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. st louis

    I have read must of your comments. It does not help or motivate to argue which candidate is better than the other. Reading your comments have already suggested who you will chose as your next President. Unfortunately, when you criticize or pass your judgment, it makes undecide voters dislike your candidate even more. CNN is always going to display bias against anything that is not as they conceive it. Instead of degrading candidates, it would be more productive to go on your candidate’s election page and make positive statements so that undecide's can read info that could possibly make them chose your candidate for the next Presidential race.

    January 16, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  2. Sean

    Does anyone else have a problem with the government taking away delegates because the people did what was best for them. Isn't that the problem with our government today? They have too much power. They are not working for us, we are working to support them for the rest of their lives. They punished MI, not taking into consideration how the people felt. Pretty much sums up our gov. both Dem and Rep.

    January 16, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  3. Tammy Stickers

    This is a stupid commentary by CNN.

    The only people who voted in the Democratic primary in Michigan were those who liked Hillary Clinton enough to cast a meaningless vote, or those who hated her enough to cast a meanless vote. Had there been an actual race, with delegates, many more people would have voted. Perhaps Hillary Clinton would have won, perhaps she would have lost. But to draw any conclusion as to her level of support, by the tiny and select group that voted shows ignorance at a extremely high level. I don't know how much Alan Isenberg is being paid, but it is clearly too much.

    Rather than a scientific poll, this was a poll of selected people which only included the most fervent supporters of the Democratic candidates. Alan Isenberg should probably look for another profession. One that he knows something about.

    January 16, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  4. Matt, Cleveland OH

    To Mike from Oregon:

    Please get a basic understanding of global economics before you sound a cry for an end to outsourcing: Toyota outsources to America. They could just as easily build cars in Japan and ship them here, forcing more autoworkers out of jobs. Same thing with Dannon and L'Oreal. There are hundreds of other examples I can go through of foreign companies shipping jobs here because it is more profitable for them that you take for granted everyday. Furthermore, our economy only functions because it is cyclical in nature. If it was constant and did not have periods of growth and recession, it would collapse without a doubt. And please, use proper English if you are going to criticize higher education: "lifes" is actually "lives" and "ur" is actually "your".

    And one more thing: just because you read blogs and short write-ups on news network sites does not mean you are a "political junkie". Usually, those types of people have a basic understanding of principles and can back up their claims with FACTS.

    January 16, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |

    She still finished with 65% of the total vote, rendering the article pointless.

    January 16, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  6. Omar V.

    "I believe that sexism is more insidious and hostile then racism."

    Are you insane, or are you truly that ignorant? I don't recall hearing about police brutality cases with a woman being the victim; I don't recall too many hangings just because someone was a woman; I don't know of any cases where people are followed around or more carefully watched in a store because they're a woman; I don't recall women being treated horribly at peaceful sit-ins JUST because they're a woman; I could keep this up all day if you like.

    For you to say that sexism is essentially "worse" than racism is absolutely ridiculous. I'm in no way saying that sexism does not exist, because it's completely deplorable, but to say that it's more hostile than racism...

    January 16, 2008 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  7. Sangeethco

    CNN is not anti Hillary. Infact they are trying to help her. By repeatedly saying that black voters are consolidating behind B Obama, they are igniting the white Americans minds to unite based in the RACE and vote for Hillary. I think Hillary camp is also part of this conspiracy. Any way wishing good luck to all candidates.

    B Obama knows very well that, if he brings up the RACE issue he will loose. So it’s very clear the conservative whites are playing the game to ignite the RACE bomb.

    January 16, 2008 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  8. PJ, New York

    Could one of you Obama supporters answer why he doesn't recognize the American flag and Star-Spangled Banner? Also other than him being black, what is this change we keep hearing from him?Other than preaching the words hope, unity and change, he doesn't have a plan. He reads a scripted speech very well and all of his supporters fall into a trance almost. Why? ALL of the debates have proved that Hillary Clinton knows what she's talking about. Obama is clueless during a debate because he has no written speech in front of him. If the media doesn't start telling the truth about him or asking tougher questions and he some how manages to win the nomination, the Republican's will eat him alive! They won't be as nice to him as the news media has. The media won't come down hard on Obama though because they fear they'll be called racist.

    I can't wait to hear all of you Obama supporters crying come November when there's a nother Republican in the White House.

    January 16, 2008 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  9. tennessee

    This was a protest vote against Bob Johnson's statement about Obama. This was not so much against Hillary.

    January 16, 2008 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  10. RuthieM

    Hillary didn't beat Obama because Obama's name wasn't on the ballot. She beat herself because she was the only one on the ballot, there was no competition. Her numbers are meaningless but the 'uncommitted' tells a story.

    January 16, 2008 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  11. Scott, Royal Oak, MI

    PH at 12:46 pm: try 55%

    January 16, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  12. Greg in OH

    Why won't one single Hillary Clinton supporter answer this question?

    "Why is FoxNew's Rupert Murdock a Hillary fundraiser?"

    Please someone answer this question for me. Does it not bother anyone else?

    January 16, 2008 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  13. Alice

    I'm just wondering why Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson haven't jumped in on this!

    January 16, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  14. Adam

    Everybody needs to calm down just a little bit. Considering this primary meant absolutely nothing when you take into account that there wasn't full voter turnout, both the press and public are getting a tad worked up over nothing. A story like this isn't sexist, racist, or otherwise. It has nothing to do with any sort of bias or preconcieved notions. It's about data from a primary that didn't actually mean anything. Just everybody reign it back in. Please.

    January 16, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  15. Zach Lorber


    (White Plains, NY 1/15/08) In response to news releases from the National Organization for Women-Political Action Committee, and NOW-NYS, urging women to vote for Senator Hillary Clinton because she is a woman, Doris L. Sassower, Co-founder and President of Center for Judicial Accountability, Inc., a former President of the New York Women’s Bar Association, honored in 1981 with a Special Award from National Organization of Women-NYS “for outstanding achievements on behalf of women and children,” and profiled as one of the “Feminists Who Changed America, 1963-1975 in a recently launched book by the same name, says:

    Such sexist appeal represents outdated, divisive, un-American thinking. It is because of my longtime passionate commitment to equal rights for women that I am urging NOW’s Political Action Committee to withdraw its endorsement of Senator Clinton for President and that women’s organizations and women en masse across the country NOT endorse or vote for Senator Clinton simply because she is a woman. More than that, much as it pains me, I specifically urge them NOT to vote for the Senator Clinton at all, based on her serious malfeasance as a U.S. Senator, a record that includes corruption of the federal judiciary and complicity in gross governmental abuse in violation of law.

    A previous press release, hereinbelow, issued by CJA, details how, in May 2003, Senator Clinton’s staff counsel prevented CJA’s public interest advocate, Elena Ruth Sassower, from testifying at a public confirmation hearing in opposition to the Clinton-endorsed nomination of one of President Bush’s nominees, a Republican New York Court of Appeals judge, to a lifetime federal judgeship on the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals, which hears appeals from all New York federal district courts. Her respectful 23-word request to testify against this Bush judicial nominee led to her unprecedented arrest and prosecution by our government for “Disruption of Congress.”

    She was tried before another recent Bush nominee, whose confirmation had likewise been the subject of a pre-arranged “no opposition” confirmation hearing. After he refused to disqualify himself notwithstanding judicial ethics rules required him to do so when his “impartiality might reasonably be questioned,” she was wrongfully convicted, and this judge sentenced her to the maximum six months in prison, incarcerating her immediately in a DC Jail. There she spent the July 4th 2004 weekend in solitary confinement for five days. Through all that time and even after her release six months later, Senator Clinton kept silent and did not lift a finger to help her own constituent, Elena Ruth Sassower, albeit, on her return from jail two days before Christmas 2004, she was hailed as a hero in her White Plains, NY hometown, as “Defender of the Constitution” and named “2004 White Plains Person of the Year.”

    This is not just a women’s rights issue; it is a human rights issue - a cause I fought for all my professional life as a lawyer and as president of the New York Women’s Bar Association nearly 40 years ago. At this defining moment in our nation’s history, much as it pains me to say, despite her history-making effort to become the first woman president and women’s natural yearning to see a woman do so, Senator Clinton does not deserve that high honor. She betrayed not only her constituents, but her country, by knowing disregard of sacrosanct democratic values, when she condoned by silence, inaction, and indifference the violation of constitutional rights by her own staff counsel and thereafter by others on the federal payroll. Senator Clinton bears full responsibility for that outrage and should be held accountable for her disrespect for an open, honest, and participatory federal judicial nominating process and for her collusion with those in government willing to pervert the truth and the Rule of Law for their own political and personal gain.

    Perhaps, a DC Jail cell would befit the Senator’s crimes better than the Oval Office of the White House.”

    # # #


    For Constitutional Violations In Not Protecting Her Constituent’s First Amendment Rights
    When Her Own Staff Counsel Acted To Prevent Opposition Testimony At Judicial Confirmation Public Hearing

    White Plains, NY (12/23/07) On May 22, 2003, White Plains, NY resident, Elena Ruth Sassower, Co-Founder and Coordinator of the Center for Judicial Accountability, Inc, rose, as the closing gavel came down at a U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Public Confirmation Hearing Richard Wesley nomination to the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals and respectfully asked: “Mr. Chairman, there’s citizen opposition to Judge Wesley based on his documented corruption as a New York Court of Appeals judge. May I testify?” Without answering the question, then Chairman Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) had Ms. Sassower forcibly removed from the hearing room by D.C. Capitol Police. She was handcuffed behind her back, arrested, incarcerated for 21 hours, and thereafter prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for “Disruption of Congress.”

    Prior to the hearing, Ms. Sassower visited Senator Clinton’s Washington, D.C. office and requested her to withdraw her announced support for the Wesley nomination. Ms. Sassower supplied documentation substantiating his corruption of the NY Court of Appeals. Instead of probing the very serious documented charges of her constituent, a longtime judicial reform activist, Senator Clinton’s Staff Counsel called the Secret Service. In turn, D.C. Capitol Police telephoned Ms. Sassower threatening that if she came to the Public Hearing and requested to testify in opposition to the Wesley nomination, she would be arrested.

    On June 28, 2004, despite recommendations of the Probation Department and the U.S. Attorney’s Office that there be NO jail-time, D.C. Superior Court Judge Brian F. Holeman sentenced her to the maximum six months in jail, with a maximum fine, without bail, and denied her repeated requests for a stay pending appeal, after she declined his long list of probation conditions. These included a direction that she “stay away from and inside the United States Capitol Complex,” have no contact with Senator Clinton and her staff, and “write and send letters of apology to Senator Clinton,” among others, “…which state…your remorse for any inconvenience caused.” When Ms. Sassower said she would not write such letters because she would “not lie,” Judge Holeman ordered her taken straight to the D.C. Jail, with no opportunity to go home and settle her affairs. There she spent the July 4th weekend in solitary confinement and was not released from prison until December 23, 2004.

    By contrast, at a May 7, 2003 U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee hearing, during testimony of then-Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, a group of eight protestors, loudly and repeatedly shouted “Fire Rumsfeld for war crimes!” and unfurled a banner that read “Fire Rumsfeld” before the protestors were escorted from the building. None of the eight were arrested or charged with “Disruption of Congress.” Ms. Sassower’s arrest on May 22, 2003, a mere 15 days later, was an unprecedented violation of her First Amendment and other constitutionally guaranteed rights.

    In all that time, before, during, and since Ms. Sassower’s arrest, imprisonment, and release after her six-month incarceration, Senator Clinton did not lift one finger to help her constituent, whose arrest and imprisonment her own office had instigated – closing her eyes and ears to the appeals of other constituents and outraged members of the public from all over the country and abroad that she initiate remedial action. Ironically, following Ms. Sassower’s release from jail, she was voted 2004 “White Plains Person of the Year/Defender of the Constitution” in her hometown. Still no word on the subject from now Candidate Clinton. Yet, husband Bill boasts she is a “world-class genius”… with an unbroken record of making decisions that have had a positive change in other people's lives.”

    # # #

    January 16, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  16. Ward

    If you're a Clinton supporter (which I am not), you'd be advised to tone done the race-baiting on Obama. At this point, I don't think she can win without Obama on the ticket.

    January 16, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  17. Young Liberal

    The point of this article is not that Hillary would have lost if Obama was on the ballot its that if South Carolina is anything like Michigan she will lose.

    January 16, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  18. Scott P.

    Is this what we have come to? Tallying votes by race? This shows an unfair bias towards Hillary. The caucus isn't about Black v. White and the News media is certainly trying to deflect the focus from the real issues of this country. The question should be, will this bias continue to reer its ugly head and is Obama purely being selected because of his race. I don't want to elect an individual based on race or sex, I want them elected based on their ideals.

    January 16, 2008 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  19. Greg, NY

    DJ, new york, ny,
    THE REAL NUMBERS do the math,

    AND all others that think Hillary would have won anyway, please go back and read my prior two posts on this subject:

    For those that think if Obama or Edwards were on the ballot, they would have only split that 45% of non-committed votes, you are wrong. Think about all the people that didn't even go because they knew that their vote doesn't really count.

    Also, an overwhelming amount of Democrats voted for a Republican. If Obama or Edwards had been on the ballot, many more Democrats would have actually bothered to go vote and many more would have voted for one of them instead of a Republican.

    The fact that 45% voted non-committed is astounding in itself because that many people DID bother to go out and vote against Hillary.

    January 16, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  20. Annoyed

    Joe Fattal, you just can't let that issue go, can you? Americans just love drama.

    January 16, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  21. Dave

    Didn't Bush just sell the Saudi's billions of weapons from his daddy's company:

    Democratic White House hopeful Hillary Clinton on Tuesday accused President George W. Bush of “begging” for cuts in oil prices in “pathetic” encounters with Gulf leaders.

    The former first lady hit out at the US president as he wrapped up a tour of the Middle East, during a 2008 Democratic presidential campaign debate here.

    “President Bush is over in the Gulf now begging the Saudis and others to drop the price of oil,” Clinton said. “How pathetic.”

    “We should have an energy policy right now, putting people to work in green collar jobs as a way to stave off the recession, moving us towards energy independence.”

    Bush earlier urged oil producers to take action over near record-high prices, prompting his Saudi hosts to vow to increase output when justified by the market.

    Bush, facing recession fears at home after prices surged to a record 100 dollars at the start of the year, raised the sensitive issue on the second day of a visit to OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia — the world’s largest oil producer.

    He said he planned to discuss with King Abdullah “the fact that oil prices are very high, which is tough on our economy.”

    “And that I would hope, as OPEC considers different production levels, that they understand that if their — one of their biggest consumers’ economy suffers — it will mean less purchases, less oil and gas sold.”

    January 16, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  22. Jeff;South Carolina

    Great News...
    I'm ready to vote for Obama here in South Carolina.

    January 16, 2008 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  23. K.from Chicago

    I wonder why my Comment is not here. It wasn't ubnormal or racial!!!!
    Dicrimination !!!! is even in this part of the world ???????
    I wish you, people could be more liberal.
    In my comment I supported Mrs Hillary Clinton in respect and passion for what she have done and what she is planing do do. She has a good plan and strong mind on many issues beeing considered as a major and very important for all poople in the USA (many nationalities country). Please past this comment. Everone should have a chance to live a comment.
    Mrs Clinton for the next President !!!!!!! Good Luck !!!!!!!

    January 16, 2008 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  24. Gil - California

    So this "news" is so important CNN must have it listed as two separate items in the ticker?

    January 16, 2008 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  25. Dave

    HRC supporters – please tell me what have the Clinton's done to help African Americans. I don't recall them doing much of anything for us.

    January 16, 2008 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30