Hillary Rodham Clinton

Kentucky Primary Victory Speech - May 20, 2008

Hillary Rodham Clinton
May 20, 2008— Louisville, Kentucky
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Thank you all very, very much. I am so grateful for this victory, and I am so appreciative because tonight I'm thinking about why we're all here, and it's not just to win a primary or even just to win an election. What propels us is the struggle to realize America's promise, a nation where every child can achieve his or her God-given potential, where every man and woman has a fair chance, where we fulfill- where we fulfill the ideals our founders pledged their lives to defend, and our nation was born to uphold. I want to say a special word this evening about someone who has spent his whole life dedicated to realizing the promise of America. Sen. Ted Kennedy is one of the greatest, progressive leaders in our party's history and one of the most effective senators in our country's history. He's my friend, and he's my inspiration. More than that, he is a hero to millions of Americans whose lives he has fought to better.

I'm proud to have stood side by side with Ted Kennedy to increase the minimum wage, to extend health insurance to millions of children, to help stop insurance companies from discriminating against the sick. But the privileges that I have had and so many others have had because of the battles we have fought side by side with him are just a mere handful of what he has done during his entire public service, five extraordinary decades devoted to America. And as a lifelong champion for social justice and equality, his work has made the path easier for me, for Sen. Obama and for countless others. He's been with us for our fights, and we're with him now in his.

And I know he's going to fight with all of his legendary might, supported by his wonderful wife Vicki and his entire family against this latest challenge, and we wish him well and send our thoughts and prayers to him.

Tonight we've achieved an important victory. It's not just Kentucky bluegrass that's music to my ears. It's the sound of your overwhelming vote of confidence even in the face of some pretty tough odds. Some have said your votes didn't matter, that this campaign was over, that allowing everyone to vote and every vote to count would somehow be a mistake.

But that didn't stop you. You've never given up on me because you know I'll never give up on you. This is one of the closest races for a party's nomination in modern history. We're winning the popular vote, and I'm more determined than ever to see that every vote is cast and every ballot counted.

I commend Sen. Obama and his supporters, and while we continue to go toe to toe for this nomination, we do see eye to eye when it comes to uniting our party to elect a Democratic president…and your help will keep us going. We've made it this far together, so please go to HillaryClinton.com.

Now I'm told that more people have voted for me than for anyone who's ever run for the Democratic nomination. And I'm going on now to campaign in Montana, South Dakota and Puerto Rico. And I'm going to keep standing up for the voters of Florida and Michigan, and that's why I'm going to keep making our case until we have a nominee, whoever she may be.

I'm in this race to fight for your future, and that's why whatever happens, I'll work as hard as I can to elect a Democratic president this fall. We will come together, as a party, united by common values and common cause. United in service of the hopes and dreams that know no boundaries of race or creed, gender or geography, and when we do there will be no stopping us.

We won't just unite our party, we will unite our country and make sure America's best years are still ahead of us.