March 28th, 2008
09:35 AM ET
3 years ago

Dodd: Prolonged Democratic race 'devastating'

 Dodd wants the Democratic race to end soon.
Dodd wants the Democratic race to end soon.

(CNN) – Sen. Chris Dodd said Thursday a protracted Democratic presidential race would be "devastating" to the party, and argued an agreement should be worked out after the upcoming contests in Pennsylvania, Indiana, and North Carolina.

Dodd, a former presidential candidate and current backer of Barack Obama's White House bid, told the National Journal he thinks it’s a forgone conclusion Obama will be the Democratic presidential nominee, and said he thinks it's about time party leaders bring the race to a conclusion.

"We've got five more months to go before the Democratic convention at the end of August and, candidly, we cannot go five more months with the kind of daily sniping that's going on and have a candidate emerge in that convention," said the Connecticut senator.

"Over the next couple of weeks, as we get into April, it seems to me then, that the national leadership of this party has to stand up and reach a conclusion," he added.

Pennsylvania, a state where Hillary Clinton is heavily favored, is slated to vote April 22; North Carolina and Indiana head to the polls two weeks later. It remains unclear which candidates have the edge in those states.

Dodd's comments come one day after Clinton indicated she planned to stay in the race through the remaining round of primary contests. The latest votes, South Dakota's and Montana's caucuses, fall on June 3.

"I think the elections that are yet to come deserve to be held because the people from Pennsylvania to Puerto Rico to all the others that are waiting in line deserve to be heard. And I think that's part of the good," Clinton said Wednesday. Former President Bill Clinton also reiterated that sentiment, saying Wednesday, “my family’s not big on quitting.”

But Dodd said Thursday allowing the race to continue indefinitely would be "irresponsible."

"Allowing this sort of to fester over the months of June, and July and August, I think, are irresponsible," he said. "I think you have to make a decision, and hopefully the candidates will respect it and people will rally behind a nominee that, I think, emerges from these contests over the next month."

Specifically, Dodd said leaders among the Congress, governors, and at the Democratic National Committee need to work together to forge a compromise.

"It seems to me you've got to have an issue here that transcends your favorite candidate and decide whether or not the best candidate we have to win this election, to bring our country together and to get behind that choice, instead of having this sort of drip on for the next five months. That is devastating in my view," he said."

– CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

soundoff (178 Responses)
  1. DENISE

    How convenient that those who support Mr.Obama are calling for Hillary to quit. He needs to follow his own advice and "put aside your favorite candidate and decide whether or not the best candidate we have to win this election"....THAT BEST CANDIDATE IS HILLARY CLINTON. How can Mr. Obama represent us in the world when there will be no one who clears all obstacles, criticisms, questions, etc.. When the heat got to hot...he went on vacation until the storm ended and the media returned to being in love with him. The republicans, the world and our enemies will not be swayed by a speech.

    March 27, 2008 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  2. duh

    Then don't rig elections in favor of Obama.

    And don't hold primary elections into June if you don't actually want the primaries to go on into june.

    And don't punish Florida and Michigan for moving their primaries up. The race could have been decided then, if those votes had counted.

    Democratic party leaders are just incompetent hypocrits.
    They all want Obama at any cost and will say and do anything to install him as nominee.

    March 27, 2008 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  3. PA

    We will loss the White House if this negative in-fighting continues.

    The candidates need to let go of their own desire to win and see that our nation can not handle another 4-8 years of Bush/McCain!

    March 27, 2008 07:02 pm at 7:02 pm |
  4. Michelle in Los Angeles

    Sen Chris Dodd is right. The powers that be need to stand up and make a decision. The facts are in. Barack has the lead. Hillary can not catch him, he is in front and in all games, the one with the most votes, wins.
    This is America. The land of the free. The home of the brave. I urge the powers that be to recongize that America wants a change. America wants Barack Obama. Embrace change. Give the people what . If the title of winner is stollen from the true winner, Sen Barack Obama, everyone will know beyond a shadow of a doubt that America is racist and a cheat, then God help us all.

    March 27, 2008 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  5. NW Independent

    Gee, let's not worry about those states that vote in May and June. Let's declare this thing "over" for the good of the party. I'm from Oregon and if this "thing" is declared over before we vote with it being so close; I for one will never consider voting for the Dem. candidate no matter who it is and I will blog and do everything in my power to tip Oregon Red!

    You gotta be kidding me right?

    March 27, 2008 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  6. Gerry

    Dodd is right. McCain is already poaching independent voters and more importantly fund raisers. It's time to end it now.

    March 27, 2008 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  7. Otto F

    Remember all the calls for Hillary to quit in those weeks before Texas and Ohio went her way? If I were an Obama supporter I'd be trying everything I could to pressure Hillary to quit right now. If I were Hillary, I wouldn't even consider it.

    March 27, 2008 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  8. Sunny

    Chris Dodd needs to let the people decide. Everyone should have a voice!!

    March 27, 2008 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  9. rosie

    Look out Pennsylvania! Here come the Judge!!! Surprise! Surprise! Surprise! To God be the glory!!!

    March 27, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  10. Darth Vadik, CA

    I heard they are going to have the superdelegates vote way before the convention, so I guess this is probably the same thing.

    I think the'll probably have them vote right after Indiana and North Carolina, so we should be OK, we should have a candidate by mid April, much better than going on until August, just thinking about it going to august gives me chills.

    I can see the McCain camp starting to shake, we're coming McCain we're coming...

    I just can't wait :)

    March 27, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  11. Adia Fron France

    Shup upHillary! Your Bosnia's trip ah aha aha ahahahah! Even in France you are looked like a liar now.....You've lost your credibility
    Shame on you!

    March 27, 2008 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  12. Lisa

    This is insane! This race isn't finished yet. Everyone deserves the opportunity to vote and thanks to the DNC we are already missing two large states. At this point the DNC needs to stay out of this and go forward with the rules that it has in place. You know...the rules that kept Florida and Michigan out of the race. Otherwise it will be an injustice to Hillary Clinton and all her supporters. Sit tight Chris Dodd. Obama still might win. He just has to EARN it!

    March 27, 2008 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  13. Brian Rich

    South Dakota and Montana are both holding primaries, not caucuses.

    March 27, 2008 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  14. Justin

    absolutely! A divided party cannot win in November, and we must move on to rallying our troops!

    I know Hillary has her reasons to stay in....but everything is against her. And the longer she stays in the race and allows in-fighting, the less chance Obama will have at a nomination.

    If nothing else, Hillary, do it for the good of the country. Right now, we're going to have YOU to thank for losing in November, just like we had NADER to thank when Gore lost in 2000 (yes, he won....but we know that already).

    March 27, 2008 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  15. Mark

    Senator Dodd is boldly demonstrating all the reasons why he deserved to lose the presidential primary. He has done nothing but exhibit poor judgment in this difficult situation. How does disenfranchising voters in FL and MI, stripping super delegates of their right to vote independently and pushing the Old Boys agenda serve the best interests of the Democratic Party? It doesn't. Senator Dodd is thinking of himself again, as per the usual.

    March 27, 2008 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  16. Sherry

    Would Dodd be speaking like this if his state had not yet voted in a primary?

    Obama supporters have a lot of gall blocking the re-vote in Michigan and Florida and now wanting to take the vote away from Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Indiana, Kentucky, West Virginia, Montana, Puerto Rico, and Oregon all in the name of "unity." Don't we already have this type of person in the White House? Count the votes before you demand someone else quit the race. Geez, Obama backers, how republican can you get?

    March 27, 2008 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  17. Jane V. Lisa

    I am officially tired of the superdelegates telling the electorate that it is over. There was absolutely no reason why any superdelegate had to endorse or support a candidate before all the primaries were held. Their time would be better spent finding a resolution to the Michigan and Florida debacle which could cost them the general election.

    March 27, 2008 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  18. Linda

    Geez just because there is a little rivary here, a run for the nomination on the democratic side, we've just decided that it's gone on too long. Will people just let this happen at the pace it happens. You want to talk devestating, our country is falling apart, we are at a stand still, housing, finance, jobs, corporate greed, and a govt that outsources things that should be taken care of in our own country, we are rebuilding Iraq instead of our own country, and we have an idiot for a president that is more worried about Iraq than the country he calls his own.

    March 27, 2008 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  19. deb

    HE SHOULD SPEND HIS TIME WORKING ON INCLUDING MICHIGAN AND FLORIDA. THE ARROGANCE OF THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY COULD PUT THESE STATES IN PLAY FOR THE REPUBLICANS.

    ANOTHER DEMOCRAT LOOKING FOR A JOB IN THE OBAMA ADMINISGTRATION.

    March 27, 2008 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  20. Paul, 47 year old White Male

    Hillary, do the math!! Or should I say Huckahillaby. You and your staffers are treating the American people as though they are ignorant. Pennsylvania is smarter than that and they understand sport analogies that Bill puts out there. Don’t wait around for a miracle and don’t let the door hit you in your behind on your way out!

    The Clinton Drama Queen machine is out of power & Bill please NEVER use football or any athletic analogies to show you’re fighting tough side. You didn’t have to figure out which way to put your jock on for the cheerleading team. “If a politician doesn’t want to get beat up” does your quote apply to Chelsea? Or are you once again above the rules? It’s tough out there!!!

    It is hard for me to believe I’m talking this way about a former President I respected and admired and now despise, because of the low life campaign you and Hillary are running.

    Bush, Clinton, Bush, Obama… Now that’s Change. Something new in Washington, what a concept!

    Sorry Mr. McCain and thank you for many years of Military service, many, many years ago. But we just went through 8 years of a president who couldn’t read well at all, and couldn’t speak if he didn’t read. We need someone who can look you in the eyes and speak from the heart with intelligence in their mind.

    March 27, 2008 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  21. Cathy in Indiana

    I'l bet Dodd wants to end it . He's supporting Obama and eveyday
    something new comes out against hiim

    March 27, 2008 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  22. for freedom

    Well then fix the system.

    Right now this is the way it is.

    Stop trying to sabotage Clinton and install Obama.

    You are all swiftboating your best candidate, your democratic base and your party.

    You should have stayed out of it from the start and the people would have voted and their votes would have counted and we would have Hillary as our nominee.

    Now you want to steal the nomination from her and give it to Obama

    March 27, 2008 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  23. Stephen

    Clearly Obama has the advantage and the more Hillary hangs around the more it favors Mcain but she already said Mcain is better anyway. So why is she still in this? And as for Bill this is not about your family it is about the American family look at the larger picture dummy!! Go Obama, I believe in you like I never will any other presidential candidate. Obama for President, Edwards for VP!!

    March 27, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  24. Marge Hibbing Mn

    Tell Dodd to take a hike to Mexico or Canada if they will have him and by the way take his manly man example obama with him.

    March 27, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  25. Gina, Los Angeles

    Are you kidding me! This is how the Democratic Party arranged this race. We're voting AND WAITING until June 3rd. Serves them right for having things this way.

    I'm a McCain supporter. But, I don't like his 100 years comment. So, I'm either voting Clinton in November, or sticking to McCain.

    March 27, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
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