CLEAR FORK, W.V. -- At a campaign rally in rural West Virginia, Hillary Clinton said that, much like her, John F. Kennedy also didn't have the necessary delegates to clinch the nomination as late as the Democratic National Convention in 1960.
"It was West Virginia that made it possible for John Kennedy to become president," Clinton told a small group at a local high school. "Now John Kennedy didn't have the number of delegates he needed when he went to the convention in 1960, he had something equally as important he had West Virginia behind him."
As Clinton struggles to keep pace with Barack Obama in pledged delegates, in superdelegates, and in campaign contributions, her argument to stay in the race has shifted several times in the past few weeks. She went from making the case that she has won all the 'big' states, to then saying she has won all of the swing states, and now in West Virginia, Clinton says no president has won the White House without the help of West Virginia. It is no surprise as Clinton's claim comes as she poised to beat Obama here by as much as 30 points.
"Democrats don't elect a president unless West Virginia votes for them," Clinton said drawing loud applause from the audience. "Everybody knows West Virginia has picked presidents pretty accurately over the last years."
Clinton is crisscrossing the state by ground today spending most of the day driving down the winding back roads of rural West Virginia where every few miles out of the mountains one can see enormous coal mines looming.
She refrained from engaging her opponent directly but did take him to task for not supporting the federal gas tax holiday. Clinton said Obama calls it "a gimmick" which prompted one man in the audience to yell "We need that gimmick!"
Clinton ended her speech with a final plea to voters to turn out tomorrow saying again, "West Virginia has nearly always picked the next president." She even called on young voters to get involved in the election. "I am asking for you help tomorrow. Those of you who have just turned old enough to vote, I would be honored to have your first vote."