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. John

    Jon Corzine is the governor of New Jersey, not a senator. He used to be a senator.

    April 3, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  2. Devin

    Jon Corzine is the Governor of New Jersey...not a Senator!

    April 3, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  3. justobserve

    At least, they are not as delusional as the one they support.

    April 3, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  4. Jack

    Hillary will win the popular vote via the remaining contests b/c of the key swing vote in these states: Archie Bunker Democrats who don't want to vote for Obama

    April 3, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  5. Paula in WI

    I think she should leave the campaign soon so as not to risk any more negativity of herself.This reminds me of Huckabee and how he kept trying for so long to stay in there hoping for a miracle.At this point I think she'd have to go and play really dirty,but that would only alienate people further.

    April 3, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  6. Independent-woman-voter-for-Obama

    Senator Obama is LEADING Clinton in the POPULAR VOTE BY 700,000! How can she possibly catch up? She is already losing her lead in Pennsylvania, last week she was ahead by 12% now its only 9%.

    Sen. Obama is the choice of the people. He has more delegates, a huge lead in the popular vote and I believe that the people of Pennsylvania will vote for him!

    People want CHANGE and Bush-Clinton-Bush-Clinton IS NOT change!

    OBAMA 08!

    April 3, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  7. Dan , TX

    Judas Murtha and Judas Corzine better watch out.

    Hillary Clinton rejects their suggestion.

    April 3, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  8. ds

    I don't think it would be legitimate to count MI and FL in the popular vote since those votes were made under irregular circumstances. Why would you tally votes from a state in which all candidates were not on the ballot? Even if all candidates were on the ballot, you can't interpret the popular vote to mean anything if some voters purposefully stayed home because they thought their votes would not be taken to the convention.

    April 3, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  9. Jake, California

    It will be wise on the part of superdelegates to rally around Obama should he emerge with the lead in pledged delegates and popular votes!

    This is the only best way to resolve this issue.
    It is good to know though that even with MI and FL counted, Obama would still lead!

    Great piece of information

    April 3, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  10. gerard morei

    This is very simple:
    Obama wins= Mc Cain winss in November
    Clinton wins= Clinton wins in November.
    I'm from NJ. and I think Mr. Governor Corzine shoul vote for Hillary, regardless of popular vote, period!!!!!

    April 3, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  11. Rupa

    If Super delegates ignore popular vote, and nominate other candidate, it would divide the party with damaging outcome in general election. How can you factor in results from Florida and Michigan, when the primary in both state was flowed? If democrats sit the delegate from both the state, it should be split 50/50 or as per the popular vote percentage from other states.

    April 3, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  12. Sherri

    Corzine needs to wake up and smell the coffee as the rest of educated New York voters have. Clinton's lies, empty promises and unpaid campaign vendors have proven that she is not what is best for New York or the United States!

    April 3, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  13. Dave C - NJ

    Thank you Captain Obvious and Duh-Man.

    April 3, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  14. Alex

    Jon Corzine is the current New Jersey GOVERNOR and former Senator. Please make it correct!

    April 3, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  15. Tim

    We need to get this over so we can take on John McCain on a united front!!!!

    April 3, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  16. Geez

    What Hillary needs to do is to get Al Gore to endorse Obama – as history has shown, that will be the end of Obama...

    April 3, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  17. Jacob Reses

    Corzine isn't a Senator, though he was before he won the governorship of the New Jersey.

    April 3, 2008 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  18. n.

    Corzine isn't NJ senator. He's been Governor since January 2007

    April 3, 2008 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  19. LifeLongDemocrat

    Work on calling in PA by going to HillaryClinton.com

    April 3, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  20. Jersey_Blues

    Uh, CNN Corzine is the Gov not the Sen from Jersey.

    April 3, 2008 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  21. Mary

    Good news!!! Super delegates that endorsed Hillary are siding with Obama.

    April 3, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  22. Jeff Radun

    I think that if in the end the Dems split the deligates 50/50 for Florida and Michigan and I strongly disagree with splitting them 50/50. I think it should be split according to the votes in each states and who got what %. As it is Obama would get the undecided vote when that could have been for Edwards
    I think the super deligates will have no choice but to look at the popular vote Hillary won in those states. It is symbolic but Hillary won by a wide margin and that can not be ingnored by the super deligates. The supers also have to look at the most recent polls in Florida and Michgan to see who these states would vote for now if the vote was re-done tomorrow
    The states were stripped of their deligates but the vote still happened and you can not discount the people who voted

    April 3, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  23. Haley Rodman Clemson

    She won't win the popular vote unless she really presses the Jeremiah Wright and Tony Rezko issues. The problem is that she has plenty of those type of scandals herself.

    April 3, 2008 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  24. Tosha-Atlanta, GA

    I am so disgusted with the Clinton supporters continually trying to change the party rules.

    April 3, 2008 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  25. John, Pittsburgh

    Yeah !!! Winning the peoples votes would be a good start.

    April 3, 2008 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
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