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. hsl

    Let all the people be heard including the super delegates!

    March 27, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  2. JL - PA

    Don't quit Hillary. We need you as our leader. How can we trust Obama who puts his faith and trust in a racist and hateful man, Rev. Wright.

    Hillary 2008

    March 27, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  3. jack

    If Hillary supporters are relying on Superdelegates- then the are in some sort of fantasy world.

    My boss is a superdelegate and he is getting enormous pressure from the party members to finish this race soon and keep new democrats happy.

    March 27, 2008 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  4. Marla

    I totally agree with Chris im getting Tired of all the back and fourth stuff he said/ she said "we all said".... after these states PA, IN, NC who ever has the most Delegates the super's should step in and end this it should be awarded to the person winning with the most delegates. this will be the only way Hillary will Drop out of the race! if super's dont step in she will continue and IT WILL HURT our party....

    March 27, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  5. jonsey

    There is nothing worse than a football game where the teams are totally unmatched. BORING!!!!!!!! I want to see a close game, its exciting and keeps me on the edge of my seat. This is a very competitive race between obama and hillary and I love it! this is what America is all about Michelle!!!!!!!!!! By the way, can we hear why obama "DISOWNED" his brother MArk, threwq his grandmother under the bus but wont give up on his Pastor? He has the nerve to talk about family values, he doesnt have any.

    March 27, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  6. concerned

    The real news out of Washington is that voter registration for the Democratic Party has been in record numbers in every state that has voted, including Florida, and Michigan. Pennsylvania's Democrats registration was record turn out. And, there is no reason not to believe that the states left to vote will also have record registration and voter turn-out. Neither Obama or, Hillary should pull out now. You are misrepresenting the heightened interest in this historic race. And, the states left remaining to vote are very excited about their voices being heard.
    Senator Dodd needs to stop promoting this nonsense. The only voters I can see turning away from the party at this point is Florida and Michigan. And, who could blame them for that? If you want what America wants, then you should have the sense for your party's future, that Hillary or Obama should pull out. There will be outrage over that for sure. Do not tell America to quit this very important vetting process. And by-the-way, I am interested in really knowing what Barack's future plans for us concerning NUCLEAR ENERGY INTERESTS THAT ARE FINANCING HIS CAMPAIGN-I DARE YOU TO MAKE THAT AN ISSUE AND STOP HARPING ON PEOPLE TO PULL OUT OF THIS ELECTION.

    March 27, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  7. karen (hillary lies as usual)

    It makes no sense of the hillary supporters to say that Obama should drop out that is absurd and undemocratic when he is in the lead. So stop it, it's not intelligent. I don't want to vote for Hillary who is always lying. Can we discuss Hillary's ties to the cult organization called the "the family".

    March 27, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  8. Shirley

    Hillary will never pull out of the race, even after her 'kitchen sink' is empty. The Clintons are part of a huge political machine and still believe they can bully their way back into the White House.

    March 27, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  9. Tracy

    What about the voters for Hillary? Well, they chose the losing candidate just as the voters who voted for Edwards did. Simple.

    The Clinton's won't back down because they don't care about A) Rules and B) Anyone but themselves. They'd rather have McCain win so Hillary can run again in 2012. Them ther are the facts. Get used to another four years of Republican rule. Thanks, Hillary.

    Bet this won't be published.

    March 27, 2008 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  10. Linda, DE

    Why is it...if your for Hillary and not Obama...and refuse to vote Obama....a person is automatically a raceist????? It seems to me that Obama...his Preacher and Church has that statement sewed up!!!! Hillary 08 and if not Obama will never see my vote!!!!! (and nothing will change my mind on that!!! and NO I'm not a raceist!!!

    March 27, 2008 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  11. mike

    Obama step down now!

    March 27, 2008 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  12. Dave, TX

    I am all for letting everyone's vote count, but the kind of dirty politics that the Clintons' have employed will definitely leave a mark. If there is a reason to stop this process now, this is it.

    March 27, 2008 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  13. fp

    The prolonged Dems race is the result of the incompetence of the party leadership. The leadership strting with Pelosi all the way to the DNC is responsible for this nightmare. the DEMS primary rules are3 self defeating.

    March 27, 2008 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  14. Tim from Eugene OR.

    I think it would be fine to let Hillary go all the way to the last primary vote, if she would stop building up the opponent, quit mudslingging and talk about the issues. She and Bill are really tearing the party appart. Not by continuing to run but by the way they are running. I don't remember in my life time any other candidtate that gave the other party such help with her scorched earth type of race. Play fair and I like many others wouldn't mind you staying in the race til June Hillary. Right now you will be lucky to come out of this thing with just your loyal femanist supporters. Look how you lost the support of almost all the black vote, while Rush has got the right voting for you. You have taken a block of voters and traded them for right wing bigots and you think thats ok, maybe when all you care about is yourself. Enough play fair or just go away!!!

    March 27, 2008 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  15. Ryan

    No! Of course another Obama supporter would say that!

    March 27, 2008 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  16. Erik

    As usual, the Democrats bicker while the Republicans get behind their guy and let him begin appearing "presidential" all over the country. As a nation, we're more and more willing every day to favor a blinky, feeble-looking old man over dynamic new leadership, simply because he's not in conflict at the moment.

    March 27, 2008 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  17. jim ohare

    Since when to the Clintons give a dam about irresponceibility,it's always about them & the hell with everybody else.

    March 27, 2008 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  18. beth

    I don`t think someone already took side should have a fair opinion.

    March 27, 2008 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  19. so true

    The Obama camp has been too apathetic to vote until this election.
    How did that apathy work out for you under 2 Bush terms?
    Where was your support when we needed it?

    Because of that, now that they finally motivated themselves to participate in the process, we are all expected to bow down and hand the nomination over to their candidate.

    These newbies, independents and crossover republicans do not have a history of solid support for the democratic party and its nominees.

    You should not have sacrificed the democratic base, hoping to attract these people who have not cared about their country until now.

    March 27, 2008 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  20. rck

    HILLARY TELLS PEOPLE NOT TO VOTE FOR McCAIN AND i'M TELLING HILLARY THAT MY FAMILY WILL VOTE FOR McCAIN IF SHE GETS THE NOMINATION. AND THATS 5 VOTES OF THE MILLIONS OF VOTES THAT HE WILL GET IF HILLARY GETS THE NOMINATION

    March 27, 2008 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  21. James Lynch

    With all due respect to Senator Dodd, why were the later primaries scheduled if he wants to ignore them. There's a logical thread missing here.

    March 27, 2008 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  22. Josh, The Californian Independent

    Ok, I agree 100% with you Mr. Dodd but actions speak louder than words. In other words get all the super delegates together have them endorse whoever and early vote or something. The people are waiting and you Democratic Leaders are not doing a D@MN thing to end this and have our nominee attack McCain. Which should be easy anyways, he should be in prison already for breaking the FEC thing, Millions of dollars spent illgally by McCain. Come on Media!!! Especially CNN and MSNBC Focus on McCain and his corruptedness!!! All in all we need our nominee now and to unite this party or we are doomed for a "Bush 3rd Term".

    DEMOCRAT '08 & '12

    March 27, 2008 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  23. Bond_Dallas

    Since you are typically taking this out of context,, a bunch of typical white people are weary of racism and have embraced Obama. There are however still people like you that still suffer from a self denied growth beyond racism. I hope you grow out of that at least before you go meet the Almighty God.

    March 27, 2008 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  24. fred

    Then tell your buddy Obama to drop out!!!

    March 27, 2008 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  25. Michiel W

    Excuse me, but aren't there still 10 primaries to go? Are these voters just to be disregarded? Or are there options down to one and only one candidate? Neither candidate has the delegates to win. The popular vote is close. How can Senator Dodd think this is equitable? And if this is such a big problem, to wait for all of the primaries to be completed, why did the DNC set them to run into JUNE. These supporters of Senator Obama have got to stop these blatant attempts to "annoint" Senator Obama, at the expense of not only Senator Clinton, but the voters of America.

    March 27, 2008 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
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