June 2, 2008

What exactly is Hillary Clinton going to say after the last primary is over?

How much of a concession speech is she going to give tomorrow? Is it going to be an all-out endorsement of Obama, or will she carefully craft it to preserve the opportunity to win over the superdelegates — to get them to switch — if Obama starts slipping or experiences another Wright-sized blow? I expect her to talk about the importance of unifying the party and getting behind one candidate but to leave the door open a crack. Maybe that one candidate could still be her.

57 comments:

Kirby Olson said...

I hope she cries, and finally clarifies something about the meaning of is. For instance:

Reporter: "Is it over?"

Hillary: "Depends on what you mean by 'is.'"

kimsch said...

It will not be a concession speech of any kind whatsoever. It will be a victory speech. She will declare that she is the winner of the popular vote, she will declare that the Michigan and Florida delegates were misallocated, and she will declare that the super delegates all have a right to a change of mind, right up until the final vote at the convention.

It's not over until the weight challenged refined and gentle woman sings...

Roger J. said...

I see absolutely no reason for Hillary Clinton to concede at this point--and even if Obama goes over the magic number based on super-delegates, the supers are NOT pledged and can change their vote at the convention. At this point, she has incurred most of the sunk costs she is going to. A speech something along the lines of "the voters have now spoken and we will resolve this campaign at the convention in Denver."

Simon said...

Ditto Kimsch.

Freder Frederson said...

I think she will announce that Jeff Gillooly is joining the campaign as a "special advisor".

I kid!

former law student said...

I already quoted Bluto's "Nothing's over till we say it is" speech.

vbspurs said...

I read this line from Bill Clinton,

I want to say also, that this may be the last day I'm ever involved in a campaign of this kind," the former president said

Very differently than most people, I fancy.

Because I believe that he and Hillary will split up, at long last. Perhaps in 2 years. Reasons? Various, but I think it's dawned on her just how much of a handicap he has proved to be, instead of a leg up.

Cheers,
Victoria

Freder Frederson said...

It will not be a concession speech of any kind whatsoever. It will be a victory speech.

Maybe she can borrow the president's "Mission Accomplished" banner.

Summer Anne said...

It will not be a concession speech of any kind whatsoever. It will be a victory speech. She will declare that she is the winner of the popular vote, she will declare that the Michigan and Florida delegates were misallocated, and she will declare that the super delegates all have a right to a change of mind, right up until the final vote at the convention.

I disagree. Mostly just wanted to say that so I can nyah-nyah tomorrow night. I think she'll concede, but agree with Ann that it will probably remain pretty vague. The dems aren't going to let this go to convention and HRC knows it. She's better off leaving now on her 'own terms' (kind of) instead of being forced out by Nancy Pelosi et al.

michael farris said...

Even though Obama's been the presumed nominee for a while she's been cleaning his clock regularly for the last month or more and is polling pretty well ahead of him in SD and Montana.
Why on earth should she quit now?

Trooper York said...

Hillary: We're gonna go inside, we're gonna go outside, inside and outside. We're gonna get 'em on the run boys and once we get 'em on the run we're gonna keep 'em on the run. And then we're gonna go go go go go go and we're not gonna stop til we get across that goalline. This is a team they say is... is good, well I think we're better than them. They can't lick us, so what do you say ladies?
Raddled Harridans:YEAAAAAHHHH!!!!

Simon said...

Summer Anne said...
"The dems aren't going to let this go to convention and HRC knows it. She's better off leaving now on her 'own terms' (kind of) instead of being forced out by Nancy Pelosi et al."

I know that Pelosi has huffed and puffed about bringing the curtain down, but in reality, regardless of how much she and others in the leadership want to avoid "let[ting] this go to convention," they lack levers with which to force Clinton out. Their only weapon is to press the remaining superdelegates to get off the fence - but in that regard, Pelosi has pull, not power, and even if all the remaining superdelegates switch to Obama tommorow, they remain free to change their mind. The only two people who have any say over when this fight ends, fundamentally, are Clinton and Obama. If either of them drop out, the fight ends. If either of them want to stay in until the convention, the only limit on their power to do so is their own judgment. Both have constituencies that will back them to the bitter end should they so desire.

Pelosi is bluffing. Lacking a stronger hand, she might want to consider whether her condescending tone is going to induce the reaction she wants.

Original Mike said...

Kimsch said: ...and she will declare that the super delegates all have a right to a change of mind, right up until the final vote at the convention.

Well, it's not like it hasn't been tried before. In the early days of the 2000 post-election fight, Democratic stategist Bob Beckel attempted to persuade electoral college delegates pledged to Bush to vote for Gore instead, premised on the "he won the popular vote" argument.

former law student said...

[Hillary's] polling pretty well ahead of him in SD and Montana.

Obama's ahead in Montana, but not SD. If SD votes for Hillary, that will make them the only Hillary state in the North Central/Northwest of the country: From Illinois to Nevada, Wisconsin to Washington, and Iowa to Oregon, it's been all Obama up to now.

Freder Frederson said...

Why on earth should she quit now?

Because it's over and she lost?

michael farris said...

"Obama's ahead in Montana"

oops you're right I think I misread the SD results for both SD and Montana.

Johnny Carson said...

She will be announcing her transition team -- for the transition from mere irrelevancy to complete obscurity.

Summer Anne said...

Clues. Why New York tomorrow night? I maintain my prediction. I'll bet five whole dollars.

coenito said...

She could plod on quietly or relentlessly. Or she could quit the race respectfully or defiantly.

The quiet/respectful path takes on the Republicans and McCain and Bush in a speech about unity. Talks about how the country must elect a Democrat. Blah, blah, blah. I don't see how this route leads to a future President Hillary or more power in some other form. She'd be giving the party over to Obama/Dean/Pelosi and very much jettisoning the Bill Clinton legacy (of which, in truth, she has never been fully on board).

Where is her support these days: Reagan Democrat men. White women. Elderly. Rural. Big city machine Democrats. The relentless/defiant stance would be a broad swipe at the McGovern/Carter/Obama wing of the party. She doesn't have to get all Zell Miller on 'em, but Scoop Jackson/Moynihan/Lieberman would suffice. This leaves her as an independent thinking Senator sticking her fingers in the eyes of the fringes on both the right and the left and she spends the next 30 years becoming a legend. Or, if Obama loses big in the election, she can still try again for the Presidency in 2012/16 building from swing/red states out. Clinton/Lieberman would win. The latter course would be interesting. Heck, I might even vote for her.

P. Rich said...

Let's look at Hillary's future as she probably sees it. Assume she desperately wants to be the Party nominee, if not this time around then in 2012 latest (age issue after that). Then:

1. If she more or less endorses Obama and he wins the general, then:

A. He does well in office and she will not get the nod next time around, or
B. He does miserably in office and no Democrat is going to be elected in 2012.

2. She remains combative, the Dems struggle on in disarray, McCain wins the general and she is poised to be the "New Winning Candidate" in 2012 after 12 years of a Republican in the White House (with McCain's performance likely to have been lackluster and Obama a proven loser).

Bottom line simplified (IMNSHO): If she is determined to be elected in this or the next cycle (sans Bill?), she cannot endorse Obama. That behavior is extremely unlikely to end with her presidency.

vbspurs said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chip Ahoy said...

She's going to say, "Sorry for taking up so much of your time and attention. Dreadfully egocentric of me. Carry on."

Chip Ahoy said...

I mean, what kimsch said up there ^^^ 100%.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Why would she conceed now?

Serious question: are the delgates that are assigned to Obama and Clinton fixed? I mean can they change their minds and vote for the other candidate? If so, I wonder if there might not be some delegates assigned in the early part of the campaign that would jump ship to Hillary since much of Barack's "issues" have come out since their primary. They may be having second thoughts especially in those States where Hillary actually won the popular vote yet the caucus process gave Barack the majority of the delegates.

The superdelegates who haven't committed yet and the superdelagates that might yet change their minds could swing it one way or the other.

I think she would be a fool to quit now after all this time and MONEY spent when there is still a glimmer of hope. If it were me.....I would be there until the bitter clinging end.

Simon said...

P. Rich said...
"[If Obama] does miserably in office ... [then] no Democrat is going to be elected in 2012."

Yep - and more to the point, she won't even be the nominee. Can we really imagine Obama not seeking a second term, no matter how badly his first might go? That being so, I'm trying to think of any examples of a sitting President seeking reelection being denied his party's nomination.

vbspurs said...

Summer Anne linked to this:

Clinton has also has planned a rally with her husband and daughter in South Dakota tonight, the kind of reunion she usually saves for election nights. Meanwhile, former President Bill Clinton said that today may be his last day campaigning for his wife.

Yep, that pretty much is a tell. She's quitting now that she didn't get full-votes from a weak-kneed Democratic Rules Committee.

But don't worry. If Senator Obama loses all eyes will turn to Hillary. She and President Clinton have said it enough, so I don't think on November 5, CNN will be interviewing her to hear her say:

"If you had chosen me, I would've won the White House"

It's enough that every single American will have that thought in their mind. The what-ifs of history kill you.

Watch Hillary grow in stature ever more, if she concedes tomorrow, regardless of her polarising views. She IS the next Senator Ted Kennedy.

(Madison, thanks for reminding us about Ted Kennedy's operation. Considering YSL died of brain cancer, it's not to be gainsayed)

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Raddled Harridans:YEAAAAAHHHH!!!!

I'll forgive you for the sexist harridans remark because you know how to properly fit a bra. Pretty good skill. Most men only know how to take it off.
:-)

SteveR said...

I think she will be vague enough to sound suportive of the "party" without saying its flat out over. Behind the scenes there will be lots of talking. She played through the end of the primaries to maintain her position, but now she can go undercover. I would not underestimate their machine, although its seems to have lost its mojo.

Revenant said...

"Why on earth should she quit now?"

Because it's over and she lost?

I don't see how you can say she lost if it is still possible, within the rules, for her to win.

Ron said...

The Pistons need a new head coach; why not Hillary?

Revenant said...

That being so, I'm trying to think of any examples of a sitting President seeking reelection being denied his party's nomination.

It happened a number of times in the 18th century, if I recall correctly.

kimsch said...

Victoria,

I want to say also, that this may be the last day I'm ever involved in a campaign of this kind," the former president said.

I read it differently than others and differently than you too - although you certainly have a point there.

I read it as he's not going to be involved in a primary

Jim Howard said...

She will just say 'I am suspending my campaign'.

No way will she withdraw and endorse anyone.

It's clear that an Obama meltdown is coming, the only question is when.

Ralph said...

...a sitting President seeking reelection being denied his party's nomination.

LBJ thought he would in '68 and dropped out.
Revenant, I believe you meant 19th century.

Steven said...

She should, for the sake of her future, stay in until she gets a bunch of back-room pledges from Obama.

She won't have enough delegates to win the nomination. She will have enough delegates to stage nasty floor fights over, for example, the representation of Michigan and Florida. Or over the Vice-President -- even losing the Presidential nomination herself, she might have enough superdelegate influence to choose the VP over any of Obama's objections.

Obama, of course, will want to avoid those fights. So he'll basically cut a deal where he guarantees her the back-room right to name minor Cabinet officials and lesser personages. All of whom will then owe her favors, giving her increased influence in the Senate, and helping make her a power in that body despite her relatively low seniority.

rhhardin said...

You have to consider that Obama isn't going to win in November, so favors from Obama aren't of great value to Hillary.

It's like favors from Kerry in value, only Obama will lose worse than that.

Cedarford said...

Both Truman and LBJ were eligable to run and had not taken themselves out of contention at the time of the New Hampshire primary. LBJ was marginally popular, but faced growing war opposition. Truman was hugely unpopular in 1952 and facing a huge Party revolt (66% disapproval ratings, inept running of the Korean War, Dixiecrats hating his guts, and the target of a number of corruption and cronyism Senate investigations.)

Both Truman and Johnson then fell in New Hampshire to populist Tennessee Senator Estes Kefauver and Eugene McCarthy.

Then dropped out.

Both claimed their unpopularity and NH losses had nothing to do with their decision not to seek another term.
(It was a time before the face-saving convention whereby either could say they suddenly decided to spend more "quality time with their families").

In 1980, by all reason, the Dems should have shown Jimmy Carter the door. The problem was that all the media and Dem establishment thought only one Democrat was morally entitled to challenge Carter, and that was Teddy Kennedy.

Who turned out to be about as adept on his feet and speaking ad lib, as John Forbes Kerry was 24 years later. The public soon saw Teddy was a stupider, duller, more whiskey-sotted version of JFK or RFK. Plus Kennedy carried the baggage for a lot of bills he fostered & passed that criminal-coddled, promoted welfare freeloading, weakened the military. And his biggest piece of baggage was Mary Jo Kopechne.

In short, Carter should have been cast aside, but wasn't due to unique Party dynamics that year.

rhhardin said...

I'll forgive you for the sexist harridans remark because you know how to properly fit a bra. Pretty good skill. Most men only know how to take it off.

The whole reason that buttons are on the opposite side for men and women is so that they can undress each other.

Trooper York said...

Thanks Dust Bunny Queen. Just today somebody told me I was too sexist for my shirt.

Trooper York said...

But Rh, how do you undress a chicken?

Simon said...

rhhardin said...
"You have to consider that Obama isn't going to win in November, so favors from Obama aren't of great value to Hillary."

That depends on whether Hillary thinks Obama is going to win. People make decisions based on what they believe to be likely outcomes, even if you or I might disagree with the likelihood of that outcome.

Ruth Anne Adams said...

Why couldn't she mount an independent campaign just like Joe Lieberman? Let the very far left have their guy [Ned LaMont] and take her supporters and run a general election scooping up the liberal hawks. John McCain's best strategy then would be to tack right and excite the conservative base. After all this, I don't think Hillary will have much love left for her Democratic party. The mainstream media would probably support Obama as it rebukes Hillary. And a downtrodden Hillary wins lots of votes. At least it wins way more votes than regal/entitled/inevitable Hillary does.

rhhardin said...

How do you undress a chicken

Unfortunately they don't have buttons, so they try to kill each other, at least if they're roosters and it's spring.

today's rooster pic

One of them is pretty uninvolved, and probably the cause of all the trouble.

Also it's not as if they don't have the entire state of Ohio and beyond to spread out in.

They hang together so they can fight, perhaps.

In bad times, like cold and snow, they're the best of friends. Once they get some bug calories inside them, watch out.

They have tiny tiny pea brains and so have complicated reasons.

vbspurs said...

Ruth Anne, because if you think media are knifing her and Bill in the back now, that would be a tea party if she ran as an independent. And I really don't fancy a Civil War Part Deux...

OT: Ann blogged about this days ago, but here is a great post on Dems/Obama's/Webb's projection of masculinity. (Via Villainous Company/Insty)

Check this out:

...ideas about courage and cowardice can exist in a protected class, whether Quakers or Senators, without causing harm -- they may even improve us as a society in some ways.

If they step outside of that class, however, they will quickly find that their ideas on second nature clash sharply with the first nature of man, and the nature of the world. If the Quaker becomes the Marshal, and sets aside the rifle in favor of a kind heart and a language of hope, he will be fine as long as he only meets with other Quakers; or with Quirt Evans, the young man ready for reform in the face of beauty.

But there are other kinds of men in the world, too. You cannot wish them away. Klein's preferred second nature may be fine for him, as his streets are guarded by United States Marines. It may be fine for a Senator. It may have things to offer the greater society that are of value. But it cannot defend society. Society cannot stand on it, nor survive protected by it.

A President must be of the Marshal class. That is not a preference that can be reframed; it is an absolute requirement arising from the nature of the world. It may be that a good politician can smooth voters' fears enough to cause them to set aside that requirement, and elect the Quaker to office. If they do, however, there will be evil consequences.

There is no changing that. You can talk all you want, but there are men who do not talk. It is the President's job, first among all his duties, to be the answer to them.


I was going to blog about this lack of resolve/masculinity on the part of Democratic Party vis-a-vis Obama in the coming days, but this blogger just stole my thunder. And I couldn't be happier.

Cheers,
Victoria

Revenant said...

Revenant, I believe you meant 19th century.

I not only meant it, I thought I *typed* it! Yes, the 19th century, not the 18th.

Chip Ahoy said...

rhhardin, I wish I had chickens.

My friend lets me find chicken eggs on his ranch. Another friend told me his chickens are actually quite radical. My sister told me eggs come out of a chicken's egg-hole soft and immediately turn hard when exposed to air. I don't entirely believe that. I think it hurts them, BAM! right in the bum.

It's 100% of fact the egg came first.

PatCA said...

She will concede or semi-concede, and then everybody out for shots and a beer!

Dust Bunny Queen said...

"But Rh, how do you undress a chicken?"

You use rubber gloves and hopefully it is after the chicken is dead. Not nearly as fun as undressing each other...I didn't know that about the buttons.

"My sister told me eggs come out of a chicken's egg-hole soft and immediately turn hard when exposed to air"

Your sister is correct.

Beth said...

It may be that a good politician can smooth voters' fears enough to cause them to set aside that requirement, and elect the Quaker to office. If they do, however, there will be evil consequences.

Like Nixon?

vbspurs said...

Like Nixon?

And Hoover.

I used to think Eisenhower was one too (due to his parent's legendary strict pacifist attitude), but apparently he came from a Mennonite background. His parents later became Jehovah's Witnesses, and he was inaugurated using one of their Bibles (!). However, he joined the Presbyterian faith in 1953, just weeks after.

Cheers,
Victoria

Fen said...

Freder: Maybe she can borrow the president's "Mission Accomplished" banner.

More mythmaking from the Left. Their mission was accomplished.

Gavin said...

I have to agree that her and Bill are not likely to remain married for too long now.

And I don't agree that she's the next Ted Kennedy. Kennedy is loved by many in his own state. Step outside of NYC and Hillary is very high negatives. This is a state where the Dems could run a cucumber and it would win a senate seat after all. The moment she becomes vulnerable (ie - never likely to be a succesful party leader, let alone President) then all those scandals she has managed to doge will start to stick like shit on a shoe.

ballyfager said...

Cedarford makes a point that younger people might be unaware of. Although Harry Truman is now generally lionized and remembered as the jaunty underdog who won in '48, he proved to be a VERY unpopular President.

MadisonMan said...

I mean can they change their minds and vote for the other candidate?

Yes, they can be for Hillary after they were against her. Makes for a great sound bite.

Henry said...

Maybe she'll announce the formation of the Cow Moose party.

Henry said...

Fen, you don't have to take the bait EVERY time.

Freder's Gillooly line was pretty good.

MadisonMan said...

Freder's lament:

Fish gotta swim
Birds gotta fly
Fen takes the bait
Each day 'til we die
Can't help, baitin' that man of mine.