March 24th, 2008
04:47 PM ET
7 years ago

Clinton stresses party unity in Pennsylvania

Sen. Clinton said Democrats will need to unite against John McCain.
Sen. Clinton said Democrats will need to unite against John McCain.

BLUE BELL, Pennsylvania (CNN) – Over the weekend, Barack Obama's campaign manager David Plouffe accused Hillary Clinton of having a “character gap.” Clinton spokesman Phil Singer returned fire, saying today that Obama’s campaign is perpetrating an "insidious pattern of personal attacks."

Any Democrat listening the harsh language emanating from the campaigns would be forgiven for thinking it might be tough to unify the party this fall.

Clinton was asked by a voter here Monday about the increasingly contentious race, and whether Democrats can manage to come together in the general election. Clinton re-emphasized that Democrats must unite after the primary battle.

"I think we will have a unified Democratic party once we have a nominee, we will go into fall election very committed to taking back the White House," she said. "None of the things I talk about will happen if Sen. McCain is elected."

She praised McCain and their work in Senate together, but added, "As he himself has said, he doesn’t know much about the economy."

The mostly female audience laughed as she ribbed McCain over his economic credentials, but she was serious as she urged Democrats to put aside their differences to defeat the presumptive GOP nominee.

"I think that people that who would have voted for either me or Sen. Obama are going to ask themselves, 'Wait a minute, there are really big differences between the Democrats and the Republicans.' And let’s have a unified party and elect a Democratic president."

UPDATE: Republican National Committee spokesman Danny Diaz issued this response to Clinton's charges against McCain: "Sen. Clinton’s plans to increase taxes and implement massive government spending would only hurt hardworking families and small businesses. Her political attacks against Sen. McCain won’t distract voters from her backward-looking and failed policy stances."

– CNN Political Producer Peter Hamby

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Pennsylvania
soundoff (397 Responses)
  1. John Kay

    She can do better than that. All eyes are on her to step down and unite the party.

    March 24, 2008 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  2. jess

    i see what she is getting at. she is concerned that her credibility is on the rope and the superdelegates might not give her the nomination over obama citing this issue along with other arguments of "more pledged delegates, popular vote and more states." so, now she is trying to show them (the superdelegates) that she can get all the democrats to vote for her in the general election even though a majority of democrats are probably tired of her and would vote for mccain if she somehow steals the nomination from obama.

    she is some politician, boy! but, let me tell you (you hillbill), you underestimate your fellow americans, they know your plot and would never fall for it.....

    March 24, 2008 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  3. Allison Marie

    Obama has had a free ride from the media. It's okay for him to plagiarize, it's okay for him to lie, it's okay for him to not follow rules, and it's okay that he makes racial comments...............I'm with SNL Obama are you comfortable do you need a pillow or some water?

    Clinton 08/12

    Go Hillary go,

    Go Hillary go,

    Obama let the voters of Florida & Michigan count! What are you afraid of? Oh, what the voters think!

    March 24, 2008 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  4. Jay Graham, Dallas, TX

    Hillary looks presidential! Its not just she has popped up in a year or two, she has worked all along to prepare herself for the job.

    March 24, 2008 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  5. Ifeanyi Azubike Houston Texas

    The Easter spirit really works. Hillary just woke up to reality. Well we have always known that the Democrats have been diging their graves, what we wondered was how deep?

    March 24, 2008 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  6. Anonymous

    Not sure how Bill Clinton could ever make Obama look like a school boy? It's great that he can speak in Hilary's favor... but remember who is running for president here!

    March 24, 2008 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  7. brandy

    Thank GOD! Hilary finally opened her mouth without slandering anyone or personally attacking her opponent.
    It a tru MIRACLE.
    I am an Obama supporter and would like to see him in the White House. I know Clinton has done a lot to win this race. I actually admire her tenacity although I deoplore her politics. Its what her people know.
    I am for Obama but I think today I finally heard a quote from her that didn't seem to have a double entendre.
    Realisticall, Obama supporters mostly want a Dem nominee. We really want to see Obama implement the changes the Dem party keeps talking about. But ultimately we want to fight McCain with all guns drawn.
    I just really wish Hilary would focus that energy of hers on helping the Dem party guarantee a strong nominee and the seat at the White House. As hard as it may be for her to put another first, that is really the only way she can possibly run again in the future after she loses this bid this year for President. She will lose. She has lost. No matter how she looks at it. Others have said that same thing on here....

    March 24, 2008 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  8. Bryan

    I think its so hypocritical of you obama supporters to want her to drop out. Obama has tried to run a campaign of lofty speeches preaching that he is above the fraw so to speak. But as soon as his poll numbers start to decline his camp goes on the same attack policy that they say is "Old" politics well let me tell you all something there is no such thing as new politics. We have been doing the same type of thing since the days of the ancient greeks. I support Hillary and there is no way I will vote for Obama and there are people like me believe it or not. i am 21 Black and a male so in the eyes of you political pundits i should be a AVID Obaminite. Either way it goes this party will be hurt in the fall for the basic purupose that there is two good candidates and the have very LOYAL supporters.

    March 24, 2008 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  9. Antoinette

    Personal Attacks Hillary???

    Like you havent done them also

    Did you not think he would take the gloves off sooner or later?

    March 24, 2008 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  10. Pat

    I am supporting Hillary. If Obama gets the nomination, I will vote for McCain.

    March 24, 2008 06:47 pm at 6:47 pm |
  11. Blaise

    Why can't any one see that its Obama that is going to divied the party and country? Has any one truely looked into what his pastor was REALLY preaching? He preaches Black Liberation Theology, that is a proven fact it just hasn't been covered very much by the general media. For those who don't know what that is, well lets just say that if your white things don't work out so good for you. This is what Obama has been listening to for 20 years don't forget, what has been on you tube and the media pale in comparision to whats been said over the years. It should be clear to even the most educated person in the US that Obama is not the type of person he shows at his cult get togethers. His loyal fanatics take his word as gosple and he can do no wrong. Its Obama that has character issues not Hillary.

    March 24, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  12. Pip

    A vote for Obama is a vote for McCain. I promise.

    March 24, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  13. Mark

    The democrats in Florida and Michigan will not vote in the general election if their votes are not counted!

    A revolt is in the works in both states. No democratic vote should be denied and it is up to the people of these states as to a revote and not Barry Obama.

    If he is the democratic nominee, then he has won that title as a cheat!

    All votes should be counted! You will be sorry Obama when the democrats from these states do not turn out to vote in November.

    YOU will lose the Presidency and we will lose our chance as democrats.

    March 24, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  14. Nathan

    "let’s have a unified party and elect a Democratic president."

    Sounds great, Hill. So why don't you step aside so we can do just that?

    March 24, 2008 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  15. rk

    Obama will never win the general election. He cannot win the big states and that is what it will take. If anything Obama should quit so that the party can unit around Clinton who can definitely win the big states. Richardson is clueless and has contributed to this division within the Democratic Party. These guys are such novice (Obama/Richardson) that they cannot see the big picture.
    They are destroying the Democratic Party.

    GO HILLARY 08
    I will never vote for OBAMA

    March 24, 2008 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  16. think

    Well, Greg at 4:54 pm, I guess we'll cancel each other out because if Obama's the nominee I'll vote for McCain for you! I soon will be 58 yrs old. I've voted in every Presidential election since I became eligible. I've voted for every Democratic nominee during that time. It will hurt to vote Repub. However, I CANNOT vote for a man I DO NOT trust. He's a sneak, a liar and a hyprocrite but mostly just a plain 'ol politican just like the rest!

    March 24, 2008 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  17. gary

    Thanks cnn. Being bias again. wont take my comments.Obama is still a school boy .We dont need an on job training canidate elected for office, HRC has been schooled and will be ready on day one.Obama has more experience in being a preacher. Twenty yrs. of it. He has the smooth talk and seems to unite ,and brain wash our country. America better wake up before its to late.

    March 24, 2008 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  18. John

    I am supporting Hillary. If Obama gets the nomination, I will vote for McCain.

    March 24, 2008 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  19. penni mandel

    How can Hilary talk about party unity when she's the one destroying the party. She wants to make new rules to be elected. She and her campaign feel there is no problem making reckless and false allegations against anyone they choose to. Yet she refuses to be honest and makes up stories to inflate her importance.
    If Obama is not the nominee–I won't vote for her in the Presidential election. She is no different then Bush.

    March 24, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  20. John P

    If the Democrates are not in the Presidency in 2008 there is only one person to thank- Hillary Clinton.

    March 24, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  21. sw

    I am one of the newly desired demographics, an independent white male, and both my wife and I will remain home rather than vote for Billary!

    March 24, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  22. Charles Cather, Chicago

    I'm a diehard Democrat and was orignially supporting Hillary! I am now switching to Obama due to the HORRID NEGATIVE ATTACKS by her and her staffers!! We have to stop and back one candidate and focus on the Republicans!!!!!!!!! OBAMA 2008!!!!!!!!!!!

    March 24, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  23. Wendy

    If Obama gets the nomination I will vote for McCain. I cant believe that people are still supporting him. People are so swayed by the media it amazes me.

    March 24, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  24. CTA

    "Bravo to Carville for saying the truth. "

    Yes, he did tell the truth...betray the Clintons (not the Dem party) and you will pay....

    This is why I've stopped support HRC.

    March 24, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  25. king from toronto

    to norb!bill clinton makes obama looks like a school boy??lol are you on something???wait till obama comes back from vacation.bill wish he was half as bright as obama.lol

    March 24, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
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