January 29th, 2008
08:26 PM ET
14 years ago

Exit polls: Clinton wins late deciders

(CNN) - Democratic primary voters in South Carolina who made their presidential pick in the week before voting overwhelmingly chose Barack Obama. In Florida, according to exit polls, those last-minute deciders went for Hillary Clinton.

All the major Democratic candidates had pledged not to campaign in Florida following national party sanctions that rendered the contest irrelevant to the presidential nominating process. None of the candidates have visited, except for private fundraisers, and none have advertised in the state.

But over the past few days, the Clinton campaign called for the Democratic National Committee’s decision not to seat Florida’s delegates at the party’s summer convention to be reversed; announced several major state endorsements, like U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson; and revealed plans for a major election night celebration in the state featuring a visit from Hillary Clinton herself – all factors which may have helped sway late-deciding voters.

Among all voters who made their decision in the last three days (including those who made their decision today), 37 percent went for Clinton and 34 percent went for Obama in early exit polls.

Among voters who made their decision on Election Day, the gap was even larger: 35 percent supported Clinton, 31 percent John Edwards, and 27 percent Obama. When those last minute-deciders are removed from the equation, Obama regains a 5-point edge over Clinton among just those voters who made their decision over the weekend, 45 to 40 percent.

The votes in Florida will not count towards the Democratic Party's presidential nomination.

–CNN Associate Political Editor Rebecca Sinderbrand

Filed under: Exit Polls • Florida
soundoff (438 Responses)
  1. Thelma Leyva

    I would love for Hillary Clinton to win!!!
    We need good change.

    Thelma Leyva From El Paso, Texas

    January 29, 2008 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  2. Michelle

    Hillary is going to be our next president! She's the one to count on for better economy and true globalization. That was wonderful! Super Tuesday will prove it.

    January 29, 2008 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  3. John ny, ny

    Regardless of what pundits or obama supporters say however this does tell you what feb 5 is going to be like.
    go hillary

    January 29, 2008 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  4. Bik

    This is about the slimiest thing I've seen. can you like someone who, after AGREEING TO THE RULES IN THE BEGINNING, clamors to change the rules when the game isn't going her way? Okay, now back to politics...HRC wants to win so bad she is willing to throw her own party under the bus. If she had such a huge problem with this setup, she should have made the case out the outset...the Clinton campaign has officially lost it...

    January 29, 2008 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  5. J.J. Forbes, an independent thinker

    Big win huh Hillary? Nope.

    Of course the late-deciders voted for Hillary. She campaigned in Florida (under the name of a "fundraiser".)

    Obama did not campaign in Florida. That radio ad? Obama checked with Democratic Party leaders to make sure it did not violate the rules. He only pulled it because he did not want any doubt concerning whether he was breaking the rules or not.

    January 29, 2008 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  6. Jeff, Miami, Fl

    Obamanites, suck it up!
    It's not gonna get better from now on!
    The more media is trying to sell us St. Obama, the more voters reject it!

    January 29, 2008 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  7. horatio

    Obama didn't pull his ads, I saw one TODAY.

    January 29, 2008 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  8. rvormwald

    For the record, both Obama and Edwards ran ads that blanketed the state, Hil didn't. In addition, all the candidates had private fund raising events in the state. Hil just did a much better job. She has the integrity of a competent woman who knows how to win a campaign.

    January 29, 2008 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  9. Rathibon

    All the candidates raised money in Florida. Only one candidate cheated and broke his pledge and that is Barack Obama. He is the only one who broke his word with the voters and ran TV ads.

    Why isn't anyone calling Obama out on breaking his word? My God, if Hillary did what he did it would be front page news for two days and end up in every article about Florida.

    Obama tried to cheat and he still lost. For the life of me I can't understand how you all can while like a victim after what the Obama campaign did.

    January 29, 2008 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  10. irma

    Wow how quickly you change your tunes. Forcing people to vote in front of a Union that supported Obama was totally fair. Having the people in Florida vote privately for who they want, not fair. Interesting. I think the DNC needs to run decisions like this past the DNC citizenry before going ahead with such a move.

    January 29, 2008 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  11. william

    Hillary won a hug victory in Florida and I expect her to repeat the process on super-duper Tuesday next week on Feb 5. She has the hearts and minds of the working Joe across American supporting her, because she supports them. I predict Hillary will be our next president.

    January 29, 2008 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  12. tomdavie

    For the final time

    Clinton never said she wanted them to COUNT TOWARDS THE NOMINATION.



    And by the way. Obama is the one who broke the rules.

    The Obama folks wanna SPIN IT. why???

    Obama got his butt kicked and they KNOW how PRECIOUS THE MEDIA SPIN CAN BE . After all, the Obama camp uses SPIN every day in the media.

    Bottom line is that none of you Obama people CARE IN THE SLIGHTEST ABOUT US FLORIDA PEOPLE WHO WANT TO HAVE OUR VOTE.

    It doesnt work for OBAMA, so why should you care?

    January 29, 2008 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  13. Carolina Solis

    Why is it that Wolf asked how the Hillary campaign would "spin" the results but simply stated "what is the Obama camp saying"? The biased tone that is used is appalling. There is no "spin". She won. Delegates counting or not. We should be focused on what people are supporting. Not just what Obama wants to hear or not talk about. Since when is 51% to 30% (at the moment) a tie? I guess math is not his strength either.
    And the candidates did agree not to campaign in Florida. However, we all know Obama violated the rules. We all know stations will block out what they want. Who is he kidding? And why is that not all over the news? If Hillary had done that, she would have been blasted for days on end. Let's be real.
    When will CNN get back to just "reporting" the news. We're all adults and relatively intelligent. Just give us the facts, and we'll take it from there. Isn't that what the voting process is supposed to be about?

    January 29, 2008 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  14. PETER

    She did not violated any party rules. She did not campaign there which the party barred all candidates. THE PARTY DID NOT BARRED CANDIDATES FROM RAISING FUNDS THERE.
    I just want ELIZABETH to get this right.
    She is going to win no matter what some of us do.
    It is time for a woman to occupy the White House.
    My vote definitely is for Hillary.

    January 29, 2008 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  15. Kay

    Just a preveiw of Super Tuesday. GO HILLARY!!

    January 29, 2008 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  16. oblahblah

    Obama campaigns in Florida by having commercials – CNN Fails to cover this.

    Hill Could possibly win by 20% in a critical state – no delegates or not, this is a HUGE win, yet CNN of course will not cover it.

    Why? Because CNN has lost its objectivity.

    Cnn, you are better than this.

    January 29, 2008 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  17. Jeanie

    Okay so in New Hampshire Billary almost shed a fake tear. In Nevada, Billary declared that no woman was illegal. Now in Florida, she's going to try and get the DNC to reverse itself on Michigan and Florida.

    Billary will be just as unethical if by some chance, some fluke America puts the sleaziest couple in American history back in the White House.

    January 29, 2008 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  18. Alexandra

    How hilarious was Clinton's "victory" speech??!! Someone told her to smile as wide as she could and make it look like she actually won something. I am offended that she thinks the voters are that dumb. Now she wants the delegates seated. It didn't take her long to go back on her word. Lies! Deceit! Is she really any different from Bill??? A vote for Hillary is a vote for the Republicans in November. Congrats to Hillary on her "win". What a joke.

    January 29, 2008 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  19. ken

    It's funny how the Obama supporters can be such sour grapes when Hillary wins. It is you all who are sputing the hogwash not the Clintons.

    January 29, 2008 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  20. Antonios

    She won my ....................in Florida, by the way I am white, wow are you surprised!!!

    January 29, 2008 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  21. Micah, Canon City, CO

    I wish Florida would just fall off the continent or something.

    It would make our elections so much simpler.

    January 29, 2008 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  22. Casey

    I wonder what the article "trouble for Clinton in Flordia's insignigicant win" is going discusss. How do they minimize almost a half million people coming out to vote as not extraordinary? However, I am optimistic, and maybe they will report this win as what it is: an amazing win!

    Hillary 08!

    January 29, 2008 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  23. Dem08

    Voters count. How can anyone say the people of Florida are irrelivant? Hillary knows the delegates don't count, she is thanking the people who voted for her. Its amazing that you can not let this women enjoy a victory. She has played by the rules. Obama has even said the Florida voters matter. This election was up for grabs and if the Obama movement is so strong, he should have walked away with a victory. This win says many things, will any of you listen.

    Hillary Clinton is not the evil politician that you make her out to be. We owe her respect because she is committed to the American people and our future. She will be a great President and this will be a great moment in history for our country.

    January 29, 2008 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  24. observer

    Funny, on one of the news coverages I seen one of those Change banners. Obama knew he would get double digit beat. Since when as Americans, do some of us not count? Hillary has shown everyone she is a people President. I look forward to refering to her as Madam President. Obama is getting quite areputation of snubbing, that's what he did to 2 great states, Fla. and Mich. Hope that is not the change he has in mind.

    January 29, 2008 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  25. Peggie

    You, be the one to tell darn near 500,000 people so far in Florida, and 50 percent isn't even in yet, that "it's hog wash. The writing is on the wall. and on certain papers. People, us average little people, aren't as dumb as some think. Delegates? That's all it's about and you're basing your indignation on? ...I can't hardly wait until the shoe on that drops in August. Better brush up on you law and political know how...folks. LOL.

    January 29, 2008 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
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