May 27th, 2008
07:50 AM ET
15 years ago

Clinton rallies union in Puerto Rico

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/05/26/art.hrcpr.ap.jpg caption="Clinton’s campaign is hoping to score a significant popular vote win in Puerto Rico."]
PONCE, Puerto Rico (CNN) - Hillary Clinton held the most raucous rally of her Puerto Rico campaign swing on Monday in front of several hundred members of the Servidores Públicos Unidos union, who shimmied to live music before the event and cheered on the senator with chants of “Si se puede!”

The union operates as an affiliate of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, which has endorsed Clinton and spent millions on her campaign’s behalf. AFSCME President Gerald McEntee was on hand in Ponce to introduce Clinton, but he spent a good chunk of his speech eliciting boos for Barack Obama.

“Obama was here twice,” McEntee said, painting the Illinois senator as a Johnny-come-lately to the issues affecting Puerto Ricans. “Once to raise money. He was here for two hours, and he left, and he went on vacation. Then he came back this past weekend for two days, then he left again.”

An energetic Clinton, assisted by a translator, delivered a speech similar to others she has made on the island, pledging to offer economic incentives to the island, promising to resolve the issue of Puerto Rico’s status by the end of her first term, and reminding voters that she represents an estimated one million Puerto Ricans in New York.

In the middle of her remarks, as the audience chanted “Si se puede!” - a phrase that's been co-opted by Obama supporters - Clinton injected some Spanish of her own.

“Not only ‘Si se puede!’ Si podemos! We will! We will!,” she shouted, although there was some debate among reporters whether she stumbled over the word “podemos.”

Clinton appeared on the stage with her daughter Chelsea, who did not speak, and Bill Clinton, who campaigned with her throughout the day. The former president said his wife has long been dedicated to Puerto Rican issues.

“She understand you better, she cares more, and she has the best commitment for the future of the people of Puerto Rico,” he said. “Nothing would symbolize her commitment more than this victory” on June 1. The Clinton campaign is hoping for a healthy margin of victory here to bolster their argument that they are winning the popular vote.


Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (1,133 Responses)
  1. Hector Vasquez

    You need to listen to Hillary! Really. She is like mi madre, you know. She is going to take good care of us if we elect her. We need her to give us jobs, health care, more free stuff!! That's what it's all about anyways, right!!

    May 26, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  2. Will

    I ask you, Puerto Rico...................what has Hillary ever done for you? NOW she offers empty promises. She's had plenty of time in the Senate if you were important to her. Don't be fooled!

    May 26, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  3. Frances L

    Clinton supporters, do you really want to count all the votes, then we must count the voters in caucus states as well. Therefore, there is no way Clinton has the most votes. Obama has won twice as many states, votes and delegates. How a person runs their campaign can possibly give us an idea on how they will run the country . Clinton is running in the negative, she has loaned her own campaign $11.4 million. She had someone initially in charge who was campaigning for her as well as the Columbian free trade, something she supposedly opposed. If she cannot even run a campaign very well, what makes anyone think she can run a country?

    May 26, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  4. Agnostic Democrat

    Big surprise! All the tact and manners of the candidate and her husband. They've both behaved deplorably for a former first couple (of what?). How old are they now? They continue to act like children on the playground rather than grown adults.

    May 26, 2008 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  5. jONNY d

    HILLARY PLEASE RUN AS AN INDEPENDENT. YOU WILL WIN, TEACH THE OLD BOYS A LESSON. SPOIL THERE GAME. YOU WILL GO DOWN IN HISTORY AS THE GREATEST. YOU WILL WIN AS AN INDEPENDENT.

    May 26, 2008 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  6. Posn

    I agree with Michael I am a Democrat and I am so so sick of this fighting. People are really hurting and it seem sometimes this election this being treated like a soap opera.

    It is time to focus on the issuses not pettiness. Can we all just grow and unite this party.

    May 26, 2008 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  7. Race is the issue

    Puerto Ricans specifically and hispanic person in general dislike black people. Unfortunately, this means obama doesn't stand a chance here.

    May 26, 2008 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  8. JJ in NY

    hillary is a LIAR !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    hillary is a PHONY !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    hillary is a LOSER !!!!!

    May 26, 2008 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  9. vahe

    democrats 08 we dint need Mcbush people you have to Understand that this man will go to wars and if he gets elected be ready to pay 10 dollars for gas and be ready to be homeless

    May 26, 2008 08:59 pm at 8:59 pm |
  10. Sexy

    Hillary is constantly promising something. She is the queen of say and do anything to win.

    May 26, 2008 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  11. Glenn

    Obama only needs 52 delegates and/or superdelegates for the nomination. With Hillary's insistance to remain in the race he will receive in great excess of the required 2026 delgates. She will help in receive in excess of 2200 dlegates. What irony!

    May 26, 2008 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  12. Anna, SW Missouri

    Hillary made the same promises to the people of DC and Quam that she is now making in Puerto Rico. As soon as she lost in those elections, she not only did NOT thank her supporters but now say those districts and territories do not count. So why should any of us believe that Puerto Rico should count. It is not on the electoral college map because it can not vote in the GE, so it will not matter to her no matter what she is trying to feed to these fine people now.

    May 26, 2008 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  13. David Ross

    I don't like the idea of Democrats booing other Democrats. This was brought forcibly home to me on March 4, at our Senatorial District Committee in Houston, Texas, when our Congresswoman, the Hon. Sheila Jackson Lee, a Clinton backer, was mercilessly booed when she was introduced to the convention, and barely allowed to speak by the Obama majority in the hall.

    Just keep this up, fellwo Democrats, if you want to see a Republican victory in November.

    May 26, 2008 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  14. F, MPLS

    Bill Clinton is a piece of crap

    May 26, 2008 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  15. Mary

    Belle,
    The DNC allowed certain states to move their primary up; those states were the states in which they believed Obama would do well. Obama is the most negative candidate I can remember; he inspires such hatred and animosity that is just unbelievable
    ______________________________________________________
    Belle,

    Please go back and check your facts, the DNC or the Obama campaign had nothing to do with Florida/Michigan moving their primaries up–that was decision that the state legislatures decided upon after being warned by the DNC that they would be penalized.

    Furthermore, all Democratic candidates (at that time, including the Clinton campaign) agreed not to campaign in those states and others removed their names from the ballots (Michigan).

    I support HRC, but you cannot change the rules in the middle of the game, because you are close to being out the running, if nothing else you really need to check and doublecheck your facts before you believe the hype that the Clinton's are spinning.

    The sad truth for all of HRC supporters is that she and her campaign did not do well in the primary is because they were so sure they had the nomination all wrapped up by Feb 5th (those are Hillary's words, not mine).

    May 26, 2008 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  16. Larry

    I don't like Obama's strategy of blowing off these last remaining states. It looks bad that he is getting trounced. Puerto Rico will be more of the same.

    However, the Hillary campaign now is not about winning - though that is the theme they play - it is about showing everyone how superior and smart they are. It is about divisiveness. It is about a scorched earth philosophy. She wants to have a chip to play to wield power.

    I was a huge Bill Clinton fan. Today, he and Hillary repulse me. Dare I say it - I now know how Repubs feel about the Clintons.

    May 26, 2008 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  17. Scott

    It is no wonder why they did that. They are inbred hillbillies that disgrace the Democratic Party.

    May 26, 2008 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  18. R. Grayson

    If the folks in Puerto Rico cannot vote in the general election, why is there a primary held at all? What will we do next . . . have primaries in Canada?

    R. Grayson

    May 26, 2008 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  19. Susan

    If they have listened to the truth of what her campaign has tried to do to dishoner everyone who stood in their way, or crossed them, I don't think she will do as well as she hoped.

    May 26, 2008 09:02 pm at 9:02 pm |
  20. Bill

    This McEntee must be a really fine union leader. How many jobs has the Clinton NAFTA deal cost union workers? How much tax money has been lost that with those lost jobs.? How many AFSCME jobs are lost because of NAFTA? I'm glad my union leaders checked into candidates records. Unions need leaders not more political hacks.

    May 26, 2008 09:02 pm at 9:02 pm |
  21. Sexy

    nmayweather, if you think Hillary gives you hope then I know you are one of those people who like people lying to you. I say you need to break that terrible cycle.

    May 26, 2008 09:02 pm at 9:02 pm |
  22. jONNY d

    WE LOVE YOU HILLARY, DON'T WORRY ABOUT SOME OF THESE BLOGGERS HALF OF THEM IS IN JAIL ANYWAY, THEY CANNOT VOTE. IF OBAMA WINS HE WILL BE IMPEACHED ANYWAY. REMEMBER HIS DEAL IN CHICAGO WITH THE CON MAN REDSKO, WHATEVER HIS NAME. YOU ARE A WINNER AND YOU ARE THE BEST. I AM AN JAMAICAN AMERICAN AND I LOVE YOU. THESE BUNCH OF LAZY SUCKERS ARE LOOKING FOR HANDOUT. THEY ARE IN OUR WORKPLACES AND THEY ARE SO STUPID AND LAZY. THEY THINK EVERYONE OWES THEM SOMETHING. WAKE UP AMERICA, YOU WILL HAVE TO SUCCUMB TO THEIR LAZINESS.

    May 26, 2008 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  23. Texan

    I've been a Democrat all of my life, and I'm quite bothered by these remarks that not voting for Obama is being "traitorous" to the party. I can no longer identify with a political party that refuses to count the vote of anyone, much less the voters of two large states. I can no longer identify with a party who tries to push out one candidate when the other has NOT reached the number of delegates required, and the people who head the party are so disloyal. If they throw Hillary under the bus for a shot at power, why wouldn't they do the same to this country?

    From this point on, if anyone asks my political affiliation, it's American. I will vote for McCain before I vote for Obama. I don't see that as betraying my party, as I feel that my party has betrayed me. I love my country and cannot vote for Obama with a clear conscience. Better the devil we do know than the one we don't.

    May 26, 2008 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  24. Val

    Puerto Rico it is your turn!

    Give Hillary a big win!

    May 26, 2008 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  25. Noemi

    To Obama supportes & Y

    Before you say that PR don't speak the language check your grammar instead of talking about PR. Next to all who don't what PR is about we are very educated have one of the best colleges in the Island and States "University of PR," nuff said.

    With respect to pledge count we Hillary supporters conceed, but what embarrasement it will be for Obama to not have won the popular vote.

    Take that Obama supporters!!!

    May 26, 2008 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46