FLASHBACK: ‘Obama Can Handle 3 a.m. Crisis Call’, Clinton Says

June 07, 2009 – Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Sunday took back what was arguably her toughest criticism of her former presidential primary foe, saying President Obama is entirely capable of handling the so-called “3 a.m. call.”


“The president in his public actions and demeanor, and certainly in private with me and with the national security team, has been strong, thoughtful, decisive…I think he is doing a terrific job. And it’s an honor to serve with him.”

The hypothetical phone call was the centerpiece of one of Clinton’s most powerful primary campaign ads. The ad, which raised the question of whether her one-time opponent could handle an international crisis in the middle of the night, complemented her criticism on the trail that Obama was naive and untested.

Now that Clinton serves in Obama’s Cabinet, Clinton said Obama “absolutely” has answered that question — in the affirmative.

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