June 1st, 2008
11:20 AM ET
10 years ago

Angry Clinton supporters tell party leaders: 'Let's go McCain!'

Some Clinton backers said Saturday they're voting for McCain.

Some Clinton backers said Saturday they're voting for McCain.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Democratic leaders hopeful that a deal to seat delegates from Florida and Michigan would mark an end to the deep division the controversy has brought to the party got some instant – and less than encouraging – feedback as they finalized the measure Saturday evening.

As members of the Democratic National Committee's Rules and Bylaws panel voted in favor of the measures, some supporters of Hillary Clinton's White House bid rose from their seats and began to shout “Don’t steal my vote!” and “Let’s go, McCain!”

Several paced the back of the ballroom, yelling at the committee members and chanting “Denver! Denver!” – the site of this summer's Democratic presidential nominating convention.

When Barack Obama’s name was mentioned, boos filled the room.

"This motion will hijack, hijack, remove four delegates won by Hillary Clinton and most importantly reflect the preferences of 600,000 Michigan voters,” said Clinton senior adviser and RBC member Harold Ickes, who added that the White House hopeful reserved her right to bring an appeal before the DNC's Credentials Committee later this summer.

The delegate allocations were a blow to Clinton, who comes away with an advantage of just 24 delegates.

She is favored in Sunday’s Puerto Rico primary. But Obama is thought to hold an edge going into next Tuesday’s contests in Montana and South Dakota – meaning Clinton’s chances of pushing Obama’s delegate lead down into the double digits before the Democratic convention have virtually disappeared.

After the vote, as knots of Clinton and Obama supporters circled each other and faced off in the lobby outside the ballroom, uncommitted Florida superdelegate Mitch Caesar – who said he would weigh in soon after the last primary Tuesday - praised the party for “taking the first step toward unity.”

Nearby, Obama supporter Laura Mitchell wasn’t so sure the party had started down the path to comity. “I think it’s going to be a disaster if this goes past Tuesday,” said the Maryland resident. “Every day it gets a little harder to imagine we will be able to come together.”

Boston native and Clinton backer Jenny Doggett, an organizer of grassroots group Count the Votes Cast, called the DNC “spineless.”

“I think what they’ve done is divisive, destroying the party. I’m disgusted,” said Doggett, who expressed hope that the popular vote in Puerto Rico and a shift in superdelegates might still be able to deliver the nomination to Hillary Clinton. “I’m done with the Democratic Party,” she added. “I’m an independent voter now.”

The Rules committee ultimately adopted modified versions of a Florida delegate proposal presented by Jon Ausman, and the Michigan Leadership Plan developed by Democratic officials in that state.

All delegates from both states, both pledged and superdelegates, will be seated – but each will only be able to cast half a vote. Florida’s delegates were split The decision adds 313 new delegates, but only 156.5 votes, to the summer convention, and raises the number of delegates required to win the nomination to 2,118.

The Florida proposal was passed unanimously by the panel – but faced a rockier reception on the Michigan plan, which employed a complicated and controversial delegate allocation formula that awarded a 10 delegate, 5 vote edge to Clinton.

The Clinton campaign later released a statement from Ickes and fellow Clinton adviser and RBC member Tina Flournoy that said the Michigan decision “violates the bedrock principles of our democracy and our Party,” and repeated their willingness to challenge the decision before the delegation is seated at the Democratic National Convention.

The Obama campaign released a statement from campaign manager David Plouffe praising the RBC decision. “We're extremely gratified that the commission agreed on a fair solution that will allow Michigan and Florida to participate in the Convention,” said Plouffe.

At a press conference at the hotel following the final vote, a skeptical reporter pressed Alexis Herman on her claim that the panel’s decision would unite the party. As Herman responded, chants of “Denver! Denver!” could be heard from the lobby outside.

Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (854 Responses)
  1. Michael

    Every voter has to make their own choices.
    If they make that choice because they are personally
    dissapointed by the out come of a primary, they are acting
    childish and need to look deeply at their beliefs.

    If they vote for issues they are acting like an emotionally
    mature adult.

    A vote for Mc Cain is a vote for WAR and more for the
    haves/ less for the have nots. Grow up and stay in the
    Democratic Party.

    I wanted John Edwards to be the President but will
    support whomever the Democratic nominee shal be.


    June 1, 2008 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  2. Richard Boland

    And if Obama losses, and HRC runs in 2012??? You can forget about it because what "what goes around,comes around", we won't forget....2012..Go McCain!...RB

    June 1, 2008 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  3. Carlo

    102 angry Clinton supporters tell party leaders: 'Let's go McCain!' ?
    shure McCain needs these votes badly 🙂

    June 1, 2008 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  4. sasha kando

    Anyone with a grain of brain can figure out that Hillary herself is the cause of all these problems with the help of Granholm, Levin and other supporters in MI! A loss in November will go down in history as the destruction of the democrats by Hillary and Bill and the divisive and destructive games they have incorporated into this race. Their personal ambitions trumps all, in their view and they have no compunctions about bringing down the rest of the world if it suits them. Their names will forwever be blackened in american politics, and it is even worse than GW invading Iraq. But they must be remembered by generations thereafter as the people we now clearly see-destructors and destroyers.

    June 1, 2008 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  5. David Jones

    As a Florida Registered Democrat–which I will change tomorrow–I will definitely help fund, support and vote for John McCain. This is from Seminole County who has to put up with Tom Feeney as Congress Rep. No I do not support Hillary, Biden was my Candidate and I did not vote in Primary on Jan29, 2008.

    June 1, 2008 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  6. Susan

    I am an indepedent voter, I lean toward the democratic side. I voted for Hillary in the Primary.

    The Rules Committee has just let McCain win the election on their actions yesterday. What they did was wrong.

    If Obama is the nominee, I will be voting for McCain. Me and many others.

    Unity in the democratic party, what a joke. It will not happen with this election.

    June 1, 2008 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  7. Dan

    This is just an example of how incredibly stupid people can get when they react emotionally instead of thinking it through. I believe it's call shooting yourself in the foot, and I think the Clintons and their need to win are responsible for this reaction.

    June 1, 2008 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  8. Jesse Callahan

    I have been a registered Democrat ever since George The First gave us the great lie. I did vote for Obama in the Texas primary, but now I have come to the conclusion after watching the debacle on CNN regarding the Florida and Michigan delegates. The Democratic party is so out of touch with reality that I, like so many other will vote for Senator John McCain. I don't think that either Obama or Clinton can safely lead this country.

    June 1, 2008 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  9. Bill

    Somehow I find it odd that the Obama camp seems to believe their victory in November is preordained. I bet a good number of them do not even vote in November.

    June 1, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  10. VS

    What a nasty nasty woman (as reflected by her supporters). The theme seems to be... if I can't have it then I'm going to destroy it. All I care about is winning. Clinton attitude – Bush attitude. Do we really need four more years of arrogance?

    June 1, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  11. dave

    I don't think the DNC really believes that many Dems for Hillary will vote for McCain. Let's show them. If congress after this election becomes veto-proof, President McCain will have to compromise on many issues including Iraq.

    McCain in 08!

    June 1, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  12. Steve

    Hillary make a Great VP for Republican John McCain

    June 1, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  13. Winston

    To those Clinton supporters who are going to vote for McCain, just remember this:

    *Four more years of war (maybe a hundred) and loss of more American lives.
    *No universal health care coverage
    *Tax cuts for the rich
    *Services cut for the rest of us

    McBush thanks you for your support.

    June 1, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  14. Tommy Wright-Field

    I've been searching this site and can't find a way to contact Wolf to correct Ickies comments (11:28am).
    – Ickes indicated Obama hasn't mentioned Clinton's name at all in the new Reverand "scandal"...but he is INCORRECT!!! In Obama's media speach after the DNC result, he did in fact state that was was said about Hillary Clinton was inappropriate (or something to that effect). I hope someone (...Wolf?...) corrects this on-air during this segment. Someone needs to keep the Clinton Camp honest!!!!

    June 1, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  15. Martin Rubenstein

    The Harry Reid/Nancy Pelosi led party is consistent. Tehy've done nothing in Congress and now they are denying the public the stronger (Hillary) candidate. What will they say when McCain wins?

    June 1, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  16. Kathy Robinson

    RE: Cinton supporters crying "Let's go McCain"

    It's time for Hillary to recognize the damage she is doing by prolonging her fight for the Democratic Party nonimation. If she is the responsible leader she presents herself to be, she will swallow her disappoint and urge her supporters to get behind the frontrunner. This country cannot afford four more years of the same, and that's what we'll get with McCain.

    June 1, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  17. MR

    I am a Democrat who would have supported either candidate but with the recent activities – I am seriously considering backing John McCain. I am deeply bothered by Donna Brazile's comments and feel that if those are the thoughts of Democrat leaders – I cannot in good faith support this party anymore. She basically stated that one of the candidates was a cheater in reality – this is not about the candidates but about the people. I am one of the Florida Democrats that want my full vote to count regardless of who gets the nomination. Is she saying that I (a Florida voter) is a cheater?

    June 1, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  18. Chuck

    Those Hillary supporters threatening to go to McCain are letting their emotions take over. Is going to McCain in their best self-interest? Absolutely not!

    Let them get what they deserve if McCain succeeds to win the next presidential election.

    June 1, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  19. cmt


    June 1, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  20. Yeah

    At least now we know who is driving the wedge between the democratic party. I doubt Obama supports would be this stubborn. Welcome to the righteous side Clinton supports! Four more years!

    June 1, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  21. Anna

    I think all the Hillary supporters are forgetting the past 8 years of Bush, do you really want to go back to that? I'm with all the others who say, If you're going to vote for McCain, then you never were a real democrat. Let's grow up here! What's the point of all their whining? Let the process end and let's start getting ready for November, this is distracting the party and our chances. If we do lose in November, it won't be because of Obama, it will be because of these whining people who couldn't grow up, face the facts, and move on. I will blame them and Hillary.

    June 1, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  22. Mike

    If Clintons want to vote for McCain then so be it. I hope that when they do I hope that they make out wills for the children and grandchildren. A vote for McCain is a vote for war and the draft. So think about it, do you really want to send to their possible death. We have had Presidents over the past 35 years that have represented the Corporate interests in America. It is about time that we have a President that will be truly representing the citizens. So if you are voting for McCain your vote is not being cast for himm it is being cast for Corporate America.
    United States of America or United States of Corporate America

    GO OBAMA '08 '12

    It is time for change

    June 1, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  23. Sunshine

    Some people here are calling the Democratic party all sorts of names for granting MI and FL's delegates half votes each. You may want to know:

    The Republican party ALSO DECIDED TO GRANT MI AND FL's delegates half-votes each.
    Meanwhile, John McCain continues to insist that he will never negotiate with unfriendly countries.

    Which only leaves him one option: Bomb, bomb, bomb - bomb, bomb Iran AND Syria AND North Korea AND the Palestinians AND Pakistan AND...

    June 1, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  24. Mark

    Count me in. I too will support McCain if Hillary is not the Nominee.
    Obama doesn't have what it takes to run the country at this time.

    June 1, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  25. sick of ickes

    I think the party did the only fair thing on Sat. But I also am sick of Ickes. I first heard him on my TV Sat. I think he is a bitter sad little man and needs to down and fade. He is acting Republican.

    June 1, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
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