May 29th, 2008
12:30 PM ET
10 years ago

Pelosi prepared to 'step in' to end race

Pelosi says she is prepared to 'step in.'

Pelosi says she is prepared to 'step in.'

(CNN) - Hillary Clinton has hinted that she is prepared to take her fight to fully seat Florida and Michigan all the way to the party's convention in late August, but House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says that's not going to happen.

In an interview with her hometown newspaper, the San Francisco Chronicle, the California Democrat said she is prepared to "step in" if the presidential race does not resolve itself by the end of next month.

"I will step in," Pelosi told the paper. "Because we cannot take this fight to the convention…It must be over before then."

Pelosi, who will serve as chair of the convention, has largely stayed on the sidelines during her party's prolonged primary race. But the House Speaker has said Democratic superdelegates should not overturn the pledged delegate winner, and has warned of irreparable harm if they do so. Barack Obama officially won the majority of pledged delegates in last Tuesday's primary contests, though it's been clear for several weeks Clinton could not overtake him in that category.

Pelosi also indicated she opposes the Clinton campaign's desire that both Florida and Michigan's delegations be fully seated at the convention. The party stripped both states of their entire delegations last year after they moved their presidential primaries ahead in the nominating calendar.

Pelosi said she agreed the two states should be seated in some way, but said only "in a way that is not destructive to any sense of order in the party."

"If you have no order and no discipline in terms of party rules, people will be having their primary in the year before the presidential election," she said. "So there has to be some penalty."

The Democratic National Committee's Rules and Bylaws Committee meets Saturday in Washington to consider exactly how to seat both states. It's likely the committee will vote to meet the rule-breaking states halfway - a move that will help Clinton close the delegate gap with Obama but not overtake him.

soundoff (915 Responses)
  1. La Raza

    Thank you Nancy, this is long overdue. Woman to Woman is probably the best strategy. But why the end of June?

    May 29, 2008 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  2. Jenny

    YES! Finally you said something Pelosi...Now call Gore as well and Please finish this Primary, it is becoming painful

    May 29, 2008 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  3. Pel

    Madam Speaker has the right idea for resolving the contest between Senator Clinton and Senator Obama. The rules are the rules and any compromise should not give one contestant an advantage over the other.

    May 29, 2008 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  4. JB

    I find this whole thing most amazing.

    The newest approach by the Hillary supporters, making statements like "Obama can't win the general election" or his chances are "iffy".

    First, what makes you think you know so much. Weren't you the ones who thought Hillary would win?

    Second, saying it doesn't make it so.

    Third, do you recall what the polls looked like when Clinton had ALMOST clinched the dem nomination against George Bush? He was a NO CHANCE candidate.

    Finally, you cannot compare the primary to the general election. Just because Hillary won NY, doesn't mean Obama cannot win NY. In fact, he will win NY, and MA. Now look at the problems McCain has. Especially after the new book out.

    The truth is you all are grasping at straws, and ultimately the argument you are making is, ignore the majority will of the people and the pledged delegates. Just pay attention to who wins the PRIMARY in a swing state.??????????

    Well, then what is the point of having a primary?

    May 29, 2008 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  5. jbs

    those ppl that are still in support of HRC going all the way must be used to being the victims in an abusive relationship because that's all she is doing.....abusing the system by saying it's her right. Someone needs to step in and "kick" her out of the way just like she's tried to kick her way around and throw insults at Obama.

    Obama 08-12

    May 29, 2008 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  6. GENA





    May 29, 2008 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  7. Kim

    Thank You Nancy Pelosi as you are a democrat is this set in stone or are you also going to waffle.

    May 29, 2008 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  8. Joshua College Station TX

    Yes!! Finally someone is standing up to Clinton and her never-ending self-destructive crusade for power!

    May 29, 2008 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  9. Steve - Minneapolis

    I think we all know this is not the best situation for the Democratic party. But, we also know that Barack has won. There should be no concern about the swing states once Hillary FULLY EMBRACES the Obama campaign. Let's get with it folks.

    Thanks Nancy.

    May 29, 2008 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  10. Gerry

    Thank you Nancy. It's about time someone spoke up and clarified a position.

    May 29, 2008 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  11. Idaho for Sanity

    Finally – Someone talking reason. Hillary is so caught up in this, she is not thinking rationally about the possible outcomes of her fight. She'll be mad at Nancy for a while, but some day will thank her. Without someone to provide perspective, I think Hillary might be willing to destroy the party in order to save it. Her advisers are doing her no favors either, fanning the flames because they have their own ambitions to fulfill and they can't step back to see what they are really doing either. So Nancy, thank you for cutting through the emotion and making the analytical decision.

    May 29, 2008 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  12. Dave, Illinois

    So, who elected her god of the democratic party. I thought her title was only Speaker of the House. She sounds more autocratic than democratic.

    May 29, 2008 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  13. sky

    It needs to end so we can begin.
    The Michigan Florida thing never ceases to amaze me. Apply those same parameters to another situation in your life. Say your daughter wants to try out for cheerleader at school. You find out that the tryouts that are to take place on Saturday have not been sanctioned by the board of ed and that the board of ed will let you know with the sanctioned tryouts can occur. So three fourths of the girls show up and try out on Saturday to the unsanctioned tryout and the team is selected. The board of Ed. Says it doesnt count because they didnt set a tryout date yet. your daughter didnt try out because you were told it didnt count.

    People are screaming that you have to take the team that was selected from the unsanctioned tryouts. Your daughter didnt even get to try out because you followed the rules.

    Barack was not even on the ballot in Michigan. Thousands of voters did not even show up in florida because they knew is was not going to count. The fact that Hillary doesnt want your daughter to get a chance to be cheerleader really looks pathetic.

    May 29, 2008 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  14. lee

    If Pelosi wants a resolution very fast, she should stop saying," I don't think there will be an Obama- Clinton ticket."

    May 29, 2008 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  15. Raoul - Lake City, SC

    That's my girl!!! Except, don't wait until theend of next month, Nancy. End it on June 4. Stop Hillary's foolishness once and for all. It's time for the Democrats to rally around Obama and win the general election in November.

    President Obama... has a nice ring to it!!!

    May 29, 2008 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  16. steven

    Everyone is asking why not count the votes, okay we will count the votes in Florida and michigan, but Hillary wants all of them, you need to understand that is the issue poeple but it is not right, divide equally and seat all delegates and votes and move on.l

    May 29, 2008 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  17. Mario

    The score card is now 1982 for Obama. Please cnn adjust . Thanks

    May 29, 2008 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  18. Brian

    Why can' t Pelosi , Dean, and the rest seem to grasp that fully HALF of the democratic party supports Hillary- We're all democrates here, for cryin' out loud! Why is no one reporting that concerning Florida/Michigan, the candidates met and only agreed to not campaign in the states, and nothing more- nothing about not counting votes. Obama suporters (including the not very subtble support from Pelosi, Dean, and Reid) are alienating Clnton supporters and trying to ram their candidate down everyone's throats, before the voting is even over- – THAT is what is dividing the party-

    May 29, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  19. After further review,Texas

    The play stands as called on the field.Game over.

    May 29, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  20. No Way

    Thanks for waiting so long. YOu could have stepped up a few weeks ago and this pain would be over.

    May 29, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  21. Debbie

    How conveniant, she never stepped in to impeach Bush but will use her power to insure her candidate Obama. She should be fired and someone with honor put in as Speaker of the House. I am ashamed of her.

    May 29, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  22. Brian

    I can't stand Pelosi but she's right. Hillary signed on to the rules change for Florida and Michigan. Not standing by her word is all you need to know about Hillary's character. This is not about what's best for the country, it's about what's best for her. Anyone who thinks otherwise is fooling themselves.

    And Marc from Virginia, Bill Clinton's incompetance got us Newt Gingrich and a Republican Congress, I would not call that saving the Democratic Party.

    May 29, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  23. Anonymous

    I fear that there is no way to stop Hillary Clinton, there's no question that she will instigate a fierce and very ugly war on the floor of the convention in August. Her words and actions have seriously divided the Democratic party. The two factions have become so polarized that there is little chance to gain a majority. Whichever candidate "wins" the nomination, the Democratic party will lose in November.

    Our party has managed to snatch defeat out of the hands of victory. The Repugs will be popping the corks in Minneapolis on Labour Day weekend, and we will be handing the White House keys to McBush in January.

    May 29, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  24. michelle, TX

    If we do not unity as a party.We will repeat the same 4 years of another BUSH/MCCAIN. I know we all want our person to win. But we are DEMOCRATS. No matter what. It's time for Hillary to bow out on June 4th. The question we should be will she fight for us to take back the White House

    OBAMA '08+4YRS

    May 29, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  25. Ryan

    well lets make it happen more talk of when this will end . END IT already

    May 29, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
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