Look who’s complaining? Hillary!

 
‘Complain, who me?’ Obama asks
 
Barack Obama

SEN. Barack Obama, running late, arrives at the Williamsport Regional Airport in Williamsport, Pa  

 

Jae C. Hong/AP 

 

By JEFF ZELENY
New York Times
April 18, 2008
 
 
WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. – One day after Senator Barack Obama mockingly criticized the latest Democratic presidential debate for “playing gotcha games,” he has purposefully not waded into another debate over the debate.
 
“Did you hear me complain?” Mr. Obama said upon landing here, answering a shouted question from a reporter. “You tell me, who’s been complaining about the press for the last six months? You tell me?”
 
Campaigning in Pennsylvania today, Mr. Obama had not responded to Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton’s assertion that he had been “complaining about the hard questions he was asked” at the Democratic debate Wednesday evening. Her comments echoed those of former President Bill Clinton, who suggested Mr. Obama was whining.
 
But as he walked off his campaign plane here this afternoon in this north-central Pennsylvania town, Mr. Obama briefly answered a reporter’s question. He smiled, with his suit coat slung over his shoulder beneath the warm afternoon sun. With the campaign running late, aides quickly drew the questioning to a close, and the motorcade quickly made its way to a town meeting for Mr. Obama at Lycoming College.
 
On Thursday, Mr. Obama had criticized the format of the debate, telling a North Carolina audience that the issues of chief concern to voters – the economy, health care, the Iraq war – weren’t covered until the second-half of the ABC News debate. During the first 45 minutes of the debate, Mr. Obama was on the defensive over questions about his patriotism, understanding of small-town America and the incendiary remarks of his former pastor.
 
“They like stirring up controversy and they like playing gotcha games, getting us to attack each other. And I have to say Senator Clinton looked in her element,” Mr. Obama told voters in Raleigh, N.C. “She was taking every opportunity to get a dig in there. You know, that’s all right. That’s her right. That’s her right to kind of twist the knife a little bit.”
 
On Friday, in the early campaign stops of the day, Mr. Obama barely mentioned Mrs. Clinton. Instead, he chose to focus his attention on Senator John McCain, the presumptive Republican nominee.
 

 

 

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