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Clinton Supporters Discuss Their Role at Convention

Democrats of all stripes have converged on Denver for this week's Democratic convention -- many of whom were Hillary Clinton supporters. Leading up to Clinton's convention speech Tuesday, delegates reflect on the former presidential candidate and rival of Barack Obama.

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  • RAY SUAREZ:

    Hillary Clinton toured the convention floor this afternoon in advance of her primetime address. Many delegates hope she'll help unite her supporters with Senator Obama's.

    Outside the convention hall, Clinton loyalists held a rally. They wanted the New York senator to be the vice presidential nominee.

    At their hotel this morning, the Ohio delegates talked about the need for party unity. Clinton easily won Ohio's primary. Delegates like Cleveland attorney Melanie Shakarian dispute media reports that the party is divided.

  • MELANIE SHAKARIAN, Cleveland:

    I supported the candidate who didn't win in the end, and that's OK. And I'm proud to support Barack Obama. And I hope that the media hype surrounding the Hillary delegates who supposedly are abdicating from the party, I hope it's a lot of hype, because I certainly don't feel that way.

  • RAY SUAREZ:

    So you don't know, for instance, people who, like you, were for the senator and now are not sure whether they're going to vote Democratic in the fall?

  • MELANIE SHAKARIAN:

    No, I don't. And I'm from Ohio's 10th district, which was very strong for Hillary Clinton. And all of my friends who worked with me on the campaign and people who I know supported her are all staunchly behind Barack Obama. So it's — it's a mystery to me.

  • RAY SUAREZ:

    First-time delegate and Cleveland Councilwoman Sabra Pierce Scott.

  • SABRA PIERCE SCOTT, Cleveland:

    Well, I want to hear that she is committed to assuring the victory for the Democratic Party first and that she is willing to work with some of her supporters who are not necessarily completely on board as of today, that by November we will be able to move the party forward.

    I do not think that we are divided; I just think that we are working to blend both the Hillary supporters with the Obama supporters.

  • RAY SUAREZ:

    Many delegates said the economic downturn could help unite the Democrats. Toledo delegate Wade Kapszukiewicz believes Obama must win Ohio to win the presidency.

  • WADE KAPSZUKIEWICZ, Toledo, Ohio:

    There have not been many more states in our country more adversely affected by the Bush-McCain economy of the last eight years than Ohio. I think the way we win Ohio is by focusing on those meat-and-potato economic issues: jobs, health care, especially jobs.

  • RAY SUAREZ:

    Many female voters we spoke to said the economic crisis is their top concern. Steubenville, Ohio delegate and former state legislator Eileen Krupinski.

  • EILEEN KRUPINSKI, Steubenville, Ohio:

    We've lost jobs. We've lost businesses. Our young people have to move to find other job opportunities.

  • RAY SUAREZ:

    That was the focus of a roundtable discussion here today led by Michelle Obama and vice presidential nominee Senator Joe Biden.

    MICHELLE OBAMA, Wife of Sen. Barack Obama: If there's one thing that I know that we can all agree on it's that policies that support working women and families aren't just about politics. These issues are personal.

    As Barack and I have traveled around the country for the past 19 months, we've heard so many stories of families trying to hold it together without enough support.

  • RAY SUAREZ:

    Ohio's 141 delegates, along with more than 4,000 others, will hear that message again tonight.

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