February 16th, 2008
08:58 PM ET
7 years ago

Clinton: 'I am prepared to go the distance'

Clinton said Saturday she will leave Wisconsin a day earlier than previously planned.
Clinton said Saturday she will leave Wisconsin a day earlier than previously planned.

KENOSHA, Wisconsin (CNN) – Hillary Clinton is preparing to take her nomination fight all the way through June and to the Democratic convention in Denver, she told reporters in Wisconsin Saturday.

"I campaigned with my husband until he wrapped up this nomination in June [of 1992]," she said at a press conference here. "I thought it was fun. I had a good time. I am prepared to go the distance."

Her comments echoed those of campaign adviser Harold Ickes, who said on a conference call earlier in the day that neither candidate will earn the 2,025 pledged delegates needed to win the nomination, and that the 796 party insiders known as superdegates should be able to discern on their own which candidate can best "carry the ticket" in November.

Clinton argued that the superdelegates are "supposed to exercise independent judgement" and "make their decisions based on anything they choose to base it on."

"That is their role," she said.

This year's protracted nomination fight, Clinton said, is good for party excitement and is hardly out of the ordinary in American political history.

"I know some of you have only covered the '04 and 2000 campaign, which were really kind of anomalies," she said. "The nominees were determined early. But that's not the usual pattern. My husband didn't wrap up the nomination in '92 until June. And usually it takes a while to sort all this out."

The New York senator said she will urge her delegates at the convention to seat the delegations from Michigan and Florida, who voted for Sen. Clinton but had been previously stripped of their convention votes by the Democratic National Committee for holding early primaries.

"If there are contested delegations, the convention votes on them. Those are the rules," she said.

– CNN Political Producer Peter Hamby


Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Wisconsin
soundoff (207 Responses)
  1. Jacob S

    Funny how earlier she took several steps for solidarity with the DNC(no campaigning and such) and obviously sided with the DNC yet now that it looks like she won't win without the Michigan/Florida delegates, it's only fair to seat them. Do the MI/FL primaries again fairly or don't do them at all; otherwise they are inherently unfair and biased, particularly Michigan.

    If this is the kind of double talk and flip flopping we can expect from Hillary then I sincerely hope she does not win the nomination. We've had enough half truths and outright lies from our current administration, 4-8 more years of it could be disastrous. More than good policy we need honesty and transparency, not more lies and secrecy.

    February 16, 2008 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  2. Abby

    No matter how long it takes, in the end the best will prevail, Madam President Hillary Clinton! We love you!!!!!

    February 16, 2008 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  3. marge

    The New York senator said she will urge her delegates at the convention to seat the delegations from Michigan and Florida, who voted for Sen. Clinton but had been previously stripped of their convention votes by the Democratic National Committee for holding early primaries.

    How is this fair even in Hillary Land?
    Why would the DNC allow these delegates to be seated,when it was the DNC that stripped them of their delegates in the first place.

    February 16, 2008 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  4. Trev

    I am glad that Clinton is sticking it out. It is about time that a majority of people will actually have a chance to vote in this one. Hillary has solutions to our problems. I think Obama is worried about his being drawn out because he knows that people are going to fall out of love with him as they begin to learn more about his lack of a record, as well as the problems with the record he does have. His economic plan is a copy of Clinton. His healthcare proposal leaves millions uncovered. He voted against capping credit card rates at 30%. His main claim to fame is opposition to a war that he never had a chance to vote on because he was not in the Senate.

    Hillary 08

    February 16, 2008 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  5. jason

    It just goes to show u that she will do anything to win, even if it means causing a civil war with in the democratic party. we need a leader thatwill put the country and party first. GO OBAMA!!!!

    February 16, 2008 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  6. JP

    I thought I could support Hillary if she's the nominee but I'm really disappointed in the direction her campaign is going. This type of statement only makes her look selfish. She shows no interest in doing what's best for the democratic party. If she continues to win–great, but if she continues to lose she should consider doing what's best for the party as a whole–and everyone agrees that a brokered convention is not in the best interest of the democratic party. Maybe she needs another shakeup in her staff so someone can stop her from making statements that just make her look bad.

    February 16, 2008 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  7. Yolanda Diaz

    Yes, yes, Hillary your are right the media wants Obama to win this, you can see it in their faces. Go Hillary go

    February 16, 2008 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  8. Dan Tampa, FL

    She agreed to the rules the DNC set up about Michigan and Florida. I feel somewhat takenaback that she wants to change the rules now. I agree that it is unfair that we dont get a voice, however I believe if she saw a problem with this she should have raised a question about it BEFORE the primaries. That way ALL the candidates could possibly have had a fair chance in those states, instead of breaking the rules they agreed to.

    February 16, 2008 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  9. Lee, York Pa

    and...HILLARY's ~ SOLUTION ~ TEAM ( us the voters ) will be right with her.......
    Go HILL 08

    February 16, 2008 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  10. Nick

    Hillary you are the best, despite media bias.
    You are going to win cause people do not vote the way media is trying to tell them, but they will vote for you and the solutions you bring.

    February 16, 2008 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  11. Braineel

    Anything at all to win the nomination, violating rules the party agreed to, seating delegated from banned states, encouraging party insiders to vote against the popular vote, I think this is going too far.

    My question is, when, after all the clinging and clutching for the nomination fails, will Senator Clinton be gracious?

    Will she help president Obama?

    February 16, 2008 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  12. JohnS

    If she could only call it quits, that would be great for the party and this nation. But then, when did the Clintons ever think about the party and this nation? This is a preliminary plan for Chelsea and her future, given that the elder Clintons have aleardy served 2 terms (as she has correctly testfied).

    February 16, 2008 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  13. Mark, Gainesville, VA

    Keep Wisconsin close, win Texas by 10%+, win Ohio by 15%+, and win Pennsylvania 15%+ and I believe it will go to June. However, if these wins come true I think North Carolina is back in play along with all other states and it may be over in May.

    February 16, 2008 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  14. josh r.

    Although I support Obama, Hillary has the right to fight this out as far as she can! Obama and Hillary both went into this knowing the rules of the superdelegates. Although I heartily disagree with there even being superdelegates, rules are rules. Obama should start heavily campaigning for these superdelegates. Things are in the air right now and he has to take this opportunity to sell himself to these superdelegates. I think the superdelegates also understand the implications if they collectively decide against the popular vote. Any democratic strategist should see very clearly that Obama is the more electable of the two. I hope i am not wrong about this, but we will see!

    February 16, 2008 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  15. Mark C. Eades

    Nurse Hillary says, "The medicine's only good for you if it tastes bad." Clinton attempted this week to resurrect her old storyline that Obama is all style and no substance, despite the obvious fact that fewer and fewer people are believing it anymore. Clinton appears to be trying to discredit Obama based on the very fact that he does have style while she does not, as though his very ability to inspire and excite an audience must mean that he is weak on substance. To me this tiresome narrative suggests that it is Clinton, not Obama, who has run short of ideas.

    February 16, 2008 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  16. Joy

    THAT'S MY GIRL! You go Hillary – there are more of us than the media is reporting that have your back and are working the phones, the blogs and making those contributions! You're not quitting on us and we aren't quitting on you!!

    February 16, 2008 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  17. brenda

    I agree that there are still too many votes left out there for Hillary to stop now. Obama needs to just calm down and stop talking like its all over. The media needs to do the same. I am always amazed at how blindly people follow the leader. The people, including the media, are still just as clueless as they have ever been.

    February 16, 2008 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  18. VA

    Hillary is such a conniver...of course, she wants Florida and Michigan votes...she talks out of both sides of her mouth....She has stated that she was POSITIVE that if she were president..there would be NO scandal with Bill and then in the next second....she says she cannot be sure what the future holds...meaning she has no ide what Bill will do...does anyone..we have seen him, in action.
    HIllary wants what is best FIRST for Hillary and then the PEOPLE!!!!!
    Not to be trusted!!!!!

    February 16, 2008 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  19. cherny

    Obama supporters should be graceful for HRC's presence in the race, because she's the factor that'll enable him to win in the general election. I'm a republican myself, but at this point I'm leaning Obama over McCain. The democratic campaign so far calls to mind the story about Saint George and the Dragon. He who slays the venom-spurting dragon is a hero to me and will get my vote.

    February 16, 2008 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  20. Roger Moreland

    I believe it is unfair to keep out the Florida and Michigan delegates. They voted and they want be part of this great process as well.

    February 16, 2008 09:23 pm at 9:23 pm |
  21. Steve

    Dear Clintons,

    Please learn to lose graciously.

    Sincerely,

    America

    February 16, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  22. Sean

    And I'm prepared to go the distance with you and continue to contribute and volunteer! Go Hillary...the leader of the "Solution Revolution!"

    February 16, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  23. kaz

    All of these messages lately coming from the Clinton campaign seem eerily similar to previous failed campaigns on the GOP Side. With its "will be there to the convention" (Romney-esque) and its "firewall" of Ohio and Texas (Giuliani-esque), it seems the Clinton side has refused to come up with a new message but simply follow failed campaigns tactics.

    February 16, 2008 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  24. Doc Jerome

    Code talk: My co-presidency with Bill, . . . etc.

    February 16, 2008 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  25. Joan

    Translation = "I am prepared to lie, cheat and steal - and destroy the Democratic party if need be - to win."

    The Clintons only care about the Clintons. They will destroy the DNC and ruin the Dems chances in November if necessary. They don't care.

    February 16, 2008 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
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