February 11th, 2008
03:14 PM ET
9 years ago

Clinton dismisses weekend losses

 Clinton downplayed her weekend losses Monday.

Clinton downplayed her weekend losses Monday.

WHITE MARSH, Maryland (CNN) - Hillary Clinton on Monday explained away Barack Obama's clean sweep of the weekend's caucuses and primaries as a product of a caucus system that favors "activists" and, in the case of the Louisiana primary, an energized African-American community.

She told reporters who had gathered to watch her tour a General Motors plant here that "everybody knew, you all knew, what the likely outcome of these recent contests were."

"These are caucus states by and large, or in the case of Louisiana, you know, a very strong and very proud African-American electorate, which I totally respect and understand."

Clinton has publicly dismissed the caucus voting system since before Super Tuesday, seeking to lower expectations heading into a series of contests that played to Obama's advantage. His campaign features what many consider to be a stronger and more dedicated grassroots organization than Clinton's.

Noting that "my husband never did well in caucus states either," Clinton argued that caucuses are "primarily dominated by activists" and that "they don't represent the electorate, we know that."

The New York senator went out of her way to say she was "absolutely" looking forward to the Ohio and Texas primaries in March, where she believes voters are more receptive to her bread-and-butter message.

She also downplayed many of Obama's Super Tuesday victories, describing them as states that Democrats should not expect to win in November.

"It is highly unlikely we will win Alaska or North Dakota or Idaho or Nebraska," she said, naming several of Obama's red state wins. "But we have to win Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, California, Arizona, New Mexico, Florida, Michigan ... And we've got to be competitive in places like Texas, Missouri and Oklahoma."

Watch Hillary Clinton assess her weekend losses

- CNN Political Producer Peter Hamby

soundoff (705 Responses)
  1. Kevin

    Is this lady and her husband for real? With her statements she just punched every good hearted White American in the face that voted for Obama. Is she trying to say that Whites that caucuse voices should not be heard? Is she saying that the states which Obama won should not be heard? America please wake up and stop this persons.

    P,S. "My prayers go out to Rep. Tom Lantio (CA) family" But not only did Hillery Clinton lose 5 races this weekend but; she also lost 2 superdelegates.

    Obama 08'

    February 11, 2008 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  2. All ahead dems

    Just the facts of the matter.
    16 year olds voting at cacaus!!! , no verification, and yes it is not a vote for every citizen, sorry its true they do represent the majority but that is the process.
    It funny how Obama voters do not like hearing facts, OR ISSUES this country faces.

    Primaries are more democratic for all get to vote, and yes Clinton did will the large primary states and yes they are important to the total voting public.
    Keep in mind Clinton has 50 if not more of the voters and they will matter come November and yes the Florida and Michigan voters are US citizens too, and will count or the election will not work to anyones favor.

    Sorry just the facts.

    February 11, 2008 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  3. Joyce memphis, tn

    She is right. I never thought that caucuses were fair because they are at a set time, in a crowded place and are too time consuming. I think this should be more like the general election. All states hold a PRIMARY on the same day after 6months of campaigning. This way, all people are able to vote in a private setting. The presidential candidate is choosen in one day, and if there is a tight race; then they should have a runoff election. Also, this eliminates the "momentun factor." It seems that when people see someone in the lead (regardless of experience) they "follow sheep." Holding a national party primary on the same day will save time, money, and media influence.

    February 11, 2008 03:15 pm at 3:15 pm |
  4. Stephen- Independent

    Wow! Some states are already written off by Hillary?

    February 11, 2008 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  5. brian

    If the media is "all about Obama" than why does cnn have Hillary listed with 815 articles about her and 701 for Obama. this is clearly listed for your convenience to the right of this blog.

    February 11, 2008 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  6. Geoff in CA


    How in the world can a superdelegate in a state she's trashed: Iowa, Georgia, etc possibly even consider voting for this Witch?? If Obama only had the superdelegates of those states he would have the nomination now. She is such a sore loser. I guess only the caucus she wins should matter eh? I see.

    February 11, 2008 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  7. observant1

    So before all this is over, Clinton will have dismissed about half the country by saying they don't count. And she wants to win the general election by dismissing caucus voters and black voters?

    In addition to this and the poor way she appears to be running her campaign (including her fierce protection of her white house papers and income tax returns), I'm not sure how a supporter could stay with her. I switched a while back and I'm glad I did.

    February 11, 2008 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  8. Nathan

    Caucuses draw the kind of people that have truly thought about each candidate and are generally not voting on fame. No wonder Barack does better in caucuses!

    It was great to see all of the independants at my precinct caucus on Saturday in Washington State go for Obama. Both sides made their case and he won–America won.

    February 11, 2008 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  9. California Independent

    Just noting what is common knowledge.... Obama won Alabama, South Carolina, Kansas, Nebraska, Utah, Idaho, North Dakota, and Alaska. All have gone Republican in 4 of the 4 last elections. Obama also won Georgia and Colorado which have gone Republican in 3 of the 4 last elections.

    He is expected to win Virginia, Wyoming, Mississippi, North Carolina, and Indiana because of demographics. These 5 also went Republican in 4 of the last 4 elections. That's 15 states.

    Clinton has complied with the law regarding financial disclosure. She is under no obligation to do anything additional because King Obama has decreed it. He's needs to let go of the little tyrant act. He's looking and sounding like Bush again. No one is going to cater to him now nor in the future.

    February 11, 2008 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  10. Zee

    If Senator Obama (extremely lacking in experience) is the democratic nominee, then as a democrat I am left with no other choice but to vote for the republican candidate.

    February 11, 2008 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  11. Patrick

    Such great leadership abilities Clinton displays...NOT. I don't want a President willing to dismiss the views of voterse of States just because she doesn't win. When California went for Clinton, did Obama say "Well the voters in California aren't important". No he did not. Almost every red state that Obama has won has so far attracted voters 2 to 1 over the Republicans. That's what the Democratic party needs in order to win in 2008, and that's what Obama attracts.

    OBAMA in 2008!

    February 11, 2008 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  12. Gobama

    One nutty New Yorker down, one to go! lol

    People, remember the other New Yorker, Guilliani, losing/disrespecting the voting in states after states and putting all his eggs in the LATER Florida basket? LOL

    Clintons are similarly disrespecting states in which SHE HAD EQUAL CHANCE but lost; and instead are putting their THIRD TERM bid in the LATER Ohio, Texas & Pennsylvania baskets. lol

    As goes Guilliani in Florida, so goes the Clintons in Pennsylvania!

    If Obama continues to rack up the number of states and pledge delegates, there is no way that the so-called super delegates will hand the nomination and the election over to a Clintons & a sure fire continuation of Bush with a McCain victory.

    However, the Dems are known to repeatedly and skillfully snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, for the worse of the country

    February 11, 2008 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  13. Bart

    I voted for Barack in the "activist" state of Nebraska. She might as well siad, "Yeah, I meant to lose all lose states." I will not be voting for her in November, nor will many others. I sense she is running not because it is best for the nation, but it is best for her and her legacy. For shame.

    February 11, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  14. Eli

    Why are we DEMOCRATS letting this split us, the Republicans are loving this. We should come together and say which ever of these get the nomination they need to pick the other as VP. Both of these people are getting hugh contributions and turn out to the polls, can you image what would happen if they were on the same ticket. They would for sure go into office. Somehow the Republican party has split us as Democrats because you can read these comments on here and see that it has become a back stabbing event. Lets come together for the better of the party.

    February 11, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  15. jackiezac72

    When she speaks its like fingernails on a chalkboard for me. She is so cold and does not spark one bit of anything in me. Obama makes more sense to me and I do believe he says what he means. At least he has lit a spark of hope for many. Clinton basically called many votes and states unimportant. I wish she would just stop talking so much for it is getting her nowhere real fast!

    February 11, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  16. mr.singh

    For Hillary to say that Obama's win in those states as states that Democrats should not expect to win in November is dismissing those people and their votes. Does she not understand that if she is the candidate, those people in those states would vote for her? She's already lowering Democrat expectations to win in those states and the people will think that and stay home. It shows she is frustrated.

    February 11, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  17. Chris

    What is she going to say after tomorrow? Does she not realize she could lose the primaries scheduled then? Her own words will be used against her before they are even out of the news cycle. How can she be staisfied if she (or Bill) convince the Superdelegates to go against the majority of the voters(Barack's up by 200K now) or go against the majority of states(Barack is up 2 to 1). At what point does Al Gore step up and point out that this is like Florida in 2000?

    February 11, 2008 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  18. samyr

    Here we go again. She not only downplayed Obama's victory in red states but lost a chance to win those states in the general election if she would be the nominee. She is utter fool and do not understand that she is dividing the country once again by making these uneducated and uncalculated remarks. Did you here Obama saying bad about those states where he did not win? Because he knows in general election he needs those states in order to beat republicans. During general election total electorate vote is counted and these red states will matter a most that time. People please forgive Hillary for her mistakes. I would like to see democrats in the white house and no more republicans. I am sure this kind of comments are not going to help Hillary. Obama is the best candidate. He will win most popular vote and will defeat Hillary to get nomination. We will have a sensible president in the white house.

    God help Hillary for her cynical remarks. We want red states and Obama will win them during general election Hillary will not.

    February 11, 2008 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  19. Joe

    Senator Clinton makes a valid point. My Mom is in her 70's and she was not able to go to the caucus in Iowa because she would not have been able to stay for the period that was needed to caucus. Since many of Senator Clintons supporters come from the older generation she is not able to get those votes because they either don't have the physical capacity to last that long unlike the younger generation or they don't have transportation or someone to drop them off and come back a couple of hours later to pick them up.

    Another important thing to remember is that Senator Clinton also has large support among lower income people who may have to work on the weekends or evenings and cannot get off of work to spend time at a caucus.

    This is all she is really pointed out. Give her a break. I know I'm going to get negative responses from Obama supporters so whatever. I'm just pointing out facts about caucus'. I'm not bashing Obama or his supporters so before you start typing just sit back, take a deep breath and think about what you just read.

    February 11, 2008 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  20. Dan

    She does make a good point that more "activist" or should we say enthusiastic people participate in caucuses. I just find it interesting that she just admitted that people are not very enthusiastic about her campaign for the presidency.

    And why should we?

    Obama '08

    ps- Bill Clinton was helped significantly by Perot in the 90's and She won a traditionally strong democratic state in NY. Her test by fire is a little suspect.

    February 11, 2008 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  21. Think - FL

    Wow, she's really unraveling now. She's going to dry up her own support in TX and OH just like Bill did in SC.

    I wonder what she'll blame it on when he sweeps in her tomorrow's three PRIMARIES too?

    Simply pathetic.

    February 11, 2008 03:20 pm at 3:20 pm |
  22. J.Walton

    Don't the people who support Hillary even CARE that she's hiding her tax returns?

    Don't you want to know what she's ashamed of?

    Why don't "her supporters" care enough to go caucus? Don't tell me it's work, these caucuses have been in evenings and on weekends, when young people are MOST likely to work and old people are off.

    Obama leads by 200 thousand in the total popular vote!

    If you're a racist, just say it, instead of talking about "Those other people who won't vote for a black man". Just put the sheet on an let your neighbors know who you are.

    February 11, 2008 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  23. Kat

    I swear, every time she opens her mouth, ugliness just spews forth. Dismissive of the African American vote AND those motivated to participate in the political process!

    Way to go Hillary, chase the lazy white vote!

    February 11, 2008 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  24. CK, Dallas, TX

    How can any even consider supporting her campaign when she makes comments like these? Are all of Hillary's consituents really that gullible? One of the main goals of the Dem. candidate in November is to try and come away with as many votes in the Red/Purple states as possible – this is EXACTLY what Obama is working to do and the EXACT opposite of what she is doing.


    If the DNC wants to stand a chance to take the White House in November then we need to rally behind Obama. It's really quite simple.

    February 11, 2008 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  25. O My!

    If you are in one of the upcoming primary or caucus states I beg you to see through this woman. She has just discounted millions of American voters because they didn't vote for her. I gaurantee that had she won those states they would have been important to her. That tells me we can expect the same kind of presidency we"ve had for the past 8 years. She will do what she wants to do and not what the american people want her to do. We the people, of the United States of America, are speaking out and speaking up, and the most magnificent words I have heard in decades for a better America are Barack Obama!

    Yes We Can!!

    February 11, 2008 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
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