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. Rachel

    Wurlzelbacher is *not* a small business owner, he works as an apprentice for a business. Get it right.

    We gave going away parties for leaving faculty at my alma mater department as well, it's normal. Again with the reaching attempts to link Obama to terrorism and those 'evil' A-rabs and Muslims. Sad.

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

    Why in the world are you covering this crap? Until she grants press access no one is interested in comments that do not have to be defended.

    October 29, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  3. Kellie

    Why are McCain and Palin so cozy with Joe the Plumber? Frankly, he's starting to be old-hat. Get over it already!

    October 29, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  4. Steve

    Sorry, but "Joe the Plumber" is not a small business owner. He's not even a licensed plumber... he's a hack.

    October 29, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  5. Mary in North Carolina

    Palin criticizeing someone is Pathetic.Gov. Sarah Palin's signature accomplishment — a contract to build a 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 AP investigation shows.
    Sara Palin wants to destroy Alaska for Oil.
    Sarah has a lawsuit AGAINST FURTHER PROTECTION OF POLAR BEARS so as not to hinder oil drilling in Alaska's ice-filled waters.

    October 29, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  6. Jeff Brown

    In less than a week this shrill, Cancer of a woman will be gone! THANK GOD!!!!!

    October 29, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  7. d jones

    Mc palin, GOP, Robin Hayes, Dole are all losers!!! Obiden 08!!!

    October 29, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  8. FactCheck

    So let me get this straight... a Governor who has been reprimanded for ethics violation, whose husband is a secessionist, whose mentor has just been convicted on SEVEN counts is calling out Obama for going to a party with a professor from he University of Chicago? It bears repeating once again, this woman is a MORON.

    October 29, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  9. 37-year-old First Time Voter

    Is this idiot not forgetting that McCain funded this Khalidi character? He is more close to him than Obama was. This woman is stupid

    October 29, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  10. Karen

    This is just ridiculously sad at this point!

    Everyday a new "message" of ridiculous reasons on why not to vote for the BEST CANDIDATE the WORLD HAS EVER SEEN for President of the United States.

    Nov. 4th couldn't come soon enough for this lady to be sent back to Alaska with the pack of wolves from which she came.

    October 29, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  11. JP

    Attack, attack, attack, she's some kind of nasty pitbull. Nothing of substance comes from her mouth all the same all the time. I would hate to be married to this harpie.

    October 29, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  12. David Newport, OR

    How can American's even consider voting for such ignorance? Keep opening your mouth Sarah, Let America see how low the Republican party has fallen.

    October 29, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  13. Marcie

    Nice suit Sarah..I'll bet it's new.

    October 29, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
  14. JC

    As Joseph Welch once memorably said, "Have you no shame?"...This candidate from Alaska is a disgrace, pure and simple.

    October 29, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  15. Penny

    I am from the Caribbean and served 5 years in the U.S. military. Should I be afraid?

    October 29, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  16. Phoenix

    How is Joe a celebrated business owner. Doesn't he owe back taxes? Isn't that a crime? Ironic isn't it. Republicans always accuse rappers of celebrating criminals, but here we are, Joe the Plumber, a non-tax payer who didn't even have a license to work. Wow.

    October 29, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  17. voter

    God, just SHUT UP, Sarah! NO ONE cares about what you have to say. You and your ilk are just desperate because you KNOW you're going to lose this election. Now you've got nothing to lose so why not try whatever you can? It's not working and it's not going to work. It's over. And as for Joe the "plumber", he's just as useless as everything else you've tried.

    October 29, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  18. "June-the-military-wife"

    Here comes the kitchen sink, people! Desperation does terrible things to once-well respected people. McCain can hire anyone (even Joe the Plumber) to portray lies, but the American people aren't biting. Enough, Mr. McCain....or do you plan to loose every drop of respect you once had?

    October 29, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  19. Colin

    This woman is disgusting. When will the name calling and false accusations end? This lady needs to look in the mirror and look at her own running mate. They love to make all these connections of Obama with these other people but seem to forget that McCain himself has ties to G. Gordon Liddy and has stated that he is proud to know Liddy and what he did is forgiven because he did some time in jail. Lets also look at McCain's ties to Rev. John Hagee and Rev. Rod Parsley who both endorse his campaign, I won't go into detail with these guys but you can certainly look up the information yourselves as to who they are and their extremely offensive beliefs. Has Obama brought them up? No because his entire campaign has been about issues and what will improve America and the lives of Americans while McCain/Palin have offered no plans, no policies, but instead name called, provided false accusations, and complete lies (which also include McCain saying that Obama will raise your taxes...if when saying this he is talking to the top 20% of wealthy people in America then he's right as for the rest of America it's a lie).

    Please send McCain/Palin home. Vote Obama/Biden our only REAL hope for change.

    October 29, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  20. bernj

    Palin is a Nazi bimbo. She is an uneducated dummy who plays on the mindless attitude of the republican base. I will be so glad when this election is over and I don't have to hear her shrill voice lying and twisting the truth in an attempt to divide this nation. Not this time.

    We will take this country back from the know nothings.

    Vote Obama / Biden

    October 29, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  21. Jay

    One word.... ENOUGH!! Get to the issues PLEASEEE!

    October 29, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  22. wj

    I know alot will be made of this, however, Obama has already explained his relationship with this person. People will of course speculate to achieve their own personal agenda's.

    If folks continue to waste their time chasing a smoking gun, so be it! It's only the direction of this country, they are ignoring. The same one that they all claim to care so much about!

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

    SteveO – you're a sexist.

    October 29, 2008 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  24. Minneapolis Mikey

    I know I shouldn't be shocked, but I am. How can anyone take this woman seriously? FOR SHAME, Ms. Palin, for shame.

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

    Palin, it was McCain who helped fund this professor! Maybe you should do some reading before you attack! You Palin are a Fraud!

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