(CNN) - Hillary Clinton said again Monday that no Democratic presidential candidate can win without a victory in West Virginia - and drew a parallel between her own campaign and John Kennedy’s 1960 White House run.
“It was West Virginia that made it possible for John Kennedy to become president,” Clinton said at a Clear Fork, West Virginia campaign stop. “Now, John Kennedy didn’t have the number of delegates he needed when he went to the convention in 1960. He had something equally as important - he had West Virginia behind him, because it’s a fact that Democrats don’t get elected president unless West Virginia votes for you…”
Barack Obama may be the party’s pledged and superdelegate leader – but that status does not appear to have helped him in West Virginia, where Clinton leads by 30-40 points in recent state polls.
“So I’m here today because I know what’s really going to matter tomorrow,” said Clinton. “It’s the votes of the people of West Virginia and if you will come out and honor me with your vote I will work my heart out for you.
Clinton criticized the Democratic front-runner on his health care proposal, and his rejection of her proposed “gas tax holiday.”
“My opponent Sen. Obama says, “Oh no, that’s just a gimmick, that’s not going to help people,” said Clinton before again arguing that it will save families $70 on average and more for those with longer commutes as well as truckers.
Clinton added that West Virginia proportionately has more veterans, “more people who have served in the conflicts and in the armed forces of the United States….
“It is the hard-working, dedicated people of West Virginia who have really made America what it has been, and what it will be again.”