February 11th, 2008
03:14 PM ET
8 years ago

Clinton dismisses weekend losses

 Clinton downplayed her weekend losses Monday.

Clinton downplayed her weekend losses Monday.

WHITE MARSH, Maryland (CNN) - Hillary Clinton on Monday explained away Barack Obama's clean sweep of the weekend's caucuses and primaries as a product of a caucus system that favors "activists" and, in the case of the Louisiana primary, an energized African-American community.

She told reporters who had gathered to watch her tour a General Motors plant here that "everybody knew, you all knew, what the likely outcome of these recent contests were."

"These are caucus states by and large, or in the case of Louisiana, you know, a very strong and very proud African-American electorate, which I totally respect and understand."

Clinton has publicly dismissed the caucus voting system since before Super Tuesday, seeking to lower expectations heading into a series of contests that played to Obama's advantage. His campaign features what many consider to be a stronger and more dedicated grassroots organization than Clinton's.

Noting that "my husband never did well in caucus states either," Clinton argued that caucuses are "primarily dominated by activists" and that "they don't represent the electorate, we know that."

The New York senator went out of her way to say she was "absolutely" looking forward to the Ohio and Texas primaries in March, where she believes voters are more receptive to her bread-and-butter message.

She also downplayed many of Obama's Super Tuesday victories, describing them as states that Democrats should not expect to win in November.

"It is highly unlikely we will win Alaska or North Dakota or Idaho or Nebraska," she said, naming several of Obama's red state wins. "But we have to win Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, California, Arizona, New Mexico, Florida, Michigan ... And we've got to be competitive in places like Texas, Missouri and Oklahoma."

Watch Hillary Clinton assess her weekend losses

- CNN Political Producer Peter Hamby

soundoff (705 Responses)
  1. Unsure

    So she's pulling a "guiliana"(sp).......skipping the small states and counting on the big ones....it didn't work to well for him maybe she'll do better him.

    February 11, 2008 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  2. MKO

    "These are caucus states by and large, or in the case of Louisiana, you know, a very strong and very proud African-American electorate, which I totally respect and understand."
    She just lost her African American voters with that comment.
    BARACK 08!

    February 11, 2008 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  3. AJ, IL

    Wow! Bad form Hillary! Is it me or is Hillary dismissing White people? She is a polarizing sore loser! Hillary has said that the people who caucused and the Louisiana primary electorate don't count. This is very reminscent of her first loss in Iowa. She dissed the Iowa caucus goers as well.

    Sam Jr....Obama didn't win just a few states, in all totaled he won 19 of the 29 states that have already voted compared to Hillary's 10. If Obama can sweep Hillary in the next 5 contests, he would have won 10 in a row and have 24 wins to Hillary's 10 wins.

    Obama in 08!

    February 11, 2008 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  4. harry K

    Toronto Girl .It take a Canadian to tell the obious! Sure The republican sttes will vote for OBAMA.. The are scared of HILLARY and remember she has won NY, CA
    FLORIDA, MICHICAN and for sure she will win PEN., OHIO, TEXAS, among others

    GO HILLARY

    February 11, 2008 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  5. art

    one point about Caucuses: they are not confidential. So during a caucus an Obama voting husband can perhaps convince his Hillary suporting wife to come accross to Obama even though she might have voted for Hillary in a primary. This is why caucuses favor Obama because men seem to support him more than women do (according to CNN – Obama's best polical team).

    February 11, 2008 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  6. Ada

    Hillary, I am really getting sick of you and your political games. You change your campaign managers to match ethnic groups in states that are about to hold elections. Now, you have an African American woman because of the up coming elections. Only fools would not see through you. I will never never fall for the manipulations coming out of the Clintons. I am a graduate student.

    Hillary, please move aside. Obama is the toughest, badest guy out there.

    February 11, 2008 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  7. James

    "they don't represent the electorate, we know that."

    Way to belittle the electorate. Please Hillary take credit for your failures. You lost contests fair and square. Stop attempting to say that caucuses are rigged against you or that Louisiana is not considered a fair primary.

    You lost and your attempt to rationalize your losses only insults the electorate. We will not forget and we will return the favor.

    I'm a Democrat, yet I feel that it is time to start an anti-campaign against Hillary's next senate run.

    February 11, 2008 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  8. teachin101

    I wish Hillary got half of the Media coverage Obama gets.
    Check out CNN and the rest of them it is all about Obama. No wonder he has a movement. The media has created it.
    Go Hillary!!!!
    I could not agree more!!! I do think the media is covering this election withbias
    perhaps oprah owns cnn too!

    February 11, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  9. Matt, KS

    Hillary could be the most arrogant politician since Bush himself.

    For the sake of the party she needs to show she can recognize reality, since we already know what it looks like to have a president of the US who can't see the writing on the wall.

    Go ahead, keep explaining away 20 and 30 point landslides.

    Maybe Wal-Mart will take her back as a corporate lawyer after she gets leveled in Ohio.

    February 11, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  10. Doc Jerome

    This is desperation masquerading as leadership. Hilliary's campaign is falling apart and she with it.

    February 11, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  11. Charles

    I have never heard anything like this before...according to Hillary Clinton caucuses are "primarily dominated by activists" and that "they don't represent the electorate, we know that." Wow! Sounds like a very sore loser to me. Is this the way she is going to govern the USA when she becomes president? I dont like a leader like that...she has no heart...thats why I still doubt her tears in NH were genuine! I mean if you can cry becuase you truly care about this nation why can you not be at least honest enough to admit that you lost? I dont get it!!!

    February 11, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  12. He is not heavy he is a brother

    You are right david, it is dolts like you who are not ready for a black man in the White House. I bet you sister is ready for a black man............................in the White House.

    February 11, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  13. Carrie

    Pennsylvania for Obama!

    February 11, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  14. norb

    I wonder how many of you voted for George W, not once but twice! Bill Clinton may not have been no alter boy, but what I can remember, everyone was pretty sad to see him go. We went from a surplus budget to anoutright stupid war that everone was duped. I'm sure most of you thought we'd go in there bomb the hell out of and have some fun watching all the destruction on television. Well, it didn't work out that way did it?. Even George W's daddy had the sense not to occupy Iraq, Biggest mistake that was made is that George W wasn't impeached. He had driven this country in the ground. What's that you say about Nero? Please people, you have to get real if you want to solve any issues. Obama I'm sure is a nice guy. However, does he really have the experience to run a country? George W the part-time Governor from Texas didn't really have any experience either and look what has happened.

    February 11, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  15. David

    Someone should tell the Clintons that caucuses do in fact matter. They are only trying to pplay headgames with a population they believe to be ignorant.

    February 11, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  16. Grant

    I love how Hillary referred to those who caucused over the weekend as mere "activists." The suggestion is that we should write off the huge turnout in Maine and other states this year. I find this downright disrespectful for two reasons. First, many people turned out to caucus for the first time in their lives. To say these folks are activists smears their sincere efforts to participate in our democracy. Second, many turned out over the weekend for Clinton. Should the 40% who voted for her in Maine be thought of as "activists" as well?

    February 11, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  17. Never little o

    I would never ever vote obama...give me a primary or General election anyday and the results will spell Victory for Hillary!

    Life long dem. the division is done it will never be reconciled. Nobama no matta.

    February 11, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  18. Greg

    I hope it comes down to the DNC. Everyone knows that the Clinton camp was strongly against Howard Dean's endeavor for Candidacy. Now it will be time for some payback. We need someone NOT fully plugged into the political machine. Obama '08!

    February 11, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  19. RealChange

    Like in sports, rules are set before competition. What's wrong with superdelegates concept? Similarly, what's wrong with caucuses system?

    Only thing I'm concerned is we have GW Bush 7 years again just like today's Obama. Do the comparison in terms of articulations in debates!

    February 11, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  20. IDA SMITH

    EVERYONE IT SEEMS THAT HAS TO DO WITH CNN AND MSNBC IS ALWAYS PRAISING OBAMA AND EVERYTHING ABOUT HILLARY CLINTON IS ON THE NEGATIVE SIDE. SO IT REALLY DOESN'T MATTER WHAT IS WRITTEN HERE BUT THIS LADY IS FOR HILLARY BECAUSE SHE HAS THE EXPERIENCE MORE AND BEYOND THAT OBAMA HAS. SHE HAS WITHSTOOD THE RIGHT WING AND ALL THE FIRE THAT HAS BEEN THROWN AT HER AND STILL IS STANDING WITH HER HEAD HELD HIGH, AND STILL TAKING THE NEWS MEDIAS DIRT THAT THEY THROW AT HER.
    AND BECAUSE OF THAT I WILL VOTE FOR HER.

    February 11, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  21. Ron G

    There's absolutely zero chance of California, New York, Pennsylvania, and the rest of the exorbitantly blue states ever voting for a Republican.

    Not true it happened when Mondale ran – remember??

    February 11, 2008 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  22. Cherish

    When you say that "sure he's won a few states" it is important to know that he has won

    20 OUT OF 31 STATES. THAT IS 64.5% OF THE STATES SO FAR.

    And to say the Republicans are looking forward to Obama being the candidate is absurd. Hillary unites the Republican base (and some Democrats) against her, while some of Obama's votes come from the other side of the aisle – IT'S JUST A FACT!

    Shoot, I'd try to downplay a primary sweep if I was on the downside too!!

    February 11, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  23. TJ

    Wow, if you support Hillary after these sore loser comments, you need some help.

    Obama 'o8.

    February 11, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  24. Maria

    Mrs. Clinton was to recieve my vote here in Texas on March 4th. However, I'm seeing the tide turn in Obama's favor daily in my state. Everywhere in the state, my family and friends speak of voting for him. I will now vote for Obama too as I refuse to lose the White House to another Bush!

    February 11, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  25. Martin in PA

    HRC is merely doing what every politician does – "spin-doctoring." Anyone with a brain will dismiss such "spin" immediately... no matter which candidate is spinning..

    February 11, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29