NEW YORK (CNN) - Sen. Hillary Clinton is poised to deliver a message Tuesday "that she will do whatever it takes" to put a Democrat in the White House - a message that Barack Obama insiders say indicates she would accept an offer to be Obama's running mate if asked.
"In her speech tomorrow night, she will convey the message that first and foremost she is committed to Democrats winning in November and will do whatever she's asked to do," a close friend and adviser of the former first lady, who speaks with her regularly and is privy to her deliberations, told CNN Monday.
"She will do whatever it takes to bring the party together to win and whatever is asked of her to make sure the Republicans are defeated."
That message has been conveyed to the Obama campaign via informal channels, according to Obama insiders who said the message is a signal that she would be willing to serve as his vice president.
Both the Clinton and Obama campaigns told CNN that there have been no formal discussions between the campaigns.
Obama insiders are split over whether considering Clinton to be on the ticket is a good idea.
NASHVILLE, Tennessee (CNN) – During a town hall meeting on Monday afternoon in the historical home of the Grand Ole Opry, John McCain attacked Barack Obama on no less than six different topics, ranging from the Illinois senator’s single visit to Iraq in early 2006 to not supporting the nominations of Supreme Court justices John Roberts and Samuel Alito.
However, McCain had nothing but kind words for Hillary Clinton whose candidacy has been declared all but dead.
“I have known Senator Clinton, I admire her and I respect her,” said McCain in response to a questioner who noted that Clinton is still in the race. “She has inspired generations of American women to believe that they can reach the highest office in this nation.”
“I admire the campaign that she has run, she deserves a great deal of credit,” he added. “A few of us who have been around politics for a while learned a lesson way back in 1992 that you better never count a Clinton out of any race.”
McCain said that they have had their differences on the Senate floor, but drew applause from the Nashville crowd for emphasizing his respect for Clinton.
Clinton has insisted that if she fails to win the Democratic nomination, she would work with Obama to unite the party ahead of November’s election. But there is no doubt that if her campaign fails, McCain will – and may already – be targeting her white, working class and older voters Obama has had trouble winning over.
(CNN)—The Democratic presidential candidates are entering the primary finale Monday. In the latest installment of CNN=Politics Daily, Senior Political Correspondent Candy Crowley reports on how Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton are planning their next moves after Tuesday’s closing primaries in South Dakota and Montana.
Hillary Clinton continues to make her popular vote pitch Monday. Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider explains what is behind the New York Senator’s argument that she is leading Barack Obama in the popular vote count.
Plus: CNN’s John Roberts gives you a preview of what different delegate outcomes of the South Dakota and Montana primaries could mean for Obama and Clinton.
Finally: Senator Edward Kennedy’s surgeon says Monday’s operation to remove a malignant brain tumor was successful. CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Doctor Sanjay Gupta explains what Sen. Kennedy could face in the coming weeks and months.
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(CNN) - Could this be Bill Clinton's last day on the stump this campaign season? The former president seemed to signal that his time on the trail was drawing to a close at a campaign event in South Dakota Monday.
"This may be the last day I'm ever involved in a campaign of this kind," he said.
The comment comes one day before South Dakota and Montana hold the primary season's final two contests. Barack Obama is expected to hold the advantage over Hillary Clinton in both states.
"I thought I was out of politics, until Hillary decided to run. But it has been one of the greatest honors of my life to go around and campaign for her for president," Clinton also said.
The comments seem to suggest the former president believes his wife's campaign is coming to a close, though she has given no signs she is ready to end her run.
Earlier Monday, a Clinton spokesman denied reports the campaign is cutting members of it's advance team. And on Sunday, Clinton launched an new ad stressing she is the winner of the popular vote. She also argued to reporters that the party's superdelegates have the right to change their mind until the party's convention in late August.
YANKTON, South Dakota (CNN) – Clinton aides said they do not expect there to be a Democratic nominee Tuesday evening when the final polls close in the 2008 primary season.
“Until there is a nominee, we are still working to become that nominee,” said campaign spokesman Mo Elleithee.
It remains unclear how the Clinton campaign will respond should Obama amass the 2,118 delegates needed to clinch the nomination. Elleithee told reporters the campaign would “cross that bridge” if they came to it and suggested if the campaign challenged the allocation of Michigan delegates the number of delegates needed to secure the nomination might change.
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Several sources tell CNN that House Majority Whip and superdelegate James Clyburn of South Carolina will endorse Senator Barack Obama Tuesday.
Clyburn, whose congressional district went overwhelmingly for Obama in the state's January primary, had said that he would wait to weigh in on the presidential race until the last nominating contest had been held. Earlier this spring, he had made remarks critical of Bill Clinton, calling his conduct on the trail "bizarre," and telling interviewers that some of the former president's actions had deeply upset African-Americans.
"There are African-Americans who have reached the decision that the Clintons know that [Hillary Clinton] can’t win this," he told Reuters. "But they’re hell-bound to make it impossible for Obama to win.”
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Federal election monitors are being dispatched to South Dakota to protect Native American voting rights on Tuesday, the final day of primary elections in the Democratic presidential nomination race.
Officials in the Justice Department's civil rights division announced they would send an unspecified number of observers "to watch and record activities during voting hours at polling locations" in Todd, Shannon, Bennett, Jackson, and Mellette counties in South Dakota.
Native Americans comprise more than 94 percent of the population in Shannon County, and 85 percent of the population in Todd County. More than 40 percent of residents in the two counties live below the poverty line.
Native Americans make up more than 8 percent of the state's population, making them the largest minority group in South Dakota.
(CNN) — Several of the 17 uncommitted Senate superdelegates are currently holding a meeting to discuss their course of action after the polls close in the final two primaries, CNN has learned.
It remains unclear exactly how many and who of the uncommitted Democratic superdelegates in the Senate will be in attendance at the meeting, which is being held at the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee headquarters near the Capitol.
CNN spotted Sens. Tom Harkin of Iowa, Ken Salazar of Colorado, and Tom Carper of Delaware head into the meeting.
In a brief interview with CNN, Harkin said the point of the meeting is "to discuss what if anything we might do after the polls close tomorrow night together."
An aide to a senator in the meeting tells CNN's Gloria Borger that it’s “not likely” anyone will come out today with an endorsement. “It’s a how-do-we-do-what we-want-to-do” meeting," the aide said.
"Some want, after the primaries are over, to come out in a group; others feel the need to do it with state delegations. The Obama campaign wants a group of senators to come out together, for obvious reasons.”
The aide said it's “more likely,” the endorsements will come at the end of the week, but added, "anything is possible after Tuesday.”
(Updates with new information)
(CNN) – Sen. John McCain, the Republican Party’s presumptive presidential nominee, targeted Sen. Barack Obama again Monday over the Illinois senator’s approach to Iran and the Middle East.
But a new poll released by Gallup Monday suggests McCain may be out of step with the majority of Americans when it comes to U.S.-Iranian relations. Fifty-nine percent of Americans surveyed thought it was a good idea for the President of the United States to meet with the President of Iran. When Iran is taken out of the equation, an even higher percentage – 67 percent – responded that they thought it would be a good idea for the president to meet with leaders of countries considered enemies of the United States.
Of the three remaining major presidential candidates, only Sen. Barack Obama has said he would meet personally with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and the leaders of other countries regarded as enemies of the United States by the Bush administration.
The Gallup survey was conducted May 19-21 and based on telephone interviews of 1,013 adults nationally. It has an overall margin of error of plus or minus four percentage points.
If you’re looking for clues, try this one: Hillary Clinton will give her post-primary speech in New York tomorrow night. The thing is: New York is not voting, Montana and South Dakota are.
Campaign aides say staffers who worked for Clinton in those two states and Puerto Rico have been invited to attend the event or go home and await further instructions. Here’s another clue: it’s being reported that the campaign’s finance department is asking Clinton staffers to turn in their outstanding expenses by the end of the week.
Clinton has also has planned a rally with her husband and daughter in South Dakota tonight, the kind of reunion she usually saves for election nights. Meanwhile, former President Bill Clinton said that today may be his last day campaigning for his wife.
All this would seem to indicate that the end is near. The news comes on the heels of a weekend where Clinton swept up in Puerto Rico, yet was frustrated by the decision of the rules committee. With just two contests to go, Clinton continues to trail Barack Obama in the ever-important categories of pledged delegates and superdelegates.
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