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Hillary’s Staffers Say “Don’t Fight On In Vain”

From the UK’s Telegraph:

Hillary Clinton staff: don’t fight on in vain

By Tim Shipman in San Antonio, Texas


A growing number of Hillary Clinton’s aides want her to abandon her White House bid if she loses both the Texas and Ohio primary elections on Tuesday.

Some of Hillary Clinton’s aides believe that only her husband Bill has the power to persuade her to quit.

Younger members of her campaign team fear she will damage the Democratic Party, as well as her own reputation, if she fights on in vain to deny Barack Obama the presidential nomination.

Most observers believe Tuesday’s elections, which include the smaller states of Vermont and Rhode Island, could deliver a death blow to Mrs Clinton’s candidacy unless she wins Texas and Ohio convincingly…

The sense a decisive moment is approaching was heightened on Friday night as both candidates held rallies in San Antonio, home of the last stand at the Alamo. Mrs Clinton played to a crowd of 4,000 but Mr Obama packed a 20,000-seater stadium.

A Democrat strategist who has discussed the campaign with Clinton staff told The Sunday Telegraph: “The younger campaign aides are looking at how to bring this to a dignified end. People are prepared to go to her and say this thing is over.

“They fear a divisive contest that opens the door for the Republicans and makes it impossible for Hillary ever to run again. But the only one who can tell her to quit is Bill.” …

The younger aides believe only Mr Clinton has the influence to convince her the game is up, since many of her most senior staff are in a state of “denial” about her prospects.

They fear if the decision does not come from within her camp, she could be publicly shamed into standing down by senior party figures coming out for Mr Obama…

However, in a series of conference calls with reporters, her senior aides, Terry McAuliffe, Harold Ickes, Howard Wolfson and Maggie Williams were almost manic in their intensity as they sought to deny reports of low morale and to insist that Mrs Clinton is not beaten yet.

On Friday, her most senior advisers began to use a different strategy, attempting to paint Mr Obama as a choker who cannot “close the deal” unless he wins all four states that vote on Tuesday…

The Democrat strategist said: “The guys at the top table are grasping at any straw they can. They want to fight all the way to the convention, and they will die in a ditch with her.”

The Obama camp accused the senior Clinton aides of “moving the goal posts” so that they can claim even a narrow win in Ohio as a major victory that revives her candidacy…

Friends of Mr Clinton let it be known he is appalled at the “political malpractice” of his wife’s aides, who made no plans to fight caucus states or the primaries after Super Tuesday, allowing Mr Obama to win 11 contests in a row.

The former White House chief of staff, Leon Panetta, said: “They didn’t have a plan. I think those were serious mistakes.”

The Democrat strategist told The Sunday Telegraph even some of Mrs Clinton’s own staff were concerned by the “bunker mentality” of her inner circle, evident in two interviews she gave last week in which she appeared bewildered by Mr Obama’s appeal.

“She seemed confused by the phenomenon; out of touch,” the adviser said. “She doesn’t get it.”

Nor does remembering the Alamo offer her much hope. Davy Crockett and Jim Bowie fought bravely with their backs to the wall but they ended up dead 172 years ago this week.

There are so many telling quotes in this article it is hilarious.

The young aides are worried Mrs. Clinton will damage her reputation? Lose her dignity?

Only Bill can tell her to quit? Political malpractice?

Oh, my sides.

This article was posted by Steve on Sunday, March 2nd, 2008. Comments are currently closed.

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