October 7th, 2010
07:00 PM ET
12 years ago

O'Donnell on the Maher tapes: 'I'm not saying that I'm prou...'

Wilmington, Delaware (CNN) - Delaware Republican senate candidate Christine O'Donnell says she's "matured" since her now well-known appearances on Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher back in the 1990's. But she acknowledged in an exclusive interview with CNN that the resurfaced clips have forced her to reinvent herself in the final weeks of the campaign.

"I haven't been embarrassed. And I'm not saying that I'm proud," O'Donnell said. "I've matured in my faith. I've matured in my policies. Today you have a forty something woman running for office. Not a 20 year old. So that's a big difference," she added.

Watch the full interview, after the jump:

O'Donnell is now running a TV ad in which she tells voters, "I am not a witch… I'm you." The spot is a response to the Politically Incorrect clip unearthed on Maher's current HBO program, Real Time, in which O'Donnell admits she once "dabbled in witchcraft."

"This campaign is about the future and not the past. This campaign is about what each candidate is going to do to address the needs of the people of Delaware," O'Donnell said.

After weeks of keeping a lower profile and fewer interviews with the national news media, O'Donnell has scheduled more public appearances in recent days. Today she took a handful of questions from reporters at a Delaware gun club where she picked up the endorsement of a local 2nd Amendment rights organization.

In a wide-ranging interview on a series of national issues, O'Donnell promised to vote to make the Bush tax cuts permanent. She dared the President to veto any bill that would repeal health care reform. "If Barack Obama vetoes that the year before his reelection he's setting himself up to be very vulnerable and I've seen many Hillary for President ads running," O'Donnell said.

Asked whether she believes human activity contributes to climate change, O'Donnell responded: "I don't have an opinion on that."

On the issue of teaching creationism in public schools, she declined to state her position. "It doesn't have anything to do with what I will do in Congress… My opinion on that is irrelevant," she said.

O'Donnell said she often gets 'you go girl' advice from former Alaska governor Sarah Palin. Is Palin is qualified to be President? "Is she running for President? Again, hypothetical," O'Donnell said.

She also declined to say whether she would support current Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell or tea party favorite Jim DeMint for Majority Leader in a republican-controlled Senate.

At the gun show event, a French TV reporter asked O'Donnell "if she could wave her magic wand, what would she change in Washington?" It was an obvious reference to her "witchcraft" moment. O'Donnell took the question in stride, a sign she doesn't feel threatened by the controversy.

But she is not planning to go on Maher's program between now and Election Day. To O'Donnell her past statements to Maher are not at stake in this closely watched race.

"What I said or did on a comedy show, you know, over a decade ago is not relevant in this election," O'Donnell said.

Filed under: 2010 • Christine O'Donnell • Delaware • The Situation Room
soundoff (209 Responses)
  1. librarian

    She makes me feel ashamed of being a woman

    October 7, 2010 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  2. grenadine

    so you've matured within 20 years. whooptie doo. have a cookie. that's a great accomplishment. while i'd hope that you have matured for the sake of those surrounded by you, the question is if you've become smarter, more educated, well rounded, disciplined, more knowledgeable on current affairs, and if you have formed an opinion over matters that are important to your voters. you're not some hollywood actress, where "no comment" suffices and your personal opinion has no weight. You want to be an elected official, representing the people. your stance on creationism, and who you are inclined to support in the next presidential election is important to americans.

    October 7, 2010 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  3. JM

    But she hasn't matured enough to realize that starting a commercial (in the tone of a high school ditz) with the words "I'm not a witch" sounds extraordinarily imbecilic.

    October 7, 2010 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  4. republican-4ever

    I love this woman, can't wait till she wins. We need more women like her and less of the jealous complainers

    October 7, 2010 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |

    O'Donnel why are you even acknowledeging a creep moron like Maher. No one but a jackass would listen to what he had to say. You ought to know that he David Letterman, and Jimmy Kimbell will say anything do anything at the expense of anyone attacking the Damnocrats. But I got news for them. They the ones who are making fools of themselves while cracking their stupid jokes just to get a half-dozen laughs. No one takes these people serious. They should be locked away as being a menance to society. Like walking through a chicken yard barefooted. They're something nasty to wipe away.

    October 7, 2010 09:02 pm at 9:02 pm |
  6. Jimh77

    Oh my. What! I have matured. Give me a BREAK. Must be taking pointers from Palin... Nuf said. Republicans are digging in deep. Deep in doo doo. As if they magically now have all the answers , other than "NO". We need to replace both parties. Neither of them are serving US, the PEOPLE of which they were elected and took an oath to do so. We need "TERM LIMITS", no one after 4 years are any good after that. They will all be bought off by Corporate Lobyists.
    We need to ban LOBYISTS, we also need to BAN the CIRCUIT COURT JUDGES from making dispicable actions against the American People. ONly way I see this , Thomas Jefferson, "create a revolution" against Government that has failed the PEOPLE.

    October 7, 2010 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  7. Crystal

    I may be dyslexic but I can still so "some math" if she is 41 now.. and the show was taped in the 1990's ... she was NO 20something .. was was thirtysomething.. right?

    that is a lie right there

    October 7, 2010 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
  8. Apollo

    "And neither would you"

    So she's assuming that everyone else is against the things that have been happening in Washington? That's not representing the people at all....

    October 7, 2010 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  9. iCanHazTeeParti

    Dear Ms. O'Donnell,

    pop quiz!

    1) what shape is the Earth?

    2) true or false: the Earth revolves around the Sun.

    this will be graded. anything less than 100% and you can't be a Senator. sorry.

    October 7, 2010 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
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