May 26th, 2008
10:55 AM ET
1 year ago

Bill Clinton says wife is victim of a ‘cover up’

CNN

Watch Bill Clinton's remarks about the state of the race.

(CNN) - Former President Bill Clinton said that Democrats were more likely to lose in November if his wife Hillary Clinton is not the party’s presidential nominee, and suggested some people were trying to “cover this up” and “push and pressure and bully” superdelegates to make up their minds prematurely.

"I can’t believe it. It is just frantic the way they are trying to push and pressure and bully all these superdelegates to come out,” he said at a South Dakota campaign stop Sunday, in remarks first reported by ABC News. “'Oh, this is so terrible: The people they want her. Oh, this is so terrible: She is winning the general election, and he is not. Oh my goodness, we have to cover this up.'"

The former president added that his wife had not been given the respect she deserved as a legitimate presidential candidate. "She is winning the general election today and he is not, according to all the evidence,” he said. “And I have never seen anything like it. I have never seen a candidate treated so disrespectfully just for running.”

“Her only position was, ‘Look, if I lose I'll be a good team player. We will all try to win - but let's let everybody vote, and count every vote,’" he said.

The former president suggested that if the New York senator ended the primary season with an edge in the popular vote, it would be a significant development. "If you vote for her and she does well in Montana and she does well in Puerto Rico, when this is over she will be ahead in the popular vote,” said Clinton.

“And they're trying to get her to cry uncle before the Democratic Party has to decide what to do in Florida and Michigan” – which the party would need to do “unless we want to lose the election. "

The current requirement to claim the Democratic presidential nomination is 2,026 delegates, a formula that does not take into account delegates from Florida and Michigan, whose contests were not sanctioned by the party – although if those votes were to be counted as cast, Hillary Clinton would still currently trail rival Barack Obama in the overall delegate count.

The former president said Sunday that the media had unfairly attacked his wife since the Iowa caucuses, repeating an often-used charge that press coverage had made him feel as though he were living in a “fun house.”

"If you notice, there hasn't been a lot of publicity on these polls I just told you about,” he said. “It is the first time you've heard it? Why do you think that is? Why do you think? Don't you think if the polls were the reverse and he was winning the Electoral College against Senator McCain and Hillary was losing it, it would be blasted on every television station?”

He added, “You would know it wouldn't you? It wouldn't be a little secret. And there is another Electoral College poll that I saw yesterday had her over 300 electoral votes…. She will win the general election if you nominate her. They're just trying to make sure you don't."

soundoff (353 Responses)
  1. Reese

    Bill, would you PLEASE just SHUT UP!!!!!!!!!! I am so tired of you and Hillary playing the victim. Why is it always someone else's fault when things don't work out the way you want them to. When you point the finger at others there are three pointing right back at you. You don't have to admit it to the world they you may have something to do with your current situation, but you could at least stop blaming it on everybody and everything else.

    May 26, 2008 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  2. Roper in Denver

    Prior to the beginning of the primaries, the DNC established the criteria to determine who would be selected as the party's nominee. There would be primaries and caucaces conducted to award delegates. Delegate total ( both the standard and the "super" variety) would determine the winner and nominee. Those are the established rules. Not total popular vote. Not who believes they have more momentum. ETC.
    My 4 year old knows the rules to GO fish. She does not like losing. But when she does, she deals with it. Once Hillary has some free time, I can have my daughter explain how to accept the rules of the game.
    I voted for Bill Clinton twice. They are disgracing their legacy more than the stained blue dress ever did.

    May 26, 2008 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  3. Sunshine

    OBAMA DO NOT PICK THIS NUTJOB (HILLARY)FOR V.P.
    OBAMA/WEBB OR OBAMA /BIDEN HAS A NICER RING.
    THESE 2 CHOICES HAVE THE GRAVITAS TO TAKE ON THE GOP ATTACK MACHINE & FOREIGN POLICY EXPERIENCE AS AN ADDED BONUS.

    OBAMA/WEBB,OBAMA/BIDEN VS CLINTON/MCCAIN

    May 26, 2008 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  4. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    Boy these CLINTONS just cannot accept losing, huh? They will subvert the Democratic Party in retaliation for Hillary's LOSS. They will work against Obama (even though they say they will support him) and hand the election to GOP.

    Why would Clinton say anything like this when Hillary has already lost? But they hang on, hoping for dirty back-room politics to hand her the nomination. Is this the new Clinton Fear Tactic?

    The more these CLINTONS whine and cry, the more I hate them.

    May 26, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  5. Larry of Boston

    I do not have to like Bill Clinton to agree with him, and I do agree with him 101% on this perspective.

    let the Obama supporters now come out and throw more dirt on the Cintons – absolutely shameful bahavior – shameful.

    May 26, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  6. bilco

    As someone who knows an unpledged delegate, what I can tell you is that she is sick of getting non-stop calls from the Clinton campaign. Five or six a day.

    The Obama folks calling once a week to see if there is anything they can do to make her mind up – in other words, they are respectful of her tme.

    May 26, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  7. New Day

    Al form Atlanta – If your not a republican than your comments are idiotic. So, your solution is for Clinton and Obama to split the blue states and McCain to win all the red states, huh? Clever!

    May 26, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  8. Al is wrong!

    Al, From Atlanta if she ran as an indipendent, she would be handing over the Presidency to McBush.

    If she did that, she will never be President.

    May 26, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  9. Jesse

    Bill is right, that Hillary has a right to continue, he is worng that, if Obama is the eventual nominee, he is obligated to pick her. This again, is the double-faced-ness of Clinton, The loser dies not deserver anything but to be respected. The problem with the Clintons is that they believe their own poli-speaks. Hillary and Bill set up the divide, a strategic move. The thought was to bring this out later on (as with now) saying that "these are our and only our votes." If Hillary is not on the ticket then they will defect to McCain. This suggests these so-called supporters of Clinton only vote for her – the person – not the plan. What is curious to African-Americans, is why is it so hard for some people to do for once, what blacks have beeing doing ssense we've been allowed in the voting process. Though people don;t want to lose, its okay when and if we learn to lose with grace and respect. Clinton has not lost yet, but there is no respect, nor grace, in the way she or Bill is running her campaign. And what is worse now, if the Democrats lose in November, regardless of who is on the ticket, the Clintons will shoulder much of that blame. Now, they have positioned themselves such that the only way they will ever gain serious respect is if Hillary is on the ticket, she delivers in those so-called swing states, and they win. Otherwise, who would ever respect the CLintons again. Cerainly not African-Americans, who for the most part, loved them, and certainly not their fellow Democrats.

    May 26, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  10. rhiannonrede

    This is just the kind of nonsense talk which puts paid to the lie that he didn't inhale. Looks like he still is.

    Little Rock, AR

    May 26, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  11. granforchange

    GIVE IT UP BILL!!! YOU ARE OUT OF YOUR MIND! YOU AND HILLARY NEED TO GET OUT AND TAKE A MUCH NEEDED VACATION IN MARS OR JUPITER, WHERE YOU CAN NOT DO ANY MORE DAMAGE!! AS FAR AS I AM CONCERNED YOUR LEGACY IS TOTALLY DESTROYED, NOT TO MENTION HILLARY'S POLITICAL CAREER AS WELL.. I HOPE AT THE CONVENTION THEY DO NOT ALLOW YOU TO SPEAK.. YOU HAVE DONE ENOUGH DAMAGE BY YOUR SELF...AFTER ALL IS SAID AND DONE YOU AND HILLARY WILL BE LUCKY IF YOU CAN GET JOB AS TRASH COLLECTORS.. GET OUT BOTH OF YOU! YOU HAVE LOST AND IT IS TIME TO MOVE ON... OBAMA SUPPORTER IN WISCONSIN

    May 26, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  12. Eugenia Mulholland

    Obama has received a great deal of exposurer on television and Hillary has not. I thought in U.S. the popular votes counted and we had a say on who was going to be the candidate for the President. Doesn't experience count? Are we going to elect a president who can charge up a crowd and have all these people on his coat tail telling him what he should do? You don't hear that in Fl. the state government is republican and that is who changed the voting date. Why isn't that in the news?

    May 26, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  13. john california

    Do any of you honestly believe that Obama can win the general when he can't win any of the major elcetoral states? Do any of us really care that he won in south carolina when he didn't win in California, Texas, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Florida and Michigan?

    On another note, stop blaming Florida democrtas for having an early primary. Their governor and their legislature (both Republican) moved their state primary up, not the Florida democrats. How is it fair that their votes hsould not be counted?

    May 26, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  14. AN OHIO VOTER

    Well said, President Clinton, well said!!

    I keep wondering why the DNC has treated Hillary the way they have and also why they have treated you with such hatred and disrespect. Why are they so afraid of Hillary?? Why can't Obama close the deal instead of encourage the "get out Hillary, get out" mantra? What is going on in the Democratic Party and the main stream media that they are trying to cover up? Obama is suppose to be the candidate who will unite and bring about Change...All he has done is divide the party with the help of the "old guard" Dems (Kennedy, Daschle, Dean, Pelosi, Kerry) These people do not represent "change", they are old Dems. Hillary is a very strong and viable candidate.

    WHY DOES THE DNC HATE THE CLINTONS???? WHY DOES THE MAIN STREAM MEDIA HATE THE CLINTONS? WHAT IS THE RATIONALE HERE?? WHY ARE THEY AFRAID TO COUNT THE VOTES AND SEAT MICHIGAN AND FLORIDA??

    KEEP TALKING BILL AND KEEP FIGHTING...YOU TAUGHT HILLARY HOW TO FIGHT!!!! DON'T EVER GIVE UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    HILLARY ALL THE WAY TO THE WHITE HOUSE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    May 26, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  15. john

    Did anyone in the audience ask Mr. Clinton why there is such a big conspiracy against his wife? Especially if she would be the stronger candidate in the general election, as he suggests, why would the superdelegates be doing this, against their own interest?
    I find the Clintons to be very good at getting folks riled up, but not so good at explaining things...

    May 26, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  16. El Máximo Gutierrez

    WE LOVE YOU OBAMA!!!!!

    SI SE PUEDE!

    JES WE CAN jes we can JES WE CAN jes we can JES WE CAN

    OBAMA '08 & '12

    May 26, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  17. Terry

    Wow...the Clintons take the cake when it comes to saying and doing anything to win.
    Talk about sore losers and it is always someone elses fault that she is losing.

    May 26, 2008 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  18. storytellers13

    well i guess any post
    that does not favors obama
    is not going to be posted
    ok

    May 26, 2008 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  19. john

    Hillary it is over so get out of the race
    so Obama can go to the white house.

    May 26, 2008 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  20. Mia

    Well, Hillary's not going to be President. And good riddance. I need a decoder to translate the true meaning of the comments coming out of their mouths.

    The media was all to willing to deam her the winner even before the first vote was cast. The Clinton's glory days are over.

    May 26, 2008 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  21. jozap

    His comments show no connection to reality.

    If they count FL & MI with 0 for Obama, then leave out all the caucus states, change a few more rules, Hillary could win. But that is not what is going to happen.

    The Clintons just don't know how to leave the race gracefully or without doing as much damage as possible to Obama and the party.

    May 26, 2008 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  22. Chris C from Florida

    a fighter in the white house is fine if they pick their fights wisely... hilary picked to fight IRAQ ... obama didnt... she talks of nuclear war with iran... obama talks of diplomacy and working out grevances and rebuilding our name in the eyes of the world...

    wow ill take smooth talk i guess

    May 26, 2008 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  23. B.C.Leach

    Bill Clinton needs to distance himself from Hillary at this time. Every time he opens his mouth he only does more damage to her chances. Shut Up William!!!

    May 26, 2008 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  24. terry beaulieu

    i think bill clinton has lost touch with reality. I've never seen such desperation for the position of president of the u.s.

    May 26, 2008 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  25. paul

    Here is the truth, from Hillary’s own words and actions.

    Hillary: The Politics of Personal Destruction
    by David N. Bossie

    the book and the movie uncover Hillary’s record of cynicism, controversy, and scandal and establish that the "politics of personal destruction" is Hillary’s favored approach to dealing with anyone who stands in her way.

    May 26, 2008 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15