Clinton soldiers on as Iraq war vote haunts her
HILLARY Clinton said she will press on after today’s key primaries despite 11 losses in a row to rival Barack Obama in her Democratic presidential nomination bid.
Four states vote today, but the focus is on the big two, Texas and Ohio. The former first lady needs to win in both to save her campaign to be the first female president.
“I’m just getting warmed up,” Clinton said yesterday. A total of 370 delegates are at stake today.
“Ohio is the key to winning the presidency, and I’m excit- ed about tomorrow and I’m looking forward to it,” she said, looking to the next big primary in Pennsylvania on April 22.
Polls show Clinton holding her lead in Ohio, although Obama has narrowed the gap.
Obama has said he is not ready to write the obituary for Clinton’s bid yet. However, in an apparent sign of his confidence, he said she may have no choice but to quit if he does well in Ohio and Texas.
“If we do well in Texas and Ohio, I think the math is such where it’s going to be hard for her to win the nomination,” he said. “And they’ll have to make a decision about how much longer they want to pursue it.”
Obama has been fending off attacks by Clinton.
“What precise foreign policy experience is she claiming that makes her qualified to answer that telephone call at 3am in the morning?” Obama asked. He was referring to TV ads over who would exercise superior judgment in responding to a national emergency.
Obama highlighted his opposition to the Iraq war during his 2002 Senate campaign, months before the invasion. He criticised Clinton for failing to read the National Intelligence Estimate of Iraq’s weapons capabilities, a report available in October 2002 when she voted for war.
“She didn’t give diplomacy a chance. And to this day, she won’t even admit that hervote was a mistake – or even that it was a vote for war,” Obama said. “When it came time to make the most important foreign policy decision of our generation – the decision to invade Iraq – Senator Clinton got it wrong.”
Clinton said she would make national security the core issue of the campaign.
“This is a wartime election, which Democrats haven’t talked enough about in my opinion,” said Clinton.
Obama has 1385 delegates to Clinton’s 1276. A total of 2025 is needed to secure the Democratic nomination in August.–AP