Skip to main content

Clinton looks to stop Obama in aftermath of 10 losses

  • Story Highlights
  • NEW: Bill Clinton: If she doesn't win in Texas and Ohio, she won't be the nominee
  • Obama swept Tuesday's contests
  • Clinton has seen some of her base turn to Obama
  • Clinton banking on wins in Ohio, Texas
  • Next Article in Politics »
Decrease font Decrease font
Enlarge font Enlarge font

(CNN) -- As Barack Obama solidifies his lead, Hillary Clinton is shaking things up with a revamped message and sharper digs at her party's front man.

art.clinton.20.gi.jpg

Sen. Hillary Clinton has set her sights on the upcoming contests in Texas and Ohio.

Her commanding lead in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination has vaporized since the Super Tuesday contests two weeks ago, and now, not only is Obama out in front, he's also chipping away at her base.

It is something that is not lost on her husband.

Speaking to a crowd in Beaumont, Texas, Wednesday, former President Bill Clinton said "If she wins in Texas and Ohio I think she will be the nominee. If you don't deliver for her then I don't think she can. It's all on you." Video Watch Bill and Hillary Clinton court votes »

In a speech Wednesday, the New York senator maintained her campaign is moving forward, despite suffering 10 consecutive losses.

"It is time to get real," Clinton said, "to get real about how we actually win this election... It is time to move from good words to good works -- from sound bites to sound solutions." Video Watch how Clinton can make up lost ground »

Clinton made efforts in the contests leading up to the Texas and Ohio primaries but concentrated on those delegate-rich states, which will be decided on March 4.

Now she's trying to avoid becoming the Democratic Rudy Giuliani, whose failed strategy took him from front-runner to GOP dropout.

She didn't mention her losses in her speech after the results came in Tuesday, and instead focused on her economic message and tried to appeal to the blue collar voters she lost in Wisconsin.

Democratic Debate
Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama face off on the same stage in Austin, Texas.
Thursday, 8 p.m. ET

She told an audience in Ohio that the choice in the Democratic primary this year is between someone in the "speeches business" and someone in the "solutions business."

"Americans have a choice to make in this election, and that choice matters," she said.

"We need to make a choice between speeches and solutions, because while words matter greatly, the best words in the world aren't enough unless you match them with action."

Clinton reached out to part of her core constituency -- union members.

"If you want to know how America got its great middle class, how we got fair wages, how we got benefits and a shot at the American dream, it's because of unions," she said. "Because they stood up, they spoke out and they refused to back down."

Obama has been steadily chipping away at the voters who had formed Clinton's base -- the blue-collar, older, working-class voters. On Tuesday, he got 53 percent of Wisconsin's white voters compared to 41 percent of those voting on Super Tuesday.

He captured the vote of 48 percent of women in Wisconsin compared to 41 percent on Super Tuesday. He also increased his standing with white seniors by 8 points, from 31 percent to 39 percent since Super Tuesday. He split the non-college-graduate vote 50-50 with Clinton compared to getting 42 percent of it on Super Tuesday.

According to Wisconsin exit polls, Obama swept Clinton in all of the economic categories and passed Clinton in households with union members.

All along, Clinton has been marketing herself as the candidate with the experience needed to be "ready on day one to be commander-in-chief."

But Obama, a senator from Illinois, has been able to convince voters that he and Clinton don't have many policy differences, and that if they want change, they're going to need to change how Washington does business.

Clinton attributed her Wednesday losses to the fundraising gap with Obama.

"We were outspent in Wisconsin by a 4-to-1 margin on ads -- and we can't let that happen on March 4," her campaign said in an e-mail to supporters Wednesday.

Clinton has also stepped up attacks on Obama's strong point -- his words. She's accused him of offering rhetoric with no specifics, and this week, based on similarities between his words and those of Obama-ally Deval Patrick, her campaign accused him of plagiarism.

Clinton did congratulate her rival Wednesday, saying, "He's had a good couple of weeks, and he's run a good race." She added, "We're going to draw the contrasts and make the comparisons and give the people of Ohio and Texas and the other states a real choice."

In addition to Texas and Ohio, Vermont and Rhode Island also hold contests March 4.

According to CNN calculations, Obama has 1,315 delegates to Clinton's 1,245.

Clinton leads in superdelegates, a group of about 800 party members who cast their vote at the convention and are free to vote for the candidate they choose.

While there has been a lot of controversy over the role of the superdelegates, both camps have denied they would also look to woo the "pledged delegates" earned by their opponent in primaries and caucuses.

Pledged delegates are typically strong supporters of the candidate they represent at the convention -- although they are technically not bound to cast their vote for that candidate.

Clinton has also been fighting for her delegates in Michigan and Florida. She won both states, but they were stripped of their delegates for scheduling their primaries too early.

Clinton and other candidates had signed a pledge to not campaign in either state after the Democratic National Committee's decision.

Last month, Clinton released a statement calling on her party to seat both states' delegates at the national convention this summer.

advertisement

Her campaign also launched a new site -- Delegatehub.com -- touted as "fact and myths about the race for delegates in the Democratic nomination."

The site argues Florida and Michigan delegates should count. Clinton was the only top-tier candidate on the Michigan ballot. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

CNN's Candy Crowley, Jessica Yellin, John Helton and Rebecca Sinderbrand contributed to this report.

All About Hillary ClintonBarack ObamaU.S. Presidential Election

  • E-mail
  • Save
  • Print
Quick Job Search
keyword(s):
enter city:
Home  |  World  |  U.S.  |  Politics  |  Crime  |  Entertainment  |  Health  |  Tech  |  Travel  |  Living  |  Money  |  Sports  |  Time.com
© 2013 Cable News Network. Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. All Rights Reserved.