Chicago Sun-Times
The scoop from Washington

Sweet (post) Dem debate special. Talk with rogue leaders?Clinton, Obama split spills over in Tuesday post debate wrangling. Report 15.


WASHINGTON—Monday’s debate revealed a divide between Democratic presidential rivals Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) and Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) over talking to leaders of rogue nations during their first year in office.

Obama, searching for common ground, said he would. Clinton said she would first try a variety of diplomatic steps in order to not be used as a propaganda tool. The differences between them bubbled over to Tuesday as the Obama team tried to reinforce his bona fides as a commander-in-chief--perhaps concerned his answer may have left him looking naive--while taking a swipe at Clinton he did not deliver during the debate over her vote to authorize the war. On Tuesday morning, the Clinton campaign hosted a conference call with former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, a Clinton advisor.

Said Albright, Clinton’s reply was a “very sophisticated answer which shows an understanding of the whole process." (will be UPDATING with more from call)

Obama’s memo hit Clinton for not demanding an exit strategy when she voted to authorize the Iraq war.

Click below for Obama memo…

Here's the tic-toc: At 11:05 a.m. eastern the Obama campaign distributed a memo asserting Obama won the “commander-in-chief-test,” arriving minutes before Albright call set to start at 11:15 a.m. It’s the start of what may be the second day story of the debate.


From the Obama campaign........

TO: Interested Parties

FR: Obama Communications

RE: Obama Wins Debate and Commander in Chief Test

DA: July 24, 2007

Last night at the debate, Obama displayed the judgment he will exhibit as Commander in Chief that impressed focus groups conducted by both Fox
and CNN. He showed his willingness to lead and ask tough questions on matters of war and he offered a dramatic change from the Bush administration's eight year refusal to protect our security interests by
using every tool of American power available - including diplomacy.

Senator Hillary Clinton, however, did nothing to dispel questions that have arisen as a result of her support for the war in Iraq, even as the National Intelligence Estimate has found that our focus on Iraq has hindered our ability to track down and destroy al Qaeda. When pressed, she gave no explanation for not demanding an exit strategy before we invaded a country riven by deep ethnic rivalries that portended civil war and a long, uncertain occupation. Obama warned of such an outcome in 2002, and said the war would undermine us in the battle against Al Qaeda, as has now proven true.

From the debate -- Obama: thing I have to say about Senator Clinton's comments a couple of moments ago. I think it's terrific that
she's asking for plans from the Pentagon, and I think the Pentagon response was ridiculous. But what I also know is that the time for us to
ask how we were going to get out of Iraq was before we went in. And that is something that too many of us failed to do. We failed to do it. And I do think that that is something that both Republicans and
Democrats have to take responsibility for. When I am president of the United States, when I send our troops into battle, I am going to be absolutely sure that it is based on sound intelligence, and I'm going to tell the truth to the American people, as well as the families who are being asked to sacrifice.

On issues of national security, Obama made clear that making America safer would require using tough diplomacy with countries like Iran and North Korea that have seen dramatic expansions of their nuclear programs
during the seven years of the Bush presidency.

From the debate -- Obama: Now, Ronald Reagan and Democratic presidents
like JFK constantly spoke to Soviet Union at a time when Ronald Reagan
called them an evil empire. And the reason is because they understood
that we may not trust them and they may pose an extraordinary danger to
this country, but we had the obligation to find areas where we can
potentially move forward. And I think that it is a disgrace that we
have not spoken to them. We've been talking about Iraq -- one of the
first things that I would do in terms of moving a diplomatic effort in
the region forward is to send a signal that we need to talk to Iran and
Syria because they're going to have responsibilities if Iraq collapses.

Earlier this year, Senator Clinton claimed: I think it is a terrible
mistake for our president to say he will not talk with bad people.
[Associated Press, 4/23/07]. She reversed herself last night,
disagreeing with Senator Obama's assertion that we should use every tool
at the president's disposal to address problems before they become

Obama's tough but smart approach to America's diplomacy is exactly the
kind of change and new thinking that excites voters about an Obama
presidency. In the focus group conducted in New Hampshire by CNN,
voters showed they were hungry for this approach.

CNN Reporter Randi Kaye: This line here, this represents the reaction.
A mark above 50 is favorable, below 50 unfavorable and 50 means no
opinion whatsoever. The group rating the debate was made up of
undecided Democrats and nonpartisan independents. Let's turn to the raw
highlights and what we like to call the raw lowlights. One of the
peaks in audience reaction came in response to Barack Obama on the issue
of diplomacy and Iraq. Obama: "Ronald Reagan and Democratic presidents
like JFK constantly spoke to Soviet Union at a time Ronald Reagan called
them an evil empire..." During that answer the meters cruised up to
about 80 or so. The viewers apparently liked his idea of talking with
Syria and Iran to solve problems in Iraq.

The American people choose straight talk over Washington double-speak,
and they know that change must be more than a slogan.



This is what Hillary Clinton said in late June, just last month, at the Center for a New American Security. A new foreign policy organization that Madeleine Albright co-founded.

"The Bush Administration has given Iran six years of the silent treatment."

"In this vacuum, Tehran continues its progress toward developing nuclear weapons and increasing its influence in the region...After initial talks with Iran and Syria on Iraq, the administration says it isn't sure that we need any more discussions with either of them. I think we should keep talking."

This is total BS. These focus groups prove nothing--the samples are far too small. More revealing is the SurveyUSA post-debate poll showing Clinton won the debate (39%) and Obama finished a distant second (15%). These results are confirmed by a CNN on-line poll with over 20,000 responses showing Clinton won (48%) to Obama distant second (26%). And a second CNN focus group in Nevada also tabbed Sen. Clinton as the winner. This memorandum from Obama's campaign is pure spin. So much for the new politics.

I am much more inclined to believe the average citizen's opinions on candidates rather than the polling data coming from the Washington Beltway. It is interesting to me that these people repeatedly prefer Senator Obama, which is a detail the pundits seem to be willing to overlook. I also do not trust the polling data coming from CNN who has their polling performed by Opinion Research Corporation, which is owned by someone who contributes heavily to the Clinton campaign. Can we say conflict of interest here?

Maybe Senator Obama is on to something here. I know Hillary is trying to make him seem inexperienced by his answer that he would meet with leaders in North Korea,Venezuela, china, etc. but maybe his idea is a new and bold one. What is wrong with him taking the bull by the horns and sitting down with the leaders to take his own, personal measure of a leader? Why does he have to wait and go through a series of diplomatic steps? I'm for him meeting with the leaders privately, without all the fanfare, and just talk and see where they are at. We all know how it's "supposed to be done" and how the other Clinton did it. Sounds like Hillary is going to continue to do it the way it's always been done. Maybe, just maybe, we could try something different. With the crisis this world is in, I don't think we could wait a year into the new President's term before the new President and other world leaders meet. That could very well be disastrous for us. Hillary showed, once again, that if you vote for her you will simply get things the way they've always been. Nothing new here with her. I think it shows too much timidity and fear on her part that she won't commit to meeting with these leaders within her first year and that she feels she must have others pave the way for her before she meets with them. Great job Senator Obama!

I am curious as to what Hilary is thinking about her what people believe of her stance to support the war effort in Iraq that has taken over 340 billion dollars from our country (Borgen Project) and what her reasoning is. I am also curious as to what both of them believe is a solution to solving terrorism. I believe that one sure solution that is, however, long-term is to combat Global Poverty.

In Will Shakespeare's play TITUS ANDRONICUS, Aaron the Moore and bloodthirsty Queen Tamora team-up to chop-off Lavinia's arms, legs, gouge out her eyes, and then rip-out her tongue. Will HILLARY and BARAK team-up to become the DEMBHOLE CANDIDATES in 2008??? Will they then, like, Aaron the Moore and the evil Queen Tamora; eviscerate AMERICA in the same way SHAKESPEARE's characters raped and trampled their imagined nemesis??? Does 'art' from long ago imitate today's present day realities???

October 31, 2006, Council of Foreign Affairs:

"Direct negotiations (with Iran and Syria) are not a sign of weakness; they are a sign of leadership...The Bush Administration refuses to talk to anyone on the evil side, as some have called that idealistic, but I call it dangerously unrealistic."

June 27, 2007, the Center for a New American Security:

``The Bush administration has given Iran six years of the silent treatment...In this vacuum, Tehran continues its progress toward developing nuclear weapons and increasing its influence in the region...After initial talks with Iran and Syria on Iraq, the administration says it isn't sure that we need any more discussions with either of them. I think we should keep talking.''

--Hillary Clinton

"Instead of lecturing Iran's leadership, the United States should talk with them without preconditions. And instead of using inflammatory names, such as ``Axis of Evil,'' the U.S. and its allies should seek and find common ground, particularly with moderates unhappy with the current leadership."

--Bill Richardson

Alice: Obama's idea is not new at all. Richard Nixon went to what we then called Red China inorder to talk to Mao and Chou and open that nation up to us and others in the west.

Guess who said this

"I think it is a terrible mistake for our president to say he will not talk with bad people. You don't make peace with your friends -- you have to do the hard work of dealing with people you don't agree with," said Clinton, who is seeking the Democratic presidential nomination.

Opening talks with other countries doesn't mean the U.S. won't defend its interests whenever necessary, she said, "but what it means is that we should discuss other routes before we decide we're going to pursue military options.

"We cannot provide the leadership we need unless we are willing to try engage the other countries," she said,

Did Hillary Clinton forget that it was her own husband that wanted to personally go to North Korea to negotiate with Kim Jong Il?

Hillary Clinton summarized her entire campaign and would-be presidency last night:

- Empty sound bites without substance
- Prone to bad decisions
- More of the same

If history has taught us anything is that the "establishment" and older politicians are often wrong.

Elizabeth Edwards was onto something....Hillary Clinton is overly hawkish and in attempt not to come off as "feminine." Can we truly afford a President with this level of personal insecurity and one that is constantly trying to "prove" how strong she is? Imagine if Hillary had been President during the Cuban missle crisis.

We can do better.

This is definitely a blog of Democrats discussing the Democratic party's number one base talking point. I would like to remind everyone that Bill Richardson and Bill Clinton had a complete and open dialogue with North Korea. Amazing isn't it, how North Korea and Kim Jong Il misled the great communicators of the Democratic party. Diplomacy only goes so far, folks. I don't disagree with trying it, which does lay a fair amount of blame on the Bush administration for not trying it enough. But, this country better be ready to back up its diplomacy with action if diplomacy fails, instead of pretending all is well. Think of it as avoiding the neighborhood bully by buying him off rather than standing up to him once and for all. I don't think any of the Democratic candidates have the moxie to send ANY troops into battle at any time short of preventing a full scale invasion of the U.S.. Hillary might come close, Obama, Richardson, and Edwards, never.

Here is my new Hillary email:

Dear American Friend,

I have attached my “Hillary file” which is culled from the 205+ books and other media that I have on Hillary and Bill. The Clintons are thugs. On the campaign trail in 2007 Hillary and Bill are play acting as the loving, respectful couple – singing each other’s praises on stage and engaging in public affection as they troll for votes.
In order to understand Hillary and Bill, one must first understand the wildly dysfunctional Jerry Springer lifestyle they have lived for 36 years. Hillary has covered for Bill who not only has had HUNDREDS of women, but also perpetrated several rapes and vicious sexual assaults, often involving biting the lips of the women victims. In order to cover up this Jerry Springer chaos, Hillary has often used a secret police and criminal intimidation tactics to harass, intimidate and terrify Bill’s sex victims and girlfriends.


These tactics include the savage beating of Gennifer Flower’s neighbor (Gary Johnson), criminal harassment campaigns on Kathleen Willey (1997-98 car vandalism, stole her cat Bullseye), Liz Ward Gracen (who Bill probably raped while she was Miss America), Gennifer Flowers (break-ins, threats), Sally Perdue (car vandalism, threats), Bobbie Ann Williams (break-in), Christy Zercher (a flight attendant, break-in), Suzi Parker (a journalist harassed off Arkansas tainted prison blood scandal, fearing for her life), Connie Hamzy (lying campaign) and Juanita Broaddrick (raped by Bill, break-in and IRS audit when she went public in 1998). It is not a stretch to say that Hillary, Bill and Buddy Young may have organized the murder of their former employee Jerry Parks on 9/26/93 because he knew too much about the Clintons.
Hillary and Bill were well on the way to crucifying Monica Lewinsky as an unstable stalker, liar and fantasist - – and would have done so if Bill’s semen had not be found on Monica’s blue dress. Hillary’s private eyes were already digging in Monica’s past, when the real story was the Clintons’ criminal track record.
Additionally biographer Roger Morris describes a vicious sexual assault by Bill on a woman (around 1980) on p.238 in his book Parters in Power. Journalist Michael Isikoff details a very crude sexual advance by President Bill in 1996 on a lady married to a Democratic VIP on p.162 of his book Uncovering Clinton. Additionally, pervert Bill exposed himself to Paula Jones in May, 1991 and also to Carolyn Moffet in 1979.
Other Clinton dysfunctions include Bill’s cocaine addiction as governor, Hillary’s lesbianism and the fact that Chelsea is probably the seed of Webb Hubbell, NOT Bill Clinton. Bill’s only offspring is probably Danny Williams, the product of deadbeat dad Bills’ orgies with (no condoms) drug-addicted street hooker Bobbie Ann Williams and her girlfriends back in 1983-84. Bill paid $200 to Gennifer Flowers so she could have an abortion in Jan., 1978, just 3 months before Bill’s rape of Juanita Broaddrick on 4-25-78.
Also, Bill, brother Roger and best friend Dan Lasater were partying with high schools and providing them cocaine when Bill was governor.
And, of course, there is Hillary’s long and intense affair with Vince Foster who was her emotional husband while Bill was screwing everything in sight. Hillary has a long record of fomenting domestic violence with Bill. The Secret Service, fed up with this insanity, leaked to the press Hillary throwing a lamp at President Bill. Hillary has often thrown objects at victim Bill.
Hillary has used criminal tactics such as a secret police and illegal IRS audits to go after both political enemies and Bill’s sex victims and girlfriends. The Clintons put a harassment team on Patrick Knowlton, a witness in the Vince Foster investigation, in late October, 1995. This was a prelude to the intimidation campaign waged on Kathleen Willey in 1997-98 before her deposition in the Paula Jones case. Paula Jones, rape victim Juanita Broaddrick and possible rape victim Liz Ward Gracen all got audited in the late 1990’s by Clinton’s IRS. Ditto Gennifer Flowers.
Floyd Brown’s offices were burglarized in 1992 and only his Clinton files were stolen. Brown’s private phone conversations were illegally wiretapped. Clinton biographer Emmett Tyrrell also had his offices twice broken into and his NY apartment invaded once. The manuscript of Tyrrell’s book Boy Clinton was stolen when he couriered it to Robert Novak for a blurb. Clintons thugs tried to intimidate 2 of Tyrrell’s researchers in Little Rock.


Many people close to the Clintons describe Hillary as rude, vulgar and abusive, not just with staff and co-workers, but especially with Bill who she made a sport of ridiculing, according to L.D. Brown, Bill’s favorite state trooper. Hillary is well known for making mean, vicious and personally degrading comments often towards people who work for and with her. She probably got that from her dad Hugh Rodham, a deeply disturbed man.
Hillary and Bill are sociopaths, not unlike serial killers such as Ted Bundy. Seemingly personable and normal while brown nosing wealthy contributors or opinion makers, Hillary and Bill have no regard for the integrity and well being of others. They disregard rules and lie with practiced ease, not feeling guilt or empathy for others.
Bill is the kind of guy who can rape your sister upstairs and then come down to the living room and tell you what a great book he has read about women’s rights. Hillary is the kind of person who can be in the kitchen calling up a secret police to terrify your rape victim sister into silence, and then come out to the living room and ask what do you think about her latest speech on women’s and children’s rights.
Some of the goons that Hillary has used to cloak her and Bill’s Jerry Springer lifestyle and criminal activity include Ivan Duda (1982), Jerry Parks (1980’s), Jack Palladino (1992) and Anthony Pellicano (1990’s). Pellicano is now in JAIL in Los Angeles for the same kind of thug tactics that Hillary used him for. Also, Buddy Young, the head of Bill’s trooper detail and who Bill made #2 at FEMA, is additionally a dangerous criminal that Hillary and Bill has employed in their black operations. Terry Lenzer is also someone Hillary has used extensively.
Please forward this information to your Democratic friends and co-workers and ask that they (and you) vote for and support John Edwards, Barack OBAMA, Bill Richardson or any other Democratic candidate, and NOT Hillary. The difference is Hillary will break your kneecap to get to the White House; the others will not.
Thank-you and have a great day!

Robert Morrow Clinton expert Austin, TX 512-306-1510

The interesting question is why the "Clinton machine" decided that she should come down from the clouds to continue the dispute personally. It seems she had a lot to lose and only a little to gain by engaging personally and not using surrogates.

My suspicion is that this was her own decision, one reflecting a short fuse and little strategic thought by "the machine."

Is it that Obama had gotten under her skin with the "the time to ask for an exit strategy was five years ago?" comment?

Not to be too snarky, but a short fuse would be a good reason for _her_ not to meet with foreign leaders in the first year of her presidency.

Hilary has met her match.She is an intolerant bully who doesn't appreciate democracy and therefore hates debate.She has the behavior of a dictator who always seeks to have the final word. She started the war against Obama by calling her naive and irresponsible and didn't expect him to defend himself. Is that why she wants the debates to exclude other candidates. The reason why Bush's policy never worked in because he set unrealistic preconditions for dialogue and thats exactly how Hilary is sounding and showing in her behaviour candidates.Already she has received support from some of Bush's men like Romney and McCain who also fear Obama. Secondly, as Obama has already asserted, the question did not require him to add some of the little caveat that Clinton got a chance to add as Barack had already answered the question for him. Hilary should not be allowed to bully other candidates around just because she was married to the former president of the USA. The media needs to treat her in the same way as every other candidates.

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on July 24, 2007 10:53 AM.

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