Richardson Denies Saying Obama Can't Win, Hillary Doesn't

04/11/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011
  • The Huffington Post

Bill Richardson's office has released a statement responding to a charge from the Clinton campaign that it he said that Barack Obama "can't win" the general election:

Statement from Richardson spokesman Pahl Shipley:

"Governor Richardson has never questioned Senator Obama's electability. He believes Barack Obama is the right person to lead this country and he will be America's next President.

In fact, the Governor endorsed Senator Obama based on his ability to bring this country together both domestically and internationally.

The Governor wants to move beyond this he said-she said nonsense. It's irrelevant and petty. The focus should be on ending the war in Iraq, improving the economy and passing universal health care, which is exactly what Senator Obama is talking about."

ABC News reported on Wednesday that it was Clinton who told Richardson that Obama couldn't win. Clinton appeared to deny that report today, but according to her aides, she misunderstood the question:

"That's a no," Clinton, D-N.Y., told reporters at the end of a press conference in Burbank, California, when asked if she made the comment in a private conversation with Richardson.

"We have been going back and forth in this campaign of who said what to whom and let me say this, that I don't talk about private conversations but I have consistently made the case that I can win," she said earlier in the press conference.

Clinton aides now insist the Senator misunderstood the question, asserting the candidate believed she was answering whether or not she would discuss a private conversation.

"I just double checked," Doug Hattaway, Clinton spokesperson told ABC News, "She was saying she was not going to tell (the reporter) about her private conversation."