DURHAM, N.C. – Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama took aim on Monday at his rival Hillary Clinton’s argument that he is less electable than her given his recent series of troubles and because he has not been fully “vetted.”
Tales from the Trail
Bill Clinton is making news again.
Campaigning for his wife Hillary in Pennsylvania, the former president accused the Obama campaign of “playing the race card” and later lashed out at a reporter who asked him about his comments.
SCRANTON, Pa. – Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama kicked off a day of campaigning in Pennsylvania by dropping by a Scranton diner for a breakfast of waffles, sausage and orange juice.
But the press corps went hungry — hungry for an answer that is.
The Illinois senator brushed aside a question from one reporter on his reaction to former President Jimmy Carter’s description of a positive meeting with leaders of the Islamist Palestinian group Hamas.
“Why can’t I just eat my waffle?” Obama replied.
Reporters traveling with the Illinois senator, fighting with his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton over Pennsylvania ahead of its vote on Tuesday, are venting frustration over a lack of access to the candidate lately. Obama has not held a press availability in 10 days, though he has given dozens of interviews to local press in Pennyslvania.
Republicans have pounced on Obama’s “waffle” comment, suggesting he is evading tough questions.
“Today, Obama continued to dodge questions from the media, responding that he just wanted to eat his waffle,” the Republican National Committee said in an email sent to reporters that included press accounts of the waffle incident at the Glider diner.
Both Obama and Clinton are far less accessible to the media than presumptive Republican nominee John McCain, known for holding lengthy question-and-answer sessions with reporters on his Straight Talk Express bus.
The sessions last so long that some reporters say they run out of questions.
WASHINGTON – White House hopeful Barack Obama often says his “funny name” is one of the things that makes his status as the Democratic frontrunner so unexpected.
But at a luncheon with U.S. newspaper publishers and editors on Monday, a publisher made an embarrassing gaffe when asking the Illinois senator a question about the Taliban and al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden — but accidentally said “Obama” instead of “Osama.”
“I think that was Osama bin Laden,” Obama corrected him.
Realizing he had made an error, the publisher, Dean Singleton, chairman of the board of the Associated Press and founder of the NewsMedia Group newspaper company, apologized.
“If I did that, I’m so sorry,” Singleton said.
Obama made light of the mistake, drawing a mixture of laughter and some relief in the audience, which had been taken aback by the gaffe.
“No, no, this is part of the exercise I’ve been going through for the last 15 months,” Obama said. “Which is why it’s pretty impressive that I’m still standing here.”
ATLANTA – Commentator and activist Tavis Smiley has quit the syndicated “Tom Joyner Morning Show” after 12 years because of the “hate” he got from the show’s mainly black audience over his criticism of Sen. Barack Obama, Joyner said.
PITTSBURGH – Sen. Barack Obama held a campaign rally on Friday in the Soldiers and Sailors museum in Pittsburgh. No drama there? Well, the building was used to film a crucial sequence in the movie “The Silence of the Lambs.”
For anyone not familiar with the 1991 thriller, the scene occurs when serial killer Hannibal Lecter, played by Anthony Hopkins, is locked in a large cage from which he toys with Clarice Starling, a young FBI trainee played by Jodie Foster .