January 16th, 2008
10:51 AM ET
12 years ago

Potentially troubling news for Clinton in Michigan 'win'

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/images/01/15/art.clintonmichigan.ap.jpg caption=" Clinton won less than a quarter of support from black voters."](CNN) - Hillary Clinton faced a grim statistic in Michigan Tuesday night, despite her primary "win" there: results revealed that she may have reason to worry about her grasp on the African-American vote.

The Michigan primary vote was essentially meaningless: the national party stripped the state of its delegates because it held its contest too early in the election season, and Clinton was the only major Democratic contender whose name appeared on the ballot.

Even so, roughly 70 percent of Michigan’s African-American voters - a group that makes up a quarter of Michigan’s Democratic electorate - did not cast their votes for Clinton, choosing the “uncommitted” option instead. Yet these voters weren’t uncommitted at all: in fact, according to CNN exit polls, they overwhelmingly favored Barack Obama, whose name did not appear on the ballot.

Had Obama’s name been on the Michigan ballot, CNN exit polls show that he would have won an overwhelming 73 percent of the African-American vote, in contrast to 22 percent who say they would have voted for Clinton under those circumstances. If South Carolina’s large African-American community votes as Michigan’s, Hillary may not be feeling much ‘southern hospitality’ in that state.

Related: Blacks, youngest voters choose 'uncommitted' over Clinton

- CNN Political Producer Alan Isenberg

Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (738 Responses)
  1. Annie

    Why does CNN have this posted at the top of the page again? I was on this site earlier this morning and this was the top posting, then when I come back to the site it is still posted at the top, while other items are posted below it that have come to this page since this item did. Please tell me that you are not intentionally trying to continue the "race" issue even after the candidates have called for a truce. Please start reporting the news instead of trying to stoke the fire. You are not doing this country any service by continuing this. Maybe we should be asking if CNN is racist!

    January 16, 2008 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  2. pam s.c.

    cnn is the best . i watch you all the time. go obama.

    January 16, 2008 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  3. Ray 4 Hillary!

    To JP – And your assuming that All of Clintos supporters voted? They might have stayed home because they thought there was no reason to vote with just her name. SO..It works both ways no matter how you try and spin it.

    January 16, 2008 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  4. Bobbi

    How's that for spinning the news? All of those people who would have supposedly voted for Obama, could have written in his name on the ballot. The media continues to dictate their spin. We are the fools for reading it.

    January 16, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  5. Janet S

    The media is making this worst than it needs to be. I personally don't care for neither Hillary nor Barack, but I don't agree with them making this about race. People need to learn to vote for the candidate that best personifies their beliefs and the things they want from a candidate, not because of the color of his skin or gender. It is not fair for the media and the pundits to keep throwing this race thing in the face of the American people. As an African American, I am quite frankly, insulted by the notion that we must make this about race. I believe the Hillary Clinton will still prevail, despite what many believe. You may not agree with her, but an Obama win would mean that the next President will be a Republican, unless I am sadly mistakened. The candidates made it about race and it backfired.

    January 16, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  6. Confused

    Quite the predicament I'm in as black male in his mid 20s unfortunately.

    If I vote for Obama it's because he's black
    If I dont vote for him it's because I dont want to appear biased voting for a black candidate being black myself.
    If I vote for him it's because I'm an uneducated young adult
    If I vote for him it's because I'm sexist and dont want to see a female as president.

    Why am I not allowed to vote for him because in MY OPINION, he's the best person for the job at hand. Why does my decision need to be analyzed 5 million ways it's not supposed because he's a black male and I'm a black male.

    January 16, 2008 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  7. John

    "Uncommitted" represents Obama and Edwards combined. Hillary beat them both with 55%. Stop spinning this.

    January 16, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  8. Terry

    As of Jan. 16 McCain & Huckabee each have 25.7% of the Republican delegates and share about equally in news coverage with Romney, Clinton and Obama.
    Why is it that Edwards with 26.9% of the Democratic delegates is largely ignored on the news?

    January 16, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  9. Not being fooled

    I will vote my conscious, I will not allow myself to be swayed by the words or by the media.

    I will vote for a leader that is strong willed, determined and willing to fight for the issues that matter to me as an individual.

    I will vote for for a leader that will restore our country’s economy and our standing in the world.

    I will vote for a candidate who will be unafraid of taking a stand and making an unpopular choice if and when it is needed.

    I will not be bullied into voting for a candidate based on the color of thier skin.

    I will vote for Hillary Clinton.

    January 16, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  10. Peace4all

    Like I posted on here yesterday, it's the media that is playing the race wars. Not Hillary. Not Obama. Hillary and Obama supporters (black and white voters), please don't buy into this. Please see it for what it is. We democrats are more intelligent, aren't we?

    Special thanks to all the intelligent posters on here – Nick, John, Tod, Charlotte, etc.

    January 16, 2008 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  11. Mike, Land O Lakes, FL

    That goes to show you there is half the population who wouldn't vote to Hilary no matter what!! This should definetly raise a question whether she can win in a general election should she be the nomenie.

    January 16, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  12. Derek

    I don't know why this is a big deal. If Obama was on the ballot, then he would've gotten maybe 30% of the total vote. Once again the media is spinning this useless stat into something important.

    January 16, 2008 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  13. Karl Rove

    These comments are a hoot! Keep it up folks!

    January 16, 2008 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  14. Emma Lou Diemer

    Hey, I submitted a comment and it's not there. My one moment of fame. Shucks. Anyway, I'm for HILLARY, THE NEXT PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES!

    January 16, 2008 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  15. Obama is #1

    I think we need to be careful about automatically accusing a candidate of "using" either the "race card" or "gender card." Both gender and race are still a valid concern in the U.S., whether we still like to admit it or not, and it seems a shame if we cannot discuss this fact openly. To me, it has seemed that, for a very long time Obama studiously avoided raising the issue of race... probably because he was afraid of just this type of backlash. In fact, I supported Edwards for a long time, because he was the only candidate bringing up tough issues like race, and the fact that there is still disharmony and inequity in this country. If Obama does not bring it up, then he is "ignoring" the issue and disenfranchising people, if he does, he is "playing the race card." Seems to me he is in a no-win situation, as perhaps Clinton is with gender.

    If we want candidates to be "real," then we need to be able to handle a real debate on issues that are more comfortable to ignore.

    January 16, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  16. Nelson, Colorado Springs Co

    Why is the Black Vote single out , there are other people voting, this needs to stop. Myself, I get tried of hearing this. Sound like the other vote don't count

    January 16, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  17. Dave

    Clinton does have problems. If she wins the nomination a lot of people who normally vote Democratic will vote for Bloomberg who will almost certainly run an independent campaign. The Country has Bush AND Clinton fatigue.

    January 16, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  18. Brian

    Could we please start addressing the fact that Clinton's major argument, that "she's the one with superior experience" of all the candidates, is totally bogus? Compare her 7 years experience as an elected official (sorry... First Lady doesn't count) to Obama's 11, and tell me who has more experience!

    Once you strip her of that argument, what's left to vote for?!

    January 16, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  19. Tre

    Watching last night's debate, again, showed me who should be our next president. I saw three candidates, but only one president. I don't know who else saw this but I saw only one candidate displaying the qualities needed in our next president. He was humble, not high-minded, about his strength and weakness. He was charismatic and comfortable in his skin. He displayed his ability to reach a consensus with Edwards over post-Iraq U.S. troops' involvement. He was diplomatic and poised in response to Clinton's question about co-sponsoring her bill. He was alert and bold to correct any distortions about himself or his record. Finally, while the others may have been spirited about what Clinton/Edwards can do for America, it was only Obama who was consistent and clear about what WE can do.

    January 16, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  20. Susan Texas

    The more CNN paints Obama as the second coming of Christ, the more convinced I become that my decision NOT TO VOTE for him was the correct one.

    January 16, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  21. Bill

    Why is it that when CNN has a debate with the democrats they don't get into the subject of illegal's in the country? After all it is one of the things the American people would like to hear about. Are you afraid they will no longer be on your show if you use that format? Maybe the sponsers will dry up for such questions? Would like to hear your reasoning behind this.

    January 16, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  22. charlotte

    Forty cent gas tax increase effective Jan. 31st. And we are concerned about black or white votes. Get real people, It's the economy, stupid, sound familiar. The war in Irac, Afganistan and maybe Iran.. the issues should the most important to all Americians. And I mean ALL AMERICIANS

    January 16, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  23. ejorourke buffalo,ny

    'In the early part of the year, when Name recognition was the driving factor, Blacks overwhelmingly supported Hillary. I heard no complaints from white posters, I guess because "all was right with the world as we they it". Now that the candidates are being vetted, and black voters are deciding they like what Obama has to offer and are moving his way, suddenly white posters are accusing Obama of playing the race card.
    Candidates have always tried to attract blocks of voters: seniors, women, hispanics, blacks, unions you name it. But Obama is the only one who gets criticized for trying, successfully, to attract black voters. That's a double standard.

    Again, Candidates have always tried to attract Black voters, Obama shouldn't have to shy away from that just because he's black. If there's a backlash from white voters because of that, then I'd say we haven't come as far as I'd hoped in bridging racial understanding"

    teni, the problem isnt the runners using the race card, its the people , people like you, he's black, I am voting for him, has anyone listened to all the debates? I heard obama challenged about leadership yesterday, and being able to lead and his response was I will put people in those positions and monitor them?, another obama supporter uses Bills cheating as a write off of obamas drug use? Bill isnt running, Hillary, the woman who was cheated on and stood by her man is. and yet another b.o. supporter on her says the mi unions dont want bill back in office? which union is that? I was a proud uaw employee for 12 years, 8 with bill as president, and I made alot of money, cars were selling , homes were selling, the country had a budget surplus, we werent at war? what dont you get? if hillary's ideals are anything close, bring her on, and as for all the new blood and fresh idea's I see as obama campaing rally cry, we have several here newly to erie county,and guess what, we are worse off then when we had the experience"career politicians" I as a democrat think HC has the best chance/most knowledge to turn us around, I also believe BO should be her vp, then when she is done, he would have my vote whole heartedly! mr edwards, has probably the best message, but he unlike OBAMA and Hillary didnt have the pharmeceutical companies financial backing, oh yes obama people who keep spewwing about the drug companies, obama is already in thier debt tooo.

    January 16, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  24. Carl

    "The Michigan primary vote was essentially meaningless: the national party stripped the state of its delegates because it held its contest too early in the election season, "

    Why should a national political party have the right to disenfranchise voters?

    When we hold our state primaries should be left up to the states, not power dealing politicos!

    CME, Santa Barbara

    January 16, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  25. Omar Norfolk VA

    I am truly confused, please educate me. What has Bill or Hillary Clinton done for Black people? SOmtimes, I see that Hillary supporters think they are voting for Bill not Hillary. Hillary needs to start standing on her own two legs.

    January 16, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
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