April 3rd, 2008
04:32 PM ET
10 years ago

Clinton backers: She must win popular vote

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/04/03/art.corzmurth.gi.jpg caption=" Corzine and Murtha are supporters of Clinton."]
(CNN) - Two prominent supporters of Hillary Clinton suggested Thursday the New York senator needs to best rival Barack Obama in the total popular vote to have any chance at winning her party's presidential nomination.

In separate media interviews, New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine and Pennsylvania Rep. Jack Murtha both indicated they believed Clinton will be unable to convince enough superdelegates to support her if she finishes second to Obama in both the pledged delegate count and the popular vote.

Speaking on CNBC, Corzine suggested it won't be enough for Clinton to argue she deserves the nomination because she has won more crucial swing states than Obama - a talking point the senator's campaign has long argued.

"I think it would be a very hard argument to make," Corzine said of that position. "I'm a very aggressive supporter of Senator Clinton, but I think you need at least a popular vote."

Corzine also suggested he himself may cast his superdelegate vote for Obama should Clinton fail to win the popular vote, though the New Jersey governor insisted he thought Clinton would come out on top in that count if the Florida and Michigan contests were counted.

Murtha echoed Corzine's sentiments in an interview later Thursday, saying, "Clinton has to win Pennsylvania…She has to be ahead in the popular vote to have any chance at all of getting this nomination."

Clinton is heavily favored to win in the April 22 Pennsylvania primary, though recent polls suggest Obama may be narrowing the gap there.

Most estimates currently have Obama leading Clinton by approximately 700,000 votes in the popular vote. If the results of Michigan and Florida — the two states that were penalized for moving up its primary — are factored in, the gap is approximately half that.

Re-vote efforts in both states failed last month and it appears highly unlikely the results of either of the earlier contests will stand, meaning Clinton will need to achieve decisive wins in several of the 10 remaining primary contest to have a chance at overtaking Obama in the popular vote count.

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

soundoff (390 Responses)
  1. Sean

    It's about time some Clinton supporters started making intelligent statements.

    April 3, 2008 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  2. Ric

    Ive always thought that. Since neither is going to hit the 2024.

    April 3, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  3. Alex H

    Wise remarks!

    April 3, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  4. Kenneth Woodard

    Can you state three reasons why you support Hillary Clinton. The reasons can not contain the following three words: Experience, Solutions or Female.


    Just what I thought. Go OBAMA!

    April 3, 2008 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  5. Dave LA, California

    I'm a republican, and I can only imagine how sick and tired the democrats are of continuing this race. I'm even sick of it!!

    Hillary won't win, that's what all her backers are trying to tell her! She is now becoming just a glorified Mike Huckabee who will depend on miracles to make the numbers work!

    April 3, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  6. Obama Supporter

    Corzine – we welcome your defection any time!

    Best of luck to all dems whoever you support – let's remember that both of our candidates have very similar plans, and that 4 more years of McBush is NOT going to fix the country's problems.

    April 3, 2008 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  7. S Williams

    This is just another Clinton media strategy.

    Get the media to buy-in that the popular vote is the new goalpost- then go for that new goalpost alone.

    Once you have obtained it, no one can argue against the fact that you got it by conniving to bring in two uncontested states, plus losing the pledged delegates, plus losing 20% leads in virtually every state in the nation to an unknown contender.

    Problem is, her tricks always work on the media.

    April 3, 2008 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  8. vanchava

    Without Michigan and Florida Re-vote

    It's not possible

    Hillary supporters are having voters remorse

    April 3, 2008 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  9. Unity

    Interesting- even if Florida and Michigan's rule-breaking primary votes are counted, Hillary Clinton is still behind.

    She has no chance- she's bitterly playing the role of Tonya Harding.

    April 3, 2008 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  10. Gobama!

    America get ready...the next President of the United States will be Senator Barack Obama....get over it and govern yourselves accordingly!

    Too bad Hilster maybe next time....try again in lets say 8 years!!

    April 3, 2008 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  11. HP Boston

    Sue she does if you let everyone VOTE!
    If you do not have votes for FL and MI counted this whole primary is criminal. I accuse you all of voter fraud here and now. If you can't manipulate this with super delegates now you want to do it with popular vote when you do not have EVERY ONES VOTE!
    She can beat McCain and OBAMA can not, simple as that!

    April 3, 2008 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  12. NIkki

    "If the results of Michigan and Florida . . . are factored in, the gap is approximately half that."

    It's real simple...


    April 3, 2008 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  13. Hopeful Woman, Boston MA

    I hear the Voices of Reason! Obama all the way! Si se puede!

    April 3, 2008 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  14. Grif

    Well, If the Women, want a Woman in the White House...
    I suggest they adopt more control of their lives.. The Woman keep saying, "what's in this for me"?... Then they either take a back seat.
    Or have the Man Folk, tell them what to do...

    April 3, 2008 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  15. John Zeger

    Superdelegates should look to a variety of factors including the popular vote but the deciding factor should be which candidate has the best chance of beating John McCain. Although the polls presently show this to be a toss up, I think that as we get closer to election day that the public will be thinking more about political and government experience which should favor Hillary Clinton.

    April 3, 2008 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  16. Robin

    The main problem for Mrs. Clinton is not convincing the so called superdelegates. Her main problem is convincing the regular voters. Mr. McCain can make her part of the history as easily as Mr. Regan did it to her fundraiser, Ms. Ferrero.

    April 3, 2008 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
  17. ALBO


    But to seat the delegates of Michigan, where no meaningful opposition existed induced by the DNC penalties and where 40%
    (in addition of the probably more which simply not voted) TOOK THE


    April 3, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  18. Linda. Boston, MA

    Uh oh!!!!!! So that means her "electability" argument and her "big state" argument are now both dead in the water. And since she can't possibly catch up in pledged delegates or states won, that leaves the popular vote as her ONLY path to victory.

    And bad news for Hillary? Seating the FL and MI delegates does NOT mean that their popular votes will be considered. Those are out. Gone. Forget it. Which means she has to make up a 800,000 vote deficit in the remaining states!

    Impossible..... Not. Gonna. Happen.

    White Chicks for OBAMA!

    April 3, 2008 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  19. Mike

    Latest PA poll (see pollster.com) shows Obama ahead of Clinton, 45 to 43.

    April 3, 2008 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  20. honkey white guy from cali

    I am glad to finally start hearing some logic from some Clinton supporters. If she loses the popular vote and try to get super delegates to go behind her she has no chance and also would be a major flip flop once again on her part after being so loud and out spoken that every vote must count and then turn around and make a argument that the party leaders should turn over the will of the voters. I am glad thought to her that some of her supporters are after all good democrats not just a bunch of loud, rude, disrespectful lune's.

    Go Obama 08

    April 3, 2008 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  21. Anson

    I could not say it better, "I think it would be a very hard argument to make," Corzine said of that position. "I'm a very aggressive supporter of Senator Clinton, but I think you need at least a popular vote." though I no longer support her because she went to negative. I'm not just saying it; I used to LOVE her so much. Now it's my mother who still love her and that's because she always love Bill Clinton.

    April 3, 2008 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  22. Absurd "analysis"

    How could you "include" the Michigan and Florida results when they are patently invalid? Obama followed the rules by not campaigning in Florida, whereas Clinton appeared there twice immediately prior to the election. Moreover, Obama was not on the ballot in Michigan because the DNC said the election would not be recognized. Under these circumstances it is ridiculous to suggest it would be fair to include the results of those tainted elections.

    April 3, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  23. Danielson

    Enough with Florida and Michigan already!

    Never mind that Florida hasn't been a Dem friend in the past two elections...

    Please...take a brief look at what Obama has been able to do in EVERY state he's had an opportunity to campaign...on average, he rises 15 points or so...EVERYwhere he goes with gusto. Can any of us really, honestly claim that a fair fight was waged in states that were penalized by moving their primaries up?

    To "claim" that the votes ALL CANDIDATES agreed would not count...somehow SHOULD count now...is laughable.

    And to call the standing results in Fl and MI as "real" is even more absurd. Get over it already. All candidates agreed to this bad arrangement...but only one candidate is crying about it now that she desperately NEEDS the votes she discounted at the beginning of the process.

    April 3, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  24. Carl from Pa

    I agree, however, even with maybe eeking out a popular win.. it's all about the delegates as everyone has said. But you know, lets keep moving that goal line. What was it, super tuesday the first time, then it was Texas and Ohio followed by Pennsylvania and now its "oh, well maybe the popular vote." Maybe it will end up being a bowl off since that's the only way she might be able to beat Obama.

    April 3, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  25. Ratgurl

    Wow, they're finally acknowledging that more people want Obama over Hillary. One small step for Superdelegates, one GIANT LEAP for America!

    April 3, 2008 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
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