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Obama slams not Hillary, but Bill

world Updated: Jan 21, 2008 23:05 IST

AFP
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Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama on Monday lashed out against former president Bill Clinton, calling his role in the presidential race "pretty troubling."

Clinton has been aggressively campaigning on behalf of his wife, Hillary, the current leader in the race.

"You know the former president, who I think all of us have a lot of regard for, has taken his advocacy on behalf of his wife to a level that I think is pretty troubling," Obama said in an interview with ABC's Good Morning America show.

"He continues to make statements that are not supported by facts — whether it's about my record of opposition to the war in Iraq or our approach to organising in Las Vegas," the US senator from Illinois continued.

Obama was apparently referring to Clinton's much-publicised "fairy tale" comment about Obama's position on the Iraq war, and Clinton's efforts to prevent Nevada's Democratic party from holding caucuses last Saturday inside Las Vegas casinos — a move the Hillary Clinton campaign feared would help Obama.

Before the January 7 New Hampshire primary, the former president dismissed Obama's assertion of superior judgment based on his claim that he had opposed the war from the start.

"Give me a break. This whole thing is the biggest fairy tale I've ever seen," Bill Clinton said. Unlike Obama, Hillary Clinton has voted in the US Senate to authorise the war.

"I understand him wanting to promote his wife's candidacy," Obama said of Clinton’s statements. "She's got a record that she can run on.

"But I think it's important that we try to maintain some ... level of honesty and candour during the course of the campaign. If we don't, then we feed the cynicism that has led so many Americans to be turned off politics."