This is a rush transcript from "America's Election HQ," June 5, 2008. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
BILL HEMMER, CO-HOST: Back now to the race for the White House. My next guest thinks that Hillary Clinton is in fantasy land. In an op-ed piece today in the New York Post, Washington bureau chief, Charlie Hurt says, quote, "Hillary Rodham Clinton is ending her quest for the presidency precisely as she began it: with a false sense of entitlement, complete self-absorption and delusional lies."
Charlie Hurt is live in Washington.
Tell us how you really feel, Charlie.
CHARLIE HURT, NEW YORK POST: I think it is summed up there. But you know, if you talk to a lot of Democrats, you know, they say that Hillary Clinton, you know, began wearing out her welcome a long time ago, and by yesterday — by last night, she'd really worn out her welcome, and, you know, my understanding is -
HEMMER: You know, Charlie, let me just — history is not going to remember whether she concedes on a Tuesday night or Saturday afternoon.
HURT: No, but I think that by November, you know, the concern the Democrats have is that come November, that these divisions within the party will still be pretty fresh and sore, and that it — that it could really cost them the election.
Now, you know, I don't particularly care one way or the other about how that turns out, but I do think that it is - you know, she has run this campaign as being something about her, and less about, you know, about the party. She has put her own, you know, ambitions ahead of the — what was good for the party. And while that's been marvelous for those of us covering it and very entertaining, I know a lot of Democrats who are deeply wounded and feel like the party has been permanently hurt, at least, well - at least going into November.
HEMMER: Yes. It strikes me that there is just a slow acceptance on her part, to wind down this hard-fought 16-month battle and to accept the reality. It appears now that she has finally done — disagree or not?
HURT: Absolutely. And the line between, you know, persistence and never giving up and delusional is probably a fine line. But my understanding, if she would completely still be in this race right now were it not for people like Ed Rendell and Charlie Rangel telling her behind the scenes that she had to get out and that it was over.
And sure, I think that she will certainly be applauded for that sort of persistence, but, you know — had Barack Obama been up against anybody else, that his opponent would have gotten out probably after Super Tuesday.
HEMMER: Well, they are fighters. That phone call you referenced that took place apparently yesterday afternoon about 3:30, you're probably right about that, too. So, I'll give you that point. Thanks for coming on, Charlie.
HURT: Good to be with you, Bill.
HEMMER: Charlie Hurt in Washington, I'll bring you back here next time, all right?
HEMMER: Good deal.
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