Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity

Clinton, Obama Feud Over Novak's Tease


Things have gotten even testier between Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama since Thursday night's debate in Las Vegas. (AP).

A tense back-and-forth erupted between two top Democratic presidential candidates on Saturday as Sen. Barack Obama accused Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton of spreading rumors that her campaign is in possession of potentially damaging information about her rival.

Robert Novak wrote in his syndicated weekend column that "agents" of the Clinton campaign had been "spreading the word in Democratic circles that she has scandalous information about her principal opponent." Novak did not offer any further details about what the allegedly negative information might be.

The Obama campaign lashed out at the report, saying it was "devoid of facts, but heavy on innuendo and insinuation of the sort to which we've become all too accustomed in our politics these past two decades."
The Obama challenged Clinton's campaign to either make the negative information public "or concede the truth: that there is none."

Clinton campaign aides, in turn, denied any knowledge about what led to the Novak item and accused Obama of "echoing Republican talking points," and falling prey to a conservative columnist's attempts to pit Democrats against each other. Obama's campaign manager, David Plouffe, responded to that by accusing the Clinton campaign of evading the question of whether she was behind it.
"The Clinton campaign refuses to answer two simple, direct questions: Are 'agents' of their campaign spreading these rumors? And do they have 'scandalous' information that they are not releasing?" Plouffe wrote.
Escalating the exchange further still, the Clinton campaign again mocked Obama for betraying his promise to implement a "politics of hope" and said he was wasting his time on insubstantial matters.
"It's telling that the Obama campaign would rather spend the day throwing mud in Bob Novak's sandbox than talking about the issues," Phil Singer, a Clinton spokesman, wrote. "Our statement was crystal clear: Democratic voters should be concerened about any presidential candidate inexperienced enough to fall for Republican talking points. The Clinton campaign has nothing to do with this item."
None of the parties involved -- including Novak -- specified what the rumors might be. Novak wrote that Clinton had "decided not to use" the material.

"This word-of-mouth among Democrats makes Obama look vulnerable and Clinton look prudent," Novak wrote, in the brief, three paragraph item.

--Anne E. Kornblut

By Post Editor  |  November 17, 2007; 7:00 PM ET
 
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: 'Joe is Right'
Next: McCain on Secret Service: Why Do I Need It?

Comments

Aa an african-american woman, i would be lying if i said i didnt support barack because of his race, but honestly if he was garbage as a person there is no way i would want him in office. Thank god though that he just so happen to be the most honest,refreshing candidate in the race. I am a highly skeptical personal and analyze words,actions and acknowledge my vibes....i get nothing bad when it comes to barack.. i believe in him and that he would do whatever is in his power to do whats best for our country. We really need this type of president...he is niether all black or all white,not as if thats the issue, but it has been for many years...........I DONT KNOW ABOUT YALL, BUT IM READY FOR SOMETHING NEW, UNPOLLUTED AND FRESH!!!

Posted by: ebonyblaze | November 19, 2007 7:18 PM | Report abuse

Aa an african-american woman, i would be lying if i said i didnt support barack because of his race, but honestly if he was garbage as a person there is no way i would want him in office. Thank god though that he just so happen to be the most honest,refreshing candidate in the race. I am a highly skeptical personal and analyze words,actions and acknowledge my vibes....i get nothing bad when it comes to barack.. i believe in him and that he would do whatever is in his power to do whats best for our country. We really need this type of president...he is niether all black or all white,not as if thats the issue, but it has been for many years...........I DONT KNOW ABOUT YALL, BUT IM READY FOR SOMETHING NEW, UNPOLLUTED AND FRESH!!!

Posted by: ebonyblaze | November 19, 2007 7:18 PM | Report abuse

Aa an african-american woman, i would be lying if i said i didnt support barack because of his race, but honestly if he was garbage as a person there is no way i would want him in office. Thank god though that he just so happen to be the most honest,refreshing candidate in the race. I am a highly skeptical personal and analyze words,actions and acknowledge my vibes....i get nothing bad when it comes to barack.. i believe in him and that he would do whatever is in his power to do whats best for our country. We really need this type of president...he is niether all black or all white,not as if thats the issue, but it has been for many years...........I DONT KNOW ABOUT YALL, BUT IM READY FOR SOMETHING NEW, UNPOLLUTED AND FRESH!!!

Posted by: ebonyblaze | November 19, 2007 7:18 PM | Report abuse

Aa an african-american woman, i would be lying if i said i didnt support barack because of his race, but honestly if he was garbage as a person there is no way i would want him in office. Thank god though that he just so happen to be the most honest,refreshing candidate in the race. I am a highly skeptical personal and analyze words,actions and acknowledge my vibes....i get nothing bad when it comes to barack.. i believe in him and that he would do whatever is in his power to do whats best for our country. We really need this type of president...he is niether all black or all white,not as if thats the issue, but it has been for many years...........I DONT KNOW ABOUT YALL, BUT IM READY FOR SOMETHING NEW, UNPOLLUTED AND FRESH!!!

Posted by: ebonyblaze | November 19, 2007 7:18 PM | Report abuse

The CLINTON camp is NAIVE if they think the age of the internet hasn't changed the political landscape since 1990.

Obama was right to react immediately and with force.
It would have been around the world in a cyber second if he hadn't.

Hillary seems more and more stuck in the (pre-internet) 1990s.

Things have changed, Hillary.

Posted by: julieds | November 19, 2007 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Obama is getting rattled . Can't handle bad press. Let's his campaign manager David Axelrod go negative while he stays "hopeful" and above the fray. Read Lynn Sweet of the Chicago Tribune and Marc Ambinder in Atlantic for more information about tactics Obama used to defeat his Senate primary opponent, Blair Hull and how his campaign has been frustrated that the media has not covered Clinton more negatively.

Posted by: rdklingus | November 19, 2007 10:12 AM | Report abuse

My disdain for Hellary has nothing to do with her supposedly being a woman! I love women and would vote for one for president readily. But, let's not vote for Klinton just because of gender: think back to that administration, all of the spies, lies, corruption, deaths, smears, immorality, backstabbing, laws broken, drugs, bribes, Chinese spies, payoffs, character assinations, assasinations, investigations, using dead people, theft, obfescations, stealing china, destruction of public property, threats to bimbos, assaults, rape accusations, sex not sex, asprin factory murders, tyrant coddling, Whtewatering, Rose law firming, missing files, DNA disapearance, Foster bodies, Lies in diaries, lawyers commiting suicide, hidden agendas, payoffs, Luewinskiing, coverups, mismanagements, bodies in the parks, bodies in the cell, bodies in the water, nuclear secrets being sold, FBI files stolen, blackmailings, ..... all with Hellary right smack dab in the middle either orchestrating or covering up!
Use your memories people!

Other than that I have nothing against her.
http://fakesteveballmer.blogspot.com

Posted by: SteveBallmer | November 19, 2007 8:34 AM | Report abuse

Hillary is at about 50% in the National polls. She is doing fine and has every reason not to rock the boat. Just keep working, meeting and talking to as many voters as she can.

The idea that Clinton staff contacted a Republican flack with this story, with some naive assumption that this contact would be kept confidential, is absurd. Reaching this conclusion using reason is not difficult. Obama acted emotionally and irrationally. A president should have the reasoning ability to figure out what an adversary is thinking, how he will react to our actions and so on. This is a MAJOR mistake.

Posted by: ct742 | November 18, 2007 11:36 PM | Report abuse

Barack Obama is embarrassed over his absurd performance in the Vegas debate. This is the only reason he and his campaign are making a huge deal out of the Novak comments. They are trying to change the headlines!

It does not take a brain surgeon!

Posted by: audart | November 18, 2007 7:43 PM | Report abuse

I think the reason for the hateful smirk that Hillary was giving Barack Obama was that he blew a fart in her direction at the debates and it hung over her head like a cloud because of the poor ventilation.

Posted by: indywally | November 18, 2007 6:34 PM | Report abuse

While I'm at it, I wonder if Clinton is nervous about a scandal erupting on her side? I heard somewhere that Katherine (sp.) Willey is planning to publish an autobiography tell-all about the Clintons.

Maybe the Clinton campaign will blame Obama! LOL!!!

Posted by: Lioness1 | November 18, 2007 6:03 PM | Report abuse

There goes Hillary Clinton spreading dirt through subterfuge and using deniability tactics to cover her tracks. We all know what this was: a smear tactic by a candidate who is apparently doubting her own frontrunner status.

(This comes on the same day as The New York Times publishes a lengthy story that essentially points to how worried the Clinton campaign is about Iowa.)

This reminds one of what happened when Clinton bombed the October debate. Her surrogates, notably her husband and Geraldine Ferraro, went on this crybaby rampage about hoe she had been attacked because she was a woman. Then, Hillary said it was NOT because she was a woman. Again, send others to do the dirty work, then look good by denying it.

Obama, no fool, knew this Novak thing for what it was.

And BTW, folks - don't question Novak. He is a sadist, but remember that he got it right with Valerie Plame.

Posted by: Lioness1 | November 18, 2007 6:01 PM | Report abuse

Novak's point clearly had nothing to do with a possible sex scandal -- he is suggesting that Sen Clinton's aides are manipulating to "[make] Obama look vulnerable and Clinton look prudent." The rather shrill response from Obama indicates that we should continue to scrutinize both candidates:the allegations of many kinds of manipulation that have been made against Sen Clinton and the allegations that Sen Obama possibly lacks sufficient maturity to be president.

Posted by: leeskyblue | November 18, 2007 5:34 PM | Report abuse

In the Inner Depths of Liberaral's anquish, there is a Terror. It lurks in the Darkness biding its time. As the Libs struggle through their meaningless existance, they know the true meaning of FEAR!
It Lurks. It WAITS!

Time goes by.

A Primary passes.

Night decends.

Then, as the Dim Lib rounds the silent, darkened hallway

IT STRIKES!

NOVAKULA FEASTS!!!!


Sleep tight now!

Posted by: rat-the | November 18, 2007 2:57 PM | Report abuse

I think the Hilary agent are scared of Barack Obama and they see him as the only thing in her way to win the nomination and they will pull any of their dirty tricks to slime senator Barack Obama.

l see goodness in Obama and l believe his every word that he will bring change and progress to America and he will move America forward. we need such leadership in a president.

Hilary is a con/artist-politicain and she will do or say anything to make history. she does not care about anybody but to be the first woman president. HILARY IS CORRUPT.

We need people like Edward to point us to the right direction and bring out the corrupt ways of the Clinton's.

CNN and Wolf Blitzer shame on you guys for being so bias about Hilary and her lies. l have stopped watching situation room, it sicken me.

l think we need a president who will be straightforward and tell the American people the truth rather than shift positions because you want votes. Obama is that man and l respect him for that.

Barack Obama '08

Posted by: nkgilb | November 18, 2007 2:53 PM | Report abuse

If Clinton was interested in keeping mud-slinging out of the race, she would have just flat out condemned Novak for the scumbag that he is. You can add "paranoid" to the "Top Ten Names Clinton Has Called Obama" list. First two were "naive" and "inexperienced." Will we get all ten by January 3, 2008?

Posted by: howmartin | November 18, 2007 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Right now, the Republicans are selecting the Democratic candidate that they think will be the easiest to defeat by a moderate Republican. Any other Democratic runner-ups will be swift boated or cashed out.

Posted by: Beacon2 | November 18, 2007 11:25 AM | Report abuse

If the Democrats want to ensure a Republican win, keep up what you are doing. Attacking each other and bickering over unfounded allegations is a perfect way of turning every voter against you. If you want to gain voters, state your position on things that are important to voters and stop acting like fools. Whatever any Democratic candidate has in their background, the Republicans will find out. If there is nothing, a support group will make something up. Just consider the big issues and don't waste time on the BS.

That is the strategy, wasting precious time on the BS and on each other. You guys are foolish. Get new handlers. If someone smears you, stay the course and have some other person research and address the issue. Even Bush ignores all the negative press and bulletin board BS and moves forward. Don't get sidetracked and petty. Pretty soon your families will be attacked, don't get side tracked and waste time.

Posted by: Beacon2 | November 18, 2007 10:50 AM | Report abuse

WHAT?! And we are supposed to put ANY credibility to ANYTHING that comes from Novak??? Especially if it is about Democratic Party news??? Get real, folks. Consider the source of Novak's more famous revelation(s) regarding national intelligence resources. Then reconsider this torpedo. Novak is nothing more than a Republican "agent".

Posted by: dave_klinzman | November 18, 2007 10:34 AM | Report abuse

Dang! Do people still read Novak? He should be in jail already! A no brainer here! Move On to somebody we care about!

Posted by: Jimbeaux | November 18, 2007 10:08 AM | Report abuse

I have been watching the debates and there is no doubt in mind mind that Hillary Clinton should be the next President of the US. She will not only bring her experience but her deeper vision for a better US Leader.

Politics is never easy, clean or without opposing views.

I would much rather see a woman to lead the Americans out of their quagmire that the Bush Admin. has created.

Posted by: Jaya1 | November 18, 2007 3:10 AM | Report abuse

The Brain Trust kjlover46 writes: "It's right after Las Vegas debate. I believe it's repulbican's dirty trick. They must scared to death of a Clinton nomination, thus use one stone to kill two birds."

Well, kjlover46, if that is your real name, to you, Republicans are responsible for everything from the common cold to no right turn on red signs. But the notion that whomever the GOP nominee will be as well the party does not want to dance with Hillary in 2008 is lame: bring it on, baby, as she is the number one Demonrat they want to tangle with...and win at least 40 out of 50 states.

Posted by: glazed36546 | November 18, 2007 1:39 AM | Report abuse

Since Sid Vicious is "officially" working for another Clinton campaign after being released from his community service at a Washington domestic violence center one can only ascertain that this is his handiwork.

How proud (as well beholden) can The Washington Post be of its longstanding relationship with Sid?

Watch it Matt & call your lawyer before you post anything more..."developing".

Posted by: glazed36546 | November 18, 2007 1:30 AM | Report abuse

The Clintons have always played hardball. I'll just bet she wants to run against Giuliani because he has the most 'dirt' in his past and already has a campaign to smear him. I can just see the pictures of him in his dresses not to mention living with gays. Hillary is drooling!

Posted by: rockyjc | November 18, 2007 12:51 AM | Report abuse

Hmm. Ratings or a Republican agenda Mr Novak.

Is Robert Novak acting as an "agent" for the Republican Party, in the attempt of creating a feud within the Democratic Pary?

----> http://www.youpolls.com/details.asp?pid=1018

.

Posted by: PollM | November 18, 2007 12:17 AM | Report abuse

If it's a personal scandal, big deal.

I would be much more interested in hearing about the hundreds of thousands of suspicious donations Senator Clinton has received from low income workers in New York.

Posted by: drd6000 | November 17, 2007 11:23 PM | Report abuse

Personally, I am very worried about Hillary. She must be suffering from Botox overload. Did you ever notice how her face has no wrinkles during these debates? Yet if you catch her on TV the next day, she has huge bags under her eyes and more wrinkles on her face and neck than Mick Jagger.
As far as the election goes, how could Hillary ever win?? All republicans hate her. Many democrats like me hate her husband. And then there are those (like it or not) that will never vote for a woman. Do we really want her as the Democratic candidate??
Wake up everyone!

Posted by: PattyS1 | November 17, 2007 10:19 PM | Report abuse

Does the Washingtonpost think that the Clinton camp should not react when they are accuse of spreading words?

Posted by: christophefiero | November 17, 2007 10:00 PM | Report abuse

Most every dirty taint will come out in the "wash" either before or after the election. If it isn't there, most voters will be able to see it or the lack of it. But this will sell more face-time.
For some reason, American disinterest, Biden has not received more coverage. He and Edwards, less the attitude, are the more qualified.

Posted by: lindafranke1952 | November 17, 2007 9:38 PM | Report abuse

The Clinton camp is not serious. They should be the first to react to this article. Because they was the one accuse. If they are not spreading any words, why didn't they react to the article at the first place and let the Obama people ask them to say something about it.

Posted by: christophefiero | November 17, 2007 9:34 PM | Report abuse

After HILLARY and her 'fake' bout with the lilliputians in VEGAS - finally admitting she is forced to wear "...asbestos pants-suits" to deal with D^CKHEAD BILL'S heated emanations from trystes with his BIMBETTES - not much has changed. 'BARKY' OBAMA was flummoxed, RICHARDSON looked like the 'second tier stooge' he is, and argentiferous DENNIS'does-my-hair-piece-look-otherworldy'KUCINICH supplied little spice or substance in this latest yawner!!! HILLARY proved once again she is not as smart not as articulate not as good-looking as 'IL DUCE - BENITO MUSSOLINI' but then "...asbestos" pants-suits hide a lot of 'UGLINESS'/CORRUPTION is being 'attacked' for her stupidity and malapropisms!!! The FEMALE FASCIST first made the mistake of 'taking' maximum size donations from CHINESE DISHWASHERS who couldn't be traced. Next it was getting ILLEGALS to receive DRIVERS LICENSES when she tried to play the old CLINTON 'shell game' of being on all sides of the issue depending whom she was 'speaking at'. Now it is not giving a 'tip' to some frowsy little waitress that HILLARY wanted to 'schmooze' at a photo op for HILLARY and her band of DEMBHOLE-DIMWITS and sycophants. The 'commoners' hate you HILLARY. GO AHEAD DRAG OUT YOUR PRETEND-HUSBAND BILL aka D*CKHEAD - this adds even less to your 'so-called' credibility with his lies, mechanations, outright flaunting of MS. STRONACH and his other 'BIMBETTES' which you 'helped dispose of over so many years. All hail the 'new' FEMALE FUHRER - HILLARY!!! HIELE HILLARY!!! Ha! What a pathetic joke who has never achieved anything but be elected a U.S. SENATURD by DEMBHOLE-DUMMIES in NY where HILLARY said she was a NYYankees fan! Ha! And all 3 million papers which HILLARY claims prove her competence are locked safely away by order of yes, her co-conspirator one D*CKHEAD BILL. HILLARY a lying FASCIST for our times. Now HILLARY says she is tired of the 'mud-slinging' from the Lilliputians at the DEMBHOLE 'so-called' DEBATE in VEGAS. The sobriquet 'what happens in VEGAS stays in VEGAS' held true as the 'Nielsen ratings' proved that no one watched or cared!!! No 'mud-slinging' eh HILLAY??? YOU MUST HAVE 'SPACED-OUT' ALL the 'smears' of D^CKHEAD BILL's BIMBETTES and the other 'enemies' of your co-presidency. DEMBHOLES should be insulted that HILLARY is the #1 CHOICE FOR fuhrer - for now.Ha!

Posted by: ZyskandarAJaimot | November 17, 2007 9:14 PM | Report abuse

vwcat, I know you a Obama supporter. But let's not make things more complicted. Anybody notice the timing about this "report"? It's right after Las Vegas debate. I believe it's repulbican's dirty trick. They must scared to death of a Clinton nomination, thus use one stone to kill two birds.

Posted by: kjlover46 | November 17, 2007 8:54 PM | Report abuse

If there was any scandal, which I doubt, and any newspaper was sitting on it, it would be due to not being able to verify the story. Most likely it was made up garbage given to newspapers to try to slime Obama.
The Clintons are known for their tawdry tactics and using right wing sources to spread them. She is really good in using Drudge to be her mouthpiece. And then, her fundraisers with Murdoch.
Dont' be fooled. Just because she has a D after her name doesn't mean she is a real democrat. I don't think she is.

Posted by: vwcat | November 17, 2007 8:17 PM | Report abuse

What about Vincent Foster? Vincent Foster and Hillary were having an affair until his mysterious death in 1993.
Why hasnt this been brought to the publics attention??
Hillary and Bill are both having affairs...I dont think the country wants people like that running America!!

Posted by: michaelh2oson | November 17, 2007 8:15 PM | Report abuse

Who cares? Seriously, I don't think Obama's, or Clinton's sex life is an issue that affects most Americans. Who in the name of all that is sacred really cares, this is the very defintion of yellow journalism, muckracking crap. It detracts from every single issue about this campaign that actually matters.
The Economy,
The War,
Climate Change,
Health Care,
Immigration,
Corruption,
These are the issues we should be discussing. And horrible faux reporters the likes of Novak only distract us from solving these issues.
Step it up media, Americans want you to grow up! We need your help and you aren't doing us any favors by trying to make every headline more sensational than the last. Have some integrity, do your jobs and report the News, not rumors.

Posted by: formlessness | November 17, 2007 8:12 PM | Report abuse

The only sex scandal I ever heard about involved Bill Clinton and Las Vegas call girls. The washingtonpost should check that out, there are rumors that the Las Vegas police are involved in the cover up.

Posted by: vamonticello | November 17, 2007 7:49 PM | Report abuse

http://pajamasmedia.com/xpress/ronrosenbaum/2007/10/29/shocking_inside_dc_scandal_rum.php

Shouldn't the Washington Post look into this; the website above asserts that there seems to be some sex scandal and LA Times is sitting on it, but did not release it. Check it out Anne! You could become the next Bob Woodward!

Posted by: AmericanforPeace | November 17, 2007 7:17 PM | Report abuse

Well, Anne, have you heard any of these rumours from the Clinton campaign? I'm suspicious when only Novak seems to have heard them -- much like the other little voices in his head.

Posted by: boldbooks | November 17, 2007 7:14 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2010 The Washington Post Company