May 8th, 2008
12:03 PM ET
11 years ago

Clinton touts support from 'white Americans'

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption=" Clinton campaigned in Washington Thursday."](CNN) - In what appear to be the New York senator's most blunt comments to date regarding a racial division in the Democratic presidential race, Hillary Clinton suggested Wednesday that "White Americans" are increasingly turning away from Barack Obama’s candidacy.

"I have a much broader base to build a winning coalition on," Clinton said in an interview with USA TODAY.

Clinton cited an Associated Press poll "that found how Senator Obama's support among working, hard-working Americans, white Americans, is weakening again, and how whites in both states who had not completed college were supporting me."

"There's a pattern emerging here," she said.

Exit polls from Tuesday's primaries in Indiana and North Carolina show Clinton won about 60 percent of the white vote in both states. That percentage is down from the Ohio primary on March 4, in which Clinton won upwards of 65 percent of the white vote. Meanwhile, Clinton garnered 63 percent of the white vote in Pennsylvania on April 22.

Speaking with the paper, Clinton rejected the notion her comments were racially divisive in any way.

"These are the people you have to win if you're a Democrat in sufficient numbers to actually win the election," she said. "Everybody knows that."

Obama spokesman Bill Burton called Clinton's statements "not true and frankly disappointing."

soundoff (1,572 Responses)
  1. non-whites lazy?

    What bothers me is that she is implying that Black people – or non-white people – are not hard working Americans. SICK.

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  2. Ed from PA


    Whitey here, F-you Hillary.

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  3. Pat in Illinois

    I am a 65 year old white woman, and I don't want Hillary!

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  4. Clarence Styles

    Schrillary said "white who had not completed college". Duh,,,,everybody knows that the more educated you are the less likely you will be fooled by the clinton lies. In 1992 & 1996 the majority of voters voted AGAINST Bill Clinton and she can't even win the majority of democrats...what a joke!

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  5. Ed

    Wow.. hello up here from Canada ..
    ok that last offensive comment from Hillary reaks of racism... based on the state of the economy..the non working non White americans have just got a reason now to not vote for Hillary ..get out e while you still have dignity Hillary..

    Up until Febuary , I was hoping Hillary would win but after seeing the lies ( her being "shot" at on the Airstrip in Bosnia), the comment about "obliterating Iran and the negative attack ads on Obama makes cast my support now totally to Obama now…

    Hillary is just acting like a Republican now and she is toast as in the sooner she bows out, the better for all involved…
    And to that say they will vote for McCain if she is not the candidate are even more foolish and narrow minded… look at what kind of mess the Republicans have put your country (the economy) in now not to mention getting you involved in a war without a cause in Iraq while you should really be in Afghanistan where our country is now fighting your war for you…
    GO OBAMA GO!!!

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  6. EWOL

    Don't worry my Caucasian Brothers and Sisters African Americans

    still have love for YA! I'm Speechless,how shallow and insensitive

    America is not only Black and White!!

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  7. Shourie

    It is refreshing to know this fact !

    Do mongolians qualify as whites ?

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  8. greg

    barack can't win the white vote or the latino vote... only the black vote

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  9. John in PA

    So is she saying that if you aren't white or have a college education or greater, you're not hard working? In the last 2 primaries, the only demographic she carried was white over 65 and white without a college education. That is the "much broader base" she is talking about?

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  10. nikki

    This white American is not for you...OBAMA!

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  11. vli

    It's funny how people want to blame Hillary for the divide.....we "the people" are causing the division...

    WHY......because some people are blind & deaf...and others are able to look at the facts and make an intelligent decision.

    It's alway the problem the emotionally battling with the logical.... and guess what....logical usually is right

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  12. Ken

    So if Obama's pastor makes Obama a racist because it is believed by some Wright is a racist, then does that make every catholic a pedophile because some of thier priest have been accused of being one?

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  13. Steve

    I'm glad Hillary is finally doing whatever it takes, not to win the nomination, but to keep Obama out of the White House. I think she's a true patriot if she works to stop that.

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  14. Alexander

    It's not wrong for people to vote for those who are like them, and that includes on the basis of racial similarities. People who claim that all the African Americans who voted for Obama are being racist need to stop throwing the word around so cavalierly.

    This is not about the white voters who voted for Hillary being racist. It's not even about Hillary being racist. It's about her playing the race card in an attempt to polarize us and exploit a controversial issue for political gain. Quite frankly, it is unacceptable.

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  15. Neil

    Hilary says that she is the candidate for white-America. I am voting for the candidate of all-America, Obama.

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  16. lopez

    OMG !!

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  17. Patrick Peavy Plano,TX

    So it is okay for the media to constantly say "Obama is going to win due the large black population"? How is that not racist? I am glad Obama has gotten so far just for the fact that he has exposed the African-American Racist Double Standard. I don't see these group of people wanting equality (the double-standard racists,not african-americans); they want to become what they hate.

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  18. Phil G. , New York

    Her comments are outrageous!!! Time and time again i have looked for ways to keep supporting her... this is the last straw for me. You have injected a racial divide in order to gain a nomination that is almost out of reach. She should retract these statements immediately!!!! I am so sick of the race issue being brought up in politics. How do we call ourselves the "UNITED" States if we continue to draw a divide. All americans should be outraged by her comments if she refuses to distance herself from them. Let us not use racial tensions in politics. She cannot win without the black vote as well. So what does this mean? Should we just surrender to the republicans now? Lets be serious if you dont have anything good to say dont say anything at ALL. We had all the advantages in the last election and we LOST!!! Point blank. Either get with it or GET LOST Sen. Clinton. You have truly lost any support from me and maybe thats why Sen. Obama is in the lead. Integrity should be a important part of ones not only campaign but life. I am saddened to hear you make such remarks!!

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  19. Hannibal Silver

    Hillary's major dysfunction is her blind engagement to an extended "post-rational" campaign. After she rests from her sleepiness , negativity, tears, anger, and messianic sense of entitlement to the nomination, she may greatly benefit from a "reality check" to measure the severity of her level of denial and systemic manipulation. She also may find great perspectives of service and legacy beyond the oval office

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  20. Kimm

    I am so sorry she is representing us. We appeal to those who have influence to ask her to abandon such a shameful attitude. Winning can't possibly be this important.

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  21. Gerald London, UK

    Hillary knows exactly what she is doing. She is gently stoking up racial concern in order to get people looking at Obama from racial perspective.

    She simply doesn't care about what happens to the party or the country as long as she gets what she desperately wants – the nomination.

    It is sad that there are people out there who are still not smart enough to see through her tricks and gimmicks. Maybe that's why more educated people are on Obama's side. It's harder to fool them with little gimmicks.

    May 8, 2008 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  22. Ronnie

    Ooh, I'm a conservative white woman who hates when people play the race card (on either side) and I try not to call it out too much, but in this case, it was extremely blatant. This wasn't the fairy tale comment, it wasn't the Jesse Jackson comment, it wasn't the LBJ comment, this one was unabashedly, indisputably race baiting. HILLARY CLINTON PLAYED THE RACE CARD. Wow. Hillary Clinton has hit a new low.

    May 8, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  23. Anonymous

    She really needs to give it a rest. How many ways can she spin off this loosing battle as a win for her ???

    May 8, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  24. puttfl

    This comment definately shows Hillary is using the "race card", and she will do anything to win, even if it means dividing the party and the country .

    Sad to say, but we have along way to go as a country...

    May 8, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  25. ed s.s.

    Ms Clinton is again following the lowest denominator strategy. Usually she lets Billy boy be the bad cop but as the inevitable occurs given the grammar school math calculations.SHE CANNOT WIN!
    Therefore she enters the same slime her husband has been spouting...Politicians make statements and than accuse the other of making the statement an issue. I am fed-up with thes kinds of politicians and will NOT vote for Bill-hilary. I am a white American and proud to include all americans as my patriots.
    Has anyone shown the photos of Bill and Hillary with Rev. White in the white house....oh that doesn't count! How about Pat rRobertson and Jerry Falwell who spout their hate under religious cover...Has anyone run a few quotes from our Republican Religious connections who sponser support and raise funds for politicians. And our friend Russ Limbaugh who loves popping pills beleives he has some secret power at his radio station to thwart the peoples choice (whomever that will be). He is delusional....
    So Hillary has shown her true colors......At least we see the real YOU!

    May 8, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
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