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Published: Thursday, 5/15/2008

Clinton campaign says it has most votes


NEW YORK - Democrat Hillary Clinton vowed to remain in the presidential race until the final primaries next month while her campaign built a case that she now leads in the popular vote if the disputed contests in Michigan and Florida are counted.

Mrs. Clinton gave a round of television interviews yesterday before meeting with her finance team and top fund-raisers at her Washington home.

Participants described the session as upbeat and said the unifying message was that Mrs. Clinton, with her lopsided victory over front-runner Barack Obama in West Virginia on Tuesday, now had the lead in votes cast thus far. The numbers, however, include the results from the Florida and Michigan primaries, which the national Democratic Party has not recognized.

"You don't walk off the court before the buzzer sounds," Mrs. Clinton said on CNN. "You never know, you might get a 3-point shot at the end."

Advisers said she had attracted 22,000 new donors in the past four days, and, on a conference call with reporters, campaign chairman Terry McAuliffe said the campaign had pulled in a seven-figure fund-raising haul online Tuesday night. He declined to be more specific.

Campaign officials also urged party leaders and elected officials known as super delegates to remain uncommitted until the final primaries in Montana and South Dakota on June 3.

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