April 1st, 2008
12:20 PM ET
11 years ago

Pelosi: Dem race has to 'run its course'

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/04/01/art.pelosiclinton.ap.jpg caption=" Pelosi said Tuesday the presidential race should run its course."]

(CNN) - House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Tuesday she wants the Democratic presidential election to continue through the last round of primaries, but warned against a floor fight at the party's August convention.

"I think the election has to run its course," Pelosi said, later adding, "I do think it is important for us to get behind one candidate a long time before we go to the Democratic convention if we expect to win in November."

Pelosi's comments come as Hillary Clinton is increasingly suggesting she is willing to take her presidential bid all the way to the Democratic convention at the end of the summer.

"I have no intention of stopping until we finish what we started and until we see what happens in the next 10 contests and until we resolve Florida and Michigan. And if we don't resolve it, we'll resolve it at the convention - that's what credentials committees are for," the New York Democrat told the Washington Post.

In the interview Tuesday, Pelosi said she understands why Clinton is making that argument, since 10 more primary contests remain over the next two months.

"We don't know what these next elections will do. We do not know what the conduct of the campaigns in the next four to six weeks will produce," she said. "So if you are a candidate for president, you certainly are saying that you are going to the convention - you can't say anything but. And Senator Clinton might well be going to that convention as the nominee."

But Pelosi suggested a clear frontrunner will emerge well before the party's convention.

"At some point it'll be clear that there is a frontrunner - and at that point we would hope that, for the greater good, for the country, that we can all rally as early as possible behind one person," she said.

The House Speaker also maintained her argument that the party's superdelegates should not overturn the pledged-delegate outcome, and suggested she wasn't affected by a recent letter from powerful Clinton fundraisers criticizing that stance.

"It wasn't important to me," she said of the letter.

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Nancy Pelosi
soundoff (272 Responses)
  1. Chris

    The superdelegates need to commit now and stop wasting everyone's time and effort. I live in a state that hasn't voted yet and I know I wouldn't feel disenfranchised if the race was decided before my state votes. I'll vote in November for a candidate who has a better chance to win then. That is what matters.

    April 1, 2008 12:58 pm at 12:58 pm |
  2. Amanda

    I think Pelosi needs to stick her head back inside Capitol and do some work there instead of giving the 10 states left permission to vote! When Congress has lower ratings than our crappy President there is a problem. She needs to worry about the homeowner who is getting ready to be homeless, can't put gas in their car to find a job or food on the table to feed their children. Do the job you were elected to do Pelosi and let the candidates for the Democratic nomination do theirs!!

    April 1, 2008 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  3. Pat

    Ms Pelosi,
    If super delegates are supposed to vote with the popular vote in their own state, then why do they exist at all? We would just go with the popular vote... delegates are there because of their supposed insight and own knowledge of the process and candidates. I understand how much easier your job will be when a democrat wins the Presidency, but do not give in yet....let the process work and believe me if it was your race and you were running a close second, you would not give up now......before the country gets to voice their opinion. You would not be where you are now if you were a quitter.

    April 1, 2008 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  4. jd

    Let the clinton's have their encore. They certainly fouled up the 2000 election, a disaster for the Democrats and worse for the Nation, due to bill's antics in the white house and lies to the American public, which energized the Cristian collition, moral majority and evangelicals leading to the election of the current moron in the white house. Every Democratic primary means more votes for the election of the Industrial-Military complex poster boy, and then the U.S. can wage war from Jordan to India for the next decade – relying on the draft and running the printing presses to print script. So On clintons On, do your thing to the Democratic party and the American people.

    April 1, 2008 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  5. Mac in Nova Scotia

    Stop Calling for Hillary to drop out of the race. She feels that it is her God given right to be elected President. All of us who vote for Obama are causing her to become confused. She needs to realize we have an election not a coronation. CNN Can you tell me what James Carville's claim to fame is?

    April 1, 2008 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  6. Patricia

    too bad that some the Democratic party peopole wants Senator Clinton to drop out from the Presidential race, it will a shame to do so, if that happens , my vote will go to Senator McCain, not only my vote but friends as well.

    April 1, 2008 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |

    When Nancy Pelosi was being appointed to the speakership, I was looking forward to her fulfilling all of the accomplishments for The People that she promised to make "in the first one hundred days." That's what I kept hearing and I liked what I heard. But, I think that not only has she failed to accomplish even a single thing she promised to accomplish "in the first one hundred days," but she has still, hundreds of more days later, still not accomplished anything she promised to do for the American people that I am aware of. Now, she is trying to run the Democratic Presidential campaign and keeps throwing out negatives as one reported today that the election has "run its course." What kind of comment is that when millions of American voters have not even voted or had their votes counted yet. I guess she thinks you should stop the race when your candidate is ahead. Democracy??? I don't think so.

    I think it is time for a person who was placed in a position of trust such as the Speakership who, in my opinion, is demonstrating such blatant ANTI-Democracy and who has failed to accomplish her promises to the American people ought to do the right thing and step down.

    That is my opinion about it.

    April 1, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  8. RG

    Why are so many complaining about Tax Records?

    No political candidate wants to show their tax records, and every candidate keeps harping on the opponent to show it.
    What about Obama? Has he released his?

    Are they hiding anything in their returns?

    NO – no candidate running for President is stupid enough to hide something in his/her return. So, why are they reluctant?

    Simple, both Obama and Clinton are super rich millionaires compared to the ordinary Joe. When some run-of-the-mill, unemployed voter sees that millions made by one or the other candidate, that voter immediately develops a resentment for the millionaire. As a candidate, you don't flount your millions, and more importantly, as a candidate, you don't want to go off message?

    April 1, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  9. Greg

    Here's a question –

    Does pathological lying run in the Clinton family? When Sen Clinton stated that she was under fire from snipers in Bosnia, she later stated that she had misspoken due to fatigue. Well, she said it three times so she must be one tired person.

    But when Chelsea was asked about her recollection of the Bosnia incident, she stated that she fully supported what her mother had said.

    Well, we have video proof that there were no snipers, there was no running to the armored vehicles, there was no danger at all.

    Yet the mother and daughter both said there was. Is Chelsea getting enough sleep these days or did she flat out lie?

    April 1, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  10. pretzelONEgeorgebushZERO

    OBAMA '08!!!!!!

    Tired of Hillary's antics and McCain is clearly not a legit choice. That due is bad news all the way around.

    For integrity and change it needs to be Obama with Biden as VP or Sec. of state.

    April 1, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  11. bill gee

    The rest of the races 10 in all are pretty well projected by the polls.the key for Hillary is getting Florida & Michigan in her corner after a floor fight on the convention floor, and i'm sure she will hang tough until she will or won't prevail on that issue.

    April 1, 2008 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  12. 4hill

    This is a little better, but Speaker Pelosi should stop telling superdelegates how to vote. She should do everything possible to count the votes in FL and MI – if she's going to talk about the pledged delegate total it ought to be a legitimate total.

    April 1, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  13. Joseph

    I am a Florida voter that does not want our delegates to be sat at the convention, nor do I want a revote.


    I knew that a vote for in the Democratic primary wouldn't count at the time of the primary, so I decided that I would make my vote count and voted in the Republican primary. Hillary Clinton agreed to this and is on record stating that the primaries weren't going to count for anything.

    Now that she needs FL and MI, suddenly we are all disenfranchised in her eyes. And somehow this is all Obama's fault, when all he did is play by the rules, and seek a fair solution to having the FL and MI delegates sat. This mess is the fault of the lawmakers in FL and MI for going against the rules and warnings of the DNC. Period. End of Story.

    I don't want to have a Democratic revote in FL, because I wouldn't be able to participate since I already cast a vote in the Republican primary. I don't want the delegates to be sat based on invalid primary results since I would have voted differently had I known that the results would count 2-6 months down the line.

    The rules are in place to ensure that there is a fair contenst when all is said and done. FL and MI knew what the consequences of moving their primaries would be and they went ahead and did it anyway. Changing the rules now doesn't fix the problem, it compounds it. This is the consequence of their lawmakers actions. It's unfortunate that the citizens and candidates have to pay the price. Put the blame where it belongs and remember how your elected officials voted on these matters when they are next up for re-election. I know I will.

    April 1, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  14. Rob

    I have decided that I will not call Obama's opponent by her name anymore. From now on I will simply refer to her as Tonya Harding.

    April 1, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  15. Stephen

    Pelosi is pacifying here. She wants this thing to end just like many others do. This latest stance is a change of tune only in rhetoric. There is nothing afloat to knock Obama off from becoming the presumptive nominee – and that will be realized well before June 3rd.

    April 1, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  16. Debra

    "The United States, which has raised concerns about election fraud, called on Zimbabwe's government to make sure "the counting of the votes ... ensures the will of the people is heard," State Department spokesman Tom Casey said Monday." (Source: CNN World news)

    So, the Union is eager to establish justice in Zimbabwe. That´s good. Democats, how about Florida and Michigan there is no difference of principle. Obama recently objected that the will of the people in the two states is heard.

    April 1, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  17. Brad

    See how Pelosi changes her tone when the one's with the money for the party question her theory on roles for super-delegates. Howard Dean finally told her to shut her trap and learn to do her jod in the House. Obama's camp are just afraid she is going to win the popular vote. They have constantly bragged about Obama winning the popular vote and the delegate count that he should be given the key's to the party nomination. There afraid as they should be. He only leads the delegate count because FL.& Mich. haven't counted and the sham caucuses which doesn't reflect the true vote from the state. If Hillary wins the popular vote then the super-delegates should and hopefully do look at the states that she has won and the states he has won too see who should be our candidate. Alot of people think Rep. cross-overs are giving Hillary an advantage thinking she would be easy too beat. But there is alot of people who think it is Obama who could be just as easy to beat. The take is do we vote for someone who was married to a former President who was liked around the world who also helped put alot of people to work and gave this country a balanced budget that was giving us a surplus or do we vote for someone who has no meaningful political stance on anything except to say he was against the war, ( even though he had no say in the matter when that vote was taken.) shady politics from the Chicago machine, shady past with a racist preacher, shady dealings with a soon to be convicted political supporter and contributor. Hillary's life has been under the microscope for the past 15yrs. what more could the Rep. machine bring out that they haven't used against the Clinton's already. The Monica scandal didn't hurt Bill Clinton that bad cause he still won the election for his second term. Let them try to use it against Hillary and watch it back-fire on them. Hillary lied about Bosnia to make herself look better than it was. Obama lied about his presence in the church with hate speeches being spewed like a sermon. Bill Clinton states that Obama won South Carolina because he was African American was based on how Jesse Jackson won the state when he ran. If you look at the African American vote can we disagree that they are voting for Obama threw out all states 90+ % . Now is this because he's Black or is it his policies, which seem to be the same as Hillary's. The trash talking has been coming from both sides, and both are going to be the destruction of this party. There supporters are not going to support who ever wins, myself included. We as citizen's are looking for more than dream's. We need someone who can make this country a power-house in the World like we used to be. I feel this is the time for a woman to step into this spot and help heal this nation, Alot of women who have been given the chance have succeeded and I think Hillary will also.

    April 1, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  18. RAY

    Obama won't win the general election due to his long time relationship to his pastor, Wright. Obama is not a frontrunner if Florida ans Michigan primaries results were counted.
    Hillary 08

    April 1, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  19. Bob Stephens

    The Clintons have become the definition of dishonesty during this campaign. I wish they would go away somewhere and torment each other..

    April 1, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  20. R CAL

    I actually agree with Pelosi. Let the primary voting continue, the people will decide who their nominee is. For the superdelegates to overturn the votes of the people at the convention would be unwise.

    April 1, 2008 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  21. MMASH in NC

    OK...Time for a reality check.

    – MI & FL are out of the picture. Even if she brings it to the convention, the credentials committee will not seat them according to the invalid results. NOt only becasue it would be unfair, but becasue the commitee will have more Obama supporters than HC supporters. They will almost certainly just divide the delegates equally.

    – HC is roughly 130 delegates behind. There are only 10 contests left, with only two big states, PA & NC. Even HC's win in OH netted her only 9 delegates. Because delegates are allocated proportionally, it is just about impossible for HC to catch up.

    – Even if HC does well in PA, she will give back any gained delegates when she gets trounced in NC.

    – Polls show that her negative ratings are at an all time high and her campaign is running out of cash.

    So HC supporters, just stop the mud throwing and accept it gracefully. Sure, she can continue, but she should not destroy the party while doing so. We need to focus on the bigger picture and remember who the real enemy is.

    April 1, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  22. Go Hillary

    HILLARY FOR PRESIDENT !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    April 1, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
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