May 24th, 2008
12:05 AM ET
14 years ago

Clinton: Democratic nomination process needs to change

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Clinton has been citing Karl Rove’s analysis as a basis for her argument."]BRANDON, South Dakota (CNN) - In the face of Barack Obama’s insurmountable lead among pledged delegates, Hillary Clinton on Friday again declared victory in the popular vote and suggested the current nominating process fails to represent the true will of American voters.

“We’re going to have to change the system by which we pick the nominees, I believe, and we are with the system we have now,” Clinton said, responding to a supporter here who lamented the role of superdelegates in selecting the party’s nominee. “And I’m a big believer in one person one vote, and I believe in as much democracy as possible.”

Clinton told the supporter that “superdelegates will play a big role” in choosing the nominee, but said she would prefer a primary-only system in which nominating contests would be bundled together.

“I think that’s an issue for debate in the future because I believe we should have primaries everywhere, and everybody, as many people as possible should be encouraged to vote,” she said. “We ought to group them so that nobody is at the tail end, so everybody has a chance to participate. But that’s all for the future.”

Despite her apparent dig against superdelegates, Clinton and her campaign have routinely argued that those party elites should be able to exercise their independent judgment in choosing a nominee, regardless of vote totals or pledged delegate counts.

Clinton also entered into a lengthy fulmination on the question of electability, arguing that she can “put together the electoral map” to defeat John McCain and citing a sampling of Karl Rove’s electoral maps and polling data, obtained by ABC News earlier this week, that showed her performing better than Obama in key states.

“Ask anybody who is supporting my opponent to please tell you how he gets to the 270 electoral votes that we must have to win,” she said. “Every independent analysis that I have seen, some of them done by no friends of Democrats as well as objective news channels, show that I defeat John McCain in key states like Florida, like Ohio, and my opponent does not. Show that I have won states totaling 300 electoral votes. My opponent has won states totaling about 217 electoral votes.”

On her chances in South Dakota, Clinton said she is “racing against the wind here” because Obama has “a lot of the institutional support, a lot of the political establishment” in the state.

Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (271 Responses)
  1. R. Brown






    May 24, 2008 02:46 am at 2:46 am |
  2. Ty

    I am an Obama supporter and I know this race is statistically over(As of May 24th, Obama just needs 19 percent of the remaining delegates to win the nomination), however, this nomination has not been "officially" clinched so if Hillary wants to continue another 2 weeks I have no problem with that.. I mean the campaign began in October 2006, what is another 2 weeks? However, I believe the Clinton's, since the Mississippi Primary in March, have shown the true colors that many Americans have accused them of for many years, (ala they will do anything and run down anybody to get what they want).. I do hope that after the last primary, and/or Obama gets the nomination because of the superdelegates, that Hillary will gracefully exit because it is not fair to Obama's supporters, her supporters, or the overall supporters of the Democratic Party to be alienated..

    May 24, 2008 02:49 am at 2:49 am |
  3. Charles

    That there are still so many supporters that back her on the blogs amazes me. I wrote on here earlier today that I felt she was doing the right thing in keeping the primary energized. After the things that have come out today, I know I was wrong. She's lost it at this point. There's no way she can come back. Clinton supporters, there's nothing that can be done to change this. There's no relying on Florida and Michigan as the super delegates are smart enough to realize the truth about those states. Had there been regular primaries there as opposed to them being held out due to rule breaking (something ALL candidates agreed on, including Clinton), Obama would have gotten more than enough votes to maintain a popular vote lead and the pledged delegate lead.
    She let this go till June 3rd but I expect a concession speech by the end of that week.

    May 24, 2008 02:49 am at 2:49 am |
  4. moon

    I am Indian-American.

    I had highest regards for Hillary Clinton before the primary.

    My regards for Hillary Clinton today is "zero".

    I realized today, she would do anything to get nominated, even refreshing memory of RFK, changing rules of DNC as suits her, banning Republican Party , or changing anything to suit her, to be declared as President of United States.

    I changed my mind today.

    I am all for Barack Obama who has principles and stood by it even in defining moments and difficult times.

    Barack Obama, you are a true leader.


    May 24, 2008 02:50 am at 2:50 am |
  5. Mary Gray

    I have read all the other posts and I'd say they all pretty much sum it up.

    This woman is humiliating herself and destroying her own career. It makes you wonder about her mental state.

    Don't get me wrong-she's obviously doing damage to the Democratic Party and impeding Obama's chances in the fall-but then, I expected that of her.

    What I DIDN'T expect was her recent behavior. She seems oblivious to what she is doing to herself-and she's far too narcistic and self-centered to let that happen under normal circumstances.

    I am wondering if she is having a breakdown. I think someone close to her better take notice of what she is doing to herself and see if they can't help her.

    I can't stand the woman, but on the other hand, I don't wish "cracking up" on anyone.

    May 24, 2008 02:52 am at 2:52 am |
  6. Inks

    Did her husband not get elected with the same rules?
    What is she talking about? Please no one should say they are trying to drive the only woman in the campaign out, they did the same thing to Mike Hukabee and I did not hear him make this much bruha about it, he just insisted that he would continue until one person gets the nomination.

    So she should remain by all means but at least fight with dignity. I know what it is to fight in a Man's world, its never easy but I have always done it with dignity and integrity and have never asked for handouts because I am a woman!

    We do women a disservice by acting like oh my word if Sen Hillary Clinton does not become the next president who else has a chance. Well I will say this, I am more than confident that the US in the very near future will have a female president only this time, majority of men and women will be proud to vote for her and call her their president!

    I want a female president that will not let us down, imagine if a female president was elected and she was a nightmare, that will be bye bye for the rest!

    May 24, 2008 02:54 am at 2:54 am |
  7. Allan

    I have rarely seen such a sense of entitlement. I guess she thinks the nomination should be hers just because she was ahead once upon a time. Sorry Hillary, it is time for you to realize you lost. Get with it and back the future nominee. You have already done enough damage. And by the way, you aren't going to be Vice-President either.

    May 24, 2008 02:56 am at 2:56 am |
  8. RAG

    There are those who say that we are unfair to Hillary, because of the things being said here. But, how can you not see that most of what is said is true. And yes, Obama is not perfect but he has run his campaign with dignity. When ever he spoke out against Hillary it was on the issues and not on a personal note. He has yet to say anything to discredit her on a personal level. He never once pushed the issue of her claim of being under sniper fire, etc. I regret that the women's rights movement is supporting her and refuse to support Obama is she does not win the nomination just because he is male. If you
    looked at the whole picture you would see that he is young with new and fresh ideas, he is organized, he is poised. It is now time for a new generation to move us along. Isn't that the reason we work so hard, to educate our children in order that they can vision the future and lead us in that direction. I am so saddened by the fact that some of us cannot see past race. Our young people are out there everyday working together sharing their thoughts and ideas which is why
    for example, technology is now so advanced. They don't see color, they see creativity. I love what this man represents and I hope and
    pray that we as democrats will reconize this as well.

    May 24, 2008 02:57 am at 2:57 am |
  9. Election Reform

    Popular vote is the only way to ensure that each person votes equally.

    Wait, that would be too democratic. This is America - screwing up elections is what we DO.

    May 24, 2008 02:59 am at 2:59 am |
  10. Cody S. - Montgomery, AL

    One person. One vote.

    Novel concept, but right now you are still losing by the current system which is what WILL determine the nominee.

    May 24, 2008 03:00 am at 3:00 am |
  11. Rachelle , Canada

    Whether you are an Obama or Clinton supporter you surely all agree that this voting process is completely ridiculous.
    Delegates , Super Delegates and the never ending silly endorsements of celebrities , and who ever had the idea to introduce caucuses.
    The amount of money that gets raised and spent and earns bragging rights borders on obscenity.
    Your country is at war and people are suffering due to loss of employment , lack of healthcare and not to forget the high gas prices , just to name a few.
    Therefore some restraint might have been more impressive and in line with people 's daily life.
    As for the comments I have read on a few websites , I am appalled at the rudeness and lack of civility used to attack candidates.

    May 24, 2008 03:00 am at 3:00 am |
  12. Nia

    ...To her benefit of course

    May 24, 2008 03:01 am at 3:01 am |
  13. White middle aged woman for Obama

    Hillary you're making it hard for the next woman that would want to run for president. Next time a woman throws her "hat into the ring" people are going to stop and say : uh oh, hope this doesn't turn into another Hillary Clinton campaign, we all remember how that went".
    The rules were fine for you in the beginning, and if they weren't, why didn't you say something back then ?.
    I used to think, "okay let her run as long as she wants to", but now you are really looking pretty pathetic. You and your husband have shown what you're both really about, and it doesn't look good.
    I had even hoped you could bow out gracefully, now I just hope you get out period.

    May 24, 2008 03:02 am at 3:02 am |
  14. Lanre

    This just boggles my mind. HRC still has the chance – right now, I mean at this very moment to bow out gracefully, especially after the comment about Kennedy, talk less of the impossible math she faces. She should bow out now or lose every bit of dignity, that's if she hasn't already lost it entirely at this point.

    May 24, 2008 03:05 am at 3:05 am |
  15. Malcolm-Alabama

    Why does the Democratic nomination process need to change? Because you're losing? It's the same process by which your husband won the presidential nomination now you suggest it's flawed? Give us a break!! Even if we went all-primary, you'd still be losing! Plus if there were no superdelegates to win, you would have been out of this race a long time ago – it's been the 200+ superdelegate lead that you had from beginning that Barack Obama has had to work overtime to overcome.

    When you're in a hole, the first thing you want to do is stop digging. The kind of personality that consistently blames everyone else but themselves for their failures is the worst kind of personality to have in our nation's executive office. Anyone who's worked under a boss like this knows exactly what I'm talking about.

    May 24, 2008 03:06 am at 3:06 am |
  16. April in Texas

    This coming from the very person who made the sad asasination comment now wants to change the DNC? Hillary you lost all credibility and any respect at all I had for you. To use history in such a hateful way is appauling..

    May 24, 2008 03:07 am at 3:07 am |
  17. Jeff

    This is for Jeff who chimes in that Obama hates America, steals other candidates' ideas, and that it is ONLY Hillary that stays focused on the issues. You really have no idea what you are talking about. First and foremost, like Obama has said, this election is about the democrats taking over the white house. This election IS NOT ABOUT HIM OR HILLARY. He is absolutely right. As much as I can not stand Hillary, I will vote for if she were the nomine (by way of FAIRNESS).
    Now onto your ramblings Jeff: As for taking other candidates ideas, Hillary actually picked apart John Edward's health plan and made it her own. Edwards had the same health care plan since the last time he ran in 2004. I know this because I have always been an edwards supporter. Hillary had no plan when she first entered this race.
    As for staying focused on the issues, she can't be too focused if she couldn't give her adamant decision on granting illegal immigrants driving licenses. Here in NY ( Yes, I am from NY and she does nothing for us here on Long Island) she was asked about granting illegal immigrants driving licenses. She couldn't form a decision because she was waiting to see how it would play out. When Elliot Spitzer was shot down on the proposal, THEN Hillary came forward to say it wasn't a good idea. Lastly, Hillary has lied numerous times here in NY. As for here on Long Island, she barely ccomes around to hear about our issues. She only comes around during election time, and to Book revue to sign her book.

    May 24, 2008 03:07 am at 3:07 am |
  18. Trenton Sims, Los Angeles

    She couldn't Win by the Rules ..
    So Therefore the rules Must be changed??

    She Has become a danger to herself and others...

    Call the Men in the White Coats..

    She has lost her Mind.!

    She has Flown Over The Koo-Koo's Nest..:-(

    May 24, 2008 03:08 am at 3:08 am |
  19. paul oregon

    hillary is something else shes a joke now shes unhapply with the role of the super deleg. if the dnc doesnt end this real soon we are nt going to have ademorcat party. this is getting disgusting.

    May 24, 2008 03:10 am at 3:10 am |
  20. emmanuel Ray

    OMG Obamas wife now found on a tape calling out on a white people rant....Obama you will never win the General

    Say what you will about Hillary , at least she can win and knows how..she will do anything , thank god!!!

    Go Hillary

    May 24, 2008 03:11 am at 3:11 am |
  21. samoo

    she's a sore loser. not to mention a kinving, scheming, v*g! most of america is done with her except for the blue hairs. enough...end this and lets win in Nov!

    May 24, 2008 03:11 am at 3:11 am |
  22. Lanre

    SUPER in superdelegates means SUPERIOR BLOOD. All men are equal but some are more equal than others- Animal Farm.

    May 24, 2008 03:12 am at 3:12 am |
  23. Joe Reg

    Everything is wrong.

    Fit the rules so i can win.

    sour loser!!!

    May 24, 2008 03:14 am at 3:14 am |
  24. begone

    Please can somebody tell this woman it's o-v-a-h. first she was a come back kid and now can you please change the rule for me to be VP maybe she need to ask please before her and BILL this is the nominee process and oh no she have the majority votes..HILLARY time to go. I think the woman is a Republican for real. she can't win but she will take the rest down with her..........moron get out enough.

    May 24, 2008 03:17 am at 3:17 am |
  25. Anonymous

    Yes Hillary , you are losing so lets just change the rules ( that you agreed to ) to accommodate YOU and so that YOU can be President ! The woman is pathetic . They will probably have to drag her away from the podium kicking , biting and screaming as Obama accepts the nomination .

    May 24, 2008 03:20 am at 3:20 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11