Did Obama Give Hillary The Finger Today?

It’s appears that way to me. The timing, the gesture, the sheer passive-aggressiveness of the act, which would fit Obama’s passive-aggressive campaign, couldn’t be simply a habitual gesture. Judge for yourself.

I’ll withhold most of my profane reactions to this classless, deliberate playing to a young audience who have no political history to use as an anchor point for judgment. Barack Obama is an ass. And you can bet Hillary Clinton, in private, will react much, much more strongly. [I hope she keeps Bill away from any cameras for 24 hours, at least, to let him cool off.]

I also hope she demands a public apology and lets him refuse to give her one. He’s played one too many passive-aggressive campaign games.

The Traditional Media won’t ignore this video (the full “looked in her elementvideo is at Politico and TPM ). It’s red-meat for them.

h/t to vtlover at Mydd.

UPDATE (7.58 pm pst by Pamela Leavey): The Swamp has picked up on this (emphasis mine):

Sen. Barack Obama was on the stump today in Raleigh, N.C., the day after his debate in Philadelphia with Sen. Hillary Clinton. Have a look at his body language when he spoke of the sort of debate it was — a “gotcha” fest — and about Clinton being “in her element.”

“Last night, Sen. Clinton and I had our 21st debate of the year,” Obama said today. “Last night, I think we set a new record, because it took us 45 minutes before we even started talking about a single issue that matters to the American people.

“I don’t blame Washington for this, because that’s just how Washington is,” he said. “They like stirring up controversy. They like playing gotcha games…

.. and I would say Sen. Clinton was in her element.”

And that’s the part of the videotape, courtesy of Fox News, where viewers need to pay some attention to the hand that Obama raised to his face, and the finger with which he scratched it.

And before the “finger” there was the “Snub.”

UPDATE 2 (11.15 pm pst by Pamela Leavey): For the sake of those arguing against the gesture here’s a freeze frame from the CBS video that captures the gesture at a different angle (from what I can see the index finger is bent down in the shot):


UPDATE 3 (11.30 pm pst by Pamela Leavey): From the LA Times Blog Top of the Ticket: Barack Obama makes a one-fingered gesture while speaking of Hillary Clinton

This is one of those political moments that really needs few words.

We’ll no doubt hear much more about this incident in coming days. […]

The presidential candidate raises his right hand to seemingly scratch his cheek.

He doesn’t use his whole hand though. Just one finger. Briefly. A couple of strokes.

Democratic presidential candidate and Illinois Senator Barack Obama touches his cheek with one finger while criticizing his opponent New York Senator Hillary Clinton April 17, 2008 during remarks in Raleigh, NC

He pauses. He smiles slyly as the crowd begins to mumble and then he tries, somewhat distracted, to continue his remarks, smiling as the buzz spreads through the crowd.

He’ll no doubt deny it later, but that mischievous smile seems to confirm plenty. And the crowd sure sees something.

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69 Responses to Did Obama Give Hillary The Finger Today?

  1. Obamamerican

    Apparently YOU seem to think Janis had a different president than YOU did.


    We were all stuck with the same loser FYI.

    Though around here, most of the longtime readers are also longtime John Kerry suppporters, so I will thank you not to drop your rude remarks here again and insult our readers because YOU think YOU know more because YOU are an “Obamamerican.”

    Got it?

  2. kcowley and alec bantor

    It’s ONE speech — only. Just one speech. Different camera angles from the different news agencies fliming it. All of the camera operators can’t stand in the exact same spot.

    Both of the candidates travel with a very large press contingent and then there are local camera operators at events as well. The press is usually provided with a riser from which they camera operators record the events. Thus each film clip you are seeing has a bit of different perspective (and lighting) but if you look closely you see some of the same people in each video.

  3. JimB

    Thanks for sharing the link to DKos–ObamaCentral.

  4. Ginny: Best of luck. Look forward to seeing your piece when you can. Health care is still clearly still at the top of the list on domestic issues.

  5. Hillary4Prez says:

    Of course that was the middle finger. It was the scratch oops go eff yourself middle finger. Anyone who cannot recognize that is a socially clueless weirdo.

    OF COURSE it was the middle finger. The crowd knew it and you can see that he knew it too by his sh*t eating grin on his face.

    He is so immature and clueless. He doesn’t even know what he is DOING!!!

    Then he brushed his shoulders off like he was Big Pimpin’ JAY-Z. Seriously, LOSER?

    Barack Obama is unpresidential and he does not take this seriously. I DO!!!!!!! IT’S MY (OUR) COUNTRY!!!!

  6. Obamamerican says:

    Pamela Leavey Said: on April 18th, 2008 at 8:38 pm


    Though around here, most of the longtime readers are also longtime John Kerry suppporters, so I will thank you not to drop your rude remarks here again and insult our readers because YOU think YOU know more because YOU are an “Obamamerican.”

    Got it?

    And who edited my comment about saying it’s the bigotry in some people that will make them choose even the most appalling choice over a better qualified one? And how did that violate any rules? Oh btw, you right wing, faux news watching, duck hunting xenophobes don’t fool me one bit. You all want Hillary to win ’cause you know Barack is going to make that Geriatric fossil look like a Nursing Home Patient when the real elections come around. It will be interesting to hear what McCain now thinks of Asians and other minorities now that he is running for President…. We all know what he thinks though (links below)….. And eh Ms. Leavey, what did you say? I didn’t GET it…. maybe you can expound on that?




  7. Obamamerican says:

    Hillary4Prez Said: on April 18th, 2008 at 10:55 pm

    Then he brushed his shoulders off like he was Big Pimpin’ JAY-Z. Seriously, LOSER?

    Barack Obama is unpresidential and he does not take this seriously. I DO!!!!!!! IT’S MY (OUR) COUNTRY!!!!

    First of all, I think you’ve got the great Luo son of Africa mixed up with the C student loser you currently have in the White House. Secondly, did you say YOUR (My/Our) country? You know I see through your racist taunt, don’t you? Let me make it categorically clear to you…. I don’t care if Barack wins or not (don’t think he cares either to be quite frank), but unless you want to wake up the millions of enslaved Africans and Native Americans on whose back and blood your ancestors built this country, you had better not start along those unwise lines. This is OUR country too and we don’t need a Clinton third term of sexual and ethical scandals or a Bush thirf-term disguised under the auspices of a McSame character who can’t stand minorities, especially “Gooks” (to quote him)……

  8. Obamamerican says:

    Hillary’s Terrorist Ties…..


    Here is an Excerpt….

    “In this week’s debate, Hillary Clinton said all of her “baggage” has been “rummaged through” for years. But important features of her close relationship with known terrorist sympathizers and Hamas supporters are still opaque to the public view.

    Clearly Barack Obama should not have stayed in Rev Wright’s church and his campaign should not maintain a “friendly” relationship with William Ayers. But what about Hillary’s service on a board that gave money to a terrorist organization? And her hosting of a terror supporting group in the White House? And her acceptance of a $50,000 contribution from that group? And the statements of terrorists that they are hoping for her to win.

    These are far more serious connections than have been established for Obama and either Wright or Ayers.”

  9. So, 57 comments so far! I hope I don’t offend out there, but this mass dumbing down of America just amazes me. I guess we are now suppose to pick our favorite candidate based on his/her perceived body jestures. This makes as much sense as the lapel pin debate. Guess these kinds of contrived issues trump Iraq, crime, medical coverage, education, the environment, home foreclosures etc. in the minds of middle America. How very sad!! Trite issues such as these are the very reason that we have ended up with “The Decider” for eight years. This particular blog entry is obviously appealing to all of you tabloid news fans out there.
    The sheer hate and venom that’s being spewed on Obama is beyond words. Just review some of the entrys to see the gutter language that is being used against him. As you may or may not know, of the three possible who might next occupy the White House–Barack has the most secret service agents assigned to him. Due to there being so many crackposts out there, there is nothing more than some back woods (perhaps small town) person would like to do than knock him off. Don’t get me wrong, I am not accussing any of my co-boggers of being this type. However, the language being used. undoubtedly contirbutes to this dementied, racial, mined set. No, I am not playing the race card, just noting unchecked hatetred when I see it.
    As a member of a different minority group, gay Americans, I am keenly aware of the various perceptions which drive people to hate, abuse, and even kill us. Just the perception of being gay, has often contributed to a person’s death. Let’s tie him to a rail because he MAY have given Hillary the finger. Let’s knock off this particular male because his voice is too high and he was just one block from a gay bar. Makes no difference if he actually is gay–but my actions are justified because of my perception of him!! God help us all Buzz

  10. Peace Out For Unity says:

    No doubt Obama had jestures going on ! Umm ?

  11. John P. says:

    can’t wait to check back tomorrow to see what ground-shattering important items the community here has dug up.

  12. Peace Out For Unity says:

    Psychological humorous quiet signal of jesture given his communications at the time and part of Obama’s personality come back? He’s a character,no doubt about it ! Makes ya wonder and he used other humorous jestures with his body language.

  13. Peace Out For Unity says:

    The flip off o’l itch ? I’d be surprised if he engaged in debate after that last one and Clinton’s experience,honesty and direct response in communications on tough questions did shine through. He was kicked hard and to be fair,he did well on comeback. Was he giving Clinton the bird ? Who knows !

  14. Peace Out For Unity says:

    Foolish posts concerning a jesture ? Perhaps but shows we are all in tune with every move Obama’s making. Watching him like a hawk on a mouse ! “Every move you make,every bond you break,every smile you fake……” Name that tune !

  15. Obamamerican

    DO NOTI repeatDO NOT insinuate here that readers are bigots or racists. That is why your comment was edited.

  16. Tim says:

    Before I post I always check the source. Uh let’s see…. I gather that the founders of this website are supporting Hillary. DUH. Yo Hillary supporters are getting soo desperate. Hillary is a freaking liar. You try to make a case that he flipped her off. You know what Obama has 2 small children you goofs. You are a bunch of sore losers. I will enjoy watching Hillary deservedly lose this nomination. Like Obama is really going to give her the finger aat this point in the race. I am sure his response will be that he better be more careful gesturing infuture. If anti Obama blogs are going to study him this carefully. geesus!

  17. DownwithObama says:


  18. Truth Seeker says:

    People, Senator Obama flipped off Senator Clinton last Thursday.


    The media has fallen down big-time on this disgusting behavior on Senator Obama’s part. Since when is “flipping off” your opponent acceptable political discourse? I have been writing all Democratic members of Congress asking them to disavow Senator Finger and support Senator Clinton.

    Throughout this primary season, I have seen widespread misogyny on the part of the public and especially the media. Recall Senator Finger’s pointed use of “she” at the debates when referring to Senator Clinton even though she is sitting right next to him.

    What was the Washington Post intend to do? A mention in the blogs is NOT ENOUGH.

    Women, are we going to take this? We can do something about this. Contact Congress.org and email Democratic members. Contact Howard Dean at http://www.democrats.org/page/petition/chairman.

    Ladies, the time is now and the last big state is Pennsylvania. We can do it.

    Also, log onto http://www.hillaryclinton.com, contribute, even 10 dollars would be tremendous. And, volunteer to call for Hillary, especially in PA. There is an application that lets you help with phone calls to voters in the upcoming primaries and it is free!!

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