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Bill Clinton: 'Coverup' hiding Hillary Clinton's chances

  • Story Highlights
  • Former president says superdelegates being pressed to make up minds early
  • Clinton says polls that show Sen. Clinton's general election chances not reported
  • News media unfairly attacking Sen. Clinton, former president says
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From Rebecca Sinderbrand
CNN
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(CNN) -- Former President Clinton said that Democrats were more likely to lose in November if Sen. Hillary Clinton is not the nominee and suggested that some were trying to "push and pressure and bully" superdelegates to make up their minds prematurely.

"I can't believe it. It is just frantic the way they are trying to push and pressure and bully all these superdelegates to come out," Clinton said at a South Dakota campaign stop Sunday, in remarks first reported by ABC News.

Clinton also suggested that some were trying to "cover up" Hillary Clinton's chances of winning in key states that Democrats will have to win in the general election.

" 'Oh, this is so terrible: The people they want her. Oh, this is so terrible: She is winning the general election, and he is not. Oh, my goodness, we have to cover this up.' "

Clinton did not expound on who he was accusing. Video Watch Clinton talk about the "coverup" »

The former president added that his wife had not been given the respect she deserved as a legitimate presidential candidate.

"She is winning the general election today, and he is not, according to all the evidence," Clinton said. "And I have never seen anything like it. I have never seen a candidate treated so disrespectfully just for running.

"Her only position was, 'Look, if I lose, I'll be a good team player. We will all try to win, but let's let everybody vote and count every vote,' " he said.

The former president suggested that if the New York senator ended the primary season with an edge in the popular vote, it would be a significant development.

"If you vote for her and she does well in Montana and she does well in Puerto Rico, when this is over, she will be ahead in the popular vote," Clinton said.

"And they're trying to get her to cry uncle before the Democratic Party has to decide what to do in Florida and Michigan," which Clinton said the party would need to do "unless we want to lose the election."

The current requirement to claim the Democratic presidential nomination is 2,026 delegates, a formula that does not take into account delegates from Florida and Michigan, whose contests were not sanctioned by the party because they moved them up on the primary calendar.

But if those votes were counted as cast, Hillary Clinton would still trail rival Barack Obama in the overall delegate count.

The former president said Sunday that the media had unfairly attacked his wife since the Iowa caucuses, repeating an often-used charge that press coverage had made him feel as though he were living in a "fun house."

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"If you notice, there hasn't been a lot of publicity on these polls I just told you about," he said. "It is the first time you've heard it? Why do you think that is? Why do you think? Don't you think if the polls were the reverse and he was winning the Electoral College against Sen. McCain and Hillary was losing it, it would be blasted on every television station?"

He added, "You would know it, wouldn't you? It wouldn't be a little secret. And there is another Electoral College poll that I saw yesterday had her over 300 electoral votes. ... She will win the general election if you nominate her. They're just trying to make sure you don't."

All About U.S. Presidential ElectionBill ClintonDemocratic Party

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