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. BC

    This is sad because Hillary is obviously more prepared to be President.
    If you think about it, every argument used by Obama is bogus.
    He was not in the Senate when the vote for Iraq came up. So he never voted against it. He would have probably voted for it just like all the rest...based on the information they all received.
    He is not allowing a revoting in Michigan and Florida which would probably give Hillary an advantage. So she probably has the popular vote.
    He has no experience what-so-ever to be President and has gone after college kids to get his votes. Those kids have turned around and made their parents vote for him. All based on what?
    This election is sad.

    April 3, 2008 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  2. Fredd

    WOULD YOU LIKE AN AMATEUR TO LEAD THE NATION? Not vetted & spent 2 yrs in the Senate & with shady dealings everywhere?

    The presidential post is no time for on the job training! We need a leader with intelligence & will to fight for our everyday cause!

    With 10 elections ahead, including FL & MI, HILLARY will be ahead of the popular vote after June!

    April 3, 2008 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  3. Ross in MD

    I don't see her winning the delegate count OR the popular vote. She may pull off a win in Penn by single digits.

    FYI, Corzine is no longer Senator in NJ – he is the governor now.

    April 3, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  4. Jeff in WI

    Interesting to note is that 72% of the declared superdelegates from states that voted for Clinton are supporting Clinton, while only 63% of the declared superdelegates in states that voted for Obama are supporting Obama.

    So the claims that Richardson should be supporting Clinton because huis state voted for Clinton by a razor thin margin are somewhat hollow.

    Also, more of the remaining undeclared superdelegates are from Obama states than Clinton states.

    April 3, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  5. B.Brown

    Two more superdels have seen the light and appear to be mustering the courage to expressed their beliefs publicly. Add in Jimmy Carter and the light at the end of the tunnel for HRC is burning out.

    April 3, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  6. Chris from San Antonio

    Traitors! Judaseseses!
    They must have been promised a cabinet position!

    April 3, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  7. Greg

    Hillary might not win the nomination. The Caucuses are oriented against Hillary's base supporters and are undemocratic and unfair. Not counting Michigan and Florida is also undemocratic and unfair.

    But.....Obama will NOT WIN THE GENERAL!

    April 3, 2008 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  8. Mike

    Clinton will win by huge margin in PA and other coming states. At the end of the day, if Florida and Michigan is counted, Clinton will be victorious.

    Go Hillary.

    April 3, 2008 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  9. john

    When will the Obamites realize it's going to take ALL the Democrats to win in November? Better stop hatin' on Hillary supporters whether she drops out or not.

    April 3, 2008 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  10. Sean

    chuck: Where are you getting your numbers? Obama has 1,414 pledged delegates to Clintons 1,243. So she would gain 20 delegates, which is still much less than the 171 she is currently behind in pledged delegates. That's the problem with the Clinton campaign. They just make up numbers to support their position.

    April 3, 2008 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  11. Chris John

    Corzine is the Govenor of the State of NJ and not a Senator, as the author of this article states

    April 3, 2008 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  12. Rae Berkowitz

    Who cares if Jimmy Carter backs Obama – I would never value an
    opinion from an anti-semetic person like him ex president or not !

    April 3, 2008 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  13. finpower


    April 3, 2008 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  14. Greg

    Whether or not she were to win the popular vote (and it is extremely unlikely at this point) is completely irelevant.

    Though Clinton supporters want to establish this as some kind of benchmark that would allow her to pressure Superdelegates to overturn the will of the people, the fact is that if the Superdelegates were to overturn the will of the people (pledged delegates is how that is judged, not the popular vote count), the Democratic party as we know it would be decimated for years to come.

    There is simply no way on earth Hillary canwin the Democratic nomination without fracturing the party into several waring factions because she cannot do it without forcing the Superdelegates to overturn the will of the people.

    April 3, 2008 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  15. Brian

    Hillary claims 35 years of experience according to Money magazine the Clinton's net worth is almost 35 million. Therefore her "experience" seems to be a good way for her to make money.

    April 3, 2008 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  16. Bukky

    Even with the two revotes she would have to win every primary that is left....

    April 3, 2008 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  17. Lou

    What happened to, 'its a delegate race?' Hasn't it been set up as a race for the most delegates from the beginning? People are giving the clinton's too much leeway. This is nuts.

    April 3, 2008 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  18. Steve

    The old saying two heads are better than one may not be necessarily so–Maybe, she'll carry Pennslyvania big time.

    April 3, 2008 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  19. Jeff

    And she will, Florida and Michigan are not disenfranchised.

    April 3, 2008 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  20. A Voice of Reason

    More realists and pragmatists who are hedging somewhat to push the Clintons, ever so gently, to an endgame where they won't selfishly "take home all the marbles." She MUST pull out a miracle, not a train wreck, to win this nomination. If not, she must walk away gracefully and put to rest whatever petty grievences she might have. Obama has created a Movement that is her Perfect Storm. Whatever aspirations she had are no match for the organization, management and momentum that Obama has generated. THAT'S A FACT, JACK.

    April 3, 2008 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  21. Alonzo Demetrius

    For Corzine and Murtha: You and your crowd,which includes Hillary, are going to lose this election because you are so "hyper-party". If you had shown yourselves to support the best for our country rather than what you want for your party, Hillary could have likely won. Instead, even democrats are choosing a man they don't even know in the belief that he brings 'hope' - they have no idea. I don't believe you were sent to the Senate to try to ruin republicans but to serve the best interests of the US. Your party-line spinning has become sickening.

    Now, don't you wish you were better able to reach across the aisle and get bi-partisan agreements which could improve our country? Hope you have learned something or maybe retire.

    April 3, 2008 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  22. demo craxy


    finally people are standing agains the Clinton Machine, just be forwarned, she will attack each of you back and call you names and say things like they have been doing with Richardson and everyone else, HOWEVER, people are FINALLY standing up against the fear tactics, the kitching sink campaign, the old politics as usual and overall against the neverending clinton machine............

    Obama 08
    McCain 08

    anyone but the old billarys

    April 3, 2008 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  23. Michael Guinn- Ventura, CA

    Chuck: Please go to Remedial Math ASAP!

    April 3, 2008 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  24. Gobama from IB

    Would somebody – anybody- please tie the bell on Hillary?!?

    April 3, 2008 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  25. Vi Rothermel, Shannon, IL

    What's wrong with using the popular vote? It shows exactly who the people want for their president. We really need to change our voting rules back to the American way.

    April 3, 2008 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
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