Election 2008


Democrats Fear Drawn-Out Race Could Damage Party

March 26, 2008 04:55 PM
by findingDulcinea Staff
A growing chorus of Democrats is calling for party leaders to step in and end the primary contest in favor of front-runner Barack Obama.

30-Second Summary

Many Democrats are worried that as the exchanges between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama grow increasingly tense, a prolonged contest might damage the party and increase the chances of a Republican victory in November.

A recent Gallup poll further complicates matters, suggesting that some supporters of both Clinton and Obama would be unwilling to vote for the Democratic ticket if their chosen candidate did not receive the nomination.

Nonetheless, a number of media publications have begun discussing the possibility of Clinton’s withdrawal, citing the seemingly insurmountable mathematical obstacles her campaign must overcome.

A Politico column from last week says that Clinton “has virtually no chance of winning,” adding that even “her own campaign acknowledges there is no way that she will finish ahead in pledged delegates.”

Meanwhile, Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has suggested that efforts to bring the contest to an end are already underway, though he stopped short of saying which candidate those efforts would benefit.

Despite her deficits in pledged delegates, the popular vote and states won, Clinton’s campaign maintains that her current shortfalls are not enough to justify the termination of her candidacy.

Clinton aides have also downplayed the importance of the May 6 primary in North Carolina, saying that the contest is not a “must-win.” But Wake Forest University political scientist John Dinan disagrees, telling North Carolina paper The Winston-Salem Journal that the contest “will be one of the primaries that defines the state of the race.”

Headline Links: Primary quagmire may hurt Democrats

Opinion & Analysis: Clinton’s deficits prompt party debate

Reactions: Clinton says she’s down but not out

Background: Recent dirt from campaign trail

Reference: '2008 Democratic Delegates'


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