Chicago Sun-Times
The scoop from Washington

The Clinton game plan. “Don’t think for one second that she is shutting down her operation."

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WASHINGTON—Though Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) tonight is expected to claim the Democratic presidential nomination, I’ve learned that Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) now plans to continue to travel throughout the country to talk about “issues” that are important to her, even if she is not the nominee.

“Don’t think for one second that she is shutting down her operation,” I was told by a person close to Clinton.

The Clinton campaign released a statement Tuesday morning that said Clinton "will not concede the nomination this evening."

Tonight at Baruch College in Manhattan where Clinton will rally her supporters, Clinton is expected to talk about her accomplishments and leave the door open a little bit for her to continue to “fight” for “issues,” such as universal health care.

Obama plans a victory speech in St. Paul, Mn., at the site of the GOP convention where Sen. John McCain (R-Az.) will accept the Republican nomination. Obama is believed to have enough superdelegates lined up to back him that as I write this on Tuesday morning he could claim 2,118 delegates as soon as the polls in South Dakota and Montana close. Clinton is prepared to suspend her campaign--but not make, at this time a formal concession-- once Obama can put the 2,118 delegates on the scoreboard.

This strategy leaves Clinton with a variety of options; she shifts from campaigning for herself --falling short in her bid to be the first female president--to stumping for “issues,” and of, course for Obama in a strong demonstration of party unity.

I am passing along this look ahead to Clinton's short-term strategy as it was just explained to me by a person very close to Clinton; I'm not sure if this helps Clinton or Obama, but I am reflecting a snapshot of what Clinton will be considering in the days ahead.

This "issues" work will let Clinton remain visible as she travels to energize the millions of people who voted for her around “issues” as Obama works to lock their support in for November. These goals are not at odds with each other. This strategy keeps Clinton in a visible—albeit significantly lower profile—role as Obama ponders who to tap to be his running mate.

Obama probably does not want Clinton on his ticket. He would prefer someone who does not fog up the “change” message. Obama would offer Clinton the vice presidency only if he needs her, and that would take a lot of convincing. Still, Obama is claiming victory tonight with a less than powerful finish. Not counting South Dakota and Montana, in the last 14 contests—spread over three months—Obama has six victories to seven wins for Clinton

I am told that Clinton will keep her campaign office open with a downsized staff for the indefinite future.

13 Comments

Denver Here We Come. The Clinton's are no quitters.

Hillary or her people or both think Obama will be indicted when the Rezko trial is over. This is a hunch & my opinion based on her actions. To me nothing else makes sense and this fits. She has seen the same math as everybody else has.

She's the most powerful member of the Democratic Party on Capitol Hill. She has two choices: VP or Senator. Contrary to opinion I suspect that Obama wants her as his VP for a variety of reasons and wants her very badly. As VP the electorate can only perceive that she is committed towards his election and success. Unlike the Senator the VP can't jump ship. She's stuck with him. So let's make it a successful venture but it demands a mutual effort and a clear understanding of the agenda and their roles. A VP is the only official who belongs to the executive and legislative branches of the government and is meant for somebody with connections. The VP both approaches legislators and is approached by them. The VP is an alternate route to the White House for Congress, the country and the world. The strongest attack, the GOP will make on him, is insisting to the electorate that we don't really know this man! Some pundit made a rather interesting remark when he reminded the panel that the country will tune into the elections after Labor Day. Since they will have missed Trinity can you guess the hostility of the public? Now I can guess the reason why he remained. First, Obama's style demands that he engage with people. Sure there are troublemakers in the world but can you pretend that they simply don't exist. You must talk with people. Doesn't this hold true on the higher levels of state? If the Americans spent more time talking with Saddam Hussein they may have perceived that they were dealing with a windbag and it may have affected policy towards Iraq. Of course there's also a risk factor. After Vienna the Soviets thought that they could lean on Kennedy. There are troublemakers or nuisances in your life. What are you going to do? Banish them or engage with them and determine how much of a problem. Of course he must be careful but more people would give him a pass on this matter with Clinton than without her. Doubts persist about him. Just look at the mess before the Rules Committee. Obama actually looked dumb. He was quibbling over four delegates and gave Hillary Clinton a pass to the Credentials Committee which is a valid reason to continue for two more months! You can blame this matter on the staff but nobody becomes a good President who can't pick'em. Sometimes appearances can be deceiving. Mrs. Clinton is far more thoughtful than is acknowledged. When she supported the summer gas tax holiday, pundits missed the point. They claimed that it wouldn't help matters. The oil industry would simply snap up the profits. There would be no decline in prices at the pump! Well, if these objections are accurate then you've suddenly found an enormous source of 'political capital' for legislation across the political spectrum for action against the oil industry and for alternative energies. Obama missed the boat on this one. It's this fear of an immature Obama that drives voters to McCain. Voters contend, "I'm sorry. I just realized why I must vote for McCain rather Obama. He's going to make mistakes and I simply don't know the man". Why didn't Obama give her the four delegates from Michigan? Obama gave her a pass to the Credentials Committee! Is it Obama or the people around him? This recent attack on Bill Clinton in Vanity Fair was worthy of Tricky Dick and his Plumbers. It's quite easy for suspicious people to trace the article on the Internet from the Vanity Fair to the Huffington Post back to Obama. It simply drives home the point to the public: we really don't know Obama! This concern can't be accepted or dismissed. Fox News has been playing a clip: McCain is constantly chastising Obama over his failure to support the surge and reminding people what a mess the area would be if we had simply pulled out. Why can't he close a deal with the other side? Why is he bothering with McCain? If he cements a deal inside the Party, McCain becomes a political midget but he needs Clinton. Otherwise his figures will continue to decline. Winning the nomination and winning the election are different. He should be meeting with her for a long series of discussions about the Denver Convention and the next government. Her refusal of VP is going to hurt him far more than you think. She won't come cheap but what price victory? It's also the time when people get cold feet and play it safe in November. It's Goodbye Hillary Haters or Hello John!

Posted by: Daedalus | June 3, 2008 11:34 AM

SAVE YOUR MONEY AND SHUT IT DOWN!
BE GRACIOUS IN DEFEAT AND HELP BARACK OBAMA!

The fat lady is about to sing and that fat lady is Hillary

Obama only change he can give is to change the political system to one he has in Chicago/Illinois political arena. The radical left political activism, based on the black liberation theology, and that leaves out many White, Latino, Asian and Jews Americans.

The problem for Billyboy is he has all these cigars and he not going to be able to use them in the White House so he is sad.

This has been one election that has embarrassed me as a Democrat.

It has been the CLOSEST Democratic Race in the history of the party...even closer than the JFK/Johnson race.

The sad truth...if this particular race were between two male Democrats...it would go all of the way to the convention. The Super
Delegates that are undecided are supposed to cast their votes AT the convention...Obama wheezing to the finish line is an ugly win at best...but the MEDIA starting calling for Clinton to drop out after IOWA, to drop out after the 11 wins from Obama, and steadily to drop out ever since.

What ever happened to unbiased reporting of the news? This has been about COMMENTARIES...2nd guessing...and gossip among the News Media. Morrow is rolling over in his Grave.


Our next President!

The finest example of statesmanship the world can expect!
He will definitely make us proud!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wJsdHoAy4aM

Listen to this bilingual (Spanish-English) audio from a Miami Radio Station and judge by the tone of voice of the subject being interviewed and his statements.

That is . . . . unless the Senator campaign paid blogging staff has already blocked it..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0dgRzGJ8EQU

Larry Sinclair on Enrique &Joe Show (Strong Language) LISTEN TO AUDIO


The news media have certainly unreported and underestimated the very large number of republicans and independents that back Obama but don't show up in any voting statistics. The news media constantly reports that Obama needs to woo Hillary supporters. I am concerned that wooing my segment is being ignored. We love Obama and I can't tell you how much we dislike Hillary. If Obama picks Hillary as a VP, we will as a global group vote for McCain. This would ensure a McCain win and it would be another shame for 4 more years of republicans. But I could not vote for Obama if Hillary is a heart beat away from the presidency. Obama should be concerned.

Clinton made it very clear that she wouldn't accept anything less than presidency earlier on. now that she has lost she wants to be considered VP. I think she should accept her loss and move on, I didn't mind her candancy and at first actually liked her but i learned so much more about her that i didn't like throughtout this campaign, she showed her true racism and she would be no good for Obama.

Congratulations to both candidates and their supporters for running the most inclusive Democratic Party Primary in living memory. Senator Clinton deserves every single word of praise spoken by Senator Obama in Minnesota last evening. I admire her talent and toughness beyond measure and would be thoroughly delighted if she does become our party's Vice Presidential nominee.

It is imperative that we never lose sight of the goals which all Democrats have striven to achieve this year. Watching Senator McCain kickoff the General Election with multiple falsehoods at his "huge" rally of 200 Republicans made me fully aware that there's no more time to waste before Democrats fully unite to prevent our country from being doomed to 4 more years of the Republican's incompetence and destructive policies.

This is doubly true for those of us deeply worried about our civil rights, especially our rights as women secured in Roe vs. Wade. The next Supreme Court appointments must not be made by Senator McCain.

Whatever differences, which are unavoidable in such a long and stressful and heated Primary process, have arisen among the supporters of our whole field of Democratic candidates, I believe we are strong enough to forgive and to request forgiveness from our opponents, mature enough to move quickly beyond our heated rivalries and wise enough to refocus all resources and energy to ensure the election of Senator Obama as our next President

What would be so bad about an easy 16 years? Hillary 08 and 12, Barack 16 and 20?
Until the evil bloggers who bash Hillary stop it--we won't have a chance of beating McCain in the Fall.

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on June 3, 2008 10:34 AM.

Obama talks about winning primary. Emotional? "Not yet but talk to me tomorrow night." Transcript was the previous entry in this blog.

Lynn Sweet talks about Obama clinching and what Clinton will do on CNN's "American Morning." is the next entry in this blog.

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