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Hillary takes Pennsylvania
Ashish Kumar Sen writes from Washington

Hillary Rodham Clinton kept alive her presidential campaign on Tuesday night by notching up a convincing victory over Barack Obama in Pennsylvania’s primary election.

She won 55 per cent of the vote to 45 per cent for her rival with 94 per cent of the vote counted. Clinton won the votes of blue-collar workers, women and white men in a state in which the loss of jobs is a dominant concern.

“Some counted me out and said to drop out,” Hillary told supporters at a post-election rally in Philadelphia last night. “But the American people don’t quit. And they deserve a president who doesn’t quit, either.”

The next contests are in Indiana and North Carolina on May 6.

A win in Pennsylvania was crucial for Clinton who is trailing Obama in the delegate count. The state has 158 delegates. A candidate needs 1,025 delegates to win the Democratic Party’s nomination.

Ahead of the Pennsylvania contest, Obama had 1,415 pledged delegates and 233 superdelegates. Clinton had 1,251 pledged delegates and 258 superdelegates. Superdelegates are always free to support any candidate at any time.

Realising the importance of a win in Pennsylvania — for Obama to build his delegate lead, and for Clinton to build her case that she would be the stronger Democratic candidate in November — both candidates wooed the crucial working-class voting bloc.

Obama’s campaign was bogged down by incendiary comments by his pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, and later the senator’s own controversial remarks that small-town Americans are bitter and cling to guns and religion because of their economic hardships.

The election capped six weeks of intense campaigning in which Obama outspent Clinton by a huge margin. Obama reported spending $11.2 million on television ads in the state compared with $4.8 million for Clinton.

Despite this big investment Obama did not expect to win the state. On Tuesday, even before polls closed in the state he was wooing voters in Indiana, the site of the next election battle.

By winning Pennsylvania she hopes to convince superdelegates to the Democratic National Party convention to disregard Obama’s delegate count lead and pick her as their nominee.

The remaining Democratic contests are primaries in North Carolina, Indiana, Oregon, Kentucky, West Virginia, Montana, South Dakota and Puerto Rico, and caucuses in Guam.



Mom would be better Prez than dad: Chelsea

Durham April 23
Chelsea Clinton says her mother would be a better president than her father because she is more prepared and more progressive.

Clinton told about 300 people at Duke University yesterday that former President Bill Clinton didn’t have a complete grasp of the inner workings of Congress when he took office in 1993. The former first daughter said her mother, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton, would benefit from her time as a New York senator. Chelsea Clinton said her mother knows how to be productive in Washington. She stands her ground on issues but knows how to work with Republicans. — AP



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