Poll: Clinton outshines Obama?
September 11th, 2012
08:32 AM ET
10 years ago

Poll: Clinton outshines Obama?

(CNN) - Is former President Bill Clinton overshadowing the current president?

According to a new poll, more people say that the former president's speech was the highlight from last week's Democratic convention rather than the acceptance address given by President Barack Obama.

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A Pew Research Center survey indicates that 29% of national adults who watched at least a little coverage of the Charlotte, North Carolina convention said that Clinton's Wednesday night address was the highlight, with 16% saying the same thing about Obama's Thursday night speech and 15% saying that first lady Michelle Obama's Tuesday night address was the highlight.

During his 48-minute long speech, Clinton formally entered Obama's name into nomination.

Obama may be in good company. The poll also indicates that 20% of those who watched at least a little coverage of the Republican convention, held in Tampa, Florida the previous week, said that actor Clint Eastwood's impromptu speech was the highlight, slightly edging out the 17% who said that Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney's acceptance address was the highlight.

The Pew Research Center poll was conducted Sept. 7-9, with 1,012 adults nationwide questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 3.6 percentage points.

- CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this story

soundoff (216 Responses)
  1. WiredweirdinSF

    Hey about those greedy, incompetent union members in Chicago. Big democrat lib supporters. And doesn't the fact that Obozo has spent 600 hours playing golf and 412 in meetings about the economy tell us a lot about the ineptness, incompetency and corruptness of the current regime.

    September 11, 2012 11:06 am at 11:06 am |
  2. Saul M.Stevens

    I keep hearing people blame Bush and Obama for the loss of American jobs. Do you not forget at the debate between Clinton an Ross Paro. He told President Clinton," If you sign NAFTA into effect, you will see the largest suck of American jobs we've ever seen in our life. Clinton done well for Clinton and his home state.

    September 11, 2012 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  3. Sorensen

    Clinton is not stealing anything from Obama. He is adding to the total thunder of the democratic party.
    The GOP, and particularly Romney and Ryan are looking more and more pathetic every day. They have now lost all
    credibility, if indeed they ever had any.

    September 11, 2012 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  4. talbet

    well the democrats have a former president they weren't ashamed to have at the convention unlike the republicans. clinton did give an extra outstanding speech. but it's what he said in it about obama that helped the most. clinton is somewhat outshining obama but people understand and don't knock obama for it.

    September 11, 2012 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  5. Babyboomer

    I appreciated both speeches. Each one gave me just what I hoped for but the truth is there were two lines I'll remember from the convention for a long time to come. One from Rep. Rev. Emanuel Cleaver. "Hope On Mr. President, Hope On." The other from President Obama. "I AM THE PRESIDENT". Obama/Biden 2012

    September 11, 2012 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  6. Terry

    That's why Bubba is the BIG DOG. He articulated what the Dems have not...mainly the accomplishments of the Obama administration. Obama cannot be above the fray, the gloves need to come off and he needs to take the initiative and WIN THIS THING!!!!!

    September 11, 2012 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  7. Anita

    Good. That means that Clinton did his job. The point of Clinton's speech, as not only a credible source but also a previous adversary, was to reaffirm Obama's policies and accomplishments.

    Obama giving the same speech would have come across as though he was making excuses for what some have said is a failed recovery.

    The DNC put together the perfect balance. Michelle gave personal insight into the President’s character; Clinton gave a window into the affects of his policies and Obama to affirm his principles.

    Of course, Obama’s speech wasn't the highlight; the country isn’t in the mood for the soaring rhetoric that we heard when he was elected. In addition, we already are familiar with his principles, in my opinion we just needed to be reminded.

    September 11, 2012 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  8. Larry L

    Republicans need to ask themselves some "math" questions that are not releated to Fox News sound bites. They need to ask Romney to give a list of specific things he would do (no wiggle-room) to pay for healthcare, low taxes, huge defense budget, reduced deficit, 12 million new jobs, tax loop-holes for the rich, and cheap gas. He's said nothing about how he'd pay these enormous bills!

    September 11, 2012 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  9. linda

    No...both men are GREAT.....they are working together to keep this country from falling into the hands of R/R and going back to the same policies as the Bush/Chaney era.....funny how now all you Republicans are praising Clinton when he was in office you didn't have anything good to say about this man.....your all just jealous that the Democrats have two Guys that know what they are going and have the popularity of the party behind them and Romney isn't liked even by his own party.....

    September 11, 2012 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  10. becky - Las Vegas

    Julian Castro/Joaquin Castro 2024. "Elect one; get one free."

    September 11, 2012 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  11. Johann

    Clinton had more leeway in his speech, being retired. His more colorful language, like talking about Paul Ryan's "brass", made the speech more engaging than Obama could possibly have, given the decorum he had to maintain as a sitting President.

    September 11, 2012 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  12. Luke Brown

    Everyone of those speeches was excellent, and moved me from "leaning Obama" to "strong Obama". Don;t you think Obama knew that Clinton would be a star ... but he was a star for Obama and the Democratic Congress.
    There are lots people like me who like having a President who is sufficiently self-assured that he doesn't always have to be center of attention or give the best performance. In fact, that was kind of the point they were trying to make: Working together produces results. Tearing each other apart destroys any hope of progress.

    PS ... Why didn't the poll-takers ask Republicans whether they thought Mitt Romney's speech was better than George W. Bush's? Oh that's right, the former Republican President was not even in Tampa for the convention. Imagine that.

    September 11, 2012 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  13. Saul M.Stevens

    I was a State Delegate in Indiana the Begining of this century, year 2000, and a democrat. Very sad to say Unions have jobs awaiting a change of leadership. In the past unions were for any democrat because the thought they were for labor. We've seen three states go to right to work and is the start end to unions. "Where's our leader." Banks have had their customers pay insurance on morgages for serveral years. President bailed them out, people still lost their homes, the bank got their money from both ends and our President is unconious or over his head.

    September 11, 2012 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  14. rosie

    Bill, go back under your rock, please.

    September 11, 2012 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  15. Ann

    Woman In California
    A total lie:
    Former president Bill Clinton gave a very good informational speech.
    President Barak Obama gave a very good inspirational speech.
    In conclusion: the president gave the better speech.

    Poor woman.. you have a problem if you are still inspired by Mr. Obama. The guy needs help to be taken seriously and you find this inspirational? He and his 2008 campaign trashed the Clintons, he wouldn't be able to do anything without them, and he is an inspiration? Your judgement is upside down.

    September 11, 2012 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  16. Lizzie

    Women in California, Pres.Clinton makes $74 million a year in speaking fees, so how much did he charge the DNC for his speech. President Obamas speech was the same as in 2008 just rearranged some lines.

    September 11, 2012 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  17. Joe from CT, not Lieberman

    The last "Larger-than-Life" Republican President was Teddy Roosevelt. Democrats had Franklin Roosevelt, JFK and Bubba all fit into the "Larger-than-Life" mold.

    September 11, 2012 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  18. ryche

    After obamas speech, i swear it was 2008 all over again... it was as if he never was president for the last 4 years... and the democrats just eat it up like candy... pathetic..

    September 11, 2012 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  19. PeterD

    President Obama is NOT Doing His Job So We American People Have Responsibility to Let Him Go.

    September 11, 2012 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  20. GI Joe

    Where's Shrub?

    Where's Cheney?

    Where's rummy?

    Where's Brownie? (heckuva job)


    September 11, 2012 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  21. Ray E. (Georgia)

    P.T. Barnum said THERE IS A SUCKER BORN EVERY MINUTE. The problem is neither Bill Clinton or Barrack Obama knows which end is up. Bell blew a lot of smoke and a lot of you bought it. Over the last 75 Years people like Clinton and Omama have managed to pull the wool over people's eyes and sell tons of Snake Oil, Red Ink. Over 16 Trillonn Dollars worth. After the Party you wake up to see what you ended up with. Daylight takes on a whole other meaning and realty sets in. Are you sure who you want to dance with the next 4 years?

    September 11, 2012 11:42 am at 11:42 am |

    Yawn. OBAMA/BIDEN 2012.

    September 11, 2012 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  23. PeterD

    Both Obama & Biden speech was delivered with Anger While Clinton speech was Sober and Calm.

    September 11, 2012 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  24. MikeM

    The high ratings for Clinton shows how far this nation has declined. The man has no shame. I also saw Gingrich in the Rep pow-wow. Another shameless politician.

    September 11, 2012 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  25. Sniffit

    I posted this last night in the GutCheck:

    "6 point lead in September = major paradigm shift in MSM reporting in order to, they hope, help Mittens close the gap and make it a more exciting (i.e., more viewers and more cliking) "horse race." Just watch."

    And what do we have at the top of the Ticker this morning? CNN proving me right with this nonsense article. I told you so.

    September 11, 2012 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
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