October 26th, 2010
12:51 PM ET
11 years ago

Obama front-and-center in new Chafee ad

(CNN) – As Democrat Frank Caprio made exceedingly clear Monday, President Obama has not made an endorsement in the contentious Rhode Island governor's race.

But you wouldn't know that based on independent candidate Lincoln Chafee's new ad.

The new spot all but declares Obama is a strident supporter of Chafee, featuring footage of the then-presidential candidate at a 2008 political rally in full-throated praise of the former Republican for voting against the war in Iraq.

Chafee, then a senator, was the lone GOP vote against the 2003 Iraq war authorization. He also endorsed President Obama's White House bid in 2008.

"Real change isn't voting for George Bush's war in Iraq. I knew what it was, Lincoln Chafee knew what it was. We were voting for war," Obama is seen telling a roaring crowd in footage that appears as if it could have just as easily been shot yesterday and not two years ago.

The ad comes a day after President Obama made a campaign swing through Rhode Island and notably refrained from endorsing the Democratic gubernatorial candidate there, Frank Caprio. In response, Caprio made national headlines when he told a radio station that the president can "take his endorsement and really shove it."

But Obama has not endorsed Chafee either, and while Caprio was invited to attend events with the president Monday (an offer he refused), Chafee was not.

Still, White House spokesman Bill Burton said Obama’s decision not to endorse the Democratic candidate was made "out of respect for his friend Lincoln Chafee."

Filed under: 2010 • Lincoln Chafee • President Obama • Rhode Island
soundoff (17 Responses)
  1. PalmReader

    To date, it has taken Karl Rove and his cronies to dish out well over 250M dollars and 47,000 campaign ads to keep the GOPer/TeaPers focused on this election. No one ever said GOPers/TeaPers are the smartest bulbs on the string, but $250 million dollars and 47,000 ads is a bit excessive, yes, even by GOPer standards? Not including Megabucks and her $140M, of coarse. She is a marvel unto herself when it comes to campaign spending. All this as charities plead for donations to help feed and clothe the most needy of us. Unbelievable.

    October 26, 2010 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  2. Rickster

    Look up "weasel" in the dictionary and you'll find Lincoln Chafee's picture right next to Arlen Spector. Look up "epic failure" and you'll find Barack Obama's picture there alongside Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid.

    October 26, 2010 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  3. S. in California Laughing In Anticipation Of How Well Democrats Turnout At The Polls

    I would say this ranks as one of President Obama's BEST decisions. This man (Caprio) obviously is a low life. For someone who claims they don't want his endorsement – he acting like an upset wife would if her husband forgot her birthday (spiteful). I think most intelligent people agree this was a wise decision on our president's part. No one can say our president "threw" Chafee under the bus. He stood by a person who stood by him. Nothing more needs to be said about this in his defense. It is what it is – loyalty and I stand with our president on his decision.

    October 26, 2010 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  4. stufthis

    I guess other people can also say, "shove it!"

    October 26, 2010 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  5. GOP Scorched Earth Politics

    Gee with a candidate like that, no wonder Obama supported the Independent instead. It's not about the party, it's about the candidate.

    October 26, 2010 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  6. kenneth fusilier

    I would not endorse a mob boss neither.

    October 26, 2010 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  7. Yanni

    Democrat for Lincoln Chafee!! This guy has principle and integrity to run for public office.

    October 26, 2010 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  8. F. Simba

    NEW WORD for Democrats like Caprio

    – noun

    1. an advocate of democracy.
    2. a person who believes in the political or social equality of all people, until election is over.

    GOT LOVE IT!!!!!!! 😉

    October 26, 2010 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  9. freda

    It's not about President Obama not endorsing Frank Caprio at all. It's about some democrats as well as republicans not wanting to witness President Obama's success. There are lots of democrats in position faking their support for the President when in reality they are still amazed that he is the elected President. He has done a great job without glorifying what he has been able to accomplish. It's troubling and very scary that there's even a thought that the republican party might become a disaster for the democratic party and the American people on next Tuesday. Wake up people, it takes more than two years to undo what was done in eight years. Wake up, especially the democrats, and search your hearts. You know the truth – the GOP is not for the middle class. If, God forbid, they are in control and you have not done your share, then don't complain.

    October 26, 2010 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  10. The Unsub

    just vote

    October 26, 2010 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  11. Vino

    Really...Telling the President of the United States to "Shove It"....I ask what is the motivation for the most disrespect ever seen guided toward a President? You have a "You Lie" during an address; you have a I dont want my kids listening to the President address students, now you have a "Shove it" from another politicial. Keep in mind we also had a "I want this president to fail" proclamation days after election....My question is....What's different about this president that warrents less respect??

    October 26, 2010 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  12. Alafia

    As a democrat, I must say that President Obama was wrong to state that he was not endorsing anyone for governor. What he was indirectly saying is that he does not endorse Caprio. So, I can understand Caprio's feelings being hurt and telling the President off. The only problem I have is that we have to respect the president of the United States at all times and for a person who is ascribing to be the chief executive of a state to disrespect our president by using that kind of language, he does not deserve to be elected as Governor. If we do not respect our president, how can we expect others to respect him. Caprio insulted the office of the president. He has disrespected the troops who are dying daily based on the President's Orders. CAPRIO MUST APOLOGIZE.

    October 26, 2010 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  13. Anonymous

    Imagine- the President isn't a politcal partty- he is a person and he thanked someone 2 years ago for voting agianst the war..
    No endorsment for the Demcrat said nothing until he made it an issue.
    It might be wise for him to lose if that's how his thinking works- making a big deal out of nothing.

    October 26, 2010 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  14. Vote for the best candidates

    I wouldn't support anyone that voted for Obamacare or the financial 'reform' bill (both of which don't solve problems, but slightly address symptoms–while expanding the power of the federal government).

    It' sad, but Obama thinks that he is so much smarter than the general population, that he (and his silly wife) has completely stopped listening. They vacation, campaign, have parties, all at the expense of the American people. Sad, sad day to have such a clueless leader (but with such a good education!).

    October 26, 2010 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  15. willard bullock

    Presdient obama is mocked out of his presdientt cause he have too bad his polls so I said no no thanks vote presdient obama

    October 26, 2010 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  16. geecee

    This is one very Democrat Rhode Islander who is voting for Lincoln Chafee because he is an independent thinker and not a crude bully like the candidate running for Governor on the Democratic ticket. We don't need a Carl Paladino clone in RI.

    October 26, 2010 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  17. Bill

    So where is the "sit in the back" comment? Middle class america up front but the GOP has to sit in the back???? Mr. President there are many middle class americans that are republican/conservative. Your disrespect for law enforcement agencies, the American people, and in general the constitution of the United States of America is very hard to take. I am a conservative that votes for the person that I think will do the job the best. YOU are a party line promoter and really don't care what the consequences are as long as you have one more vote so you can get it done. You are a disgusting example of the clasic American Politician.

    October 26, 2010 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |