May 8th, 2008
12:03 PM ET
3 years ago

Clinton touts support from 'white Americans'

 Clinton campaigned in Washington Thursday.
Clinton campaigned in Washington Thursday.

(CNN) - In what appear to be the New York senator's most blunt comments to date regarding a racial division in the Democratic presidential race, Hillary Clinton suggested Wednesday that "White Americans" are increasingly turning away from Barack Obama’s candidacy.

"I have a much broader base to build a winning coalition on," Clinton said in an interview with USA TODAY.

Clinton cited an Associated Press poll "that found how Senator Obama's support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again, and how whites in both states who had not completed college were supporting me."

"There's a pattern emerging here," she said.

Exit polls from Tuesday's primaries in Indiana and North Carolina show Clinton won about 60 percent of the white vote in both states. That percentage is down from the Ohio primary on March 4, in which Clinton won upwards of 65 percent of the white vote. Meanwhile, Clinton garnered 63 percent of the white vote in Pennsylvania on April 22.

Speaking with the paper, Clinton rejected the notion her comments were racially divisive in any way.

"These are the people you have to win if you're a Democrat in sufficient numbers to actually win the election," she said. "Everybody knows that."

Obama spokesman Bill Burton called Clinton's statements "not true and frankly disappointing."

soundoff (1,572 Responses)
  1. Rich

    Dear Hillary,

    I am a white American and I don't want you! Could you please end your campaign before you do anymore damage to the party?

    Sincerely,

    A Democrat for Life
    "Obama in '08!"

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  2. Judy

    Hillary is correct, the white people want her. And the only reason that the black people are voting for Obama is because is a a black man that has a chance at being the first black president. I will never vote for him.

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  3. Linda

    92 % of blacks voted for his majustice obama, and that isn't racist. The blacks are more racist than whites.

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  4. Katy

    what a disgracefull and racist comment. Do we want such President? majority white american want Hillary. Americans are not ready for Black president. They would rather have a white woman president than black. Sometime I think Wright is right, black can never be president.

    Hillary wealthy and powerfull white supporter is pressuring Pelosi and buying presidency for Hillary and 3rd term of Clintons. Is this what we call democrat? USA is like a 3rd country now.

    I now believe Clintons are the DNC owners and they are entitle the presidency. DNC leaders have no backbone when dealing with Clintons. American, be ready to vote for Chelsea in near future.

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  5. Adam

    Unfortunately only african-americans proved to be racists voting over 90 percent for Obama and the race was the main factor for their decision.
    That will hurt big time all democrats in the general election!!!

    Hillary 2008!!!!

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  6. Karen in Cape Cod

    Why on earth is it OKAY for Obama 's campaign and everyone else on the news to state "he has the majority of black support", but not OKAY for Clinton to make this statement? Frankly , the majority of blacks are voting for Obama. Is it because they think he is the best candidate?
    Think about it!

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  7. Obama '08 & '12

    I HOPE U R LISTENING TO THIS HILLARY SUPPORTERS. IT'S NOT THE FACT THAT SHE SAID THAT WHITE PEOPLE WON'T SUPPORT BARACK THAT IS SAD, BUT THE CONCEPT BEHIND IT. SHE IS SO SELFISH AND POWER HUNGRY, SHE IS STEADILY TRYING TO HURT THE DNC AND CAUSE DIVISION, SO THAT IF OBAMA LOSES IN NOVEMBER, SHE WILL SCREAM " I TOLD U SO!". BUT NOT TO WORRY, HER EVIL PLAN WILL NOT WORK.-–

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  8. J-Waters

    This is just bad, what more can she do to tear up the party, drop out May 20th and no later.

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  9. unions are not stupid

    Yes Hillary keep touting the fact that you are benefits from racism and bigotry! That will be a sure fire winner! I can not see how any truly liberal person person would come support this women! It is time to come together i trust that you are a true democrat! start acting and speaking like one and leave the GOP talking points to them they don't need any help!

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  10. West, Anaheim, Ca

    How could Hilary say such a thing. Here we are in America, trying to play down the race thing and she says this? We are suppose to be bringing this country together. Is this how she is going to do this? I will not be voting for her as she is a very vicious person. Its too bad that the people of this country don't know how fake her smiles are. I have read several books about her and its all about power. Is this how she's going to run the country, with just the white americans? Get real

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  11. carolflowery

    Why is it when someone just states a fact, it's dissappointing?
    She is only going by the numbers. But, hey, it's ok to report constantly
    that 90% black voters are backing Obama like that is news, well, what was intended to be uniter, has become the ultimate divider, it's a sad day in this country

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  12. Michael, Nevada

    It time for the party leaders to end this!!! She has crossed the line!

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  13. vic

    I'm white and I'm a democrat and I don't want Hillary.

    I've heard there are actually people who support her and I've seen them on TV. However, I've never seen anyone in person who will admit to supporting Hillary for President.

    Everyone I know, black or white, supports either Obama or McCain.

    I'm starting to think this Hillary Clinton Campaign is just some myth propped up by the popular media.

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  14. concerned officer

    Well folks, I ashamedly strongly dislike her now. I am trying to avoid the word "hate." But I am very close.

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  15. Ericka

    (Still shaking my head)

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  16. Cindy- St. Louis

    OHMYGOD!!

    Lee, I totally agree with you- these words and actions are shameful and certainly not worthy of a US Senator, let alone a potential Presidential candidate.

    Hillary, keep talking, and soon your supporters will also come to realize your desperation and hate-filled comments.

    This is a new low, even for the Clintons.

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  17. Tracy

    Wow. It looks like soneone has seen the hole and just asked for a larger shovel.

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  18. Jamey Columbus

    Well one thing is for sure the "majority" of African Americans wont vote for a White person in this election.

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  19. Joe in DC

    Not from this one! Especially not with race-baiting comments like these. This is just the culmination of the argument she's been making implicitly now for weeks – I'm more electable because I'm white. Unfortunately for her, her argument doesn't match the facts. She cannot win the support of a majority of Democrats – even if you count Michigan and Florida – so how does she figure she wins a majority of Americans, including the GOP and independent voters (as well as some Dems) who irrationally but very sincerely hate her? So she'll win the white Democratic vote, huh? Even if that's true, it's not enough to propel her to victory in the general. Another losing strategy from the Clintons.

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  20. tracy

    I'm a single mom of 3, white, 44 years old, hard working, full-blooded American. I SUPPORT BARACK OBAMA.

    She really put her foot in her mouth this time. PLEASE Superdelegates, decide already so she'll get out!

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  21. Michele, WV

    I knew it was coming.....so transparent.

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  22. Ronald

    This was an utterly stupid thing for her to say.

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  23. Peter

    What a shame. She has hit bottom.

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  24. ling

    What about all the Black American Voters?? Have we regressed back to discounting them again???????????????????????

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  25. deaf1983

    I knew it would not be long til she says something stupid like that.
    I hope that comment helps Obama beat Clinton the rest of the campaign because it shows why I would not vote for her.
    Go OBAMA

    May 8, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
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