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. H in GA

    This is so sad. She dismisses the states that caucus as just being those who are activist organized. She's has been the front runner since the start and all the primaries and caucuses were supposed to prove her as the strongest candidate that would go on to be nominated as the Democratic candidate. If she had won in all of those places she would be singing their acclaim. She loses and they don't really matter anyway because they "wont be won in the general election" anyway. Does that not sound defeatist to anyone else? If African-Americans show up in states and vote for Obama then that becomes them just voting for a black man. Well he is part white as well so I guess that would have to explain why white people vote for him to. So what about the women who show up and vote for her? Why doesn't it apply? Or how about the Latinos who show up and vote for her because of her name or what her husband has done? She's someone who claims her voters do so because of her merits while people who vote for her opponents just do so on a whim or because of racial lines.

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

    Here we go again. A debate between intellectual giants whose idea of thinking is typing, IN CAPITAL LETTERS, GO OBAMA, or GO HILLARY. Here's an idea for all of you. GO READ A BOOK.

    February 11, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  3. chris-seattle

    i work 60 hours a week and run my own business and i was able to make it to the caucus. so that is a bunch of garbage that because you work means you can't make it to the caucus. when a primary is held on a tuesday it doesnt really favor the working individual.

    February 11, 2008 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  4. art

    Obama didn't care about Michigan and Florida.

    February 11, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  5. don

    Lousiana? Because of the african americans? About all the vote she has received from white voters? Wrong argument. Liberlas will never change. Vote McCain!

    February 11, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  6. Luis

    This is really simple...except for teh Liberals........NO to Socialism, NO to more Clinton scandals, NO to Billary..........not complicated....really

    February 11, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  7. Joe

    Here is the most important part of the article: "[Hillary] also downplayed many of Obama's Super Tuesday victories, describing them states that Democrats should not expect to win in November."

    So are we to believe that just because Democrats don't typically win those states, that they shouldn't try??? In fact the states that Hillary is referring to are more likey to be "swing" states than the traditional Democratic states that she is winning.

    Pure spin, and we are not buying it. Just congratulate Obama and move on.

    February 11, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  8. Not Buying It

    All the States that HRC mentioned are Democratic State- MA, NY, CA etc will always vote democratic. Its those red states that Obama is winning that will count. The Latino vote in the West Coast is different from that in Texas and Ohio.
    HRC will lose in Texas and Ohio, trust me on this one.
    I hope you will post this one

    February 11, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  9. EMMIE

    Why does Obama dodge Hillary's request for debates all the time? He just likes to keep this empty momentum going like a rock star filling arenas of "hope" and "Change". Where is his substance? We all just heard about him yesterday. Personally, I want to ask him about Rezco, his experience with "blow" as he calls it, his middle name Hussain...so much going to come out on him when McCain gets ahold of him. Hillary outshines him in EVERY debate, which is why he keeps running on his airy speeches and loser endorsements (except the bank of Oprah, which I'm sure he can keep withdrawing from) GO HILLARY

    February 11, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  10. Stephina

    Dennis

    Don't worry about Obama. It does not matter about the votes, the delegates, or how media coverage he gets. In the end, the next President will be either Clinton or McCain.

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

    I've listened to the Obamaites extoll the virtue of their candidate and in 8 years I might take them seriously. He has no earthly idea how to be the representative of the free world if the 1st thing he would do is sit down with the anti-American regimes personally. Doesn't he realize that this means nothing if there isn't a tentative platform of what is to be discussed? His healthcare plan will never work because unless everyone is covered you cannot keep the premiums down where the average family can afford to buy. He does have good speech writers – it seems like I remember the same speeches in the 60s; however, this is not the 60's and the world doesn't love us like it did then. Hillary Clinton has the inside scoop on what it takes to be president and she has the experience and knowledge to accomplish a lot during her tenure. I'm sorry Barack doesn't but if both were a team – it would be great.

    February 11, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  12. Phi

    -

    Its hard to belive, obama got this far with no experience — just 2004 he got elected Senate and also Delivered keynote address- Nothing else ….he can inspire but dont you think we need more than this

    Obam's whole campaign is based on nothing but hype and fluff..

    ----

    February 11, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  13. Red

    LOL

    Some of your comments are making my sides hurt, truly.

    Let's pick this apart, shall we?

    There are two ways to lose-graciously, and snottily. Hillary is taking the snotty route. Is this a surprise? No. Have you people not been paying attention? Do you not recall the eight years that she was the First Lady? "Right wing conspiracy", that ring a bell? Of course she had to take that back when Bill fessed up. To downplay your loss is one thing. To imply that "they really don't count, anyway", well now, that hurts. And don't think for one moment that that won't come back to bite her in the butt.

    I keep seeing mention of the race card being played by Sen. Obama. Now, why is that? He is African-American, hello! Should he state that he is in fact bi-racial? Oh, wait, he did. He's not telling, or even asking for people to vote for him because of that. He's asking us to see the fact that in this country, what you look like shouldn't matter. Now, Bill mentioning Jesse Jackson also winning in SC, that didn't sit too well with folks, because it IMPLIED that they were only voting for Obama because of race. Oh, and while we're at it, don't forget that while listening to speeches and sermons at Ebenezer church on MLK's birthday, our esteemed former president was caught, on camera, sleeping. Do you think that this had no determination in the outcome of that contest?

    As far as CNN skewing towards Obama in media coverage...ummm, which CNN are you guys watching? On any given day, Hillary is mentioned or featured at least three to one. Pay attention. Do your own vote count. Believe me, my set has been on CNN since last summer. Hillary has nothing to worry about as far as media coverage. She needs to worry that her campaign appears to be heading towards free fall.

    Karl Rove stumping for her isn't going to help, either. Oh, didn't you know that?

    One last thing. While I do support Sen Obama, I will support whoever the DNC chooses as the nominee. I just won't be very happy about it if my candidate isn't chosen. Perhaps we should all stop finger-pointing and focus on winning back the White House, yeah?

    February 11, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  14. LL

    Fox news has reported that lots of GOP voted for OBAMA, if you held your nose to watch it.
    I have heard from a radio show that a conservative white woman called and said she hates Clinton so much so she will register as independent to vote Obama.
    This is exactly what happened in some republican dominated small towns (almost no democrats at all), people registered as democrats/independent to vote for Obama, then they switched back next day.
    Caucus is biased. First, it requires lots of time to do it, second it needs great organization efforts, third people tend to hide their opinions in public, Obama supporters happen to be very motivated to do aboves, not Clinton supporters.
    Caucus results will not be an effective indicator for General election, which is based on primary. If you have to argue that it worked out for democrats, may you please tell me why democrats haven't won 2000 and 2004?
    Young people can easily switch their sides, independent voters can too, not to mention the fake independents and democrats by GOP.
    GOP are now preparing to attack Obama before GE (not now though, not the best time). There are so many things they can talk about him, his middle name, his religion, his church, his wife, his slum landlord friend, his drug use and on and on.
    So I would say democrats are screwed again this time, just like 2000 and 2004.

    February 11, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  15. Phi

    Its hard to belive, obama got this far with no experience — just 2004 he got elected Senate and also Delivered keynote address- Nothing else ….he can inspire but dont you think we need more than this

    Obam's whole campaign is based on nothing but hype and fluff..

    Hillary 08 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    ———-

    February 11, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  16. Chris

    Why is everyone making a big deal when Hillary blows off her losses in a state. Obama has done the same thing, so all of the obama supporters can shove it. Hillary supporters keep up your support because we know that she is the only chance that America has.

    Hillary 08!!!!

    February 11, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  17. wycliffe

    WOW....Hillary every vote counts..do not disrespect my vote for you in Maine. I wish I voted for OBAMA. I hope you lose thats what you are.

    February 11, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  18. tim

    As a Canadian resident I cannot belive the voting public in your country are as brain less regarding the desion of state to elect the person who is the next person for the white house. My vote is OBAMA

    February 11, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  19. Ed, Watertown MA

    But now that we know McCain is the GOP candidate, how can anyone deny that in every single matchup of Clinton vs McCain or Obama vs McCain, Clinton consistantly runs 5-9 points worse than Obama.

    Clinton vs Romney, she would have done fine. Clinton vs McCain, she's a loser.

    It always comes down to that independent swing vote and Obama can win it, Clinton just can't.

    February 11, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  20. Abe

    Someone wrote this on another blog earlier, please read, its very well thought out.

    February 7, 2008 5:11 am ET

    In the Media's eyes, Clinton will never do right. Obama will always be a prince. If it were Clinton getting Oprah, and all the celebrities, the press would spin it to be a celebrity campaign. I agree that the Media is being very unfair to not only Clinton but to Huckabee and Ron Paul as well.

    I noticed Jack Nicholson endorsed Hillary, but there was no mention of it. I noticed many other establishments, and celebrities have endorsed her yet the only coverage that gets attention is that Maria Schriver added to the Obama team. When you got backers like Oprah and Kennedy's it is not too hard to raise a big sum of money.

    Funny how it was only briefly mentioned that Obama DOES in fact take money from the very people he complains about, he just does it once removed so it is not direct. That is sneaky and underhanded and dishonest… and you want him to be president? WOW !!

    I think its time the press starts running fair coverage and positive/negative coverage equally. And I think its time that Americans start thinking for themselves, rather than allowing the news media and big names like Oprah influence your decisions.

    I think it is offensive to many people like ME who ARE very educated and DO make above average incomes, and say all her supporters are stupid and poor. I would be even MORE offended if I WAS one of the uneducated one and low income. is that NOT who these candidates are trying to better the lives of? And if THEY are the ones voting for her, that tells you something. Maybe SHE IS the candidate to make the changes needed. I hope Edwards endorses her.

    Maybe when Obama decides to actually put some substance to his case, rather than just saying I was right about Iraq, he would be more appealing.

    Does it NOT concern anyone that he said he needs to win because he will be "right" on day one, (basically saying he, I'm perfect, and am never wrong) but at the last debate said he doesn't want yes men around him because he won't always be right? so he got lucky on ONE topic, if he admits he won't always be right in the end, then how can that be his case for winning? If that had been Clinton saying that, the news would have been all over it!

    MEDIA!!! Be FAIR, be equal, and make sure that EVERYONE is accountable in the same way.

    February 11, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  21. Billy

    Hillary can't run or manage a campaign, and can't place strong strategists around her. Yet some of you want her to run your country? Good luck with that...

    Hillary drops out of the race before Ohio, unless there is some secret plan on the democrat's part to keep her in simply to build/stoke the dem base, as millions come out to vote for Barak.

    Hilary's Clinton's chances of being the next president ended this weekend. We just all have to watch how she spends the next few days spinning it so she can go back to the senate saving face.

    February 11, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  22. K

    I can't wait until Barack attains the nomination so Hillary and her legion of old people will do what old people are supposed to do...... Go Away and play canasta or something. It's a young world people and there is little or no room for the old way of doing things anymore. At least when Obama is elected the united states of america can get on with the business of uniting the country instead of keeping it seperate and non-inclusive like all the old predecessors before him and for once america can get some love instead of the hate that the global community has for us now. (Mostly you can thank George Bush and the republican party for the hate we now recieve.)

    February 11, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  23. Jon Cruz

    Could the ranting Obama supporters on here who do nothing but tear apart this hard-working senator please explain to me how they represent the politics of change? I'm turned off every day, more and more, by the zealot-like posters I encounter on here.

    February 11, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  24. Frank

    Come on Americans! We need an experienced president. We need Hillary!

    February 11, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  25. Rick, Maryland

    If Obama get's in talk reccesion now, depression then.
    He's been listening to to many of these republican's wispering
    into his ear.
    Still for the best canidate, Hillery Clinton.

    February 11, 2008 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
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