Belfast Telegraph

Obama 'best placed to sort out economic mess', says Hillary

The US financial crisis will help Barack Obama to win the race to the White House, his former rival Hillary Clinton said today.

Mrs Clinton said the Illinois senator who beat her in the Democratic primary season was best placed to haul the United States out of the "mess" it was in.

The former first lady said his Republican rival John McCain, who has admitted that the economy is not his strongest suit, had a history of supporting deregulation of business, one of the factors being blamed for the current crisis.

``Barack Obama's going to win,'' she told CBS's The Early Show.

``No doubt ... if anybody looks at the mess we're in today.

``Barack Obama is being advised by the same people who got us out of the ditch in 1993.

``I think our ticket is well-equipped for handling the mess that they're going to inherit.

``Let's make no mistake about it: this is going to be one of the most difficult presidential transitions.''

The 60-year-old New York senator added that while she recognised that race and gender play a role in the minds of voters as they make their presidential choices, she believed enough people wanted change from Republican policies to put Mr Obama over the top in November.

Yesterday, an AP-Yahoo News poll, conducted with Stanford University, said that being black could cost Mr Obama six percentage points on November 4.

``There's a penalty for prejudice, and it's not trivial,'' said Stanford University political scientist Paul Sniderman.

He added that racism ``might be enough to tip the election'' in a close contest.

The poll of 2,227 adults was conducted August 27-September 5, and was designed to probe people's racial attitudes and how those attitudes affect voting.

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