New York, June 4 : New York Senator Hillary Clinton, who sought to be the first woman President of US, refused to withdraw from the race, after Senator Barak Obama clinched the Democratic presidential nomination.
Obama's victory will be made official with the vote of delegates at the Democratic convention in late August.
A defiant Clinton paid tribute on Tuesday night to all that Obama had accomplished, but stopped well short of acknowledging him as the Democratic Party's nominee.
"This has been a long campaign, and I will be making no decisions tonight," Clinton told a cheering hometown crowd at Manhattan's Baruch College, moments after being declared the winner in South Dakota's primary.
In a speech that was part thank-you, part peace offering and part ultimatum, she teasingly acknowledged that the question of the day was, "What does Hillary want?"
"I want the nearly 18 million Americans who voted for me to be respected, to be heard and no longer to be invisible," The Daily News quoted her, as saying.
Hillary also reach out to Obama in a way that underscored her desire to be offered a place on Obama's ticket as his vice president, a theme she and her supporters sounded all day.
"It has been an honour to contest these primaries with him, just as it is an honour to call him my friend," she told the hometown crowd.
In a conference call with members of New York's congressional delegation earlier in the day, Hillary was asked directly if she would be willing to serve as Obama's No. 2 to draw in Hispanic voters and unify the party at-large.
"She said that she was open to doing whatever she could do to ensure a Democratic victory," said Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-N.Y.), who asked Clinton the question.
Although Obama beat her handily among delegates, which technically is the only group that matters in selecting a nominee, Hillary unquestionably challenged him on the popular vote.