles Times, refuses to release it.”

Palin accused the Times of being Obama’s “pet newspaper” and said the paper would win a Pulitzer Prize for “excelling in cow-towing.”

The Republican vice presidential nominee was joined at her Ohio rally by Joe Wurzelbacher, known to the world as Joe the plumber. It was the first time the celebrated small business owner has appeared with Palin on the stump.

Palin described Wurzelbacher as “a fellow Alaskan” because he once lived near Fairbanks.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Sarah Palin
soundoff (1,018 Responses)
  1. Carl Las Vegas Nevada

    Could someone please pull the needle off this broken record?

    October 29, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  2. No Hillary = No Obama

    Sarah Palin has the fight in her. The world will know the USA has evolved when in 2012 it will be Palin vs Hillary Clinton. But as long as male entitlers own the media conglomerates allowing the trash and bash of competent female candiadates and we have sexism running rampant – we would be dead & buried, reincarnated, dead, buried, reincarnated, dead, buried and reincarnated and the world will come to an end before 2 females will ever be challenging each other for the Presidency.

    October 29, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  3. adg

    Is this all they have left!!!! I heard that Mccain has had ties to the same person!!! But she didnt say anything about that !!!!

    October 29, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  4. vote! OBAMA-BIDEN NOV.4th


    October 29, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  5. Stacy (PA)

    Palin: While you're at it tell them about you and your husband's connection to the Alaska Independence Party that wants Alaska to be separate from America. You're on video tallking about the group and how you support them. Talk about them.

    Everyone: Do a search on Todd Palin's connection to the AIP

    October 29, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |



    October 29, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  7. Ben in NM

    It seems the more McCain-Palin stump in Ohio and Pennsylvania, the more their numbers go down in those states. Keep it up!

    October 29, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  8. talk2much

    Give it up Sarah. The way to elevate yourself is to bring forth your brilliant issues. Stop picking on Obama and showuswhatyou'reworking with. Most people don't care what happened in 2003. We' ve got too many issues to deal with in 2008 and our main goal is to make sure that no republican occupies the white house ever again. NIXON, REAGAN, BUSH, BUSH all had grand ideas but none of them have panned out. The last 8 years have been the most divisive in the country; reminiscent of the polarization of NYC when Ed Koch was mayor. Stick to the issues and talk about what you're gonna do instead of digging up old bones. Before you tried to be VP, you never heard of it either! Throw enough crap on the wall and some of it is bound to stick, huh?? NO PALIN, NO MCCAIN, NO REPUBLICANS NO WAY.

    October 29, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  9. CM

    So besides being a spokeman for the PLO what other 'crimes' has this guy committed besides speaking out against US involvement? Arafat visited the White House when he was their leader and he was a real terrorist in his younger days.

    Didn't McCain also fund this guy's research?

    October 29, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  10. John

    Seriously McCain Palin are just a ridiculous ticket. I know camp obama is in cruise control but they need to respond to these attacks. These are the kind of attacks that if left unanswered could change voter sentiment when people are in the booth by themselves

    October 29, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  11. Donna

    What about Palin's ties to a radical church that believes in witches and, in fact, purports to keep her free from witches as she infiltrates gorvernment? What about her husband's lengthy involvement with the Alaska Independence Party, which stopped only once she launched her political career? What about her refusal to condemn people who bomb abortion clinics?

    Oh, and what about the fact that ANOTHER ethics charge has been filed against Palin based on her having bilked the Alaska taxpayers out of thousands of dollars so that her children could tag along and enjoy functions to which they were not invited?

    October 29, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  12. Joe in MN

    If you had been to a real college, you would have known that Professors draw from a breadth of experience in all factions of life. You are so close minded.

    You point fingers at 'terrorist nations' that hug to religion like we do oil, and yet your movement is solely led in that direction.

    October 29, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  13. edwin

    3 letters A-I-P

    I personally know alot of people wiht shady histories but I'm not a bad person. I know how to seperate myself from what they do and what I do behind closed doors. If you could control everyone you know what would be the point in meeting people and should we stop meeting people because of what they may have done in their past ... alot of times you dont find out about someones past until after you meet them and by the repubs standards thats too late .. cause your them after you meet them or at least u have to think and act like them

    October 29, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  14. Thomas

    ANCHORAGE, Alaska – Gov. Sarah Palin's signature accomplishment — a contract to build a 1,715-mile pipeline to bring natural gas from Alaska to the Lower 48 — emerged from a flawed bidding process that narrowed the field to a company with ties to her administration, an investigation shows.

    Sarah Palin is, " BIG OIL INTEREST " !
    Out goes TED , in comes SARAH .

    October 29, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  15. Dan, TX

    Liar Palin. Palin is a liar. Do you believe lies? Do you want to believe lies?

    October 29, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  16. Educated Young Republicans for OBAMA



    October 29, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  17. Jeff G

    McCain chaired a republican group that gave Khalidi 500k. Khalidi himself said today that he has closer ties with mcCain than with Obama. Also the LA times has stated that their source has requested that they not release the tape. Surely Palin doesn't want to "change the Constitution" by deleting the first amendment.

    October 29, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  18. gina the Banker

    Look who is talking.....

    Sarah The Thief!!!!!!!

    Obama/Biden 08/12

    October 29, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  19. marie - ohio

    Way to go Sarah.........................Someone has to tell the TRUTH.

    October 29, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  20. VON BISMARK,Vienna.

    Let this woman talk of her own ties with her sessetionists husband. The wolves she kills have started barking in her head.She better consult her witch hunting Pastor from Kenya.

    October 29, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  21. DC observer

    By the McCain/Palin school of logic, at a murder scene when the reporters ask the neighbor about the murderer and they go "I dont know...he always seemed like a friendly guy," that neighbor is automatically an accomplice and also a murderer. These people need to just throw in the towel now and stop dividing this great country in half.

    October 29, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  22. mike (not that one)

    A professor, a leading scholar, hummmmm... hanging out with educated people, what a new concept for our leaders.

    October 29, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  23. haha

    O please find another reason for us to vote for you besides trying to stoke our fear about the other person. If you want to help yourself win please quit grasping at straws its looking very desprate!

    October 29, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  24. mark

    This is just plain pathetic..

    Are the Republicans STILL pulling at every sad straw they can find? Still trying to smear Obama?

    Why don't they go big, and talk about what change they envision?

    so sad.. they're going to pay for their failed strategies of the past 8 years, as well as their failed strategies of this campaign.

    October 29, 2008 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  25. Big Dave

    How does she know what was said there? She needs to mention that McCains Grandfather was a slave owner

    October 29, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
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