May 8th, 2008
03:15 PM ET
15 years ago

Clinton makes personal appeal to Obama on delegates

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Hillary Clinton made a personal appeal to Barack Obama Thursday to work with her to make sure Florida and Michigan Democrats votes are counted in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Clinton and Obama are at odds over how to deal with these two states, both of which broke Democratic National Committee rules that resulted in their loss of delegates. Clinton would benefit if Michigan and Florida delegates were allocated according to their January primary results. She made the appeal in a letter that was made public by her campaign.

(Full letter after the jump)

Full text

May 8, 2008

Senator Barack Obama

Obama for America
P.O. Box 8102
Chicago, IL 60680

Dear Senator Obama,

This has been an historic and exciting campaign. Millions of new voters have been brought into the process and their enthusiasm for the Democratic Party and the principles for which you and I have fought and continue to fight is unprecedented.

One of the foremost principles of our party is that citizens be allowed to vote and that those votes be counted. That principle is not currently being applied to the nearly 2.5 million people who voted in primaries in Florida and Michigan. Whoever emerges as the Democratic nominee will be hamstrung in the general election if a fair and quick resolution is not reached that ensures that the voices of these voters are heard. Our commitment now to this goal could be the difference between winning and losing in November.

I have consistently said that the votes cast in Florida and Michigan in January should be counted. We cannot ignore the fact that the people in those states took the time to be a part of this process and to make their preferences known. When efforts were untaken by leaders in those states to hold revotes to ensure that they had a voice in selecting our nominee, I supported those efforts. In Michigan, I supported a legislative effort to hold a revote that the Democratic National Committee said was in complete compliance with the party's rules. You did not support those efforts and your supporters in Michigan publically opposed them. In Florida a number of revote options were proposed. I am not aware of any that you supported. In 2000, the Republicans won an election by successfully opposing a fair counting of votes in Florida. As Democrats, we must reject any proposals that would do the same.

Your commitment to the voters of these states must be clearly stated and your support for a fair and quick resolution must be clearly demonstrated.

I am asking you to join me in working with representatives from Florida and Michigan and the Democratic National Committee to arrive at a solution that honors the votes of the millions of people who went to the polls in Florida and Michigan. It is not enough to simply seat their representatives at the convention in Denver. The people of these great states, like the people who have voted and are to vote in other states, must have a voice in selecting our party's nominee.


Hillary Rodham Clinton

soundoff (360 Responses)
  1. Kristina

    ((((Please for the love of the country, accept this. I have full confidence that the DNC will find a way to seat the delegates. But this postering in the public to TRY and make yourself look good is failing big time.)))
    That is the very problem I have with Hillary…she has NO love for this country. She is shamelessly selfish and only cares about winning for herself. Even a blind person, who has never seen her detached face, and only heard her cold words… could tell this. But since you are reading this...that means YOU can see so OPEN your eyes because this is truly pathetic.

    May 8, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  2. Cindy in Canada

    You Clinton supporters are a piece of work. You blame Obama because he agreed to the rules ALONG with Clinton. When things don't go your way you all act like racist little children. Just remember the world is watching to see what kind of USA you want to be. You have a chance to move towards a brighter future and all you want to do is sling mud so your pathetic lying, manipulative candidate can win. You all need to grow up (I think pre-school children are more intelligent) and stop grasping at straws. Thankfully it sounds like you are in the minority and that common sense will actually prevail this November. GO OBAMA !!!

    May 8, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  3. Theresa in Minneapolis

    She is shameless. I mean come on, Hillary! YOU LOST. Even with those delegates seated, you do not have enough. How do you seat delegates in a state that YOU were the only corrupt individual that actually left your name on the ballot.

    This is more of her pandering for sympathy! You're supportors have big mouths but they don't seem very interested in actually supporting you monetarily, now do they?

    I wish Obama could just pay your debt and send you home once and for all. Where is home again? PA? NY? AR? No one really knows.

    May 8, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  4. Go McCain

    This is great news for the Republicans. Keep fighting–you're making McCain's job so much easier. For all you HIllary backers who won't support Barack, jump on the McCain train. It's the only train headed in the right direction–to the White House.

    May 8, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  5. Photon Torpedo Dallas, TX

    I heard a poster on the Ticker here once say:

    "Being a Clinton means never having to say you're sorry."

    Yes We Can & Yes We Should
    Obama 08'

    May 8, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  6. says it all

    Why is Obama blocking a revote if he is confident that he is the most desired candidate?

    Seems ironic to position yourslef against the voters whose votes you need in Nov.

    May 8, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  7. All Votes Should Count

    Obama took his name off the ballot in Michigan. He did this in order to isolate Hillary and pit Iowa and NH against her. He gambled and he lost. He also ran a campaign there to have people vote uncommitted. Hillary was smart and left her name on the ballot. She did not campaign there in any manner whatsoever. She should get all the delegates or at the very least all of the delegates that she earned. The delegates resulting from the uncommited votes should be split between Hillary and Obama based on the percentage of her win (around 55% (not sure of exact %)). In Florida, Obama ran a national campaign ad despite agreeing to not campaign there. His name was on the ballot (he learned from his Michigan mistake). Hillary did not campaign there at all. These votes and the delegates should be divided as they voted. Because Obama willingly took these actions, he should not be rewarded for them. He knew what he was doing and therefore he should not benefit from cheating. Hillary and Obama should debate the matter in front of the American people and each lay their case for why the votes should count (Hillary) and why they should be suppressed/disenfranchised (Obama). Seems fair to me.

    May 8, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  8. John Lear, Burlington, IA

    You agreed, Hillbilly that the votes wouldn't count, how can you write such a letter to Obama, you are living in a pipe dream world, where anything you agree to does not mean that is what you really mean. How can we trust you to run this nation. You are done and I'm soooo glad you lost. I hate looking at you and hearing that schreechy voice, a liar, and a cheat.

    May 8, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  9. Ludovic

    She just refused the proposition of the Michigan dems!
    they proposed 69/59 for here. I think that this was fare.

    May 8, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  10. maxine, texas

    What a bunch of self-serving crap! And the timing! So typical of the Clinton campaign tactics. There is nothing in this letter but proposals, no solutions...just trying to make Obama look bad. Listen, it would be totally unfair to seat Michigan because Obama wasn't even on the ballot since he was following what the DNC had decided. And so many Floridians didn't even vote because they knew their votes weren't going to be counted. If Florida and Michigan were counted as is, it would be totally unfair and not representative of . Clinton can't catch Obama anyway, either in delegates or popular vote, so it's a non-issue.

    May 8, 2008 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
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