May 30th, 2008
10:11 AM ET
15 years ago

Clinton supporters tell her: 'It's an honor, Madame President!'

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Clinton campaigned in South Dakota Thursday."] WATERTOWN, South Dakota (CNN) - Long bus rides along rolling fields, small town stops, intimate crowds and diner pie typically symbolize the run up to the Iowa caucuses and the start of the presidential nominating season. But Hillary Clinton's two-day swing through South Dakota, a state that ends the primary process Tuesday, had all those trappings and neither the candidate nor her supporters were acting as though this race was nearing an end.

"A lot of people didn't want this campaign to keep going. They've been trying to tell me to stop running since January - and every time they say it, people rebuke it and keep voting for me. That's what I hope will happen here in South Dakota," she told a cheering crowd of several hundred in Huron.

As she stood in front of an enormous American flag, Clinton wound through her stump speech promising fiscal responsibility, universal health care, better and more jobs, ending the war in Iraq - all the issues candidates touch as they claw for every vote. She promised that between now and Tuesday there would not be a day without a Clinton in some corner of this state. As voters left they were given small Xeroxed fliers advertising a Bill Clinton event Friday in Mitchell.

Earlier Thursday die-hard Clinton supporters and some undecided Democrats waited patiently inside the smallish Second Street Diner in Madison hoping for a glimpse of and a picture with the presidential candidate. Upon arrival Clinton gripped and grinned with the all white, mostly middle-aged female crowd stopping at each booth and table to chat about issues or her Wednesday trip to Mt. Rushmore – "it's an honor, Madame President!" one woman shrieked as Clinton bounced through the door.

Clinton sat with a group of all female campaign volunteers sipped her tea and nibbled her pie before she took the microphone for a semi-impromptu speech and question and answer session with the diner crowd.

Jolene Johnson, a Madison resident and undecided voter, said Clinton's situation did not look "favorable" but said the "tenacity of staying in is typical of a woman ... she is not a quitter." She came to the diner to hear Clinton's pitch, and brought her granddaughter along to show her that a woman could run for president.

"I'd like to see her win," said retiree Wayne Grad. "Obama is a good candidate, but he lacks the experience. He's too much of a rock star." Grad said he thought calls for Clinton to exit the race were premature. When asked whether he thought Clinton would be his party's nominee he said, "I'd like to believe she is."

Clinton logged hours on the road to touch South Dakota's urban and rural communities from Rapid City in the west to Watertown in the east. She heads to Puerto Rico Friday for a three-day swing and a presumed victory in the island's Sunday primary, further adding to her popular vote total and her argument that she still has a chance at the nomination.

The campaign is mum about where she heads after Sunday and what her schedule holds for next week. The mid-size traveling press corps received an email to sign up for future travel, prompting questions about where the bus was headed next? A campaign spokesman replied "there are a lot of places to go to between June 3 and November."

Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (342 Responses)
  1. Gaby in TX

    Why is that Hillary does not want to except defeat? Father Pfleger actually spoke the truth about Hillary's feeling of entitlement to the White House.The rest of his comments I disagree with. However, his comments pale in comparison to what Hillary implied with her RFK remarks, while insulting the Kennedy Family and the Obama Family. 48 states followed the rules, as a result Michigan and Florida should be penalized and the RNC should be held accountable. What are rules for? The Clinton's ran as an incumbent, and that said, she has got a lot of nerve. Then she will stop at nothing to try and change the rules as she goes along, bring in divisiveness and calls it at the right time. Her pattern is all to clear. She will sell anybody a bill of goods just to get elected.

    May 30, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  2. Sara

    Hillary, it is so nice to see how you attract old white ladies and other bigoted scum. I'm not a pastor and I'm not affiliated with a campaign – but you have blown the dog whistle far too often to ignore. If I were in any way qualified to run for high public office, I would be so ashamed to collect my votes in the manner that you have. You have, at least since Ohio, done the worst kind of race baiting – insinuating that you are the great white hope.
    For this old white lady, at least, please take your bus and go home!

    May 30, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  3. Dj

    What did that (WHITE, CATHOLIC) Priest say again? She's entitled, right?

    What did Gov. Richardson say again? No one is clinging to the Clinton's throne, right?

    Is there a theme here?

    May 30, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  4. JJ

    LOL–the one barkin the loudest that the frontrunner can't win the general is the rival who can't win the nomination. Anyone out there as amused as I am?

    May 30, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  5. Hard Working Martha

    To NANA:

    Well said. I too am a hardworking grandmother and I would definitely love to see the younger generation take a stab at fixing this country. It could not be any worse than what has happened in the past 7 years. Everyone is asking for experience and ranting and raving about voting for McCain if Hillary is not the nominee, this just goes to show you that THEY don't care about the issues and THEY don't listen. It's all about the dislike of the person. Everyone should go back and listen to all the tapes where Hillary did not have a problem with FL and MI not counting when she was leading and listen to the promises she is making (i.e. the gas thing). How could she have push that through and not even in office yet?

    I have 2 children, both college educated, and I do not have a problem listening to their ideas on how to make things work. The older generation is just keeping things in the past and hate to admit it. That's the reason we have this thing called racism. So NANA, thanks for your words.

    May 30, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  6. ginger

    She's never going to be Madame President, so Clinton supporters,,,Pack your tents and go home!

    May 30, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  7. Hillary supporter

    And what is wrong with "older white women" mr "White Independent"? Where were you found–under a rock? Without those "women" even your gay rights advocates would be without children. Some of you people must have had abusive mothers for you to hate women so much. You are, I suspect, more to be pitied than censored. Go Hillary-Mrs President!

    May 30, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  8. JennyforObama

    Why are the supers endorsing Obama? Don't you get a hint, Hillary? Get over it. Obama is the one!

    May 30, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  9. David Goldman for OBAMA


    May 30, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  10. Ellie in Aurora, CO

    Kathy, RJ, Mike – you put the same comments on every blog. Try a little less cut and paste, and a little more imagination! It does make one question your intelligence!!

    May 30, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  11. Jon

    Please stay in the Race. You know you can win Hillary!

    You are the best prepared, ready to go!

    If Obama is nominated, it will be McGovern / Nixon all over again!

    Hillary is just what we need to change America now.


    May 30, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  12. Guido in NJ

    FUNNY – how my comment didn't make it on the pastor article. I wonder why?

    Go Madame President !!!! Your the better candidate, more electable!

    WAKE UP DEMOCRATS!!!!!! He's gonna lose, too much racial baggage in his camp!!!!!!

    May 30, 2008 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  13. Windy

    I just read a Pew Research Poll that shows a majority of democrats now believe that the Democratic Primary process continuing on is a bad thing. Most republicans love it, and Karl Rove, Clinton's advisor for the super-delegates, is more happy than any of them. Rove represents the win-at-any-cost Republican philosophy, and his role in Valerie Plain, pre-Iraq war propaganda and Seigleman in Alabama are just the tip of he iceberg. Under an unfriendly administration post-2009, he will wake up every morning wondering if he is under criminal investigation for what he and other croneys did.

    Aside from the Pew Research poll, the biggest problem I have with the Clinton campaign slogging along is that under most circumstances, average candidates who run out of campaign donations and see their prospects for winning practically non-existent bring their campaign to an end. Since Super Tuesday, Clinton's campaign is fueled in large part by debt and money from her personal fortune, accumulated largely through her husband's foriegn investments, lobbying and speeches before foriegn governments and related entities. It skirts campaign finance laws, increases foriegn influence at the highest level of government and makes a mockery of American democracy.

    Clinton needs to bring this to a respectable end. For those who say she gets too much criticism in the media, they must remember that some candidates just simply have more baggage by virtue of their acts. Bosnia sniper fire, JFK and RFK references with the "A" word, Whitewater, Monica Lewinski, impeachment, travelgate, etc., are serious issues based on her or her husband's acts, and not the media's fault. As we have seen with Scott McClellen, it is their duty to report it

    May 30, 2008 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  14. JD

    TO KATHY..





    May 30, 2008 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  15. Felly

    If all white, mostly middle-aged female are voting for Hillary, then something is wrong with her campaign. The last time I checked, America is a melting pot and you can't win with one segment of the electorate.

    May 30, 2008 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  16. fred3 (seriously quite stealing my name)

    I LOVE Obama!!!!

    May 30, 2008 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  17. Tired of all the flap!

    Hillary Clinton does not deserve to be President of the U.S.! GO AWAY!

    May 30, 2008 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  18. MD in CT

    If a voter values experience in Washington, D.C., and particularly as a United States Congressperson (such as mentioned by Clinton supporters), then the choices of the superdelegates who are currently in Congress (elected by the Democratic voters in each state) should be given great credibility. This is especially valid because these same elected representatives in Congress work closely with both Senator Clinton and Senator Obama and know them very well.

    The majority who have declared support Obama. Enough said.

    May 30, 2008 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  19. Mary

    It will be all over next week with Obama ahead.

    There are signs from Hillary & her camp that its over. If you observe, Hillary is not having many rallies. Of late, she looks more like a tourist than a candidate. Did you all see her in Puerto Rico & Mt Rushmore?
    Even this article states that there were only 200 people at her rally. Not much.

    Did you all see Lanny (Hillary Supporter) on CNN yesterday? He looked defeated.

    GAME OVER! Now on to the General Election!!!

    May 30, 2008 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  20. Tee



    May 30, 2008 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  21. john williams san diego, ca.

    it figures that women would want a pathological liar as President because she is a woman..A MAJOR setback for womens equality.

    May 30, 2008 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  22. Janet, American via Canada

    Senator Mc Cain ticket VP Senator Clinton – represent the new SCI-FI Movie = "2008 Nightmare on Pennsylvannia Avenue"

    May 30, 2008 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  23. GOBAMA 08!

    OBAMA in 08 and MOBAMA in 12!

    May 30, 2008 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  24. Smart Hillary, Copycat Obama

    Hillary is the best candidate among the three. Yes, she is ambitious, but her ambitiousness drives her to help the country back the way it was. It is not power like all the hatemongers would say. The power of the presidency is to give back to the people what's lost. Unfortunately, GWB did not do what he was supposed to, therefore losing his credibility. Hillary's been around for so long and the experience she's claiming is all true. You have to know the "ins" and "outs" of Washington, DC in order to get things done. She failed before in her health program and continuous to fight on. If you hate Hillary Clinton so much, you do not know her very well, indeed . . . if she loses, we won't have the likes of her again, ever. I've read bloggers say, 'I want a woman president, but not her,' WHO? may I ask? N-O-N-E so far, I may be dead by then.

    May 30, 2008 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  25. CT voter

    YOU WISH!!!!

    This isn't a dynasty, it's AMERICA! Your not entitled to anything, you have to earn it, just cause you were first lady doesn't mean you're entitled to be the first women president, I can think of so many other's that I wish would have ran beside's you, that would NOT have split the democratic party, and we all would have been glad to have them both on the ticket, but you and your scorched earth kitchen sink saying you'll agree to not count vote's only to later cry about it while not counting caucus's that followed the rule's, you cheating...great message you're setting for kids, if it doesn't go you're way, change the rule's at the last minute, cheat your way to victory!

    I would never vote for her after all this, seeing her true colors. And I started out supporting her, I didn't even know who Obama was until I actually listened to his idea's and speech's and saw how smart and humble he was, not like this spoiled bratt.

    May 30, 2008 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
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