May 21st, 2008
06:00 PM ET
10 years ago

Obama willing to ‘go more than halfway’ on FL, MI

(CNN) - Obama senior adviser David Axelrod says the Illinois senator’s campaign is “open to compromise” and willing to cede Hillary Clinton the advantage in talks over the seating of the Florida and Michigan delegations at the Democratic National Convention this summer.

"We are willing to go more than half way. We're willing to work to make sure that we can achieve a compromise," Axelrod tells National Public Radio’s Michele Norris in a Wednesday evening interview. "And I guess the question is: is Senator Clinton's campaign willing to do the same?"

Clinton spent Wednesday in Florida highlighting her push for full delegations from both states to be seated in accordance with their January votes, which were not sanctioned by the Democratic National Committee because of the early primary dates. Her campaign has charged the Obama team with blocking a compromise on the issue – a claim that campaign has denied.

"Well obviously, any compromise is going to involve some give, and that means if there's something on the table, we're willing to consider it," Axelrod told NPR in the interview set to air Wednesday evening. “That may include us yielding more delegates than perhaps we would have, simply on the basis of the rules."

Obama now appears likely to finish the primary season with a delegate lead, including superdelegates, that would not disappear if both states’ delegations are seated based on the results of January’s contests, in which his name did not appear on the ballot in Michigan. Clinton won both primaries.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Florida • Hillary Clinton • Michigan
soundoff (352 Responses)
  1. Big D

    This is really generous of Obama – but I doubt Hillary will accept it. She's so intent on getting all or nothing (she counts 0 for Obama in Michigan). Remember that SHE TURNED DOWN a similar offer in MI go split the difference. It would be great if they could reach an agreement on this, Obama still wins, and we can finally be done with this primary season.
    O '08

    May 21, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  2. Rave

    Dont go even quarter the way Mr. Obama.
    Hillary cheated on all her running mates and sneaked into MI and FL.
    The only real solution to this problem is to re-do the election in these 2 states (or) dont count them
    This is B.S. if she wants to include MI, where she was the only one playing the match..(still managed only 50%).
    Go Home Hillary

    May 21, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  3. blair

    obama is a nobody. always has been and always will be. everyone else has put him where he is. he has done nothing to earn it. he will never be the legal president of the United States. obama has not won anything. he has won nothing. everything has been given to him as long as he plays his role. he will be unmasked.

    May 21, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  4. BITTER Hillary Lover

    The first FEMALE president of the United States

    Michelle Obama

    May 21, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  5. Raz

    Please do not forget !!!!! Adam & Eve Story.... Do not accept the Apple.


    May 21, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  6. AussieGuy

    I think by clutching at the straws desperately Clinton campaign is only prolonging the inevitable. If she is really serious about working for American people, she can still do lot of good work by taking a senior position in Obama administration. I also think after such a bitter and vitriolic campaign, she should not seek the VP position.

    It would be absolute travesty of justice if somehow she is able to steal the nomination by her lopsided arguments based on weird calculations. If that happens, common people will lose faith in democracy and the whole political process.

    May 21, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  7. Jodie, Idaho

    I am a republican and I am voting for Ron Paul, but I love how the HIllary Clinton fanactics are so determined to get their way that they will bash Obama on this and not vote for him. Wake up!!! Hillary did not care that Michigan and Florida would not be counted, because she signed the agreement too. Now all the sudden, because it benefits her she is all the sudden worried about people's votes counting. Thats bull and everyone knows it. It was the DNC who was responsible, and what would you have them do? If they just allowed everyone to do what they wanted the process would not be fair. Sorry!!

    May 21, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  8. Wake Up America

    Ok America, it's time to stand up. Does anyone really want a shrieking, kicking, screaimng, bipolar, delusional woman for President? If not I urge you to go on the DNC's website and let them know it. Otherwise she will kick and scream her way into something in Obama's administration.

    Think about it. All the Hillary bloggers absolutely cannot stand Obama BUT they want Hilldog to be his VP. They want her to WORK FOR HIM? I don't think so...they want her to stab him in the back at every twist and turn and Bill will be running interference all the way.

    I just want democracy to work and that doesn't include changing the rules after the game starts.

    May 21, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  9. Chicagoway

    For Anyone Here- There have been countless people on here saying obama has ridiculed clinton and made sexist comments directed toward her. I have yet to hear any specific comment he has made.

    Can anyone name one?

    May 21, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  10. Anonymous

    Wow, give the poor woman a little more credit, I think she is smarter than that. She is staying in it not because of ego, money, or entitlement, but she really feels an obligation to her supporters. If she quits she will always be viewed by her supporters as a person that quit on them when they were counting on her to hang tough and they will never support her again. She wants to be bailed out and contrary to what she is leading the media to believe, she wants nothing more than to have the super delegates back Obama so she will have a good reason (excuse) for dropping out or the race.

    May 21, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  11. Shed Some Light

    Some of you Billary supporters are so PATHETIC!

    They will lie, cheat and steal there way into the Whitehouse.

    They are well dressed THUGS!

    McCain in 08'

    May 21, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  12. Mary

    Why give in to Hillary? The only thing wrong and if she was a honest person she would admit it. she cannot accept the fact that a black man defeated her. She will do whatever she can to keep him out of the White House. I would not give in to her. She knew what would happen if they didn't obey the rules.

    May 21, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  13. Adam, Los Angeles


    "I'm so tired of Obama's campaign trying to sound moderate, inclusionary and reasonable when they are constantly attacking Clinton backhandedly or just without actual 'heat' in the message."

    WELCOME TO POLITICS AND GOVERNMENT!!! At least, Obama is doing it professionally while McCain and Clinton continue to behave like children.

    May 21, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  14. EDW

    Hillary is underhanded and I'm not trusting this at all. The DNC made the rules and now Clinton is trying to break them. Let them just revote and get it over with. Have Hillary pay for it – oh wait – she's broke!!!

    May 21, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  15. Smart People for Obama

    They both agreed to these rules long ago.

    By the way, the vote should NOT be counted as is. I didn't even go out and vote, knowing mine wouldn't count anyway. So how is it fair to just count the votes as is? Many people probably stayed in that day and never voted. The existing results are invalid.

    May 21, 2008 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |

    Jack Hillary is going to put McCain in office. It just amazes me that when she thought she had it , all the rules were just fine. Now, that she is beat by the rules, fair, she want to change them. Now, let me give the Demo Party something to think about, don’t worry about the blue collar workers that she says will not vote for Obama. Let me give you the real facts. If the Demo Party overrules the will of the people all of us, the millions that voted for Obama, and this includes the young, Africian-American and everyone else. You talk about a slap in the face and vote didn’t count. For you Clinton voters, you got beat fair and square. All you are doing is destroying the Party and be asured that John McCain will be the next President. I didn’t vote for Hillary but if she beats Obama in a fair contest, follows the rules ,you will beat I would vote for her. So here it is, if Hillary voters that got beat fair & square, and can not support Obama because he won by following the rules, then ya’ll have succeeded and destroyed the Demo Party and John will be the next President. Sad situation isn’t it!???!!!

    May 21, 2008 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  17. Concerned

    She will sue the DNC, 'on behalf of the voters'...not for herself. And all this talk of sexism she's bared the brunt of? Hank Aaron received daily death threats when he came close to being the Home Run King, breaking a white man's record. What do you think the potential, first President of color has endured?

    May 21, 2008 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  18. Hillary or Histerical?

    There is an SNL skit in the making here…

    During Obama's or McCain's inauguration day speech, Hillary will push the president elect out of the way, take the microphone, and say the following:

    "I'm not giving up! If you count all of the states where I won the democratic primary, I have the most votes. It doesn't matter that Obama/McCain was elected in the general election, I'm the best person to run this country… and besides, I already wrote a book about myself being in charge!"

    May 21, 2008 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  19. No Hillary

    No Compromose!!!!!!!!!!!

    1) 1/3 of the delegates should not be seated (punishing teh states for not following party rules)
    2) 1/3 of the delegates should be seated based on the voting that took place
    3) 1/3 of the delegates should be given to each candidate 50% each

    May 21, 2008 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  20. laf

    The only fair way to solve the issue would be to have a revote and I am not altogether sure that Hillary Clinton would like the results. Of course she wants for the outcome of the "sham" primaries to stick as they are now because it benefits her especially with Obama's name off the ballot. Although, she should take into consideration that a 55% win in Michigan WITHOUT Obama and Edwards names on the ballot is hardly a win! Shame on her and her supporters. They just want to run this election and this country into the ground!

    May 21, 2008 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  21. RB

    Be careful, Barack. She is sneaky and dirty. If you give an inch....

    Now that she's through with the "blue collar Americans" in the states that had the most of "them", she's trying to stir up sexism charges. Well, I think she has been exposed to sexism only to the point that lying, cheating, stealing, and taking advantage of people are things that only women do.

    She's ruined forever. She never win another election and she knows it. Her silly little "yes" men/women in congress had better read the tea leaves before she rubs off on their careers. Don't they know that after she divides the party, their opponents will point to their affiliation with clinton? Wise up folks.

    May 21, 2008 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  22. Denise

    It appears experience is not the best teacher. Otherwise, it would seem experienced politicians would know that bashing your front runner hurts the party.

    I hope the Clinton response to the consideration is to stop bashing Obama.

    May 21, 2008 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  23. jay

    To Shane:

    The GOP cut these states delagtes in half. WHy isn't anyone complaing about that. Sen. Obama is being more than Generous about this. He could say they broke the rules, let them take this matter up with their elected officals.

    Also, Hiliary signd contract, and if she fights to overturn those votes in FL. Somebody should sue the S**T out of here for not up holding to that agreement

    May 21, 2008 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |

    Both Clinton and Obama agreed last year that these votes would not count. The voters in both states knew that they wouldn't count. Stop it already! Clearly Hillary needs a time out because she's not getting her way. She's throwing herself on the floor, kicking, screaming, and having a temper tantrum!

    May 21, 2008 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  25. James, CA

    Obama already won.

    Obama/Sebelius '08

    May 21, 2008 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
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