May 29th, 2008
12:30 PM ET
7 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. Bill from Rochester, NY

    Why not have ALL of the votes counted in FL and MI? Here is my reasoning. Barack does the magnanimous gesture and gains support from Clinton supporters. Clinton get her 50% vote in Fl and her 55% vote in MI just as they were casted. Barack get the leftovers. No harm done to Barack's standing. Hillary gets all she's asking for. The DNC doesn't have to control any fighting and bickering. Barack gains support from Hillary supporter when he is declared the Democratic candidate. Sound like Win-Win-Win to me.

    May 29, 2008 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  2. 3Stars2Bars

    Hillary needs to drop out and start campaigning for the VP spot. 2 terms of Obama-Hillary would easily be followed up by at least one term of Hillary and someone else. 12 years of Democratic Presidency? Not bad.

    May 29, 2008 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  3. Joe

    Pelosi get over yourself! Who do you think you are? You're as ineffective as any Speaker we've ever had. You should be the last person to step in on a race that is worth fighting for.

    May 29, 2008 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  4. Karen from Texas

    Obama 08

    May 29, 2008 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  5. therealist

    Nancy also promised democrats she would end the Iraq war!

    Was that a misleading statement or outright lie!!??

    May 29, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  6. sean davis

    Nixon won the election because the Democrats were fighting at their convention! History will be repeated, McCain will win the election, if the Democrats allow this mess to continue! A house divided can't stand! The Democratic Party being divided at the convention will not be able to stand against McCain in November! Wake up America! Look at history based on who has had control of this country over the past 16 years: Bush, Clinton, Bush! Are we saying that there are only two families that has what it takes to lead our country? It's time for a change!

    May 29, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  7. No Obama Ohio!

    Obama will NOT win in Nov. Ohio will make sure of that!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    May 29, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  8. Nando, Florida

    Thank you SPEAKER POLOSI she is the voice of reason in this loony party.

    May 29, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  9. CJ

    Pelosi, better be careful. Yes, this mess needs to end on May 31. The Clintons will never go for because they do not get everything their way.
    It would be nice to see it over at this meeting! It will be intersting to see what Pelosi is going to do to end it.

    May 29, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  10. Bill

    Obama is young and bi-racial. Would that make him a decent president that can get the U.S. back on track? NO! The U.S. has to be fixed. How in the world is HE going to do it? He is totally unknown and McCain is another Bush. At least we know Clinton won't mess up as bad as Obama would. As I remember the U.S. was a pretty decent place when Bill was behind the desk. MAYBE Hillary can repair the damage done over the last 7 years. Obama CAN NOT

    May 29, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  11. Change Express , Kissimmee, FL

    YOU TELL 'EM, NANCE !!!

    OBAMA 08'/12'

    May 29, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  12. Margaret

    Sounds like Pelosi wants the superdelegate system to go away permanently given that they are supposed to use their best judgement, based on several criteria, but she thinks they should only vote according to their constituents. Wouldn't that just make them 'pledged delegates' ??

    May 29, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  13. Jon, NY

    IF THE DEMOCRATS DID THEIR PRIMARIES LIKE THE REPUBLICANS, HILLARY WOULD BE THE NOMINEE IN THAT WINNER-TAKE-ALL SYSTEM!
    THIS IS WHERE HER 'IM STRONGER IN THE GENERAL ELECTION' ARGUMENT IS TRUE.
    HILLARY HAS WON THE PRIMARIES IN 7 OF THE 8 MOST ELECTORAL COLLEGE DELEGATE RICH STATES (CALIFORNIA, TEXAS, NY, FLORIDA, PENNSYLVANIA, OHIO, MICHIGAN) LOSING ONLY OBAMA'S STATE OF ILLINOIS.
    IF THE DEMOCRATIC PRIMARIES PLAYED OUT LIKE THE GENERAL ELECTION, AND IT WAS HILLARY V OBAMA (BASED ON THE PRIMARY RESULTS SHE IS WELL PAST THE 270 ELECTORAL COLLEGE VOTES REQUIRED TO WIN THE PRESIDENCY ON ELECTION DAY.

    ADDITIONALLY, ALL OF THE FLORIDA AND MICHIGAN VOTES NEED TO BE COUNTED.

    NO ONE HAS EVER LOST BOTH FLORIDA AND MICHIGAN TOGETHER IN THE ELECTION AND STILL WON THE WHITE HOUSE. IT HAS NEVER HAPPENED SINCE THE MID 1840s WHEN BOTH WERE ADMITTED TO THE UNION.

    REGARDLESS OF THE NOMINEE, THEY NEED NOT BE DISENFRANSHISED

    May 29, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  14. vince

    Pelosi,

    You have no authority in this matter. Kindly keep your trap shut.

    May 29, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  15. victor

    It's almost dumb founding how people WHO NEW THE RULES WERE BROKEN BY FLORIDA AND MICHIGAN ARE CRYING FOUL FOR HILLARY CLINTON. She signed on to penalize both states. SHE KNEW THEY WOULDN'T COUNT. Now she changes her tune and tries to change the rules again. This little fiasco needs to end NOW, NOT AT THE CONVENTION.

    May 29, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  16. Independant Vet

    PELOSI < PELOSIE < I THOUGHT WE COULD VOTE FOR WHOM WE SO CHOOSE. ? SO NOW YOU ARE TELLING YOUR OWN PARTY HOW TO VOTE SO YOU CAN STAY SEATED NEXT TO BARRACK . , SOUNDS AS IF YOU DON'T REMEMBER THE LAST SWIFT BOAT .

    YOU AN YOUR ELECTION , HAS HAD A BAD ODOR FROM THE BEGINNING . JUST SIT DOWN , JOIN ANNIE OAKLEY WITH A SHOT , THE RETURN HOME . AN SHUT YOUR MOUTH.

    May 29, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  17. hollerbode

    Good thing Pelosi,would "step in" to end this Billary nonsense!

    And this is simply because she knows "no order and no discipline" would be "destructive" to the DNC! Something tells me the Clinton's couldn't care less about the DNC...or the US!

    May 29, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  18. Valerie - St. Louis, MO

    The Clinton's are up to their the same old tactics used by the GOP. If you are not for them, then you do not count. Caucus states do not count as far as the Clinton's are concerned but they want to count Florida and Michigan. Give me a break!

    May 29, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  19. HILLARY HAS THE POPULAR VOTE!!!!!!

    PELOSI IS WEAK MINDED!

    WHAT IS SHE GOING TO DO?

    HILLARY IS SMART, SHE WILL GET OUT WHEN SHE SEES FIT, I TRUST HILLARY TO MAKE THE RIGHT DECISION!
    HILLARY IS THE BETTER CANDIDATE TO WIN IN NOVEMBER!
    IF THESE IDIOTS INSIST ON PUTTING OBAMA IN THERE, WE WILL HAVE JOHN McCAIN IN THE FALL!
    JUST WHAT THE REPUBLICANS WANT!!!!!
    WE SUPPORT YOU HILLARY!!!!!!

    May 29, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  20. Thomas

    I don't understand why so many people: a) say hillary is being disrespected and b) they would rather vote for McCain than Obama.

    She has officially NO chance of winning the nomination while abiding by the rules of the DNC and THIS is the reason people want her to pull out. She is delaying the start of the gen. election.

    Also, I believe that people who would rather vote for McCain than Obama are simply not being open minded. I happen to support Obama whole- heartedly, but even if you do not support him I can't see any way someone could use their vote to send this country plummeting even further simply out of spite because they don't like how Hillary didn't win the nom.

    Florida and Michigan cannot be counted accurately because in Michigan Obama WASNT even on the ticket and in both states hundreds of thousands of voters didn't come out to vote because their votes wouldn't count.

    Hillary agreed that these states did not obey the rules and it would be fair to not count their votes. I understand why these states would be outraged their votes aren't counted, but I believe Hillary is screwing over the Democrats in the gen. elect. because she is painting Obama as someone who is disregarding their votes, and she is rallying them to a point where they believe she is standing up for their vote rather than trying to muster up more delegates.

    May 29, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  21. SKS in Wisconsin

    Let's all remember we have more in common with all democrats than we do with Mcsame. Let's unite and end this war, achieve universal health care, and regain some fiscal responsiblity.

    Democrat '08

    May 29, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  22. Jen, Gainesville

    Finally, someone in DNC showed leadership. We should have a nominee next week. Anything longer will reduce the chance of democrats in November. Unity over division. Party over personal ambition.

    May 29, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  23. Kathy

    My question to the “under 30 generation” who for the first time in their lives “found their voice”… in Obama…..where have you been? Why not until now have you not exercised your right to vote? You place your faith in a man who has not been tested, pocesses little record of accomplishment and little to no experience in international or economic matters. Go back and check the record…Obama released his platform weeks after Clinton released her Solutions For America agenda. His were extremely similar to hers. The Clinton campaign reacted to the release of the Obama platform by saying…”at least his is not that different than ours” So I ask you, what does this man stand for when he copies what it convenient to his campaign? For shame!

    Life to you folks seems rather simple. I suppose in your minds, Obama offers a sense of entitlement both for himself and his supporters - your/his time has come. The simple fact is that if you look past his rhetoric there is little substance. You buy into his chant of “change..yes we can” with little thought or experience as to the complexities involved in bringing about change. Some of you worship him like he is a “messiah”, here to save us from ourselves. He may in fact be anointed the nominee, and you like him, will think nothing can stop you. A country cannot have economic security and growth without first securing national security. And anyone who does not believe this is living in dream world…period! The simple and relevant truth is…….. One can fool some of the people some of the time…but not all the people…. all the time

    McCain may represent a party for which I may not find a lot of common ground however, I respect his honor, integrity and sacrifice to our country, the scars of which he still bears as a testament to his courage…. And I will place my hope for change in him.-he is not Bush… He has earned my respect and most likely my vote and the votes of millions of others who feel the same way.

    For the sake of our country and that of our future….thank god there are more of us than you, and we will not allow this fantasy to continue past Nov. DNC party chairs and uncommitted superdelgates…..you either stop this false prophet now….or we will do so with our votes come Nov.

    And to all those, Obama supporters, who have previously responded to my comment, or wish to now I say this…you are being fooled by the joker himself-Obama. Study up on your American history….this man will put up a pretty decent fight, however in the end, he will join the ranks of Kerry and other far-left liberals….bitter and clinging to his religion wondering why he came so far only to have the door slam shut on him.

    May 29, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  24. Sylvia Johnsen

    Superdelegates were set-up to excersise judgement for the best of the Party. When Nancy Pelosi rejects superdelegates should exercise personal judgement, she is in fact changing the rules by word of mouth. Superdelegates don't have to listen, but she is treathening and people are worried and frighten for their jobs.

    Shame on her!

    Clinton 08!

    May 29, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  25. Chipster

    Robert in Albuquerque and the rest of the Republicans who claim the Democrats have achieved nothing:

    The Democrat congress has been blocked by not having a super majority and by Presidential veto. However, they have achieved a great deal. They have stopped the Republicans from doing further damage to our constitutional liberties. They have begun to end the transfer of the U.S. Treasury to the corporate thieves who have been given generous contracts without competition.

    To the Democrats and Moderate Republicans: Elect more Democrats and moderate Republicans who will restore our government agencies to their previous level of competence. FEMA, EPA, FDA, Mine Safety and more were competent and effective under the Clinton administration. Frankly, I don't care about a stupid blue dress! I want a government that serves the needs of its people.

    May 29, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
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