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. Rita in PA

    The delegate system is extremely outdated and no longer serves the American people as evidenced by the fact that the Florida and Michigan delegates cannot vote at this time even though the people spoke by voting. So, this means that the peoples wishes didn't count in these two states. I thought the people had a say in this country concerning who gets the nomination; apparently not in Florida and Michigan. And the superdeligate idea is garbage also. They get to place their vote for whom they please and place a nominee no matter what the people say with their vote. I wonder what our founding Fathers would say about this. The whole delegate system is a joke. The delegate system should be eliminated and the popular vote system should be installed. Primarys can still be held and a decision made on a nominee by a certain date before the general election; but the decision should be by popular vote. We can't trust delegate to do what the people of this country tell them to do with our votes.

    May 29, 2008 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  2. Betty in NC

    So what if some of you don't like Hillary ( I'd like to know how many of you personally even know her to be judging her so harshly, your just repeating the exact same things that the news media has been putting out there for months) this is not a personality contest, it's suppose to be the best person for the job, not the least experienced . Obama is making the same promises as all other candidates have so where is the "CHANGE", where is the "Different", the "New"?

    May 29, 2008 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  3. Young Democrat

    While I supported Hillary for my state's primary, I expect to fall in line with whoever ultimately is nominated by the Dems.

    That said, what Pelosi is proposing is that party insiders cut off the democratic process before the convention. Less infighting would certainly be better for the party in the long run, but I see too much hypocrisy in her statements.

    Michigan and Florida have to follow the rules or else there would be chaos, but a candidate in the primary is not allowed to campaign to the convention? The rules should only be followed when it suits Nancy Pelosi?

    No. I've had enough government that actively circumvents our democracy. The ends do not justify the means.

    May 29, 2008 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  4. Tony

    To all disenfranchised democrats, son't go to the repuiblican party if you feel the DNC has ignored you. Join us in the Libertarian Party, the only party that stands for REAL change!

    Bob Barr in '08!

    May 29, 2008 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  5. 58 old white ladies for OBAMA

    IF WE NEVER HEAR THE NAME CLINTON AGAIN, WE

    WILL BE GRATEFUL. HER LOBBYISTS HAVE THREATENED

    TO PULL THEIR SUPPORT FOR THE DNC, AND CONSEQUENTLY

    TURNED THIS ELECTION INTO A SHAM. THEY SHOULD BE

    ASHAMED. BILLHILLI BOUGHT & PAYED FORE LONG TIME

    AGO. THAT IS WHY SHE WENT TO WAR. THERE IS LOTS OF

    MONEY IN IT FOR ALL OF THEM , INCLUDING THE CLINTONS.

    THEIR TAX RETURN A GREAT EXAMPLE OF WHO THEY

    WORK FORE. AND CLEARLY IT'S NOT FOR US.

    WE NEED TO GET THEM & THEIR LOBBYISTS OUT OF

    THE PARTY.

    May 29, 2008 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  6. Jacque

    Since there's a good chance Democrats will take both the house and the senate in November – perhaps it's best if McCain is elected president . Checks and balances – too much power for either party is not good. Obama is too liberal, Doesn't have enough experience and is too full of himself and hot air for us Regan Democrats to give him the keys to the White House!

    Besides, if Nancy really wants the war to end, she can just refuse funding and override McCain's Veto. Supreme court justices must be approved also!

    Clinton or McCain – Never Barack "Bad Judgement" Obama!

    May 29, 2008 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  7. Ben

    Hillary should run as an independent. She would easily win and after the way the DNC, Obama supporters and the news media have treated, I would say do it. I hope she does.

    Have you people really read some of the vitrolic language on this message board? Especially when it comes to the Obama supporters. On the other side, the Clinton supporters seem to mostly comment on the electablity of Obama and the issues in the race. You can't unite a country or a party by name calling, fear mongering and bullying. That's what we have now under Bush and look where that got us.

    May 29, 2008 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  8. emma

    I am so tired of Hillary supporters claiming they will leave the party and vote for McCain, they seem to be the same kind of democrat as their candidate. Give me what I want or I will make up my own rules. I hope you don't claim to be a feminist the same time you are spewing the garbage about voting for McCain if so you are as dillusional as Hillary. If you really want to leave the party go ahead and take Hillary with you we don' t need disloyal people in our party.

    May 29, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  9. MD for Obama

    To Sheila, Tamap

    Go ahead and leave the party. We don't need you. Obama won this fair and square and raised more money than any candidate who ran. After bringing up the race card (Bill in SC) and the gender card (Hillary) the Clinton's have shown their true colors. They thought they had this in the bag and NEVER expected what has happened. She said at the end of 2007 this race would be over after Feb. 5th (Super Tuesday) and she obviously didn't plan ahead. She is also $20 million in debt.

    To all Clinton supporters who live in caucus states, remember she has said YOU DON'T MATTER.

    Obama '08 & 12

    P.S. To all of you saying she is the better candidate to beat McCain, how come she couldn't beat Obama?

    May 29, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  10. Mat

    Wow the way Hillary fans react to this and Obama fans react to this is so funny – Look Pelosi is right, if you don't have rules, and stand by them states will do what they want, when they want! FL and MI broke the rules of the DNC and as a result by LAW they at best can seat half the delegates. This isn't about being fair, about every vote counts, it's about party rules and sticking to it. Hillary signed an agreement not to campaign in either state and to follow party rules and not expect those delegates to count. Those are the facts!

    Hillary's supporters and big donners have sent letters to Pelosi and other Dems' demanding support for Hillary "or else' and I love that the inside washington politics aren't working!

    End this next Tuesday – move on to November – unite the party and give us a fighting chance against 4 more years of McBush!

    May 29, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  11. Jon

    I am quite disgusted with this. "I will step in." Excuse me but who are you to challenge the process of this democratic race. All these people think the world will end if something happens, the last time we had people in Washington vision an outcome of something we ended up in a sinkhole called the Iraq war. I agree the Obama has been winning, but let the process play its course and not let some elite dnc member make the decisions.

    May 29, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  12. Steve, Oregon

    I thought most Americans were tired of being lied to by our Commander in Chief and his staff. Now HRC is following his lead. She is NOT winning the popular vote; Obama is.

    May 29, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  13. A. Harrison in Georgia

    And while we're at it, let's just say "We never Wanted Hillary Clinton as our Nominee" and be done with it.

    Supporting Obama, who does not want "Washington business as usual" while acting as such is not a big sell either.

    There has been hypocracy with this "CHANGE" from day one. Maybe Wirght was right.............

    May 29, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  14. AC

    Pelosi is normally not praiseworthy , but at least she is now standing up and acting like an adult in order to bring to an end this Clinton-inspired mess.

    May 29, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  15. Mark F.

    Pelosi, take your nose out of it.

    Do your job and do something in congress, like you promised. You are useless.

    Impeach bush and his VP.

    We know you are an Obama supporter so your opinion is not constructive. It is biased.

    It is not Hillary that is dividing the party, but you, Howard Dean, Harry Reid, Kerry and the rest of you useless clowns.

    I will be writing Hillary Clintons name on the ballot if she does not get the nomination. Not a chance I will vote for Obama. He makes Carter look good.

    You people are making a very serious mistake if you do not nominate Hillary. Time to get rid of the Super-delegates also.

    Since when are they more important than the American voter?

    HILLARY CLINTON ALL THE WAY FOR PRESIDENT.

    This posting comes from:

    A white male, late thirties, very well educated, employed in a very good job.

    Not a white unemployed male, with little or no education clinging to religion and guns in small town America.

    As the Obama campaign would have you believe all Clintons supporters are.

    May 29, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  16. Proud Obama Supporter

    NO BAMA, you should stop pretending to be a democrat.

    May 29, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  17. Thank you Speaker!

    Don't let it go to the end of next month!

    End it after June 3 – Clinton *cannot* win by any fair means and she has to accept that.

    Obama 08 & 12

    May 29, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  18. Tim

    Finally some common sense in the primary. This will end after June 3rd and not a moment too soon. Unless of course we need to hang around to see if something happens!!!! Oh, but Senator Clinton meant nothing by it. She just had the Kennedy family on her mind. The problem is Senator Clinton, you said the same thing months earlier. Thank you Senator Pelosi for taking charge to end this.

    Obama 08/12!!!

    May 29, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  19. GEORGE M.

    WE SAY WE ARE HAVE DEMOCRATIC PRINCIPLES AND WE ARE THE GREATEST DEMOCRATIC COUNTRY IN THE WORLD.
    I DOUBT ABOUT THE WAY THIS SYSTEM WORKS. I SEE THE PARTY'S DIVIDED AND THE MEDIA IS VERY CAPABLE OF STEERING THE VOTE FOR THE CANDIDATE.
    WE SEE SOME CANDIDATES WHO WANT TO BE THE PRESIDENTS NOT HAVING THE MORALE BACKGROUND AND QUITE A FEW TIMES USING RACIAL LANGAUGE TO WIN THE VOTES.
    I ALSO WONDER ABOUT OUR ROLE MODEL BEHAVIOR TO THE WORLD AROUND US. HOW CAN WE BRING DEMOCRACY TO THE OTHER NATIONS? THINK.
    ONLY BY OUR PATTERN OF BEHAVIOR.
    OR ELSE WE ARE CALLED HYPOCRIATES AND WE LOSE RESPECT FROM THE WORLD. THEY WILL BE LAUGHING.
    HONESTY, DISCIPLINE, LOVE , MEEKNESS, PEACE,.......ECT.. THESE ARE THE KEY ELMENTS THAT WE SHOULD SEE FROM A CANDIDATE. BYE FOR NOW.

    May 29, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  20. Sam

    It is about time!!!
    Go House Speaker Nancy Pelosi!!!!
    She is a woman who knows what she is doing.
    This is a woman who represents me, not this pseudo-feminist Hillary, who was hidding behind her husband when he was president, and now is playing the gender game.

    May 29, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  21. john

    Go Nancy. Its over. Emotions aside Hillary's supporters will see the light (except for those who are republican impostors)

    May 29, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  22. Carol, San Luis Obispo, CA

    Will Hillary now claim Pelosi is sexist ?

    I'm looking forward to an end of the Clinton campaign. It's one thing to complete a race (and I am glad Hillary is seeing this through to the end albeit not the end Hillary wants), but it's another to lace your campaign with blame and subjective conspiracy theories and spin why you think you are "winning" instead of losing.

    Way to go Nancy Pelosi!

    Carol
    San Luis Obispo, CA

    May 29, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  23. Tim MN.

    Stop saying Hillary is destroying the party! My god how many other times has it happened that the nominee went all the way to the convention? I would say that being as the race is so close there are alot of voters that will have their say come November and they wont be voting for Obama and when that time comes and he loses and we all know he WILL you can all shut your stupid pie holes! We all know how easily sheep are swayed and kool aid drinkers keep routing for a loser

    May 29, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  24. JB

    Hillary supporters are delusional beyond belief. I am an Indian american, but I wouldnt vote for Bobby Jindal in my dreams.

    I also liked HRC when the race started , but the way she has run this campaign is disgusting. If U HRC supporters want, U can go jump off a cliff by voting McCain, but dont call others for company.

    Any 'Donkey' in '08

    May 29, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  25. Eric

    This is ridiculous. Let Democracy work. The process of election has been set. Delegates only cast their votes at the convention, up until then they are free game. This is why Democrats get made fun of all of the time because they just swing to what ever side is loudest at the time. Nancy, sit down and shut up, and let the process work its magic. You knew how elections were going into this. If the Democrats want to change this after the election thats fine, but not during.

    May 29, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
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