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Clinton: 'Come Join Me'

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Excerpts from Hillary Clinton's impassioned plea to Virginia Democrats at the Jefferson-Jackson dinner in Richmond, Va. (AP)

By Editors  |  February 9, 2008; 11:30 PM ET
Categories:  Hillary Rodham Clinton , Video Report  
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Next: The Obama Spin on a Sweep


It is interesting to note that in 2004 1,510,201 Washingtonians voted for the Democratic candidate for President.

Yesterday only 31,984 (96% reporting) decided to caucus in the Democratic race with Obama receiving 21,629 votes; Clinton 9,992 and other receiving 363.

Considering that this is an energized election year then come this November there will probably be even more voters than there were in 2004 voting for the Democrat nominee yet less than 35,000 decided the winner in yesterday's Washington's caucus.

Almost twice as many voters voted for the losing candidate in Louisiana's Democratic primary (Clinton - 136,959 votes) than voted for both Obama and Clinton in both Washington's and Nebraska's caucuses (31,621 and 38,382 respectively) even though both of these states combined populations are doubled that of Louisiana (8,164,129 and 4,287,768 respectively - 2006 census).

Something is seriously wrong with a system where so few people decided for so many others.

The caucus system is extremely flawed just like the archaic electoral college.

Does Obama 'really' represent the people's choice or is the system so flawed, as I think it is, that most people are disenfranchised by a system that is truly not representative?

Posted by: blarf1 | February 10, 2008 8:24 PM | Report abuse

It would seem that the system is flawed purposely or with the foresight to NOT have all of the answers easily accessed. Just as in college football people vote for who they feel would the best choice for a variety of reasons. People like what they like no matter what the subject. No one should begrudge anyone their choice, yet there are those that would. Was President Kennedy so experienced when he was elected? Did President Nixon' experience serve him best? Ultimately, people choose what resonates with and in them. All that can be hoped for is that whoever gets elected gives their best effort. Me and mine believe that's Senator Obama.

Posted by: darylandmelanie | February 10, 2008 10:19 AM | Report abuse

"If he doesn't charm her into joining him, he is going to loose a good chunk of the American women."

And if he does, he loses an even bigger chunk of the anti-Hillary white male, independent and crossover GOP vote. And why is it that many Hillary supporters (and even a few Obama supporters) don't seem to know or understand the big difference between the meaning of the verbs "to loose" and "to lose"?

Posted by: flarrfan | February 10, 2008 8:36 AM | Report abuse

Brain 2020 is absolutely correct as is L brown. I am a loyal Democrat so no matter who wins the nomination, I will vote for him/her. However, I have chaired presidential campaigns too, and I will much less enthusiastic if Obama is the nominee. I like him, but he is still green and untested. Just wait until the Repugs start swinging at him! Here in TN, Harold Ford, Jr., a 5 term congressman, lost to Bob Corker, mayor of Chattanooga in the Senate race when the Repugs started their silly attack ads. Now here in TN, some Repugs crossed over and voted for Obama because they are scared to death of Hillary. They see him as the weaker Democrat. I know Hill, my husband worked with the Clintons in AR. And, we remember the Clintons left this country with 4 consecutive balanced budgets, 22 million new jobs, FMLA, welfare to work, tremendous strides in workplace safety, and a 280 billion surplus. Ok, it was Bill, not Hill. But, you can bet she was in on it, and her opinions counted--just as Bill will offer his ideas to her when she is president. And, yes she has been in public service on her own for 35 years! She has a love for people and a passion to help which may not always come across publicly. She has earned my respect and love. I support Hillary Clinton.

Posted by: pnapod | February 10, 2008 8:31 AM | Report abuse

IF Obama wins the nomination, he is going to NEED Hillary to win the Presidency. In what capacity I don't know, but believe me he is going to need her. If McCain picks Huckabee as his running mate, Obama is toast. I truly believe she has a smaller ego and a bigger passion than him and she would be willing to take a second seat. I really don't think that Obama's ego and arrogance would allow him to do the same. But if it happens, if he wins, he is going to need her, BIG TIME.

If he doesn't charm her into joining him, he is going to loose a good chunk of the American women. And women will make sure he looses them and with them, the election. Either way, Hillary Rodham Clinton will stand to be the most powerful woman in American history and one of the most powerful persons in the American and International political scene. Don't doubt it for a minute. Whatever happens, Hillary Clinton has shown herself an extraordinary individual. More so than Barack Obama, and it will show in the future. It will show.

Posted by: poh123 | February 10, 2008 7:06 AM | Report abuse

Point of view of a non-voter:

I am not a US citizen and therefore will not be voting for this presidential election. I, however, voted last year for the French presidential election and drawing parallels between the two election systems is quite interesting. I have reflected on the Caucus vs. Primary argument and while the former seem more colloquial and interactively vibrant, the latter appears to offer a better chance at actually voting. The French Presidential election is based on universal suffrage, which leads me to believe that a caucus would not meet the ultimate principle of a democracy where everyone gets a fair opportunity at voting. My main reservation about caucuses is not their openness but the fact that they seems to potentially disenfranchise those who cannot be present at the time the counting actually occurs. It also leads me to feel that working class citizens would be the ones most at risk. Without further analysis, some could consider voting in a caucus an elitist approach simply because of its restrictive principles.

I'd have to say that between the 2000 general election and the possible deadlock on the democratic nomination in 2008, the people of this country would be well served with a system that allows them to elect their president based on popular vote. It would be a great step forward in modernizing an archaic system whose immense flaws are a great source of resentment and divisiveness.

As an aside, it should be noted that when voting in a French presidential election, which is by secret ballot in all cases, literature as well as representatives of all the candidates are available at every voting place to further inform you. It is quite common for people to engage in discussions, heated at times, while waiting on line (yes this is sort of a French stereotype, but it is very true). The point being that a primary does not necessarily have to eliminate discourse.

Before Mitt Romney made his ignorant suggestion ("America must not become the France of the 21st century"), he should have realized that our election system would probably have benefited him in the primaries. Maybe ignorance is bliss after all.

Posted by: michel248 | February 10, 2008 6:45 AM | Report abuse

Brain2020, I think you may have failed to realize that MA is a more populated state than MN and WA. So it should be no surprise that they cast more votes for Clinton *even if* the relative proportions in each state favored Clinton. Your math and logic does not add up.

Additionally, as someone who has always lived in a primary state (WI, MO, CA, & PA) and now I live in WA, I caucused for the first time today. It was truly a moving experience to hear how my neighbors felt about both candidates and our prospects of reclaiming the White House. In caucuses, people at least have the option to talk to a broader set of their neighbors and to hear what the community thinks, which then allows them to change their minds. That's what democracy is all about: deliberation and discussion and repeating the process. Sure I could go in and punch a button for my candidate, and you could do the same in caucuses by going in and giving unwaivering support to a particular candidate. However, in caucuses, you can have a change of heart after talking to and interacting with others. The true test of democracy is whether people can deliberate and change their minds (if they want to) without regret or remorse post voting (and a lot of people change their minds afterward b/c they didn't think of this or that issue). Also, WA has both caucuses and primaries. It happens that 100% of the democratic delegates come from the caucus, while there is a 50-50 split for Republicans. Know your facts before you brand one form of democracy over the other.

Posted by: blsykes | February 10, 2008 5:37 AM | Report abuse

Caucuses aren't interesting. Most of the time they're a glorified straw poll (see Minnesota).

All this Obama talk about Hope is humorous. It reminds me of the Conservative rhetoric about pro-life, anti-gay marriage, and national security. The message is preached far and wide each election year, yet each year in power sees little accomplished. How long will it take for the American people to realize that 'Hope' and 'Change' can only occur when both parties consent.

Supporters on both sides, be they far right or far left, seem to paint in wide brush strokes of absolutes. The previous posters' comments about 'dark' and 'light' illustrates this point. The GOP already has an edge with a centrist candidate. The democrats would do well to nominate one of their own.

I wonder when the rest of the party will realize that Sen. Obama is, at best, a nouveaux Jimmy Carter. He's someone to get elected, lead America astray, and push the democrats back to irrelevancy for 20-some years.

Posted by: thesportsguy | February 10, 2008 3:54 AM | Report abuse

brain2020: i suggest the time for you to start packing is sooner rather than later. OBAMA 2008!!!!

Posted by: caligirl1 | February 10, 2008 3:52 AM | Report abuse

Brain2020 - Thank you for pointing out the contradictions in several of the Obama supporters' comments. It is unfortunate that so many supporters of Obama's believe that "hope" is enough to change the country. Clearly, they haven't lived long enough to know that if you actually want to make change (rather than hope for it), you have to have to work hard and fight everyday (something Clinton has shown she can do). Reading their posts here and elsewhere, I have sadly come to the conclusion that my fellow Democrats are not much more rational than the Christian conservatives on the right who base their judgments on "faith." It seems Gore is correct, we are living in a time where reason is under "assault."

Posted by: Lbrown | February 10, 2008 3:09 AM | Report abuse

Brain2020 would have us believe that caucuses are irrelevant, undemocratic, or both. But no matter how you stack up the candidates -- total votes, pledged delegates, states won (18 for Obama versus 10 for Clinton) -- Obama comes out on top.

Moreover, caucuses are interesting because they measure qualities such as vision, passion, drive, enthusiasm, leadership, and organization. Anyone who thinks these qualities are not vital to the business of being president hasn't studies the lessons learned by past administrations. I seem to recall that Clinton had a pretty good health care idea 14 years ago...but lacked the leadership skills to get it (or much else) accomplished.

Dems are fortunate to have two fine choices, but one outshines the other in all the categories that matter (Yes, even in experience). Yes We Can! Obama is the one to heal our nation and lead us out of fear towards a future of hope.

Posted by: frank_jannuzi | February 10, 2008 2:06 AM | Report abuse

steven4: Please. Stop. This is the single dumbest idea I have heard in ages.

brain2020: I'm sure every Obama supporter isn't showing disdain for every other candidate. But your disdain for Obama's supporters seems rather suspect...

Posted by: mwfree | February 10, 2008 1:58 AM | Report abuse

Further, I must add, the disdain that Obama supporters show for any other candidate makes me absolutely despise his candidacy. I hear talk of hope juxtaposed with absolute hatred. This is nothing new. It is the same garbage in a new package. Every blog I read, in nearly any publication, features comments by vaguely veiled supporters of Obama demonizing Hillary or others while praising their "hope." Well I wish these people well, but can't help to suffer in anguish as I watch my fellow countrymen use extraordinarily poor judgment yet again. You would think eight years was enough, but apparently we are on a path to hell, but with "hope!" Let me tell you...We in Massachusetts could give a rats behind about together we can BS. Experience counts, otherwise you get casinos, bloated budgets for curtains and cars, and a shiny leadership that needs more than polishing after just a year.

Posted by: brain2020 | February 10, 2008 1:28 AM | Report abuse

Hillary says "Come join me" ... "and bring some money!"

PS the 16-year-plan is a Clinton trick. When you read the spiel it tells you to sign a petition, without ever specifying WHICH "exciting candidate" leads the putative "dream ticket".

Only in the small print of the petition itself do the words Clinton-Obama appear.

"Barack, no! Spare my life and I will give you vice-presidential powers beyond your wildest dreams!"

Don't think so. Let the voters speak and the chips fall where they may.

Posted by: bourassa1 | February 10, 2008 1:18 AM | Report abuse

Besides the completely illogical hatred spewed here I would point to the continued use of emotion over fact. The first responders talk in such sweeping statements that their claims are so completely illogical I can't even justify a response. His.her statements are so ridiculous any psychologist, would quickly point out that they reflect the failings of the person making the statements more so than their subject. Further, later posters point to "overwhelming" victories. But let's do some math. About 40,000 people made up the vote in Washington, the largest delegate bearer of the evening. Yet, Massachusetts, which has slightly less delegates constituted nearly 1.3 million votes. The reason? Caucus versus primary. In a caucus by and large elites with time and leisure on their hands come out to "vote." This is not democracy but a media fashion contest. The other contest in Nebraska is the same. Hillary won more votes in Massachusetts , against the support of the male patriarchs, than all of Barack's elitist' caucus votes combined. Caucuses are a shame of democracy. Louisiana does represent the fact that blacks will vote for blacks and whites will vote for whites. No Surprise. The bigger question I see playing out now is about elites and sexism rather than racism. Regardless we will all be disappointed. Just read the posts here and you can tell what we have to look forward too in this country. I'm moving elsewhere should Obama win the nomination. What a disappointment.

Posted by: brain2020 | February 10, 2008 1:17 AM | Report abuse

Let's harness the excitement we're seeing among Democrats for BOTH amazing candidates. Sign the petition to Howard Dean and the DNC at

Posted by: steven4 | February 10, 2008 1:10 AM | Report abuse


Thank you for seeing the light!

: )

Posted by: pacman04x | February 10, 2008 1:09 AM | Report abuse

Clinton: 'I need your help'

Barack Obama is in the lead in pledged delegates. After Saturday, that lead has more than doubled. The entrenched establishment of the Democratic party will be welcomed into the movement that is Barack Obama's campaign to change this nation.

Hope is alive and well in this country. We will take our nation back.

Barack Obama will lead us there.

Posted by: edhere | February 10, 2008 12:36 AM | Report abuse

fimex - It's comments like yours that make me not want to vote for Obama in the fall, should he win the nomination. I am tied of Obama's supporters trying to cast this election as, in your own words, a fight between "light over darkness." I was proud to vote for Hillary on Tuesday, and I am proud to donate to her campaign. I don't appeciate others implying that my vote was one for evil, or "darkness."

Posted by: Ryan7 | February 10, 2008 12:32 AM | Report abuse

filmex, "Si Se Puede!" (Yes We Can!) is Ceasar Chavez' famous rallying cry. You're making it seem as though Hillary stole that from Obama.

In fact, both of them stole it from Chavez.

Posted by: Alan4 | February 10, 2008 12:25 AM | Report abuse

Um, so didn't somthing happen tonight? Wasn't there an election or something? I thought that this was a political blog.


Obama dominates in Washington State 68-31
Obama dominates in Nebraska 68-32
Obama dominates in Louisiana 57-36
Obama wins BVI (not sure of amount)

I'd call this historic sweep from North to South and in between far more important than some Hillary speech.

Posted by: ESR1 | February 10, 2008 12:16 AM | Report abuse

Um, so didn't somthing happen tonight? Wasn't there an election or something? I thought that this was a political blog.


Obama dominates in Washington State 68-31
Obama dominates in Nebraska 68-32
Obama dominates in Louisiana 57-36
Obama wins BVI (not sure of amount)

I'd call this historic sweep from North to South and in between far more important than some Hillary speech.

Posted by: ESR1 | February 10, 2008 12:16 AM | Report abuse

Obviously, that was the "Yes, We can!" video I referred to.

Posted by: filmex | February 9, 2008 11:50 PM | Report abuse

My younger sister has only been following the election in a peripheral manner. But, she was moved by the Obama/Will I. Am "Yes, I Am" music video, oddly enough.

She was struck by the creativity of the venture, the poetry of the language - she felt it was a sermon Abe Lincoln may have preached - and by the fact that it was garnering a million views a day for the week it had been up.

And while she was perturbed that Hillary had seemed to attempt to co-opt Obama's message of "change", it wasn't until I Tivo'd back Hillary's speech in Virginia yesterday in which she declared that while Obama refuses to offer health care to everyone, her response is "Yes, We Can!".

Only then was she finally thunderstruck by the shallow, calculatingly soul-lessness of the campaign this woman who has never had an original thought in her life is running.

She pretends she has been servicing America for 35 years, yet none of her supporters can offer nary a word on what has come out of that 35 years.

Except perhaps to note she stopped being a Goldwater Girl who canvassed poor Chicago neighborhoods looking for "Democratic voter fraud".

She pretends she has this vast experience as opposed to the "first term Senator" when in reality, Barack Obama will have held elected office for 12 years before becoming President. Hillary Clinton will only have held office for 8 years.

The stench of the Clintons, whom Frank Rich notes in the Sunday Times is willing to take the party down with them, has become so strong that even non-political junkies like my sister have been forced to choose light over darkness.

Posted by: filmex | February 9, 2008 11:49 PM | Report abuse

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