Obama Claims Delegate Victory; Clinton Stays In
Barack Obama may have reached what he describes as "a major milestone on this journey" up the 2008 campaign trail. The senator from Illinois has now secured a majority of the "pledged" delegates to be chosen in the party's primaries and caucuses.
Citing that achievement, Obama told wildly cheering supporters in Des Moines that he was now "within reach of the Democratic nomination for president of the United States of America."
But Hillary Clinton is not going to let him grab the prize this week.
The lady is not quitting this contest just yet.
The pressure on Clinton to finish her run for the Democratic presidential nomination has been intense. And it will get more intense now that the results from Tuesday's primaries in Kentucky (a loss for the Illinoisan) and Oregon (a win for the Illinoisan) have given Obama that pledged-delegate majority. The senator from New York's keeping her campaign afloat by writing checks out of her own account. And she's watching from the sidelines as Obama and Republican John McCain launch their fall campaigns against one another.
But there is one ironclad rule when it comes to races for presidential nominations: You don't quit when you are winning primaries.
And Clinton has won another primary by a lopsided margin.
The former first lady took 65 percent of the vote in Kentucky to just 30 percent for Obama -- almost as overwhelming win as she secured last week in West Virginia. That victory had her crowing Tuesday night that, "It's not just the Kentucky bluegrass that music to my ears -- it's the sound of your overwhelming vote of confidence even in the face of tough odds."
"You've never given up on me, because you know I've never given up on you," told her cheering supporters in a speech that will be repeated as she moves her campaign on to Puerto Rico (where she should do well) and the last primary states of Montana and South Dakota (where Obama's probably a little ahead).