February 20th, 2008
08:30 AM ET
15 years ago

Clinton's election night speech fails to mention election

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/images/02/19/art.clinton0219.ap.jpg caption="Clinton tonight in Youngstown, Ohio."]

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Three times may make a trend: for the third primary/caucus night in a row, Hillary Clinton has taken the stage at a post-election rally and failed to mention her losses, or congratulate her winning opponent, Barack Obama.

She spent Tuesday night at a rally in Youngstown, Ohio, looking ahead to the primary there on March 4. She made no mention of Wisconsin.

Last Tuesday in El Paso, Texas, hours after getting swept in the Potomac primaries that night, she didn’t acknowledge her rival’s big day. The Saturday before that in Richmond, Virginia, she spoke at the state’s Jefferson-Jackson Dinner and ignored Obama’s string of four primary and caucus wins that day.

After reports that focused on the second oversight, Clinton congratulated Obama at a press conference the next day.

Acknowledging your losses isn’t required in politics, though it is a courtesy that’s been practiced for decades.

Then again: it's also been traditional for candidates to delay their remarks to avoid overlapping with their opponents' speeches. Obama began his victory speech in Texas Tuesday while Hillary Clinton was still addressing the crowd in Ohio - and most of the networks cut away from her event mid-speech. (Granted, she had begun speaking after the expected start time.)

UPDATE: CNN's Mike Roselli reports that after their speeches ended, Clinton called Obama to offer private congratulations before she headed back to New York.

- CNN Political Producer Peter Hamby

soundoff (506 Responses)
  1. michael

    I am just so disappoited at the reaction od the Clintons after each lost. running away from SC refusing to comment about the disaster in Alabama because she lost same day....She is running a campaign of bitterness with is not good for America. i am a pro Obama analyst and i am so shocked she did it again tonight. Though she lost in Wisconsin some people still voted for her and they deserve thanks like all other states where she lost. If that is the kind of President she is going to be then we need a Change..

    February 19, 2008 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm |
  2. s. clark

    so much for freedom of speech..................

    February 19, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  3. Debi

    So what!

    February 19, 2008 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  4. JTBrick

    For those of you supporting Hillary, I just don't get it. What has she done besides ride on her husbands coat tails to get elected as a Senator to new York for two terms, back track on a vote for the war and then all she cares about is beating republicans in November. As I am sure that she has done some things but she is similar to our current president in the sense that he did squat before being elected to governor of TX and then got elected to the Presidency because his first and last name matched that of a previous President. Lets not repeat ourselves people and potentially elect the Democratic version of George Bush. Vote for someone that actually cares about moving our country forward so that it is in a better place 4 or 8 years from now for the next generation to work with.

    February 19, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  5. George McGovernwannabee

    Poor little democrats. Neither will defeat McCain! Obama ands Hillary support the slaughter of the Unborn and socialism. Neither Obama nor Hillary are worthy to sit in the White House because of TWO main ingredient............CHARACTER and DIGNITY!

    February 19, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  6. kathleen, illinois

    I did not vote for Bush. I could see the evangelical uprise
    over him. Pat Robertson on national T.V. Anyone that voted
    for Bush was a fool. I was not for the War. I love our troops.
    I voted for Kerry and REALLY, HE Won!!!!!!!!!!!Right Carl Rove.

    February 19, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |

    OBAMA is going to beat mccain hands down.
    And OBAMA will make America Proud again.
    So people vote for the movement(change and yes will can).

    February 19, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  8. Rachel

    It's one thing to not congratulate the opponents that beat her, it's quite another to not recognize the hundreds of thousands of voters that went out in single digit temps to vote for her

    February 19, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  9. Kitty, Dunkirk, NY

    Where are the Obama supporters brains? Just where & how could he accomplish "his promises?" How is he going to pay for all that? His health care policy won't work- more people will be without. The money for the war was borrowed from China?
    He's just another : promise them anything but give them Arpege kind of guy. He's using the images of dead people(King & Kennedy) to further his own cause- he's an opportunist in disguise caught up in his own policies...Be Careful, America !!

    February 19, 2008 11:57 pm at 11:57 pm |
  10. KMAN

    Hey New York ... it looks like you're going to get your Junior Senator back real soon along with Bill and his legacy ... what ever that is!

    February 19, 2008 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm |
  11. dick, WI

    WI is a blue state. Did not vote in Bush. Clintons won it twice.

    February 19, 2008 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  12. Jake, California

    what is this accusation of Obama being arrogant to start his speech in the middle of Hilary's speech?

    Sometimes, I get it that not only does Hillary herself turn people of but her supporters as well.

    These two people[Obama and Hillary] do not coordinate when they will give their speeches. They schedule them ahead of time. Hillary's speech was scheduled before Obama's but she delayed for an hour so what do you expect the networks to do when Obama starts speaking?

    Is it really true that you guys behind Hillary are just full of hate or that you just have no idea of what's going on? No seriously...this scares me!

    February 19, 2008 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  13. Suchitha

    I don't see why everyone seems to be blaming CNN or other news networks for cutting Hillary's speech. The news networks don't care about allying themselves with a candidate, they want viewership to increase, so cover the more popular event. If that happens to be Obama's, well, what are you going to do? Plus, whether Clinton supporters admit it or not, she's being rude by pretending the Obama states don't exist.

    February 19, 2008 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  14. clinton muehlenbrock

    borak 08 hillary get some sleep your getting old

    February 19, 2008 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  15. Curious

    What is the DNC going to do about the primary votes of Fla and Mich? I can't envision them as not having a say in the Democratic primary.

    February 19, 2008 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  16. TerryD

    Is it possible that Lou Dobbs is encouraging Republicans to switch over to Independents because Independents are permitted to vote in the Democratic primaries thus undermining your lead.
    If that is the case, the Republicans’ are undermining your support groups, and that is their idea of Swift boating you, Hillary R.Clinton.
    Is it possible for a survey to be taken on all these so called Lou Dobbs new Independents to see if their original affiliation was to the Republican Party.
    Huh, those nasty, cleaver Clinton Conspirators…

    February 19, 2008 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  17. kathleen, illinois

    It will be 10 in a row, when Hawaii's results come in.

    Go Obama 2008

    February 19, 2008 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  18. Heather Peterson

    Ummm...ALL the networks cut away to Obama's speech, as it was more relevent. Since when is the loser's remarks more remarkable than the victor's remarks?

    February 20, 2008 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  19. realchange

    clinton fans are babies. Grow up change is coming.

    February 20, 2008 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  20. s. clark

    your bias toward obama is glaringly apparent

    February 20, 2008 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  21. Kawser

    She should cry again on a National Media, and only then she may see some light...Hahahahahaha

    February 20, 2008 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  22. Perry K

    Hillary was late with her speech...if she can't keep her schedule, then she can't complain about being cut off. She looked tired anyway. Mc
    Cain looked a lot like W with his Stepford appearing wife at his side. I am an old person and do NOT want the old politics of the past.

    Obama: Yes We Can!!

    February 20, 2008 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  23. Joe

    Of the dueling speeches Tim Russert, on MSNBC, said:

    "I thought tonight when Hillary Clinton started speaking the Obama people were stepping back saying alright you go first you are the loser. When they heard no concession or no graciousness quote on quote coming from Hillary Clinton they decided why allow her an opportunity to criticize us? We are going to go out there and proclaim victory."

    February 20, 2008 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  24. Sam, TN

    Actually Sue in Michigan, it IS 10 in a row: New Mexico voted on Super Duper Tuesday but screwed up their election so badly it took weeks to figure out who voted for who. And technically, even though Billary had 1000 more votes than Obama, the delegates were divvied up in essentially a draw.

    February 20, 2008 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
  25. Ohio for Obama

    Ohio knows they messed up the election last time around, here is the time for Ohio to right a wrong, Vote Obama.

    You Hillary supporters, that Wisconsin win for Obama must be a big hit on your pride. I mean you people completely backed the wrong horse. I know, it hurts. Actually it must sting!

    So put a big L on Hillary's forehead, but the L does not stand for Loser, in her case, it stands for LIAR. Republicans knew this for many years, but now democrats are beginning to see the real character flaws that she has.

    I used to be a Clintonite. wow, did I have much pride to swallow.

    February 20, 2008 12:00 am at 12:00 am |
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