By BVN Staff
Obama says, ‘It’s up to you Indiana.’
Hilary Rodham Clinton easily won the Pennsylvania primary Tuesday night, defeating Barack Obama and staving off elimination in their fierce nominating battle. Her solid victory ensures the race will go on at least another two weeks.
The New York senator's comfortable win sends the race on to North Carolina May 6, where the flush-with-money Obama is favored; and Indiana, where the two are close.
Obama was able to stave off an eyebrow-arching blowout by Clinton even while falling short in his effort to bring the polarizing competition effectively to a close. Clinton beat him by about 10 points.
"Some counted me out and said to drop out," the former first lady told Philadelphia supporters who roared their disapproval of that idea and cheered her victory in a state where Obama outspent her 2-to-1. "But the American people don't quit. And they deserve a president who doesn't quit, either."
In a round of television interviews Wednesday morning, Clinton argued that she's the stronger candidate to take on Republican John McCain because she's won big swing states like Pennsylvania and Ohio.
"The fair question is if you can't win the states we have to win in the fall maybe that says something about your general election appeal," Clinton told
Their Keystone state matchup was fierce and bitter, which seemed to harden attitudes among Democrats even as Republican John McCain tended to the unification of his party and campaigned across the country in preparation for the fall. Only half of each Democrat's supporters said they would be satisfied if the other Democrat won the nomination, according to interviews with voters as they left polling stations.
"After 14 long months, it's easy to forget what this campaign's about from time to time," Obama told an Evansville, Ind., rally, obliquely conceding that the Pennsylvania race turned nasty.
"It's easy to get caught up in the distractions and the silliness and the tit-for-tat that consumes our politics, the bickering that none of us are entirely immune to, and it trivializes the profound issues: two wars, an economy in recession, a planet in peril, issues that confront our nation. That kind of politics is not why we are here tonight. It's not why I'm here, and it's not why you're here."
Obama wasted no time making tracks to Indiana. His plane was in the air when the primary was called in Clinton's favor, which he discovered upon landing.
The Illinois senator trailed in opinion polls all along but had made up ground in the last few weeks, despite a series of inartful episodes in a campaign that once seemed smooth at every turn.
Clinton was winning 55 percent of the vote to 45 percent for Obama with 99 percent of the vote counted. She won the votes of blue-collar workers, women and white men in an election where the economy was the dominant concern. He was favored by Blacks, the affluent and voters who recently switched to the Democratic Party, a group that comprised about one in 10 Pennsylvania voters.
Clinton won at least 80 delegates to the party's national convention, with 12 still to be awarded, according to AP's analysis of election returns. Obama won at least 66.
Obama maintains a clear delegate advantage as well as the lead in the popular vote, and there are not many opportunities left for Clinton to turn that around. Moreover, party leaders are growing impatient with the drawn-out struggle and have watched nervously as McCain, his nomination race long settled, has climbed in opinion polls.