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. mike

    According to MSNBC, Obama has more overall votes in all the primaries/caucuses than Clinton. Another indication, as to why her negatives are so high. Never admits her mistakes(see Iraq), and won't acknowledge the success of others. Simply a bad human being.

    February 11, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  2. KNC

    It is the Hillary supporters who are the cult. Haven't you people figured out WE DO NOT WANT AN ARISTOCRACY! W was the son of a mediocre president and we got terrible results. Hillary has no accomplishments besides being the wife of a former president and four years as a senator. TWO YEARS is your idea of more experience?

    Talk about brainwashed.

    February 11, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  3. RLS

    Wow, she is not intent on merely burning the bridge that the Clintons have had to the black community, she wants to blow it up. Yikes. What a poor choice of words. This is starting to reek of desperation. The funny thing is, even though I'm an Obama supporter, I hadn't counted Clinton out yet. With this choice of words, it seems as if even she knows that she's done. Watch for the media to have a field day with these quotes as she digs her own grave word by word.

    February 11, 2008 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  4. Jimmy O

    Excuses, excuses... be gracious, accept the wins are of concern, and you are going to work very hard to win the remaining states.

    February 11, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  5. Ron

    Why do we hold primaries and caucuses in states that we won't win anyway. I guess according to Clinton those states don't count and the people in them don't. Can we also lose Connecticut or Illonios? I also seem to remember that she lost Missouri and its too close to call in New Mexico. Will she say the same thing if she loses Virgina and Maryland? This really shows her true self. Arrogant and better than the rest. Will she say the same thing if she loses to John McCain? She seems to think activists are bad. Activists are just people who believe stringly in there candidate and their country. It seems demeaning to the way she talks about them. I guess Nevada did not have activists in their carcases since said how important it was she won there. I'll say it again, The female version of George Bush and hos conies. Drop out of the race Hillary and save your party and your country.

    February 11, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  6. DRS

    I am no activist.
    I have never been contacted by an activist.
    I saw no activists at my caucus location.

    The State of Washington went 3:1 for Obama because we believe in him more.

    Hillary Clinton is a deserving candidate but she isn't entitled to anything.

    Someone up there said "he won a few states". Half of the states he won he won by 25 pts or more. The only state she carried by that margin was her home state of Arkansas. Half of her wins were by 10 % or less. Certainly no Clinton mandate. Once she loses all three states tomorrow, she needs to drop out and work for party unity.

    February 11, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  7. Bukky

    Wow!!! I didnt think she'd get this desperate. fact is if you count every single person that voted he has more votes than she does. Enthused black people dont make up 50% of the nation last I checked.

    February 11, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  8. tim

    Rock on Mrs. Clinton.
    Obama is just a windbag. He raises a lot of money because they know
    they can punk him out just like the nuclear people did in his own state.
    His legislation, while his voters consume nuclear waste in their water
    supply, made the nuclear group self regulating and now their a giant
    contributor to his campaign
    Push back on this guy. We will be an open target for all the world to challenge
    us if this weakling becomes President.

    February 11, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  9. wait a minute

    Now that is the sign of Hillary admitting her loss.
    It's better for the Dem party if Hillary can quit sooner.

    February 11, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  10. Dee

    I really don't think Hillary can look beyond her own needs. Her words are counterproductive as they only raise racial hostility, existential angst, and weaken our America.

    We are going to need to be a strong and undivided nation if we plan to survive the future. Obama gives me hope and I fully support him. Obama 2008.

    February 11, 2008 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  11. Eli

    I belive some of these people must not ever follow politics, which that is the main ones voting for Obama, not that it is bad because he has stirred up some that have never cared before which is great.. If you look back for a number of presidential elections you will see that we have RED (Repulican) state and BLUE (Democrat) states and they are always the same. Hillary is winning all the BLUE states Obama is winning in the states that are RED, which means come November all of those states will still be RED. Have you thought that some Republicans may be going to the polls and voting for the weaker person (OBAMA) because they know he will not win in the fall. You can not look at the polls and say that since Obama got the bigger % he will win in that RED state in the fall. I can not understand why we all can not unite and say whomever gets the nomination needs to take the other for VP, since both of these people have had huge contributions and turnouts to the polls. That would mean the DEMOCRATS would for sure win in November. Instead we are being split down the middle and the REPUBLICANS are loving it.

    February 11, 2008 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  12. PI

    Hillary wins the democratic nomination not b/c she achieved the needed pledged delegates to win but due to superdelegates.
    Obama supporters are angry.
    She asks him to get on the ticket with her to unite the party.
    He refuses b/c all throughout the campaign she and her supporters labeled him the "black candidate".
    He is asked by Bloomberg to form an Independent ticket.
    Now in November there's McCain/Huckebee, Clinton/Clinton/Bayh, and Obama/Bloomberg...
    Well guess who wins....
    Remember there are more independents, than democrats or republicans in this country...to be continued:-)...

    February 11, 2008 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  13. Lemon California

    Keep you head up Hillary, I just donated to your campaign .. and more to come! You are the best candidate in the field .. just continue to fight the good fight!

    February 11, 2008 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  14. Joann

    Hey Roy Joseph – again you are "misrepresenting" what Hillary said – see you're no better than the crappy media. You want this to be a Black issue and clearly now it is – grow up !

    February 11, 2008 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |

    Ok Ok; Hillary if you really cared about the American people then why after 8 years of your huband being the President why didnt you then try for universial healthcare? Why would you wait untill the caucuses to talk about it? Why would you implement change in your speech and how now your campaign is a movement? Why would we trust what you say when your on Walmarts board and after the 33 convictions that happened while Mr. Clinton was in the white house? Lets talk about that lets talk about how the Clintons are always on CNN=Clinton News Network only recently did Obama get on there it was all about you untill your position shifted you voted forthe war now your agaiinst it!!! What gives stop it with these robot politics and accept what is about to happen !!!!!

    February 11, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  16. macblaze

    go Hillary go! I am not caught up in the Obama hype. His speeches maybe inspiring but are very vague not talking any specifics to me just preaching. I know many republicans in those red states are voting in the democratic caucuses they just do not want to see you win..Hang in there u surely have my support....

    February 11, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  17. TM Davidson

    I'm an 82 year old "always Republican" who is inspired by the Obama campaign to the extent that I have been contributing to a presidential race for the first time. Obama comes across more like Lincoln than any candidate I have ever studied.
    Go Obama!

    February 11, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  18. stan pitts pa

    she fired her campaign manager- the truth is the problem is not with the campaign manager its the candidate!

    February 11, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  19. Kevin

    I'm an Obama supporter, but I've been ready to vote for the Democratic nominee.

    However, statements like these, really disappoint me.

    If I decide to participate in my state's caucus (Texas has a mixed primary/caucus situation) it will be because of this rude and dismissive statement.

    This is just over the top. I've had it.

    That's it. I've decided to become a precinct captain here in Texas.

    Thanks, Mrs. Clinton. You've helped me make up my mind.

    I guess now I'm an activist. Fine by me.

    February 11, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  20. Kurt

    The establishment candidate is Hillary Clinton; she represents 16 years of partisan gridlock and lack of progress for this country. More importantly, she represents not just nepotism; a vote for Hillary is a vote for OLIGARCHY.

    We shoulf not be satisfied with either of the above.

    February 11, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  21. Natalie

    Hi Manuel ,if we follow your logic ,shouldn't we also expect in a true democracy that the superdelegates vote for the candidate with the most pledged delegates, who are the only true representation of the will of the democrat voters in general ?Oh,and just in case you don't know , Obama leads that vote 984-926 .

    February 11, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  22. Jerel

    We will appoint two new postions under the HRC administrator Attack Dog/Defender and Someone to hold the tissues.

    However, Bill Clinton pointed fingers on the media saying some of the reporting on his comments was 'factually inaccurate,' insisting: "I did not ever criticize Senator Obama in South Carolina."

    IN SOUTH CAROLINA, no because he was not in South Carolina so once again he lawyered out of it, but it depends on what your definition of South Carolina IS

    February 11, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  23. Tony

    As a Democratic voter in Nebraska, that's exactly why she didn't do well here. We vote, we fund-raise, we donate, and we're marginalized by the party at large...until someone like Obama came to rally in our biggest city and sent his wife the next day to rally in our second-largest city. Clinton sent her daughter.

    Now she is trying to downplay our votes, our opinions, and our voices in the party. I have the utmost respect for her, but this is exactly why she's not doing very well around here.

    February 11, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  24. David, Silver Spring, MD

    You see, Hillary, it is exactly this sort of political calculation that has turned us away from you. It may gain you the admiration of James Carville and Karl Rove, but not here.

    I suspect our support for Barack Obama won't seem so extreme or irrelevant when it carries him to the Democratic nomination and then to the White House.

    February 11, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  25. Paul

    "...product of a caucus system that favors "activists" and, in the case of the Louisiana primary, an energized African-American community."

    Oh because both of those are BAD THINGS!?!? good one Hillary!

    OBAMA '08!

    February 11, 2008 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
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