March 30th, 2008
01:15 PM ET
10 years ago

Sunday morning round-up: Should Sen. Clinton drop out?

WASHINGTON (CNN) - This week, the spirited back-and-forth between the camps of Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama led some in the Democratic Party to suggest that Clinton bow out of the race in order to unify Democrats against Sen. John McCain in the general election. The debate over whether it was time for Clinton to exit the race dominated the Sunday morning political talk show circuit.

CNN’s “Late Edition” featured a showdown between two Democratic strategists, Clinton supporter James Carville and Jamal Simmons, who backs Obama. Carville quickly downplayed any suggestion that Clinton drop out.

“The Clinton campaign has not had one one-second meeting about getting out of the race,” he told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer. “Calling on her to get out of the race is…going to hurt him in terms of getting votes. And it is going to make it more difficult to reconcile the party.”

Simmons responded that it’s the negativity coming from the Clinton campaign that’s tearing the Democratic Party apart. He said that Democrats “feel like Senator Clinton is fighting Barack Obama like he's a Republican and not fighting him like he's a fellow Democrat.”

On CBS’ “Face the Nation”, former presidential candidate-turned Obama supporter Bill Richardson told host Bob Schieffer that while he has no issue with Senator Clinton staying in the race, he feels an Obama nomination is inevitable. “I personally believe that Senator Obama is reaching a stage where his lead is insurmountable,” Richardson said. He later added, “[But] I don't agree with those that say that Senator Clinton needs to drop out.”

Richardson also responded to comments by Carville, who was recently quoted by the New York Times as comparing the New Mexico governor to Judas for supporting Obama. Richardson, who served in the cabinet of former President Bill Clinton, said he would not stoop to Carville's level.

ABC’s “This Week with George Stephanopoulos” featured Clinton surrogate and Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, who chided Obama supporters for attempting to end the nomination process before all states have their say. “It's a disgrace that the Obama forces say, he's won the popular vote so he should be the nominee,” Rendell told Stephanopoulos.

Senator John Kerry, who has endorsed Barack Obama, also spoke with Stephanopoulos.  He argued that his own experience as the Democratic presidential nominee taught him an important lesson. “This time right now is critical to us,” said Kerry. “We began four years behind George Bush, and I think every day does give John McCain an ability to organize nationally. So the sooner we resolve it, the better.”

Related: Richardson: 'I'm not going to stoop to Carville's level'

–CNN's Jessica Rummel

soundoff (135 Responses)
  1. Pho

    Nah, I wanna see her fall hard once and for all. We can't let her try to push over President Obama in the next elections.

    Obama '08

    March 30, 2008 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  2. Rob

    The problem with the Clinton campaign is that she doesn't have a good time to leave. She had built up Ohio and Texas as her firewall, but then she won those states, albeit, not by that much. Should she quit after she won the states she needed to win? No. She will stay in it after she wins Pennsylvania too. If she just all of a sudden left, it would alienate all of her supporters. She has to lose, and I think she realizes that. If she is to bow out, she will do it after Obama wins a few other states down the line. Or, if she loses Pennsylvania.

    March 30, 2008 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  3. Renee Osterwalder/Expat Winterthur Switzerland

    Why should Americans even respond to this question over and over again, when nobody is at home in Hill's head to answer the phone?

    What about all the Rep. candidates that dropped out because they knew it was time?

    We Dems are our own worst enemies! We have some serious "Overblown Ego's " to deflate!

    March 30, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  4. Brian

    YES!!! For the good of the democratic party and the nation, get out of the race!

    March 30, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  5. kobs

    Kerry said it.
    Unless she wants Mccain to win let her stop and let the game start

    March 30, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  6. Molly

    GO HILLARY !!! To even suggest that Clinton get out is Crazy – how dare Obama "supporters" try to bully her out of the race. IF he was so great – and – a sure deal he would of WON By now – HE HAS NOT WON! Let the voters decide! I truly feel it is the Obama campaign that has gone negative – something he said he would not do – like he said he was not in the church (20 yrs) – but – he was.
    The campaign process is not hurting the party – like Bill Clinton said – saddle up – we are in this to win! The real problem will be if either party feels somehow cheated, bullied, pushed out by the DNC trying to "fix" the problem – that will be the Problem!
    Our AMERICAN right to VOTE is far more important than the feelings of the Democratic Party!

    March 30, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  7. g

    please while mccain is out toruing countires beefing up his resume clinton and obama are mudslinging. obamas is winning juts leave clinton

    March 30, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |

    Hillary's "dirty' political game" is not helping the Democratic Party.
    This has more to do with how Hillary viciously attacks Obama than her desire to stay. People see right thru Hillary as being self-obsessed,and caring only about Hillary.

    March 30, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  9. Gnosticman

    I am an Obama supporter who does not think that Hillary should drop out. This is a democracy ,and if Obama wins after all this heat their will be no fuel for any argument that his victory was illegitamate. I know we're all tired of this race, but it is fair and good for the Democratic party to let the remaining states have their say in who will be the Democratic candidate.

    March 30, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  10. Rudy



    March 30, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  11. FEDUP

    What has she done that is so negative? Rezko, and Rev. Wright are his own doing. He is not ready to be president, is that so negative. This is a competition, not a beauty contest. The media is the one that is guilty of being negative. His campaign is just as negative with attacks on her health plan, which I might add has swift-boated any plans of his own. This is the elimination round, the real contest is in November. I say let this elimination continue.

    March 30, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  12. Claire

    It appears CNN is trying to elect Obama as the democratic
    candidate for president; knowing he will loose, there by
    McCain will be elected Is this true? Mc Cain may be in the
    beginning of demencia, if not he seems listless or timid.

    March 30, 2008 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  13. Matt

    1. John Kerry is a proven loser and no one cares about his opinion on presidential elections.

    2. Bill Richardson is a liar and a traitor. He told several Clinton supporters behind the scenes that he was ultimately going to endorse Hillary and then he did an about face.

    3. Why would anyone expexct Obama to care about counting the votes in states that have yet to have their say? He has made it clear he doesn't care about counting the votes in states that have already voted – Michigan and Florida – and will lose these states miserably as a result if he is the nominee (along with the presidency).

    4. Why should Clinton drop? Note it is just Obama backers who are making these calls – not the undecided. They know that buyer's remorse has set in on Obama, that Clinton won convincingly in Ohio and Texas (despite an undemocratic system in Texas which will award Obama more delegates despite Hillary's commanding lead in the popular vote there), that she will win by an even wider margin in Pennsylvania, will win comfortably in Indiana, will keep it close or pull out an upset in North Carolina, and will then take huge wins in West Virginia and Kentucky. Of course they want her to drop out know. The remaining races favor HER not HIM, despite the fact that he should be winning all of these races given his "frontrunner" status.

    March 30, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  14. Mike - Ventura, CA

    Yes. If the positions were reversed she and her campaign would have been yelling long ago that HE should drop out to preserve party unity.
    Anyone who disputes this either hasn't been paying attention to her campaign or is so warped with the negativity she has thrown that they aren't thinking straight.
    I have been a Democrat for forty years- and I am sure that this is true.

    March 30, 2008 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  15. Jesse

    If she was not the former first lady. We would not be having this discussion. The media would have treated her just like Mike Huckabee, If she was some Senator from New York. If the tables were turn, the weight of the Dems would beseige the Obama's campagin it would not be funny. Just like that bit she pull saying that Senator Obama would make a good V.P. when she's the one that's losing (hahahaha). This race is over you and I know it. She wasting time, money and the American people time with this. Hillary (and her supports) just quit. Face it, you running against the second coming of John Kennedy. Good try. Best of luck in 2012. That's when you're get President Obama's endorsement.

    March 30, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  16. Grant McLachlan

    While I'm an Obama supporter, I think it would be kind of pointless for Hillary to drop out of the race now, and Obama isn't the one saying she should drop out of the race its some of his supporters. In fact he even said that he would like Hillary to say in the race, but at the same time, shes got a long road ahead to catch up.

    March 30, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  17. freedom

    We need the freedom to vote for our candidate.

    The DNC has swayed this election and advantaged Obama.

    Race card: Bill Clinton made a racist (?) comment in SC? But now we all excuse the comments of the Obama supporters, including his wife, as FREEDOM of speech.

    The same rules should apply to everyone.

    The Fl and Mi voters should count like everyone else.

    Caucus format is absurd and should be banned.

    Hillary has been swiftboated by the DNC and her own party.

    March 30, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  18. tomdavie

    Most americans are tuning into the fact that the media could EASILY spin this against Obama.

    There is no way Obama can ask Clinton to leave , when the super delegates MUST decide it, and there has been no confirmation that they are going to back Obama.

    The super delegates are under no obligation to do so. The delegate count is 53% to 47% so far. The popular vote is 51% to 49%

    Considering Obama is fundamentally damaged by the Wright scandal in the general election and he couldnt win a single major primary except his home state, the ONLY argument he has is the delegate count.

    What other argument does he have? Tap danced polls?

    How does Obama argue the 'will of the people' when he WONT allow Michigan and Florida to revote or have their primary count.

    Nowhere does it say the VOTE doesnt count. Its says the delegates wont be seated.

    The MEDIAs attempt to BRAINWASH that the will of the people count -but ignore the will of michigan and florida is outright STUPID .

    March 30, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  19. Jan Houston

    Hillary cannot afford to go on unless she decides to stiff more people with unpaid bills. She has $8.7 million in unpaid bills. A number of these are small businesses that cannot afford to carry her debt month to month.

    This demonstrates that she does not care about the little person.

    This demonstrates that she cannot run a federal budget.

    She needs to pay her bills and go home.

    March 30, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  20. kelly

    Clinton should drop out! She has been running this entire race on her husbands coat tails!

    If the math were different...Obama would have gracefull dropped out like Richardson, Biden, Kursinich, and Edwards.

    Moreover!! If the math were different the PRESS would have driven him out.

    The whole issue here is what the Clintons are willing to do to the party. They are spoiled children that will do anything to win. Chelsea Clinton needs to take her Daddys advice. She needs to chill out and be willing to answer the hard questions or get out of the game. If she is willing to put on the political suit to defend her mom. She needs to be willing to be hit. As her daddy says! You don't play football and not expect to take a hit!

    Guess what is good for the Obama's doesn't apply to the Clinton's!

    March 30, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  21. melikeyhill

    simple answer yes she must drop out!

    March 30, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  22. francine

    Obama is now up 10 points, 52-42 on Gallup daily tracking.

    The People will tell Mrs. Clinton it is time to drop out.


    March 30, 2008 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  23. Mark

    She can't win anymore. She should drop out and back Obama.

    March 30, 2008 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  24. Trang, Fremont, CA

    Well, it seems even if we get to the convention, neither of them has enough delegates to win. It still up to the superdelegates.

    Hillary has the right to run the campaign to the end, if she can afford it, because it takes money to run the campaign, although I hope she can stay on the positive, just spells out what she can do for the country, and not putting down the other candidates.

    Who knows, maybe the superdelegates will come in and make their stand, and we don't have to fight it out, and the money donated afterwards will be for the general election.

    On the flip side, if the campaign drags on, Obama can sets posts in 50 states, and maybe that would be a good thing for him, because when people gets to see Obama in person, they generally like him.

    Hillary is tough but she has character issue. McCain is likable, but his policies are terrible. With Obama, we can have both – likable and good policies.

    March 30, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  25. James in Kamiah

    YES! She is a Led Anchor and she is dragging the Democratic party down. We have a strong candidate in Barak Obama, and an intelligent one with little or no baggage around his neck, and then we have Hillary.
    She needs to drop out. She is fracturing the democratic party, and her supporters are spewing hate and Bile like the world will end if she's not the candidate. They feel that if Hillary doesn't get the nomination then it's a full fledged attack on women in general, and that type of falsehood NEEDS to be shut down. It has become an emotional, and personal war between women and the world for them, and Hillary is doing nothing about it.

    We do not need this type of woman in the white house. My vote is for Donna Brazil if it's so important. At least then we'd have someone with integrity, and not someone whos motivations are guided by the bitterness she feels about her own husbands stupidity that she can then take out on all men in general in the white house.

    March 30, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
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