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Bill Clinton / Not Counting Flor & Mich / Would be Dumb Politics

Clinton, Obama compete in Oregon, Kentucky

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Barack Obama competed with Hillary Rodham Clinton in Kentucky and Oregon primaries on Tuesday, the latest contests in a historic Democratic presidential race moving inexorably his way.

Before vote-counting began, Obama had 1,917 delegates, little more than 100 shy of the 2,026 needed to become the first black presidential nominee of a major party. The former first lady had 1,722.

Regardless of the results of the night’s two primaries, Obama decided to mark a victory of sorts. He arranged an evening appearance in Iowa, site of his critical Jan. 3 caucus triumph, to claim a majority of the delegates at stake in all 56 contests on the campaign calendar.

“The question then becomes how do we complete the nomination process so that we have the majority of the total number of delegates, including superdelegates, to be able to say this thing’s over,” Obama told The Associated Press in an interview.

Clinton looked for a consolation for the strongest presidential campaign of any woman in history. She hoped to finish with more votes than her rival in all the contests combined, including Florida and Michigan, two states that were stripped of their delegates by the national party for moving their primary dates too early.

Campaigning with his wife in Kentucky, former President Clinton dismissed Obama’s inevitable claim on pledged delegates.

“There won’t be tonight, unless you decapitate Michigan and Florida, which violates our values and is dumb politics,” Bill Clinton said.

Kentucky, where Hillary Clinton concentrated much of her efforts in recent days, had 51 convention delegates at stake. 

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