May 9th, 2008
10:00 AM ET
13 years ago

Obama closes in on Clinton superdelegate total


Watch Senior Political Correspondent Candy Crowley report on the latest superdelegates totals.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Sen. Barack Obama closed in Friday on Sen. Hillary Clinton's lead among supedelegates, the Democratic party officials who hold the balance of power in determining which one will be the party's nominee for president in November.

The Obama campaign announced the support of two new superdelegates early Friday morning - including one who had been backing Clinton. Clinton also announced a new supporter, maintaining her lead over the Illinois senator, but only by a handful of delegates. (Related: Another Clinton superdelegate jumps ship to Obama)

Rep. Peter DeFazio of Oregon announced his support for Obama to his local newspaper, the Oregonian. Oregon voters are currently in the middle of primary voting, which takes place through the mail.

Rep. Donald Payne, a New Jersey Democrat and an early Clinton supporter, told the Newark Star-Ledger he was switching to Obama. He is the third person to leave Clinton for Obama in the past 72 hours. Former Sen. George McGovern, D-South Dakota, announced Wednesday he had decided to switch, as did a Virginia superdelegate.

Rep. Christopher Carney of Pennsylvania said he was backing Clinton, the Clinton campaign told CNN.

Obama's huge victory over Clinton in North Carolina's Democratic primary Tuesday, coupled with a narrow loss in Indiana, put him within striking distance of the number of delegates he needs to cement the nomination.

A flood of endorsements from superdelegates could virtually end the race.

Obama paid an unusual half-hour visit to the floor of the House of Representatives on Thursday, where he was greeted enthusiastically.

He denied that he was campaigning, claiming he was "just saying hello" to members of the House. But he said he "let them know we'd love to have their support. There are some undecideds" in the House, Obama said as he was leaving.

"If they have questions for me, then I'm certainly happy to respond to them."

There are more than 70 undeclared Democrats in the House.

There are now more superdelegates than pledged delegates among those who remain undecided. Clinton's lead over Obama among superdelegates is now the narrowest it has been to date.

soundoff (267 Responses)
  1. robin, ft bragg

    i think it's a terrible shame for we as americans to not stand together for whomever the nominee is. and for the young lady who is a hiliary supporter and all the others, why are u holding Obama responsible for the disaster in fl and mi, their governors were the ones who did not follow the rules. and u hold such hate in your hearts that u would rather see another repub in the white house...and u call yourselves adults but act like children...your way or no way i guess

    May 9, 2008 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  2. tim from Ravenna, OH

    It ceases to amaze me how even seasoned pols can be swayed by senseless rhetoric. I can see how the common man can be lead to believe in this whole "change" mantra but you would think that the politicos would know better. Keep it up Democrats and a third party will reside in the White House before one of your own. Hillary Clinton is still the only Democrat with even the slightest chance of winning the Nov election and affecting any kind of change. Obama and McCain have one thing in common....they are not going to be good for this nation.

    May 9, 2008 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  3. Stacey

    Whether anyone likes it or not, the people of this country voted for Obama like they have for Hillary. The people have spoken not Obama himself. So when you speak you act like Obama has done some act of declaration on his own???? Character.. well lets see Mr. McClain divorced his first wife while she was dying of cancer while having an affair with his current wife.. OOOOH yeah for all you that have a problem with Obama's race.. Did you know Mr. McClain made the statement "it happened 8 years ago" as a response he had an affair with a black woman and OMG has a bi-racial child with the woman, dang bi-racial like Obama... So for you McClain going good Hillary supporters who won't go for Barak, the black man so you say totally forgetting his mother was white, will go for a man who laid down with a Black Woman and produced the same kind of child. If and When that comes out... how you going to feel then.. ????? I guess that is why Hillary and McClain stick to the issues when referring to each other... The wife of the impeached cheating husband speaks of sound policy huh.. If Hillary runs for pres. and gets the nomination, the GOP Will literally DESTROY HER. Thank God Obama is doesn't engage in dirty politics cause if the news continued to show McClain's half black child 24/7, he would lose a ton of supporters... who knows he might leave Cindy like he left his last wife and marry a black woman,,, still have a black first lady.. ha ha.. This whole election is funny when you know the truth.. to see how the american public selects what it wants to believe and hear.. OH Yeah did I mention Rev. Hagee the anti-catholic preacher that is endorsing McClain.. Unmmmmmmmmmm I have listened to his sermons here in Houston on TV as he speaks how America will be punished for it's immorality,,, like Rev. Wright, only thing he is white so I guess as always that makes it alright.. perhaps you should turn your cable channels on Sunday and check Hagee out for yourselves instead of listening to everything the media says.. get the whole picture.

    May 9, 2008 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  4. Dani

    So what, he will probably win the nomination. Too bad he won't win the general election. He's making the republicans job way too easy. Look, if he could win the general election, the primary season wouldn't have gone on this long already, Clinton would have been out long ago. Not to mention his lack of support in critical swing states, and lack of effort to do anything for Florida and Michigan to seat their delegates. Apparently he isn't a big picture guy if he can't realize that without those 2 states, you can't get anywhere in the general election.

    May 9, 2008 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  5. Heather

    Can we stop being so negative? How can people seriously call themselves democrats out of one side of their mouths, and then claim that they will cast a vote in November to prolong the war, privatize social security, bring in Supreme Court Justices who McCain says WILL overturn women's and civil rights - just because the democrat you favored did/would/might not make it this time?

    You can't be this short-sighted; I don't care which Dem you're currently backing.

    May 9, 2008 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  6. Debby

    Yep the turncoats are flooding to him and when he loses in Nov. with all the Clinton supporters voting McCain the Republicans will have the last laugh.

    May 9, 2008 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  7. KPW

    We say "We are one nation under God". Then what is wrong with this nation. We holler for CHANGE and CHANGE is staring everyone of us in the face!! And we are doing NOTHING, but bickering about Clinton and Obama. As every person has stated in the comments. If you are going to vote for Hillary do it. But don't say If she doesn't get the nominee; You are going to give your vote to McCain. He is old and already set in his ways and he is NOT for change. I am a democrate and I support Senator Barack Obama.. In the word of God, He states "If my people that are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray. And seek my face,and turn from their evil ways. Then I (God) will hear from Heaven and will answer their prayers....... He's listening and He has sent Barack and we as a Nation has rejected Him!!!!

    May 9, 2008 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  8. ken

    Hillary Supporter,

    I agree with you. If the superdelegates don't wait till the end. I don't get why the democrats have the superdelegates anyway. It's like we voters don't have a mind of our own.

    May 9, 2008 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  9. Beverly

    This shows how some delegates go which way the wind blows instead of who will make the best president.

    As for Al Sharpton I am tired of him and his comments

    May 9, 2008 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  10. Get Real

    I am truely amazed that so many people will vote for McCain. What has he shown you. He may have went against the Bush administration iniatially but now he has changed his mind for political purposes. Does this not bother you.

    Clinton supporters are so angry about MI and Fl. If you do the math, even with her delegate count in FL an MI, by the votes, she still will be far behind in every aspect. Stop trying to use this as the reason why you will not vote for Obama.

    I would rather go with the will of the people and lose in November than to give the nomination to someone that can not and has not won it outright.

    Clinton supporters need to realize if they vote for John they will most likely be be the ones that will be hurt from his candidacy. The so called "Eggheads (Educated Voters) will have an easier time getting jobs and living throught the horrible years, but those on the lower end will be hurt.

    Remeber our families are those people, everyone has a struggling member, our soldiers deserve more. Please come to your senses. Let go of the angry past and look to the positive future.

    May 9, 2008 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  11. Dana

    Wow. One superdelegate defects. This is serious headline news for your candidate-of-choice, CNN.

    May 9, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  12. Mickie in PA

    To Hillary supporter who said DNC lost her the nomination because of Michigan and Florida. Remember Hillary agreed to those rules when she thought she was appointed by GOD for the nomination and she did not ask for the rule change until she starting losing. Obama did not oppose a revote, but you certainly can't say Hillary won Michigan when Obama was not even listed on the ticket. Losers always have an excuse and if you vote for McCain, you're just as much the cause of the nation's problems as Bush and the republicans are.

    May 9, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  13. FedUpDem

    Paul May 9th, 2008 10:16 am ET

    You really can't say Obama is stealing this from Hillary. It wasn't hers in the first place

    And yet you hypocrite obamians have been talking about her stealing something that wasn't obamas...this is exactly the type of hypocrisy you and your candidate have been spewing all along, which is why I will be voting a full Republican slate in November!

    Tear the Party down is what you have done and I will help finish it off in November. Then maybe we can rebuild a more middle of the road Dem. Party or form a 3rd party with moderates from both parties.

    Not making a radical left turn with an arrogant condescending lying hypocrite racist. Enjoy your landslide loss in November!!

    May 9, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  14. Hilda

    Hillary really did not care about Michigan and Florida till she started losing. She is such a flip flopper. She did not agree to the split Michigan proposed 69 del for her and 59 del for Obama. It has to be Hill's way or the highway, why is that?

    May 9, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  15. Brad IL.

    Congrats Hillary you got a one more super-delegate today. John Edwards join the push for Hillary to win this nomination. You can be like Teddy Kennedy and vote for the real best candidate, only hopefully you will vote for what is really is needed for this country. Hillary Clinton. You don't have too worry about empty threats of losing the votes from N.C. because you don't hold office there anyway. Be smart like your wife and use good judgement and vote for the Hillary insted of this do nothing Democrat Barack Obama . This is one candidate who will vote for a person not because of party but because of expeiriance of which Obama has none. And as for Collin Powell endorsing Obama what would you expect. Once again skin tone gets the vote from looking alike instead of experiance. Go Hillary or vote for McCain

    May 9, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  16. Peter in PA

    There are bigots and racists in the democratic party. A good portion of Hillary supporters fall into this catagory. They should join the republican party and vote for McCain. At least their views and beliefs will be rewarded.

    Don't be a wolf in sheep's clothing. If your racist attitude prevents you from voting for a honest man with integratity and family values(Obama that is) and your pathological lier is loosing this nomination, then go vote for the old man McCain. Don't say it here! Do it!

    May 9, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  17. Arkansan in DC

    I have to say, I'm really really sick of the priority given to conservative and moderate Democrats the past 25 years... what about all of the more liberal and progressive Democrats that USED to matter, that reshaped the party, and helped bring civil rights and medicare during the 50s, 60s, and 70s? You know, the ones who voted for Nader and clearly can also influence an election? I have never voted third party or abstained in an election before, but Obama is the first time I have ever felt my belief system (which, as an American, is just as important as any other's) represented. And no, it's not 'cause he's a crazy leftie, because he's actually not... he's quite moderate in his voting record. It's his tone, his rhetoric, his intergrity, his belief in a better America. You may not want to admit that there are people out there that are environmentalists, or radical feminists, or gay and transgender rights supporters, but you know what, we are here and we vote too. Stop acting like it's okay if we drop off the party's agenda (hell, the country's agenda) and only that of close-minded "Democrats" matter.

    May 9, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
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