Barack Obama | Election 2008 | Hillary Clinton | Indiana | News | North Carolina

Clinton Options Dwindle with Tiny Indiana Victory, Loss in NC


Hillary Clinton put on a strong facade last night as she cheered supporters on in Indiana, but it's the cancelation of all public appearances today (reported by Talking Points Memo) and the anointment of Obama as nominee by Tim Russert, Matt Drudge, and MSNBC's Chuck Todd that have people wondering about the direction the Clinton campaign will take next.

Obama won a 14-point victory in North Carolina, and lost by just 23,000 votes in Indiana.

The Washington Post reports: "Both candidates looked ahead to contests next week in West Virginia and May 20 in Oregon and Kentucky, but Clinton was nearly out of opportunities to change the course of the race. 'We have seen that it's possible to overcome the politics of division and distraction, that it's possible to overcome the same old negative attacks that are always about scoring points and never about solving our problems,' Obama said at a victory rally in Raleigh, North Carolina. The Illinois senator's 14-point victory in North Carolina was a dramatic comeback from a difficult campaign stretch that began last month with a big loss in Pennsylvania and was prolonged by the controversy over racially charged comments by his former pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright."

The NYT reports: "The results from the two primaries, the largest remaining Democratic ones, assured that Mr. Obama would widen his lead in pledged delegates over Mrs. Clinton, providing him with new ammunition as he seeks to persuade Democratic leaders to coalesce around his campaign. He also increased his lead in the popular vote in winning North Carolina by more than 200,000 votes."

The candidates' speeches, below:

Russert told Keith Olbermann: "We now know who the Democratic nominee is going to be, and no one is going to dispute it."

Watch that clip, AFTER THE JUMP...

Additional reading
Reality Has Well-Known Obama Bias [huffington post]
If You Want to Crown Him [shakesville]
An obituary for the Clinton campaign [daily voice]

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  1. What is intresting is that out of all the repubs that actualy voted despite already having a nominee, over 15% didn't vote for McCain. Romney got 10% and Huckabee got 5%. Crazy!

    His support is very soft within his party

    Posted by: Jimmyboyo | May 7, 2008 8:29:09 AM

  2. It was refreshing to see the message of UNITY take center stage last night. I'm quite proud of both candidates. I really didn't expect anything less.

    Posted by: Rafael | May 7, 2008 8:31:58 AM

  3. The Clinton campaign will keep going strong, this is just a new chapter in her making history. Senator Clinton is in it for the long run, that is for sure. Obama's speech was great last night...However, I think the momentum is still in Clinton's favor. There are still primaries left out there, voices to be heard. I still believe she has a great case to lay out to the supers. I urge any supporters of Clinton or if you are undecided to please go to and contribute. Also, please write, email and call the DNC and tell them that Florida and Michigan must be seated, they are part of the United States and their votes must be counted. I'm very excited at this new stage and I think like most of America this spirited contest is great for our party and for democracy as a whole. Hillary '08!

    Posted by: daveynyc | May 7, 2008 9:09:49 AM


    Howard Fine said last night that the Obama camp has said that they will sit down to discuss FL and Michigan. Since Obama's lead in both pledged delegates and popular vote would still be there even giving FL and Michigan to Hillary as is.

    They will be sat. No need to worry about them.

    Posted by: Jimmyboyo | May 7, 2008 9:28:25 AM

  5. Good point JB. I tuned into Fox news last night, just for kicks, and they weren't too keen on McCain, of course their consensus was that the presumptuous republican nominee is far better than either democrat. But one of the views they shared, was that if Ron Paul still get votes today, so could Hillary tomorrow. Of course this is a cheap attempt on their part to continue "operation chaos", but in the subtext of it all, they expressed their discontent not with one, but with several of their candidate stances. I believe the republicans are far more divided than they would admit to be.

    Another relevant point made o Fox last night, was one made by Carl Rove, he explained how the undecided and the Latino demographics were up for grabs. He seemed dismissive of the division within his party, almost as if he thought they are just trying to bargain with not much of a choice. Could Sen. Obama hinder their strategy and be a feasible choice within republicans?

    Posted by: Rafael | May 7, 2008 9:36:00 AM

  6. Rafael

    Turns out I was slightly wrong. It is even worse for McCain. He only got 80% of the vote last night.

    I forgot to mention Ron Paul and the inevitable 1-2% undecided. How people go into a voting booth wether repub or dem and vote undecided is beyond me.

    Anyway; so out of the die hard repubs that voted last night (the soft people stayed home since the nominee is picked) 20% voted for someone else besides McCain.

    He is really hurting for support it would seem.

    Posted by: Jimmyboyo | May 7, 2008 9:43:52 AM

  7. Somewhere, Leland/Michael Bedwell is crying.

    Posted by: LightningLad | May 7, 2008 9:52:58 AM

  8. Dave,

    Everyone except the Clintons knows this is over. For the good of the party, they should get out soon. I hope the superdelegates continue moving toward Obama in the coming weeks--for sure they will after he wraps up the majority of pledged delegates after Oregon.

    Clinton ran a fine campaign, but she is not going to be the nominee or the president, at least not in 2008.

    And as for the Republicans voting against McCain, that's pretty meaningless. If you look back to '00, people were still voting >20% for McCain in the last primaries, long after he'd dropped out. It's a way to express disappointment in the candidate, but the Republicans will rally around McCain just as the rallied around Bush.

    Posted by: Morgan | May 7, 2008 9:53:56 AM

  9. Morgan

    Maybe, but at least the few percentage points who are Ron paul people won't.

    The other day Ron Paul did a non endorsment endorsment of Obama.

    Ron Paul is crazy on a ton of issues though on foreign policy he makes quite a bit of sense

    Anyway; after the non endorment endorsment, his biggest fans were all over the net posting Ron Paul for VP under Obama. LOL Never going to happen but they aren't going to rally around McCain. The others, you are probably right.

    Posted by: Jimmyboyo | May 7, 2008 10:01:57 AM

  10. Hillary 2016!

    Posted by: crispy | May 7, 2008 10:07:25 AM

  11. Hillary is going to continue to flush millions and millions of dollars down the democratic toilet in her tunnel-vision-quest... at a time when those funds should be super-delegated to battling McCain and "The Others".

    imagine what those millions could do in Louisiana, or the tornado ravaged alley... or perhaps Hillary should pay for the summer gas tax.

    Posted by: A.J. | May 7, 2008 10:21:12 AM

  12. On the news: Sen. McCain is against porn! and net neutrality Hehe how are conservatives going to take this? He will leave Sen Craig with nothing to do! ummmm...

    Posted by: Rafael | May 7, 2008 10:24:34 AM

  13. "Somewhere, Leland/Michael Bedwell is crying."

    That put a smile on my face.

    Posted by: anonyme | May 7, 2008 10:39:38 AM

  14. Time for Hillary to bow out gracefully. Or as gracefully as she knows how. It's over. Let's focus on McCain and November.

    Posted by: Roger | May 7, 2008 10:42:09 AM

  15. I think Clinton will concede in a couple of days. She has made her point, and I think it bodes better for her if she wants to have a second run in 2012.

    Jimmy boy - I have made 2 bets that McCain is going to win this. McCain is a weak candidate now, but Americans will again respond to Republican's message when the real fight begins.

    Posted by: Landis | May 7, 2008 10:44:57 AM

  16. Well, apparently she has loaned her campaign over $6 million and will "carry on". One of her commercials just ran here in Oregon. I know it was probably scheduled in advance, but there goes more potential funds down the drain.

    After 8 years of similar obnoxious arrogance in the White House, I will never vote for someone who shows that personality trait.

    She has now lost my vote forever because of this attitude.

    Posted by: PDX Guy | May 7, 2008 11:03:18 AM

  17. Okay, now that the primary is over, let's move on to the really important stuff.

    Michelle's inaugural gown. Designer?

    Posted by: 24play | May 7, 2008 11:05:12 AM

  18. Frankly, it was over for Hillary the moment Pelosi and Dean started to openly back Obama. It was clear that the superdelegates would drift to Obama when that happened. Members of the House and DNC makeup the lion's share of the superdelegates.

    However, since the establishment of the Democratic Party basically betrayed her, I think she had every right to make the case that she still has a lot of supporters in Middle America. After all, it was Bill Clinton who screwed the liberals over in the 1990s rather than her. And before Obama really came onto the scene in Iowa, these were the same sychophants who whispered " Madame President" in her ear for years and years.

    Now that Hillary has made that case pretty convincingly though (winning TX, OH, PA, and IN while being outspent 3 to 1), it is time for her to ***CONCEDE***.

    She has preserved her honor. That's no shame in admitting defeat at this point.

    Posted by: John | May 7, 2008 11:11:35 AM

  19. Wait, when did Dean and Pelosi openly back Obama?

    That never happened.

    Posted by: Sean H | May 7, 2008 11:27:06 AM

  20. Sean:

    They tacitly backed Obama.

    1) They say delegates need to vote with the "will of the people"
    2) They say delegates need to make up mind now (in March, when Hill was in the gutter), rather than later.

    Posted by: Landis | May 7, 2008 12:04:00 PM

  21. Sean,

    Are you kidding (or are you really that naive).

    You really think it was a coincidence Pelosi and Dean came out and said "this should be over soon" (while outright rejecting Hillary's proposal to redo MI and FL) one-day after Obama's crushing victories in the Virginia, DC, and Maryland primaries?

    You think it was a coincidence that Pelosi's top aide and confidante, Rep. George Miller, backed Obama? Or that her relationship with CDP Hillary supporters like Mayor Gavin Newsom and Sen. Diane Fienstein have became ever more cool lately? Gavin and Diane pretty much ignored her wishes during the whole Olympic Torch / Tibet debacle.

    You really think it's a coincidence the Clintons' de-facto spokesman James Carville called Dean "incompetent" after the latter refused to layout a plan for dealing with MI and FL, telling Clinton's people that Obama would have to agree to any new primary (which Obama, of course, flatly refused to consider).

    You really think it was a coincidence that Pelosi and Dean both downplayed Hillary's OH and TX comeback by stating in no uncertain terms that they expect the superdelegates to back "the person with the most pledged delegates"?

    We all know which person they're referring to. And it isn't Santa Claus.

    Seems pretty obvious to me what's going on. And I'm sure it's obvious to the members of the DNC and Congress too. Short of an outright endorsement -- which would be a gross breach of protocol because they're serving as the convention chairs -- it doesn't get more transparent than that.

    Posted by: John | May 7, 2008 12:08:54 PM

  22. Hillary should quit now. She cannot win without convincing the superdelegates to over turn the pledged delegate count. And that would, in my opinion, ruin the party and throw the election to McCain, no contest. It could happen, although I don't think the superdelegates are that stupid. And about Texas, she did not win there either. This contest is about pledged delegates and the way it worked out, Hillary got 95 pledged delegates, Barack got 98. So will everyone please stop saying Hillary won Texas. It did not happen.

    Posted by: TroyTooner | May 7, 2008 12:32:12 PM

  23. TroyTooner,

    I sincerely hope you weren't one of those people who claimed George W. Bush lost in 2000. Because your argument for Texas is PRESCISELY the same argument Bush used against Gore in the presidential election.

    Posted by: John | May 7, 2008 12:50:30 PM

  24. If I might interject (while Sean is on the floor laughing )... John, the 'definition' of openly, please? Did you and Bill go to the same Grammer School in Hope?

    Posted by: kansastock | May 7, 2008 12:51:29 PM

  25. Wait, Florida' presidential election in 2000 included both a popular vote and a caucus, with electoral votes selected in each? That's news to me.

    Posted by: 24play | May 7, 2008 12:58:25 PM

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