Clinton: ‘Who gives a f— about Chris Van Hollen?’

Greg Nash

Hillary Clinton reacted angrily to then-Senate candidate Chris Van Hollen’s attempt to not help black voters to the polls at Maryland’s primary, according to a new book.

The Hill’s Amie Parnes and Sidewire’s Jonathan Allen report in “Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign” that Van Hollen’s campaign urged its union allies to not aggressively push black voters to the ballot box, fearing that they would support Van Hollen’s primary opponent, then-Rep. Donna Edwards (D-Md.).

Clinton, who was facing the Maryland’s Democratic presidential primary on the same day, bitterly dismissed Van Hollen’s plan when she heard about it

{mosads}”Who gives a f— about Chris Van Hollen?” Clinton asked one of her aides following a campaign event in Baltimore, the book said. “What the f— are we going to do to fix this?”

Clinton’s aide promised to relay the message to the unions, to persuade them to ignore Van Hollen’s calls: “Do you want another friend in the Senate or do you want one in the White House?”

Van Hollen’s office contacted The Hill and categorically denied the charge.

“He spent heavily on African American radio and on voter contact in Baltimore to help drive turnout on Election Day,” an aide in Van Hollen’s Senate office said.

A branch of the Service Employees International Union representing more than 10,000 workers in the Maryland and Washington, D.C. area also refuted the claim that Van Hollen did not aggressively push black voters to the polls.

“1199SEIU members worked tirelessly with the Van Hollen campaign to turn out African Americans in Baltimore and across the state. Furthermore, we joined then candidate Van Hollen at a Get Out the Vote Rally for Hillary Clinton in Baltimore,” Lisa Brown, the union’s executive vice president for Maryland and D.C., said in a statement.

“1199SEIU and other unions stood with the majority of African American state leaders who endorsed Chris Van Hollen because he was the best candidate. And our hard work paid off, as he did well with African American voters — and ultimately won the election.”



Van Hollen had earned “a maximum of seven” on Clinton’s enemies list following the 2008 presidential campaign, the book said.

Clinton ultimately defeated Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) in the Maryland presidential primary, winning 63 percent of the vote after a series of polls that showed the race being closer.

Van Hollen defeated Edwards in the primary and went on to win the general election to the Senate.

Tags Bernie Sanders Hillary Clinton Maryland

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