March 12th, 2008
02:00 PM ET
10 years ago

Blitzer: Get ready for a primary season extension

The primary season is about to get a bit longer.

The primary season is about to get a bit longer.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Right after Barack Obama won the Mississippi Democratic Primary, I had a chance to speak with him. Two points that he made stand out in my mind: 1) that he’s open to possibly having Hillary Clinton serve as his vice presidential running mate; and 2) that he believes there eventually will be make-over Democratic contests in both Michigan and Florida.

“Senator Clinton,” he told me, “is a very capable person, and, as I’ve said before, she’d be on anybody’s short list.”

That certainly doesn’t mean he would ask her to join his ticket - but it does mean he’s clearly not ruling it out.

She seems to have gone further in recent days, hinting that she would ask him to serve as her Vice Presidential running mate. Bill Clinton has made a similar point.

All this is happening despite the increasingly nasty exchanges that have been hurled against each other. Obama told me that he was “confident” that once the Democratic contest was resolved, “the party is going to be unified” in the battle against John McCain. An Obama-Clinton or Clinton-Obama ticket, many Democrats believe, would go a long way toward uniting the party.

On the make-over contests in Florida and Michigan, Obama expressed some concern about the logistics for another election. Will, for example, a mail-in ballot work? But he noted that conversations were currently underway between the campaigns and the Democratic National Committee. “I’m sure it will get sorted out,” he said.

Bottom line: get ready for the Michigan and Florida make-over elections in June – after the last scheduled contest in Puerto Rico, now expected to take place on June 1.

–CNN Anchor Wolf Blitzer

Filed under: Wolf Blitzer
soundoff (177 Responses)
  1. Daniel from Kansas


    You need to seriously address criticism that CNN is purposely trying to spin this race to make it appear like Clinton has a shot at winning, SO THAT IT REMAINS CLOSE, SO THAT MORE PEOPLE WATCH.

    Do you read these comments? Do you care what your readers and viewers say and think?

    Trying to say this race is "frozen in time" and making it sound like Hillary won Texas (when she really lost) and trying to say Obama has lost his momentum is a shameless attempt at ratings.

    Please respond.

    March 12, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  2. Mike, Toronto

    Wolf, I take the opportunity to tell you that, as much as I've appreciated your shows in the past, I decided to stop watching them. Instead of being informational, they are now taking a more and more active role in influencing your audience on how to vote, and this makes them more and more irrelevant to me. I will go back watching when CNN will start providing more information and less biased opinions coming from the network's comentators who are supposed to be neutral.

    March 12, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  3. Micheal

    Wolf, please let it go! Barack and Hillary will never be on the same ticket–NEVER Wolf. The sooner you understand this-the better off you will be. I understand that you are pulling for Hillary, but you need to be ready to accept defeat gracefully.

    March 12, 2008 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  4. ct

    this is the one of saddest parts of elections. this ignorance for 2 states full of people wanting their voice to be heard. It is like to erase them from the Earth. Everyone has right to vote. Those rules are old fashioned.

    what is so expensive to make one voting day in schools etc? This should be possible!

    all you who voted, how would you feel when suddenly your votes would not be heard, would not be counted? or your vote would be split – and your half would maybe would be given to one you do not want? I would feel betrayed, used.

    March 12, 2008 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  5. Maria

    Yes, those in public offices should be hold at a higher standard and those holding them accountable seem to look the other way; from commits to personal actions. The more I hear and see of Obama the more interested I get in lettting everyone I know just he would be a change for this country.

    March 12, 2008 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  6. henrie alabama


    March 12, 2008 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  7. Fran

    After reading the blogs on CNN, MSNBC, and FOX, I believe that it is too late for the party to come together by November. Many bloggers are stating they will vote for McCain before voting for Obama. Obama supporters are saying they will not vote for Hillary. In addition, the blogs are full of comments about race. Bill and Hillary were the first to introduce race into this election. Many bloggers are stating Obama and "blacks" are responsible for the race issue. As a result of on-going statements, we do not need to question if there will be a split (it has happened). I believe the Clintons have succeeded at ensuring there is no way for either candidate to win in November.

    March 12, 2008 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  8. Linda

    Hillary has gone too far in her tearing down of Barack. She can't now go out and campaign with him after trying to argue for so long that he's unqualified. She COULD have been the first female Vice President in history, but her own dirty tactics have now eliminated that as a possibility. Isn't karma lovely.....

    March 12, 2008 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  9. Jeanne

    In my opinion, people are going to be so sick of both candidates by June that McCain might have a real shot at winning. McCain's VP choice will be critical since there's a chance McCain might die in office due to his age.

    As for the Dems, I'm not in favor of either a Clinton-Obama ticket or an Obama-Clinton ticket. Mainly, I'm not interested in giving any longevity to the Clinton dynasty. If Obama wins the nomination, his VP choice will also be critical and, for Dems, adding Clinton to the ticket would probably work, but for independents, and I can only speak for myself, I'd prefer someone like Bill Richardson or Colin Powell.

    March 12, 2008 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  10. Richard Tabuteau

    Obama is not really interested in her being his VP, but he can't say that especially when people like you keep badgering him on the point. He needs to make sure his coalition of support stays together and to seep into Clinton's. Part of doing that is by saying "she's on my short list."

    March 12, 2008 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  11. franklahai

    Why would Wolf NOT give up this issue? This is clearly a disaster, worse than any train wreck, to have Obama and Hillary on Wolf's dream ticket to the Congo Basin! Chill it Wolf; I remain one of the few people that still has great regard for your journalistic ethics; I hate to lose it!!!

    March 12, 2008 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  12. Sante

    Is America ready to see beyond the race?

    Obama: too much ambitions and posture!

    "He Challenges and bargains at the same time !"/Shelby Steele/

    I would say it simple: gifted manipulator!

    March 12, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  13. Keith

    Hillary may be on a short list but that does't mean he will ask her and he shouldn't. The Clinton(s) as VP would be such a distraction that nothing positive would come of it. Now is the time to make a clean break from the politcs of yesteday and those better suited for a new era.
    Also, I think you are wron about the make-over elections, at least other reports on CNN suggest that we are not even close to a make over solution. Some accmodation will need to be reached to seat delegates after the primaries in all states have been completed. Since these were not valid contests then they will need to come up with some fair appropriation of the delegates based on the outcome of the states that played by the rules.
    Keith – TX

    March 12, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  14. Ron, NJ

    Actually, a little bit of an edit. Puerto Rico is not the last scheduled election. South Dakota and Montana are actually the last scheduled contests, holding their elections June 3rd.

    March 12, 2008 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  15. Independent

    Wolf, remember the extended impeachment season? There will be more of this kind coming if HCR is elected, simply for doing everything and anything to cling to power.

    March 12, 2008 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  16. California Viewer

    On his short list? What nonsense, Wolf. You've been in this business for decades and should not have to be providing cover for this candidate's bitter arrogance towards his rival. Obama has railed about Hillary Clinton's "high negatives" (a term he got from his friend Karl Rove) on CNN, a clip you've played repeatedly. Read the Times of London last Sunday and you'll see that he has been interviewing Republicans like Chuck Hagel for the VP slot and cabinet position. So why are you giving his claim credence? It's not like you CNN folks ever afford Hillary Clinton the benefit of the doubt. She steps out of her house in the morning and looks up at the sun, and by that afternoon you have a whole panel of strategists convincing viewers that she caused the drought in the Southeast.

    March 12, 2008 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  17. J

    don't montana and south dakota vote on 3 june?

    March 12, 2008 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  18. Leah J, CA

    Wolf, I have been watching all the programs on CNN for some months now. You have been biased toward Obama in your coverage, but since the poll on the subject a few weeks ago you have done better at being more centered. Where is the coverage of Obama's pandering to the Latinos using the attack message launched against Lou Dobss by La Raza and MALDEF? He even MISREPRESENTED Lou's position to the crowd. Pander, Pander, Pander....cover that as thoroughly as you would IF it were Clinton.

    March 12, 2008 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  19. Andre, Hyattsville MD

    Goodness Wolf, not you too!! If those are the main two points that stood out in your mind I am sadly going to have to place you in my imaginary box of 'Media Personalities who Bought the Hogwash'.

    Lets look at this objectively here. If we were both trying our best to obtain a position, and I constantly tried my best to pull you down along the way, would you pick me as your right hand guy?? For heavens sake you wouldn't, coupled with the fact that she represents everything what the foundation of his campaign is against, I am pretty sure I would have a better chance trying to find Spitzer's moral conscience, than she does being selected as the VP.

    Please, stop giving this outrageous suggestion so much media attention.

    March 12, 2008 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  20. Sam

    My father-in-law who is white, retired, life long Democrat, Union organizer, campaign worker, has declared that if Barack Obama is nominated, he'd vote Republican for the first time in life. Funny thing is I am a person of color.

    This is common among white older voters who are Demcrats. I don't see either Democrat candidate winning this election cycle, which is a shame. McCain is going to win without really trying.

    March 12, 2008 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  21. CaliMale4Hill

    Finally, I consider this honorable on behalf of Obama, keeping his option open for a joint ticket with Hillary, good man!
    I still think Hillary is a better President for now and Obama as the VP!

    March 12, 2008 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  22. josi

    How did you possibly extrapolate "get ready for the Michigan and Florida make-over elections in June" from "I’m sure it will get sorted out"? Typical CNN pro-Clinton spin.

    March 12, 2008 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  23. Amy in Iowa

    In your dreams Wolf. I believe Obama was being congenial. But with a list of other qualified and more trustworthy candidates, Hillary would be at the bottom of the VP list.

    March 12, 2008 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  24. deanne

    I think the fact it took him at least 3 days to respond to the Clinton's campaign planting the seed of VP tells the story. Of course he doesn't want to rule it out, he's not stupid. I believe she would be his and I also believe He would be Hers. If he's the nominee, that would be the Only way I'd vote for him. On the re-do of Michigan and Florida, it Should be done. Why should the voters be penalized? Let them vote and let it Count!

    March 12, 2008 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  25. Janel, St. Paul, MN

    I'd vote for an Obama-Clinton ticket, but NOT a Clinton-Obama ticket.

    But. . .I doubt it will happen. How in the world could Obama want the Clinton's after all the back-biting and sleazy rascist remarks by their campaign supporters.

    March 12, 2008 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
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