February 16th, 2008
08:58 PM ET
10 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. streetjustiz

    You gotta be kidding me right?! This sort of manipulation is mind boggling! I know the american people are smarter than this.

    February 16, 2008 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm |
  2. Eric Clark

    This is shoddy reporting by CNN. Presenting the claim that "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" is misleading. You have ommitted the fact that Sen. Clinton was the only candidate to leave her name on the ballot in Michigan (and still only received 55% of the vote), and was the only candidate to advertise in Florida. This is a distortion of the facts by omission. Typical.

    February 16, 2008 11:51 pm at 11:51 pm |
  3. Ann

    The DNC and the state of Florida should have posts signs at every polling booth across the state of Florida such as, "Vote At Your Own Risk." or "DNC and state of florida are in dispute and Your vote may not count." Get the ides? I wish CNN would quit turning this into an Obama and Clinton thing. The fact is that one million people in Florida voted. All the candidates were on the ballot and one million votes should have counted. Think how this looks to the rest of the world. It sounds like an organization and a state's government stripped one million people's votes from them. This is the American democracy that our soldiers went over to Iraq to ensure them the right to vote? This should have never happened. Why isn't the news reporting these were all new rules by DNC. . Then, the arrogance of CNN news to call it a "Beauty Contest." The people in florida and others around the world don't see it as that. We see it as American people who went out to vote. If, we didn't have the vote where were the signs in front of every polling booth.

    February 16, 2008 11:52 pm at 11:52 pm |
  4. Erik Chappelle

    If Hillary manages to snag away the nomination from Obama using michigan, florida and the super delegates then how is she any different from George Bush? how can I believe that she is fighting for anyone but herself? I am a democrat and I PROMISE YOU that if the party bows to the clintons and forget the will of the people, I will not only not vote for Hillary – I might even vote for McCain. At least he isn't trying to steal any elections.

    February 16, 2008 11:53 pm at 11:53 pm |
  5. Eric

    MILWAUKEE: Obama answers Clinton's "speeches don't matter":

    ...Obama's remarks ran over 40 minutes, and were heavy on policy details. But his most withering remarks were directed at his opponent's recent critique of his use of lofty and inspiring rhetoric:

    "Don't tell me that words don't matter," Obama said, his voice rising with indignation and scorn. "I have a dream. Just words. All men are created equal. Just words. We have nothing to fear but fear itself. Just words."

    Folks, Hillary doesn't have a chance.

    February 16, 2008 11:53 pm at 11:53 pm |
  6. carbog

    she's starting to sound like huckabee

    February 16, 2008 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm |
  7. Yvonne Vidal

    Hillary is a fighter and that is great, if she were weak she would have caved into Obama’s & CNN, CSNBC and all of other the Condescending media out there who have been shamelessly Bashing her on there shows cutting her off in the middle speeches. They don’t do that to Obama the press is promoting Obama that you would think that they worked for him?

    She is in this raise to the end
    And I truly appreciate her sprit. That is the kind of person
    We need as our President someone that can take the attacks and still conducting themselves with dignity and doesn’t stoop to demeaning and condescending remarks to get her point across. …. Y Vidal

    February 16, 2008 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  8. Thomas

    Both Clinton and Obama will go the distance with Obama just a few delegates shy of the nomination with Clinton needing many many more. "Unknown" to Hilliary, Bill will, if not already, call in favors due to him and pressure the super delegates to nominate Hilliary instead of Obama when Obama clearly has a margin of delegates over Clinton.

    This attempt to bring the party together will do nothing but split the party into factions which will never mend ultimately disabling the Party.

    February 16, 2008 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  9. lisa

    Should be count Michigan and Florida. Michigan's and Florida's pepole have right to vote and count. can give other penalty. everybody need consider Michigan's and Florida's feeling.
    good! Hillary never give up.

    February 16, 2008 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  10. Eric

    These words have caused me to completely lose faith in Clinton. The fact that she supports this broken system just because it gives her a chance to win shows that she is not worthy of being president. The public should decide the democratic nomination and we all know this. I am staying home or voting for Nader or McCain if she wins the nomination.

    February 16, 2008 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  11. Sarah Smith

    where are the comments? At last CNN is being FAIR to Hilly.. 3 tickers in a row about the daughter, the candidate, the husband, ex president. .


    February 17, 2008 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  12. Willy

    CNN is opening this up for comments? Wow talk about freedom of speech. Is this a trick CNN?

    February 17, 2008 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  13. Texas

    Good Luck Senator Clinton.

    We are supporting you and think you are the Best!

    February 17, 2008 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  14. Alicia, Moorpark, CA

    This is music to my ears!!!

    HILLARY 08 & 12 ... CHELSEA 16 & 20

    February 17, 2008 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  15. George

    The Clinton`s their absolutetly right. Here you have a Junior Senator who has no experience what so ever about any global issues and tries to become a president of the United States. It seems to me that a lot of voters don`t see the reality or they really ignore it.

    February 17, 2008 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  16. Grif

    With and extra smile, every mile..
    Go girl, he ain't got a trace, how to match your pace,

    February 17, 2008 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  17. Ilse Leiker

    don't do it Hillary...don't fracture the party and allow the Republicans to take hold of the White House again.

    February 17, 2008 12:02 am at 12:02 am |
  18. WadeBlazingame34

    DROP OUT! No one wants to put up with your selfish obsession. You lost. Get over it.

    February 17, 2008 12:02 am at 12:02 am |
  19. Curtis in Ohio

    Ohio, Texas and PA should extend Hillary lead if Obama manages to catch her Then the Super delegates who vote on the issue and who could be a better president not a better Speech maker should choose Hillary and we can get a united ticket and fix all these problems the country faces.
    Problem is in these None voting states where you show up and can be a republican can vote in the Democratic election then switch in the General. If they were really so sure Hillary would lose in the General they would vote for her cause they think she would lose but there not there voting Barrack cause they know he is the easy Candidate to get rid of in the General.
    Voters in Florida and Michigan already have spoke they want Hillary even after they were told not to vote by voting "non of the above" by the Barrack camp who broke the rules right there" campaign there because the DNC wants to disenfranchise those voters for moving up there election date like some other states did hich is plan wrong to do to Florida and Michigan. These Votes should count and they should be counted right now not in months down the road or in a way to favor Obama who broke the rules campaigning in these states when told not to by the DNC. Hillary and the rest of nation wants to Not disenfranchise these voters the rest of nation has had there voices Heard Florida and Michigan made there Voice heard and those should count!!!

    February 17, 2008 12:02 am at 12:02 am |
  20. Curtis in Ohio

    You can "Not" Disenfranchise Florida and Michigan. That happened with Bush. These votes should count as they are if your STUPID enough to take your name off in Michigan tough. They "Obama camp" Campaigned there when they were told they couldn't and has that push about non-committed. After they lost they would not remove there name in Florida because they knew they already lost in Michigan and wanted to leave that out there they know these votes Must be Counted regardless or there will be 1968 all over no matter what happens.

    February 17, 2008 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  21. mpowers

    I will vote for a Democrat if they win in a legitimate fashion. Party insiders in a smoke filled room bailing out Hillary because she was unable to win a majority of votes/delegates is not legitimate. Moreover, including Florida and Michigan into the mix (essentially including more delegates for Hillary) is completely unfair and ridiculous. She is the only one who actively sought out a victory in those states while all other contenders followed the rule of the party. Its clear Hillary is trying to make her own rules in this election to salvage what was supposed to be an easy victory. If her grasp on the nomination begins to slip further she should be mature enough to accept defeat rather than ruin the chances of a Democrat winning the presidency.

    February 17, 2008 12:04 am at 12:04 am |
  22. Mike in Cleveland


    A divided convention does nothing but hurt the Dem party and one candidate must step down before the convention or else we will lose

    February 17, 2008 12:05 am at 12:05 am |
  23. Kathy Rogers

    Hillary is right, the Superdelegates, just like any other voter has the right to pledge the candidate they so choose...
    The will of the voters in Michigan and Florida are just as important as any other state. Those real people out voting in those states obviously thought they're votes counted,If over 2 million people turned out to vote, then the right thing to do is count the delegates in Hillarys favor...Hillarys name and another Democrats name was on those ballots,it was legal for them to vote for Hillary, therefore all of the Florida and Michigan votes are Legally Binding...Since Obama "CHOSE" to not have his name on those states ballots he has no right to claim they are unjust votes...When Obama say's he wants the popular public vote to be the winnner of the nomination, he is a liar...Anyone with common sense knows Hillary is clearly the popular public vote and I hope that the DNC rightfully seats the Florida and Michigan Delegates,the sooner the better ...It is only those who chose to vote for Hillary that Obama wrongly contests... If I remember right, Floridia and Michigan voters are still citizens of the USA ... Kathy Rogers
    Bandon, Oregon

    February 17, 2008 12:05 am at 12:05 am |
  24. Milton

    I'm not sure if Mrs. Clinton truly understands how this election is going. In a new age where people don't want to hear politicians talk negitive about eachother, she continues to do just that. I understand she needs to go after Mr. Obama, but there are many way's to do it without looking like she is making herself look like, (with all do respect) a political attack dog. Her attacks seem personal, jelious, and flat out, not what most american or atleast many people I know, want to hear. When I'm looking for a leader of our nation, I want a person that will pull us together as one nation, one people, one government. Speeches are not alot of talk, as Mrs. Clinton so eliquently said. Speeches are words that can bring people together, or can tear people apart. Which one is Mrs. Clinton doing?

    February 17, 2008 12:06 am at 12:06 am |
  25. Anonymous

    I think Hillary is loosing; She is a smart woman and I would love to see a woman president but not her. She is too obsess with the presidency. I would have vote for her if she divorced Clinton because is walking on Bill Clinton's shadow.....

    February 17, 2008 12:07 am at 12:07 am |
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