April 23rd, 2008
03:15 PM ET
10 years ago

Blitzer: Inside the spin wars

CNN Anchor Wolf Blitzer

CNN Anchor Wolf Blitzer

(CNN) - You can get dizzy from all the political spinning that's going on.

If you listen to the Barack Obama team, the Pennsylvania results actually showed that he was improving when it comes to winning support from white working class voters. They say he did better with this group in Pennsylvania than he did six weeks ago in Ohio, where Clinton also won by about ten points.

If you listen to the Hillary Clinton team, the results show that Obama simply can't win in major battleground states like Pennsylvania, Ohio, Florida and Michigan. Those are states, they insist, a Democratic presidential candidate desperately would need to win in the general election.

All the spinning is designed to sway those still-undecided super delegates who will be critical in eventually determining the party's nominee. Remember – the party created those superdelegates so they would be able to ensure that the eventual nominee would be more competitive against the Republican nominee. That's why those superdelegates are so important and powerful. The rules make clear that they can choose a candidate who did not win the greatest number of pledged delegates, or the popular vote.

Right now, Clinton advisers also pursuing some of the superdelegates who earlier announced their support for Obama. They suspect the results from Ohio, and now Pennsylvania, are giving some of those Obama supporters buyer's remorse. They are hoping to change their minds. The party rules state that superdelegates can change their minds at any time until the real roll call on the convention floor.

All of which suggests this contest is not over yet – and might not be for some time.

If someone would have predicted back in early January, before the first contests in Iowa and New Hampshire, that the Democrats would still be slugging it out now, they would have been ridiculed. The assumption back then was that the Republicans would be fighting and fighting while the Democrats settled on their candidate relatively quickly. That goes to explain why politics can be so unpredictable and so much fun to cover.

soundoff (305 Responses)
  1. Ariel

    What a joke the media makes of this process. If Hillary challenges Obama with regards to his poor choice of relationships, she is being negative. Hello people, debates and politics are all about pointing out the areas where you differ and your opponents weaknesses. It's a negative process! Gosh our state congress races have been far more negative. Obama's only response to his challenged bad behavior and questionable ethics are to say the Clinton race is negative. Obama doesn't have a chance against McCain because Obamas questionable relationships will come out. Clearly he has issues with the blue colar white population and it is reflected by his 20yr racist minister and those comments about white blue collar's clinging to their guns. I'm a republican and I will be voting against Obama. I might even vote for Hillar. Obama's one of those hollow easter bunnies. Looks good until you look inside and find there isn't much. He can point out all the problems but has no real or specific solutions. I guarantee he will never be President. Do you suppose certain groups will burn down buildings and torch cars when he loses?

    April 23, 2008 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  2. Deborah

    Call all unintelligent Americans for Hillary Rotten Clinton

    April 23, 2008 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  3. Pete, NC

    Hillary has a face only the Republican can love. This women is a train wreck. No more Bush/Clinton!

    April 23, 2008 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  4. D

    Well you know wolf is such a racist, and he likes drama. He is the one spinning things.

    April 23, 2008 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  5. Redphilly

    I also think Caucasian people are under the impression that Hillary would pick a male vice president. Not necessarily so. She may pick a woman. Never thought about that, did you?

    April 23, 2008 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  6. Mike

    Talk about spin. All the Clinton mouth pieces are asking why Obama cant put Hillary away based on the PA vote. This even though everyone with half a brain knew that Hillary was going to win in her own back yard in PA.

    April 23, 2008 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  7. At this point.....

    Spin it whatever way suits you; but at the end of the day, the person with the most states won, most delegates and popular votes wins the election. It appears very desperate that Clinton & her supporter are now bringing up MI & FL. Talk about beating a dead horse! I guess you have to say whatever to give you merit to stay in the race!

    April 23, 2008 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  8. Colette

    Why is 57% of white men voting for Clinton considered racism while 90% of blacks voting for Obama is not seen as racism?
    The demographics do indeed show that he wins or comes close 90% of the time in non caucus states because he is the black candidate. Why are we afraid to say this? Why is Ferraro gone because she said this? Is the PC police out of control in America?
    When you play politics as usual in every possible way - play race card, spin, negative false info, pander - you can't go around and sell yourself as different. Well, at least you can't to those who have been around the block.

    April 23, 2008 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  9. Kim

    Until recently I was commited to vote for the Democrat candidate regardless whom it may be. However after seeing how low and despicable Hillary has run her campaign. If she is the nominee I will just have to vote Nader and sacrifice my vote in protest.

    April 23, 2008 06:35 pm at 6:35 pm |
  10. Ophelia/FL

    Hillary, two words spin&lie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    April 23, 2008 06:36 pm at 6:36 pm |
  11. Cathy Lidbom

    My quwstion is "What about the 'switch voters" that wanted to vote for Barack Obama in Penn. that couldn't do it because thier swich from rep. to dem. did not come through–so they were turned away? What about the ballot machines that did not work and voters were turned away? Sounds like a repeat of Florida 8 years ago!! wouldn't that have lowered how many votes were for Clinton?
    Honestly can a woman clean up what Bush has done the last 8 years??

    April 23, 2008 06:37 pm at 6:37 pm |
  12. 2Nurselady

    Hillary Clinton carried the entire Democratic base – the big blue states that count for Democrats and that will count for Democrats in getting the White House back for our party. Most of the states Barack Obama carried will go to McCain in the general election. Hillary Clinton CAN get the White House back for the Democrats. I do not believe Barack Obama can win against McCain to do so.

    April 23, 2008 06:37 pm at 6:37 pm |
  13. mike

    Math does not a winner make. Obama supporters get your head out of the flowery retoric sand. You guy will loose against McCain. Hey I get it he gives great specahes, talks about hope and how he is going to change everything. To hear Obama tell it he is going to magically stop a war, stop global warming, turn the economy around over night and bring republicas and democrates togther. He is going to be a uniter not a divider...Oops wrong guy I was thinking of bush forgive me for pointing out the similarities. He is just a man who gives great speaches. Hope no one asks him any questions he does not do so well when he does not have his prepared text.

    April 23, 2008 06:39 pm at 6:39 pm |
  14. justobserve

    i am surprised that analysts talked about Obama's has problems with white men, oldies, women, electability ... but no one said Clinton has problems with black, young, educated, new voters, her untrusworthiness, her negativity, and her having less votes! Whatever problems both of them have, Obama has won more pledged delegates. Period! Sometimes, it seems they just talk to fill up the 24/7 time on the TV without thinking! or are they sheep just follow the pipers' tune?

    April 23, 2008 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  15. Jerry


    Why was Jack intimidating the other panel members during the discussion on Clinton and Obama? He needs to keep his personal opinions to himself and speak objectively. Otherwise he is of no use on the panel.

    April 23, 2008 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  16. mike

    Joy says...

    there is no great mystery. In some states in the U.S. some white rural voters refuse to vote for a black man and will vote for any white candidate available, regardless of their policy, character or ability to perform.

    The same could be said for Africa Americans in some states. With margins almost always above 90%. Sen Clinton has no margins anywhere near that. You want to talk about race as an issue then talk about both sides of the coin. Can I say that or is it racist?

    April 23, 2008 06:43 pm at 6:43 pm |
  17. Ell Kinney

    Wolf The media is acting as if Hillary was not the favorite to win Penn. just as Ohio. That is her turf. When you get down to real Primary you
    will see how they continue to vote! DEMOCRATIC!!!!

    So please stop the spin.................

    Ell from Texas

    April 23, 2008 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  18. gerard morei

    I think that all the women that support Obama are just plain traitor to they own cause, think about it, probably you are the ones that complain all the time that in your places of work you are discriminated and you never get the top possisions in there and if you get that possition you never get pay as much men does. Now you have the chance to vote for a brilliant woman to have the most important job in the world and you are turned your back on her. Are you affraid or you like to be dominated by men.? I'm a man and I support this brilliant woman for President of our great Nation.
    Hillary for President 2009!!!

    April 23, 2008 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  19. Ophelia/FL


    April 23, 2008 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  20. Newman

    What you see here is the larger picture. More popular votes for Obama, more states, more delegates, larger rally attendance, more donations, more in total donations, and an ever increasing super-delegate support. The governor of Hillary's Oklahoma just backed Barack today! Obama has the support he needs to win the general election and former Hillary supporters in the "big" states will get behind Obama in November. If Hillary couldn't change anything substantial from 1993-2001, why would 2009 to 2013 be any different. A vote for Hillary is a vote for more of the same. America needs some real changes to happen, and Obama offers this.

    April 23, 2008 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  21. Frank

    If Obama can pick up 70 to 80% of Clinton supporters as exit polls have shown if he is the nominee, what happens to her argument "he can't win the big states?"

    April 23, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  22. Jim Nammack; Kentucky

    That is pretty amazing, Wolf. You and Anderson Cooper are nothing BUT spin. I recall the good ol' days when CNN used to report the news. Now you guys report little but your own spin. For news these days, one either has to read between the lines or go to a different channel.

    April 23, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  23. Shirley-Ohio

    It does not take a rocket sciencitis to know that Hillary cannot win and that she is not going to win. Stop it already with the what ifs. Do you actually think that he will not get the 10 percent of the votes that he did not get in PA and Ohio, come on Wolf, I thought you were smarter than that and another thing, didn't Huckabee stand in the way of McCain getting the nomination, well this is the same thing Hilliary is doing. You ask why are the republicans going after Obama and not Hilliary? Duh, they don't want to run againist him they want to run against someone they can beat. The republicans cannot and won't beat Obama. Hillary, you and anybody else can spin whatever you want to spin.

    Shirley, Ohio

    April 23, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  24. Moleyo

    Who says he can't win the GE? The Hillary Campaign.
    Oh I see, well then he must not be able to win because they are pillars of the truth. Heck, the DNC could have saved a lot of money and just gave the nod to her since the voters and pledged delegates don't matter much.

    April 23, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  25. Ophelia/FL

    JACK your so right, she's hurting her own party. I'm starting to think she wants 2012?

    April 23, 2008 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
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