June 4th, 2008
04:14 PM ET
10 years ago

Rangel criticizes Clinton over non-concession speech

Rangel criticized Clinton's non-concession speech Wednesday.

Rangel criticized Clinton's non-concession speech Wednesday.

(CNN) - Prominent Hillary Clinton backer Charles Rangel thinks the New York senator could have been "far more generous" during her speech Tuesday night after it was clear Barack Obama had clinched the Democratic nomination.

Rangel, the senior member of the New York congressional delegation and an early supporter of Clinton’s presidential campaign, said in an interview Wednesday Clinton should have been more clear about what her future plans are.

"I would agree that after the math was in before her speech, that she could have been far more generous in terms of being more specific and saying that she wants a Democratic victory," Rangel said in an interview on MSNBC.

"I don't see what they're talking about in prolonging this," Rangel added. "There's nothing to prolong if you're not going to take the fight to the convention floor…I don't know why she could not have been more open in terms of doing up front what she intends to do later."

Rangel also said the entire New York congressional delegation is awaiting guidance from Clinton on what to do, and could be put "on the spot" if the New York senator does not explain herself soon.

"We could be on the spot if we don't get some answers about what does it mean when you say that you are not endorsing - or what does it mean when you say that you haven't - you're not out of the race. It just doesn't make any sense. It's inconsistent with wanting a Democratic victory and not endorsing the Democratic candidate."

soundoff (284 Responses)
  1. Jerry Brown


    June 4, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  2. Elizabeth


    June 4, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  3. Grow up Hillary!!!

    She's a nutjob–I'm not gonna sugarcoat it. If a man was acting like this the party leaders would have jumped all over him. As a woman I want equality–not the coddling HRC is demanding. Thanks, Hillary for setting equal rights back 50 years!!!

    June 4, 2008 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  4. George--FL

    "It's inconsistent with wanting a Democratic victory and not endorsing the Democratic candidate."

    DUH, CHARLIE!!! Ya think?!! Ya think Clinton gives an otter's behind about the democratic party, party unity or the direction of the country? This is, and always has been her own personal crusade to take what she believes to be rightfully hers! All of these people - particularly the politicians, who threw their hats into her ring because they truly believed she cared about the party and about the country are now going to have to denounce her for her divisiveness and arrogance. It's a sad testament to about one could have been a great American hero - whether she was ever president or not.

    June 4, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  5. Steve Lenzen

    it is time for Hillary Clinton move on for the good of the Democratic party and the country. She sounding like a spoild brat instead of a US. Senator and former First Lady.

    June 4, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  6. jAYjAY


    June 4, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  7. civics lesson

    Dear supporters of Sen. Clinton and others,

    With all due respect, the Democratic party chooses their nominee based on the number of delegates, not the popular vote. Choosing the nominee based on the popular vote would disenfranchise the electorate of states that hold caucuses which do not rely on the popular vote for their choice. This is a legal standard that has stood in the Democratic party for decades and was well-understood by all candidates who entered the race. If you think that this method is unfair, then petition your local party representative to have the rules changed. Until then, please respect the voices of all the states, both popular vote states and caucus states, who, by their legal apportionment of delegates, have chosen Sen. Obama as the Democratic party nominee.

    Thank you.

    June 4, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  8. Exactly right - HRC has no grace at all

    Last night's speech was one of the most disheartening political moments I can remember – it should have been one of the greatest nights in the political history of our country but she couldn't stand to not have all of the attention on her. She makes me sick

    June 4, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  9. Illinois

    Nice try, CNN, in attempting to paint one of her supporters as calling her out on "bad" behavior. HIllary supporters don't believe what you guys report anymore, though your stories are always good for a laugh. Hillary will direct people on what she's going to do next when she's ready to do so. Given how she's been treated by the DNC and the media, she doesn't owe any of you anything (including Obama) so she can take her time and do what's best for her and for her supporters.

    June 4, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  10. Bushwhacked in Eugene, OR

    I hope she listens to him, if nobody else. She is only harming herself, now, with this continued attitude. I've lost most of what respect I had left for her over the last few days. As a mature woman, I really hate to say that - but it's true.

    June 4, 2008 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  11. La Bruja

    Whatever! It'll be on her terms, period.

    June 4, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  12. Justin

    Further proof that Ms. Clinton has no place as our leader.

    Thankfully the American people did the right thing.

    June 4, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  13. Kory

    Clinton's reasoning behind why she'd make a good VP candidate? That Obama needs her to gain the votes of her "loyal fan base." If all of the Clinton supporters out there claim that they won't vote for Obama in November, who is it that you will vote for then? McCain? If that is the case, your vote of "protest" will only morph into a vote to run this country into the ground even further with another Bush-esque term. Look at the issues. Clinton and Obama have nearly identical stances on most issues; McCain, on the other hand, couldn't be more different. Pick yourselves up, Clinton supporters; dust yourselves off. It's time to recognize defeat and support a VIABLE candidate. Seeing as Obama has gained the necessary number of delegates to secure the Democratic nomination, it looks like that leaves only Obama and McCain with the label of "viable."

    I'm tired of hearing Clinton supporters whining about being fairly beaten in this marathon nomination process. Isn't it awfully ironic how Hillary had agreed that Michigan and Florida shouldn't be counted because they broke the rules…UNTIL she needed their votes to win? The DNC had no responsibility to cater to these rule-breaking states. No, the voters themselves hadn't broken the rules, but we live in a DEMOCRACY, folks! The state senators and representatives who voted to move both primaries up were elected by the people, and the people should exercise their democratic rights to keep these individuals from being elected next year! Fact of the matter is, these two states CONSCIOUSLY broke the rules, and the DNC had to set an example for other states.

    As an Obama supporter, I believe it to be in his best interest to avoid the Clinton option altogether. He cannot afford to be bullied and manipulated by the Clintons and their posse of "shady" characters. The last thing this country needs is another set of distractions brought to you by the neighborhood Clintons (Monica, et al.).

    June 4, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  14. The US abolishes century old clinton dynasty

    she is pure evillllllllllll
    naricisistic, look this definition up, you will be convinced this was written with the clintons in mind..
    they never apologize
    they never accept mistakes
    they will never reconized anyone can do better thna they can
    they feel entitled,

    June 4, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  15. Rob

    She does not want to support Obama....She can not stand the fact that she missed her chance to make history and that its Obama that will go down in the history books that broke the racial ceiling on the white house. I have seen nothing but hatred and vile attacks from her supporters since last night. Black obama supporters have been getting attacked on blog site after blog site with racial slurs and venomous comments from Hillary Supporters.

    June 4, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  16. If not Hillary....then McCain

    June 4th, 2008 2:37 pm ET

    Do you remember, a few months ago, the horrible specter that one candidate might win the popular vote but that the super delegates would go into a "smoke-filled room" and give it to the other one?
    Do you remember, last week, that the rules committee would not make a decision about Florida and Michigan which would alter the outcome of the election?
    Well, it looks like both things happened. Obama has 1,762 pledged delegates and could not have reached 2,118 without more than half of the super delegates, and Hillary would also have reached that threshold if she had received delegates according to votes in Florida and Michigan.
    This situation has been unavoidable due to the closeness of the race, so I am not faulting Obama for it. I have no problem with congratulating Obama for his success in mustering the delegates to become the presumptive nominee, but I don't think that people should criticize Hillary for not accepting defeat more immediately and more explicitly. It’s not like his victory was won in the voting booth, after all.
    The primary was a tie, at best, with the final decision determined only by 27 committee members and 680 super delegates. Why don't we just do the whole thing over again? If that's not really possible, perhaps we should all just respect each other a little bit and recognize that both of them could be on the ticket.

    June 4, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |


    June 4, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  18. Gorbashov, Long Beach, Ca.

    Her own supporters are right on. She detracted from Obama's historic moment to once again think of only herself.

    If she wants any political future she will get behind the nominee....NOW!

    Stop the charade.........it's over!

    Time to turn our attention.....together....toward our real opponent, and that opponent is McBush!

    Obama/Nunn in 2008!

    June 4, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  19. Dorfmann

    Does HRC really want to waste time and resources by prolonging the nomination race all the way to the convention? C'mon, the Republicans have to be giddy with delight at this. Once again we see the inflexibility of HRC and her last grasp at power. Obama was very graceful and concillatory in his speech. HRC acted as though she was a spurned lover and wanted to burn his clothes in the driveway. Let's get it together people and start working together, otherwise be faced with another 4 or probably 8 years of the Bush/Cheney regime policies.

    Obama/Edwards '08 and '12

    June 4, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  20. FreshAir

    This is just the beginning of the pummeling she is about to take. Wait until a few days go by and she is still not endorsing Obama, wait until its every Democratic Party leader the media talks to that says they are confused and surprised by her behavior. Her campaign continues to be a strategic blunder; she's making enemies faster than friends right now.

    June 4, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  21. Stevie G

    Congressman Charles B. Rangel,
    Welcome to the HRC we all knew she would be.
    You are a 19 term respected member of the NY delegation, use your clout and judgement to unite the party.

    This has gone on too long and too far.


    June 4, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  22. Bubba Lee from NC

    She has re-energized her supporters for herself, not for Barack! Very divisive! It's a game to her. She could care less about her supporters. Keep donating! It doesn't matter who you are, as long as you agree with her. During this campaign, how many times has she used republican strategy and advice to attack Barack? It's about her, not us. That's why some of her supporters are so angry. It's not about "us", it's about them.

    Obama for America! Clinton for Clinton.......

    June 4, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  23. GT

    What "guidance" is "mr. outspoken" Charley Rangel waiting for? does he mean to say that he's not going to endorse Obama if Clinton says not to??

    To use his expression, that would be the "dumbest thing" I can imagine.

    June 4, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  24. Sharon R.

    I certainly agree wih Mr Rangel. Hillary needs to give it up. She is so selfish and cannot be thinking of the democratic party only herself. The woman must be nuts or have some type of mental issues.
    I pray that Obama does not put her on his ticket.
    The world is getting to know the real Hillary Clinton. I am getting to the point where I can't stand that woman. But I am going to pray for her. She is a big hypocrite. She claimed she was religious at the religion forum.

    The woman must be delusional. She has lost. Get over it. Wow, this drama is so amazing to me. It is like a soap opera, The woman is acting like a spoiled brat. Somebody needs to commit her soon!

    June 4, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  25. President Obama supporter

    Hillary has not made one decision as a team player. She has changed the stakes throughout the campaign. The ony reason she has received so many votes is because she chose to put her own interests in front of the democratic party and this great country. If she had gracefully dropped out several months ago when it was clear that he was going to win and she could not, we would be running away with the support and the intentions of the american people in November. Instead, she decided to stay in the eventual failure of her campaign, and traveled around the country, convincing those who were trying to make a good decision, that she wa ok and he was not. Months ago, we could have rallied around our candidate and showed out the republican candidate. Obama is an intelligent, ethical, well-spoken leader who will serve our country like no other. He will surround himself with the same kind of leaders a himself and will do our country proud. What an opportunity this is for all of us.

    June 4, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
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