Posted: June 3, 2008 9:54 PM
Clinton Claims S.D. Primary Despite Obama Delegate Milestone
Sen. Hillary Clinton finished the primary season with a win in South Dakota Tuesday, but her Democratic opponent Sen. Barack Obama gained the support of enough super delegates to reach the majority needed for the party’s presidential nomination.
With 31 percent of South Dakota votes counted, Senator Clinton had 56 percent to Obama’s 44 percent. The New York senator celebrated her win in her home state of New York. While she congratulated Obama on his primary campaign and spoke of her campaign in the past tense, Clinton did not concede the Democratic nomination.
“This has been a long campaign and I will be making no decisions tonight, but this has always been your campaign,” Clinton said, urging people who had voted for her to visit her Web site and offer their thoughts about what she should do.
“It has been an honor to contest these primaries with him,” Clinton said in a speech to supports.
“Tonight, I would like all of us to take a moment to recognize him and his supporters for all they have accomplished.”
Clinton also emphasized her message of the importance of unifying the Democratic Party, a theme she addressed earlier in the day when she said she would be open to sharing the party’s ticket as the Vice President.
Voters in South Dakota said they were more energized than turned off by the drawn-out race between the two Democratic contenders, a recent Associated Press study of Democrats in the state said.
In her speech, Clinton continued to push for causes such as health care, ending the war in Iraq and the ailing U.S. economy.
Clinton repeated her common determination to continue to fight for those who voted for her, but acknowledged the length of the primary race and its coming to a close.
“In the end, while this primary was long, I am so proud we stayed the course together,” she said.