Clinton to Concede Race to Obama Saturday

Sen. Hillary Clinton prepares to end her historic presidential campaign.

ByABC News
June 4, 2008, 11:08 AM

June 5, 2008 — -- Ending her historic, hard fought bid to become the Democratic party's first woman presidential nominee, Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., will announce Saturday, surrounded by supporters, that she is conceding to Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill.

Her email to supporters, sent out overnight, said it all: "I have said throughout the campaign that I would strongly support Senator Obama if he were the Democratic Party's nominee, and I intend to deliver on that promise."

Late Wednesday night the Clinton campaign confirmed Clinton will be hosting an event in Washington, D.C., Saturday, "to thank her supporters and express her support for Senator Obama and party unity."

Thousands have been invited by the Clinton campaign to a yet-to-be-determined site -- everyone from people who gave her campaign $5 to multimillionaires.

Clinton supporters have begun an arm-twisting campaign to get Obama to pick Clinton as his vice-presidential candidate.

Robert L. Johnson, the founder of Black Entertainment Television and a prominent Clinton confidant, said in an interview that she was 'absolutely ready' to talk to Obama about the No. 2 slot and would take it if offered.

Obama announced Wednesday he had tapped three people, including President John F. Kennedy's daughter, Caroline Kennedy, to lead his search for a vice presidential nominee.

The question is whether Obama will ask Clinton to join his ticket.

"I think it's very important for me to meet with her and talk to her about how we move this party forward," Obama told ABC's Charlie Gibson Wednesday. "My main goal is to make sure that the party is unified."

However former President Jimmy Carter has said he thinks an Obama-Clinton ticket is a bad idea.

In an interview with the British newspaper the Guardian, former President Jimmy Carter said "I think it would be the worst mistake that could be made. That would just accumulate the negative aspects of both candidates."

"If you take that 50% who just don't want to vote for Clinton," Carter said, "and add it to whatever element there might be who don't think Obama is white enough or old enough or experienced enough or because he's got a middle name that sounds Arab, you could have the worst of both worlds."

Obama has wasted little time in putting his mark on the Democratic Party. -- the Democratic National Committee will no longer accept contributions from federal lobbyists and PACs, in keeping with Obama's well-publicized policy.

Instead of ending her campaign and offering her support to Obama when he won the party's nomination Tuesday night, Clinton said she would take a few days to think about her next move.

She spent much of the day Wednesday on the telephone speaking with members of Congress and superdelegates on Capitol Hill.

But some of her most loyal backers had begun to publicly urge her to exit the race and unify the Democratic Party behind Obama.

"Unless she has some good reasons -- which I can't think of -- I really think we ought to get on with endorsements [of Obama] and dealing with what we have to deal with ... so we can move forward," Rep. Charlie Rangel, D-N.Y., told ABC News' Kate Snow.

But Rangel said he's not sure the vice presidency is what Clinton is after.

"The fact that she said that she would be willing to serve as vice president doesn't necessarily mean that she's seeking the vice president's job," Rangel said.