Clinton Campaign Hopes "Bitter" Comments Stick

(CBS)

From CBS News' Fernando Suarez:


GOLDSBORO, N.C. -- Just hours after the now infamous "bitter" comments made by Barak Obama surfaced in news reports, Hillary Clinton's campaign retooled their message from top to bottom. She slammed Obama on the stump and her campaign has been pushing Obama's comments behind the scenes.

Her husband is getting in on the act as well. At a rally in rural North Carolina hosted by President Bill Clinton, a few dozen people were seen wearing stickers that read "I'm Not Bitter!" When asked about the stickers, a Clinton campaign spokesman said they were printed up by the campaign's North Carolina team and distributed. Clinton staffers initially denied having printed them up.

Obama's comments have attracted copious media attention, and they are being interpreted by many in political circles as a serious gaffe. Obama said today he regretted the comments, but stopped short of apologizing for them.

It is clear that the Clinton campaign sees Obama's comments as an opportunity to make some headway in the race. A campaign aide said Obama's comments are powerful because they came out of his own mouth. Similarly, the media attention given to Clinton's Bosnia blunder hurt her in the polls in Pennsylvania, and with the primary now 10 days away, the Clinton campaign hopes the same will happen to their opponent.

It may be just a matter of time before the campaign starts mass producing "I'm Not Bitter!" signs to be handed out at rallies.

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