February 13th, 2008
02:10 PM ET
13 years ago

Clinton: ‘This is a long and winding road’

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/images/02/13/art.clinton0213.ap.jpg caption="Clinton is looking to Texas to deliver a win."] MCALLEN, Texas (CNN) - Hillary Clinton on Wednesday denied her campaign is in trouble after three more bruising losses, telling reporters that this phase of the campaign is "exciting" and that "everyone knew" Barack Obama was favored in the Virginia, Maryland and Washington, D.C. primaries.

"My husband lost Maryland when he was running in the primaries," she said. "So we go on." Bill Clinton did win Virginia and the District of Columbia during the 1992 primary season.

A Clinton campaign memo sent to reporters Wednesday included lists of the states lost by three past Democratic presidential nominees - Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter and Walter Mondale – as evidence a string of losses often proves meaningless in deciding the party’s nomination.

"This is a long and winding road," Clinton said, "and we're all picking up delegates as we go. The key is to end up with 2,025 delegates. 2,025. That's our objective and I feel good about what we're going to be doing in the states."

The New York senator pointed to the March 4 contests here in Texas and in Ohio - as well as upcoming votes in Wisconsin, Rhode Island and Pennsylvania - as places where she would be competitive against Obama.

For several weeks, her campaign has been trying to focus attention on the states that vote that day, largely dismissing the results of February’s contests.

"I want to congratulate senator Obama on his recent victories and tell him to meet me in Texas. We're ready," said Clinton.

On an afternoon conference call, Clinton staffer Guy Cecil also highlighted March 4, telling reporters that the campaign would be within 25 delegates of Obama after that date.

The current CNN count has Obama leading Clinton 1,253 to 1,211, a difference of 42 delegates.

Cecil said the campaign would now be hiring staffers and opening field offices in several states with upcoming contests they had not devoted resources to before, including Montana and Wyoming – and admitted that they regretted the fact that they largely left the field to Obama in similar contests to date.

In the wake of several top-level staff departures, Hillary Clinton rejected reports of internal bickering among campaign staffers.

"That's not what's going on," she said Wednesday, pointing to recent success in Internet fundraising. "We have a tremendous amount of energy and focus."

- CNN's Peter Hamby and Rebecca Sinderbrand

Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (159 Responses)
  1. Patricia Denihan

    To make a blanket statement about freezing foreclosures is irresponsible.

    February 13, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  2. WC

    Hillary can do the job; Barak is a PR person with little experience. Now, which one do you want to head the free world?


    February 13, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  3. paul

    If the black vote would vote their mind instead their hearts-Obama would be finished by now.

    But i guess i can't blame them–you have to stick up for your own.Especially when it comes around once in a lifetime.

    what i really would like to see-is a clinton/Obama ticket--give clinton the first 8 years-and Obama the next 8 years-Clinton 1st because of age–Obama 2nd- letting him get 8 years of experience under his belt. Between them both-would mean no arguments-and in no way would any Republican stop them for 16 years.
    Man–they could unite the whole country and the whole world !!!!

    February 13, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  4. Papa Roach

    Not surprising at all. It is NOW a long and windy road for Hillary especially when that dust starts kicking up in those Texas deserts. I strongly recommend folks watch out for a flying house and Ruby slippers.....

    February 13, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  5. Carla F. Mollica, Albuquerque, NM

    You go, Hillary!! It's about time she starts putting Obama on the defensive. He is no match for her intelligence, toughness, experience, and clout. I just hope the Democratic Party gets it right this time.

    February 13, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  6. Felly

    Yes, Hillary it's a long and winding road which will end March 4, 2008. Your message of I'm your girl without substance has been inconsistence from day one.

    February 13, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  7. aggiemom

    She can sit and beg in Texas all she wants to for the next three weeks, I live in Texas and know what alot of us Texans think about her.

    Texas is a big state and look what areas she started out in. Where she thinks she can get the support.

    Watch Texas on March the 4th, the win will be for Obama!

    We all know the delegates will be divided.

    February 13, 2008 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  8. Brian

    Why can't the Obama fad wear off and the American people realize that we need to stabilize this country before we can realistically change it. A Clinton/Obama ticket would ensure that we are going in the right direction with 8 years of experienced leadership followed by 8 more years of Obama's vision of change. People can never keep the big picture in mind.

    February 13, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  9. Tony

    Hillary hopes to get votes by stinking around. It's time that the superdelegates that support her pull the plug off of her empty compaign.

    February 13, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  10. Susie

    Two problems with Obama's message. First – this positive fluff is not entirely what is going on. He's doing plenty of nasty work, as Tim Russert pointed out in a debate regarding the race card, behind the scenes. But, if you refuse to debate and just give speeches instead of answering questions, you can continue to pretend that you're all positive. But – thinking voters will figure you out. Second, positive fluff is not realistic for this job interview process with America. How does it translate to the White House exactly, "well, sorry North Korea, your attitude is just too negative for me, I can't discuss this with you. I'm going to go give a speech."
    Clinton '08

    February 13, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  11. Susan

    Hillary touted her "inevitability". Unfortunately, the only inevitability in her future is to lose to Obama. Face it, Hillary, if your last name happened to be anything other than Clinton, you wouldn't be running for President; in fact, you wouldn't even be in the Senate. You've ridden far too long on Billy Boy's credentials and actions. I'm sure that you'd be ready "on day one"–to pour tea or to host the wives of diplomats. You blew it, Hillbilly, because you thought that the American public is dumber than it is. Want to win? How about demanding that the records from your years in the WhiteHouse, be released immediately? How about telling us the truth about the suicide of Vince Foster, and your role in hiding papers and documents that could have shed a light on what was going on? And release your tax records. Where indeed did that 5 mil come from? The only thing that I'm still waiting to hear is that Obama's beating the pants off of you, is due to a "right wing conspiracy". That seems to be your favorite excuse. In the meantime, stopped using the phrase "on day one". It is a mantra that is uniting everyone against you. Go home and bake some Tammy Wynette cookies; I'm sure you'll have more success with that, than you are having as a pseudo-politician.

    February 13, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  12. Carla-Las Vegas

    Wow, does anyone read these articles,, or do they just read the headline, believe the naysayers and spout off hatred for Hillary? In the article, she is clearly quoted as giving Obama congrats on his wins.

    Thats what make me not want to vote for Obama, not necessarily him and his 'empty suit" (tthat does play a role), but all these so-called Obamacans who spout off hate. I thought your "leader", your "messiah" was a uniter? Why are you acting so incredibly divise?

    Obama is negative in his speeches in regards to Hillary, ALL THE TIME. Thats fair, this is a campaign. But the moment Hillary does anything remotely the same, how dare she! Poor, poor Obama. PUHHHLEEEZEEE! After what the republican rabid pit bulls are going to do to him, The Clintons are gonna look like attack beagles.

    And then what are the Obamacans gonna say after the Republicans start in on his middle name, or his church, the drug dealer and any other trash (true or not–we've seen the truth doesnt matter when it comes to how the Repubs play) they can create? And they turn off all those in middle America who are afraid of anyone who isnt just like them? John McCain in the WH, thats what.

    Good luck America. You are going to need it.

    February 13, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  13. MR





    February 13, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  14. Clarence

    Ahhh, the long and winding road back to Hope, Arkansas. But wait you and your husband never want to go back to Arkansas. You want us to meet you in Texas but not Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Wyoming or Montana? Please lady all Americans aren't as gullible as you think. For you its about delegates and super-delegates but not the people.

    February 13, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  15. CC

    Exactly what has Hillary accomplished - Bill's 8 years in the white house got a lot of jobs going overseas instead of staying here.

    So again, what has Hillary accomplished as First Lady and she has experience as what . . . First Lady . . . and that makes her qualified to be what . . .

    Seems like she's trying to "pump" up campaign by talking about what "The American Dream" and who has been talking about that?

    February 13, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  16. Bob, NY

    What does Bill have to do with anything regarding Hillary's campaign?

    Both Clinton and Obama are senators and that is the extent of their "experience".

    Hate to be the one to have to state the obvious, but just because you slept with a president does not mean you are inherently qualified to be one.

    February 13, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  17. California Voter

    It was no surprise to me that Obama won DC - approximately 60% of the population is African-American. And as for Maryland and Virginia, I think the current voter demographics favored him as well. I am glad to see that the campaign is now focusing on some areas that were previously left out. Obama swept the caucus states because of his superior ground forces. Even though the percentage of voters who vote in those caucus states is a small fraction of registered voters, the wins did give him bragging rights. I say leave nothing to chance.

    GO HILLARY we need a leader that is ready on DAY 1. How can an "outsider" like Obama be ready on DAY 1. Oh, I know he showed sound judgement by being against the war in Iraq from the beginning.

    February 13, 2008 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  18. ps

    No matter what CNN's best political team say, at the end Senetor Clinton will prevail.

    February 13, 2008 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  19. Joey Sherman, Texas

    If Hillary continues to campaign in the same manner, she will be defeated. Ms. Clinton appears to yell into the microphone as she speaks. She waves and smiles as if she was in a parade. She claps without rhythm. So why do all that. Why not just take the microphone in hand and speak from the heart? That's the difference in Ms. Clinton and Barack.

    February 13, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  20. William Duane

    I'm an independent (a true independent, who has voted for Republicans and Democrats in the past), and I'll be voting Tuesday in the Wisconsin primary. This probably makes me one of the most sought after voters in terms of politics and demographics in the whole contest. I'll be voting for Obama. I think he's relatively clean of the political process in Washington. In addition, every time Clinton opens her mouth, more negative rhetoric comes out. She's attacked Obama just about every way she knows how, and now she's obviously desperate. She is extremely partisan. At the start of the race I was up in the air about her. Now I can't stand her.

    February 13, 2008 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  21. smart grrl in ls mo

    MR why would OBAMA have to prepare for a debate if all of his positions are so well defined?

    February 13, 2008 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  22. Recognize

    8 states in a row?
    make that 10, after Wisconsin and Hawaii.

    21 states to 10 (8 if you take out Florida and Michigan)

    How are we even considering this race close?

    Its a sad day when we cant tip our hat, and
    realize who the people want.

    If Hillary wins 13 states out of 55, we give her the

    -She dismissed Wisconsin and all the other
    states as if the United States is made up of
    only Ohio , Texas, California and New York.

    She didnt even show up to most of these states

    I'm from Cleveland and I live in Dallas.

    She' s going to lose in Ohio.

    Texas will be close, only because they dont
    know Obama yet.

    Once people take the time to listen to Obama,
    the choice is obvious.

    We Latinos need to realize that Hillary has no idea
    what it's like to struggle. She cannot relate to
    our issues. Its all politics.

    Once she doesnt have your vote, you'll be cast
    aside just like her campaign manager .

    Dont just vote because you are familiar with

    Its a reason why more than1/2 the democratic party is
    backing Obama.

    -They are not basing their votes on his speeches

    They know a winner when they see one.

    Do you?

    February 13, 2008 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  23. Jackson

    Go hillary, we need a couple more liars in the white house. Oh & BTW what happened to the Vince Foster files you took?

    February 13, 2008 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  24. Marcus

    Is Hillary pulling a "Giuliani?" Hopefully it backfires on her just like it did for him...Pandering to the big states won't help you when you have to explain to the majority of americans why you didn't think their state was important enough to visit...

    February 13, 2008 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  25. Tears and Smears

    The long and whiny road
    That leads to a boor
    Who will never tell the truth
    Ive seen that road before
    It always leads me to her
    truly, truly a boor

    Many times shes been alone
    And many times shes lied
    Any way youll never know
    The many ways shes cried

    But still they lead you back
    To the long whiny road
    You left me standing here
    A long long caucus ago
    Dont leave me waiting here
    Lead me to the boor

    But still they lead me back
    To the long whiny road
    You left me standing here
    A long long time ago
    Dont leave me waiting here
    Lead me to the boor

    February 13, 2008 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
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