- The Washington Times - Monday, February 11, 2008

WASHINGTON (AP) — Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton said today that the replacement of her campaign manager reflected a need to add more people to her campaign staff.

Former campaign manager Patti Solis Doyle will remain a trusted friend and adviser, Clinton said.

“There is just too much to be done, so we had to add some more people. There really is not significant change, we really just got to get more help, we just don’t have enough help,” Clinton told a Chicago television news crew. Solis Doyle is a Chicago native.

Maggie Williams, a longtime Clinton confidante and former chief of staff from Clinton’s days as first lady, replaced Solis Doyle.

Solis Doyle announced her departure to the staff yesterday.

“This has already been the longest Presidential campaign in the history of our nation, and one that has required enormous sacrifices from all of us and our families,” she wrote.

Clinton insisted she wasn’t concerned that the replacement of Solis Doyle, whose parents were Mexican immigrants, would anger Hispanic voters in Texas or other upcoming contests with a large number of Hispanic voters.

“No, no, not at all. We have a very strong base and she’s deeply involved in the campaign going forward,” Clinton said.

Clinton addressed a campaign audience in the District of Columbia one day before the nation’s capital holds its primary.

She told a small gathering sponsored by the National Council for Negro Women that she supports full voting rights for District residents.

“I think this is long overdue,” Clinton said to cheers. “I think it is wrong that we disenfranchise the people who live and work in this city.”

Voting rights in a significant issue in Washington, where nearly 60 percent of the population is black. The former first lady has struggled to gain traction with black voters in her race against rival Barack Obama, who hopes to be the first black president.

Obama is expected to win the District of Columbia primary Tuesday as well as contests in neighboring Virginia and Maryland, in part because of his popularity among blacks who make up a significant portion of the Democratic electorate in each place.

Clinton acknowledged that many black voters face a “challenging” choice between her candidacy and Obama’s.

“It’s a good problem to have,” Clinton said, noting their similarities.

She said, however, that it was “disappointing” that Obama’s health care proposal would not require everyone to carry health insurance, as her plan would.


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