May 8th, 2008
12:03 PM ET
4 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. Chris Mackin

    I am a white man and will tell you as a white person in America, Hillary you've got no shot. Not because you're a woman, but because you're a fraud and we all know it.

    Your only realy support base is coming from people who think the novelty of a woman president is worth voting for or the fact that your "husband" was well liked.

    Nobody likes you for you because you're totally transparent to anyone paying attention. So transparent the Bosnian snipers couldn't even see you.

    May 8, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  2. I SEE UR TRUE COLORS

    HILLARY, U'RE NOW NO LONGER HURTING YOUR CAMPAIGN, YOU ARE NOW HURTING YOUR LEGACY AND YOUR HUSBANDS...

    May 8, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  3. Jerry

    Why is CNN determined to destroy these people. Who worte this Roland Martin. What a bunch of "hooey"

    May 8, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  4. Janyouerry

    What is so very awful about her determination to stop Obama at any cost (this has stopped being just an elect Hillary effort for quite a few weeks now), is that folks who genuinely admired and respected her
    are seeing a side that she managed to hide for years. I went into this campaign not really knowing which of the two I would chhose. Excitement about a woman president and intrigued by the prospect
    of a highly qualified person of color. Yes, this is a "Stop Obama" campaign so that four years from now SEnator Clinton can run against what will surely be a one-year McCain term. You have pained me and millions of other African American Democrats who have supported you and your husband unconditionally. Does your daughter really know or understand this side of you?

    May 8, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  5. brooke

    how could she say something like that? that's dividing the party even more!!!

    May 8, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  6. Larry

    Wow Billary is such a uniter with that statement. Talk about pulling out all the cards now. quit it is over, This is more about being narcissitic then about bringing the party together.

    OBAMA 08

    May 8, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  7. Paul

    She's like that booger you get stuck on your finger going down the highway at 70 mph that you can't get rid of no matter how hard you try or what you do to flick it off into the wind...it just keeps coming back on another finger.

    I'm a 45 year old "White Guy" that has been supporting Obama since his keynote address in '04. I don't really care if someone is purple with pink pokodots...knew he had something then and know he has something now.

    May 8, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  8. Donna

    This whole primary thing is not black and white (pun intended). It is about counting ALL the votes, whether from a black person or white person. ALL the votes have not been validated. This farce is more about NOT INCLUDING CITIZENS of Florida and Michigan than the black/white thing. What this says to me (and ALL Americans) is that if you live in ANY state, at ANY time, your vote may not mean as much as a super delegate's vote. Your right to vote will depend on the whim of the larger political establishment.

    May 8, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  9. ralph

    right now right here we all can see that Obama is not the One
    because of peoples like Hillary,why is so hard for American in general to acept Obama as president of USA,if WHITE will only vote for here then she will be way ahead,are Black in America 60/70% of the popularity
    in USA?????
    PLEASE HILLARY you are going way to far with your comment,you are trying to make white American to go back to the 40/50/60!s with your
    crazy comment,WHAT A SHAME.
    RIGHT NOW AS ALWAYS FOR ME Bill is way better human than you,i!m 100% sure that Mr Clinton is mad about your comment,
    thanks

    May 8, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  10. Caramia

    The only pattern emerging is Hillary Clinton proving that her need to win means than the future of this country or the Democratic Party. To have her make such divisive statements is appalling and against everything the Dems are supposed to stand for.
    Time to find some grace and think beyond the primary.
    Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, Howard Dean... step up and put an end to this before you lose the party itself, and the White House.

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  11. michael smith

    Hillary Clinton has proven that being a liar is synonymous to being a Clinton. Bill would say anything to stay President, and Hillary will say anything to become President.

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  12. GL

    Strom Thurman would be proud.

    Enough already. SD's send this bigot packing.

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  13. Rick

    Hillary's right. "There's a pattern emerging here." She's willing to roll in the gutter to win – trying to drive a wedge to divide us.

    I find her statement particularly offensive where she talks about "Obama's support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans". She faulted Obama for his "bitter" comment, but this is even worse as she implies that the people who strongly support Obama don't fit into the category of working or hard working. And by tacking on "white Americans" the direct implication is that black people who strongly support Obama are not hard-working. No Republican would ever get away with a statement like she made.

    I am a Democratic elected official, and I very much want to see a Democratic President. But if Hillary should get the nomination (which could only happen at this point if some tragedy should befall Obama) I don't think I can vote for her. She would definitely have some bridges to mend with me. I have some serious concerns about her character and temperment to be President. With her on the ballot, I would not at this time rule out voting for McCain.

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  14. Dan

    Good God...Hillary..it's time to drop out!

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  15. Antoinette

    Oh, how very sad. She would rather divide the people than give up her bid. Does America see now. Iowa is predominately White America and they did not want her. It's her they do not want no matter what the color of her skin. What a very sad statement.

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  16. leebee1963

    Every day I become increasingly disappointed in Mrs. Clinton, but now I'm just flat out disgustedat the sight of her Never did I think I would see someone who over the years has touted themselve as a so-called "friend" of the African-American community stoop to this. It seems that she has forgotten about the many blue-collar African-American workers in this country. Along with the fact she (or anyone) can't win without the sizeable African-American vote that she has all but dismissed.

    OBAMA 08'!!!

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  17. PWT

    I's a poor white man whats finisht the therd grade. i votet now in 3 elexions and i's fur Hillery.

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  18. Betty from Texas

    hillary is the only candidate who can fix this broken economy, and the news media has really angered me by the way they have done her. women of this country are still, and you can tell by the negitivity in the news media, are being treated unfairly. go ahead and put an unexperienced man, again i said man, in the white house,,,, for years man has screwed up this country. given a chance ,women would clean up this mess. but thats why most men have voted for obama,,, they are afraid of seeing a women actually cleaning up the mess men have made.. and not one person out there can say any different and be truthful about it. and come time to vote for our govenors and elected officials of oklahoma, we people of oklahoma voted hillary, and they gave delegate votes to obama,,, they really listened to the people of oklahoma didnt they. i will vote for someone else come next voting times. god bless us all for we will need it if obama is put in as president. you will see. and i will write in here again, and say i told you so.

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  19. Obama Now!

    whites without college degrees are supporting Clinton....or do yo mean the idiots of the Democratic voter base are supporting Clinton?!?!

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  20. Vince

    Preposterous. Hillary needs to take her flock and be President of
    the Aryan nations. ( on a deserted island somewhere ).

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  21. right

    BRAVO BRAVO BRAVO

    HILLARY SPEAKS THE TRUTH
    AND SHE CAN SPEAK FOR ME AS PRESIDENT

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  22. Jim S. - Plymouth, Pa

    What an overtly racist comment.. I cannot believe the propaganda machine known as the "media" have not been in an uproar over this. However, it does make sense due to the fact that the "good ole boys" want to maintain their control over their already entrenched, greed-filled policies.

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  23. Obama Supporter

    Its unfortunate, however, Clinton has an inability to be nice. She continues to race bate and attempt to divide and bring all those unwilling to embrace regardless of skin tone out and she is clearly one, what she is doing or has done is hidden racism.

    Hilliary has been speaking directly to women to vote for her, Obama isn't able to that otherwise he would be seen as soliciting black votes and that would racist or the black. Now she is soliciting all white votes. Greater divide. I'm disappointed.

    I was beginning to let all of this go just an hour or two ago and now to read this. I still dont like her and cant let go. If she manages to steal this election and thats exactly what it would be in her case because even with FL/MI she doesnt have the numbers. I will not vote for her.

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  24. Louis

    So RASCIST Hillary finally speaks.

    What about brown skin, Hispanics, Asians and rest. You want to comment on them too?

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  25. fred

    I don't care if a person is red, white, blue, black ...Obama is a disgrace to America and his Anti-America wife is even worse. He will never win and he has been playing and using the race card from day one!!!

    May 8, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
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