Hillary Clinton Quitting?

Rumors have been circulating all day that Hillary Clinton was going to give up her bid for the nomination before the convention after all. The Politico‘s Ben Smith reported early this morning that Clinton was calling all her advance staffers to New York to let them go. Then again, Smith also reported that John Edwards would drop out after learning his wife, Elizabeth, had a cancer relapse. Then again, in hindsight, that might have been best.

This afternoon, Tom Edsall broke word that Clinton has “summoned top donors and backers to attend her New York speech tomorrow night in an unusual move that is being widely interpreted to mean she plans to suspend her campaign and endorse Barack Obama – if not that night, within a day or two.”

Now, ABC News’ Sarah Amos adds another log to the fire:

Speaking to a crowd in Milbank, SD former President Bill Clinton admitted that today could be the last time he has such an active role in presidential politics. “I want to say also that this may be the last day I’m ever involved in a campaign of this kind.”

And, it turns out, both Hillary and Obama are both going to be in NYC tomorrow!

Then again, this could be — and likely is — mere wishful thinking. True, the superdelegates appear to be flocking to Obama now, putting him over the top. And it’s almost inconceivable that, absent a Bobby Kennedy scenario, Obama doesn’t get the nomination. But nothing in Clinton’s makeup suggests she’ll let those minor details get in her way.

Dean Barnett speculates that Clinton is just pretending to be gracious while expecting the Michelle Obama “whitey” video to come out and destroy her opponent’s campaign.

If the Obama campaign does self-destruct, Hillary can use her 24 hours of graciousness as a signal that she cared more about the party than her own ambitions all along, and thus is the perfect person to reunite the party.

If true, it would rock like the proverbial pony. But it seems bloody unlikely.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Dave Schuler says:

    Steady lad, ix-nay on the ony-pay.

  2. Michael says:

    Steady lad, ix-nay on the ony-pay

    Yeah, too forced, let it come naturally or not at all.