Obama Accused of 'Rewriting History' on Presidential Aspirations

By Monisha Bansal | July 7, 2008 | 8:32 PM EDT

(CNSNews.com) - Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) took aim at Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) on Sunday, claiming that Obama is "rewriting history" when he says he has not had long- held aspirations for the White House.

In a statement released late Sunday, Clinton criticized Obama for saying, "I'm not running to fulfill some long-held plans or because I think it's open to me." In Boston on Sunday evening and in Iowa earlier that day, Obama had said: "I have not been planning to run for president for however number of years some of the other candidates have been planning for."

Clinton spokesperson Phil Singer, in the statement, said: "Senator Obama's comment today is fundamentally at odds with what his teachers, family, classmates, and staff have said about his plans to run for President. Senator Obama's campaign rhetoric is getting in the way of his reality."

"Senator Obama's relatives and friends say he has been talking about running for President for at least the last 15 years. So who's not telling the truth, them or him?" said Singer.

Clinton cited members of Obama's Senate staff, law school friends, and a comment from Obama's brother-in-law 15 years ago, as well as his kindergarten and third grade teachers.

According to the Associated Press, "Iis Darmawan, 63, Senator Obama's kindergarten teacher, remembers him as an exceptionally tall and curly haired child who quickly picked up the local language and had sharp math skills. He wrote an essay titled, 'I Want To Become President,' the teacher said." Obama attended elementary school in Indonesia.

The Obama campaign did not return requests for comment for this article, but according to the New York Sun , a spokeswoman for Obama, Jennifer Psaki, ridiculed the Clinton camp's tactics. "I'm sure tomorrow they'll attack him for being a flip-flopper because he told his second-grade teacher he wanted to be an astronaut," she said.

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