On Saturday, June 7th at noon in the National Building Museum in Washington D.C., Senator Hillary Clinton delivered her concession speech to Barack Obama, endorsing him as the Democratic presidential candidate for 2008. Her 28 minute speech was both reflective and conciliatory, and the crowd displayed mixed reactions when Clinton officially called upon them to support Barack Obama.
The full text of her speech can be found here.
Hillary Clinton suspended her campaign instead of ending it, apparently to raise money and reduce her campaign’s debt. By choosing this option, she also retains her delegates for the convention.
Robert Schroeder and Kristin Gerencher of Market Watch write, June 7, 2008:
By suspending the campaign instead of ending the process, she retains her delegates and the ability to continue raising funds to defray campaign debts.
“Hillary Clinton really did clear the hurdle of toughness,” said Debbie Walsh, director of Rutgers University’s Center for American Women and Politics in New Brunswick, N.J. “We really do see voters saw her that way and saw a woman as being qualified.”
Clinton’s endurance of sexist slurs that came from several cable TV commentators and other groups was “disheartening,” but the ensuing backlash may set the bar higher the next time a woman runs for the highest office in the land, Walsh said.
After her speech, Barack Obama responded favorably and commended Hillary Clinton again on her race. Obama’s chances for the White House greatly depend on the former first lady’s support, and her ability to redirect her 18 million supporters to his cause.
In CNN article by Senior Political Correspondent Candy Crowley June 7, 2008, Obama is quoted for saying:
“Obviously, I am thrilled and honored to have Senator Clinton’s support. But more than that, I honor her today for the valiant and historic campaign she has run. She shattered barriers on behalf of my daughters and women everywhere, who now know that there are no limits to their dreams. And she inspired millions with her strength, courage and unyielding commitment to the cause of working Americans. Our party and our country are stronger because of the work she has done throughout her life, and I’m a better candidate for having had the privilege of competing with her in this campaign. No one knows better than Senator Clinton how desperately America and the American people need change, and I know she will continue to be in the forefront of that battle this fall and for years to come.”
Update by Nate
The entire video of Hillary’s speech, all 29 minutes of it: