May 8th, 2008
03:00 PM ET
10 years ago

Blitzer on Obama: He seemed at ease


Wolf Blitzer interviewed Obama Thursday. (AP Photo)

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Having interviewed Senator Barack Obama on several occasions in recent years, I must say he seemed very relaxed and at ease when we spoke in The Situation Room today. On earlier occasions, he often seemed more wound up and intense. That was certainly true during the four Democratic presidential debates that I moderated over the past year. On this day, however, he seemed very comfortable and very confident. And with good reason.

I showed him the new issue of Time magazine, which features him on the cover, along with the words: “And the winner is…” Asked for his reaction, he said: “I don’t want to be jinxed. We’ve still got some work to do.” It reminded me of superstitious athletes who fear having their picture on the cover of Sports Illustrated.

Obama could not have been more effusive in his praise of Hillary Clinton. He kept calling her an “extraordinary” candidate. In response to a video question from a CNN I-Reporter, he said Senator Clinton would certainly be “on anybody’s short list” as a vice presidential running mate. “But it would be presumptuous of me at this point when she is still actively running, when she is highly favored to win two of the next three contests, for me to somehow suggest that she should be a running mate,” he said. “At this point, I think we have to resolve this process and then we can figure it out.”

While he had nice things to say about Hillary Clinton, he didn’t hold back in criticizing his other opponent, John McCain, on a host of domestic economic and national security issues. He seemed ready to move on to the next chapter of his campaign.

soundoff (248 Responses)
  1. Eliz

    Clinton VP 08,12!..... thats the only way Obama can win if he picks a different VP then its President MCcain in January–

    May 8, 2008 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  2. yeah yeah

    Hillary is here to stay because many lifelong democrats do not like election fixing that has influenced this primary.

    We will NOT vote for Obama- for no reason but to protest the corruption of this primary: Advantages for one, obstacles for the other. Media bias. Flawed caucus format. Obama supporters using bully tactics at caucus. Obama with his gloating, cocky, arrogant mocking of Hillary with his Annie Oakley antics (while claiming he does not go negative). Obama with his ridiculing of Hillary by dismissively brushing her off his shoulder ( again, not negative? is this the uniter?). And, of course the Fl and Mi fiasco. It is never good or right to disenfranchise your voter base.

    So We WILL teach the DNC a lesson with our vote in Nov.

    It is that simple.

    May 8, 2008 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  3. Praetorian, Fort Myers

    Why wouldn't he be at ease.
    He'll be the first President in history who aspired to the post and became elected on: zero resume, nothing but rhetoric regarding his agenda, and his only campaign motto worth remembering is "HOPE".

    Truly, he is either the best thing since pastuerized milk–or he is all Bison dung–time will tell.

    May 8, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  4. ts

    Obama has worked hard and he deserves to feel at ease! The math can't be diluted. He has had a lot of explaining to do over the past few weeks and he still won North Carolina with a huge margin, not to mention, GOP running ads with Him and Rev W In North Carolina. Michigan and Florida knew they were breaking the rules and so did Clinton's campaign. She was asked in New Hampshire in November about these elections and she said " they don't count". Quite frankly, I don't recall ever going to a sports match and saw the rules change at half time/extra time to accomodate the loser. This is what is going on and to use "disenfranchising the residents of those states" as an excuse. Please, give me a break.

    May 8, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |

    mark my usually straight democratic ticket over to McCain this time for sure!!!

    May 8, 2008 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  6. demetris-cyprus

    Its not just America that needs the change Obama is promising but the whole world.

    I believe he can and a lot better than the other two candidates.

    May 8, 2008 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  7. David James

    Thanks Wolf for a job well done. Fox should take a lesson from you about fair and balanced.

    May 8, 2008 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  8. Dell, Laurel, MD

    Presidential!!! Wow, Obama will serve our country well. Hillary go dry your hair or get botox or something other than continue in your same old pesky ways. Go away Annie Oakley – Whiskey is calling...

    May 8, 2008 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  9. Max Wellson from PA

    Guys, you should all get over it. – The race is over and, fortunately, Obama is the winner. "Run ...Run...Run....Can you catch me," said Obama? - So, get over it! Maybe, she will come back in 2016. She will only be 8 years older and she will still be younger than McCain as of now. Afterall, it's a shame that she could not run a successful campaign. As we all know, she is still having problems raising money. That must mean that her supporters are not investing in her campaign right now or are just being evasive (smile) - So, let's just accept the fact that Hillary is the looser.
    Max from PA

    May 8, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  10. loribee

    OBAMA '08!!

    May 8, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  11. Sam

    It's rather unfortunate that people with blood running through their veins hate Hillary to the extent that they will go at length to discredit her even if she is right. I wonder why people hate such an extraordinary woman in human history and one day America will live to regret that she did not treat her fairly. The media has become advocates of the haters of Hillary and they have tried beyond measure to see to it that she doesn't become the Democratic Party nominee. As for the DNC, I REGRET GREATLY FOR HAVING REGISTERED AS A DEMOCRAT, NOW IT'S ABOUT TIME FOR ME TO RECONSIDER MY DECISION.

    May 8, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  12. georgia

    1 race...Human.
    Down w/ selective scrutiny & hate mongering.
    USA as a world leader again & role model for a great, inclusive society.
    What would Jesus say ??
    It begins with each of us.

    May 8, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  13. ari

    He was obviously relaxed and at ease, and rightfully and deservedly so. The question of Hamas was not really relevant- a spokesperson said something, so what; and Hillary as VP very premature, so could have asked more substantial questions. Anyway a delight that a candidate can speak with ease and realisticaly about the issues. instead of the stumbling and grumbling of others. Whole idea is to connect Mccain to Bush for elections and Hillary, well she is looking for something instead of moving back to the senate, and probably her tone will be less confrontrational in coming days to save herself and the party, otherwise she has not only lost the race but aalso the respect of most if not all the electorate.

    May 8, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  14. Howard Nc

    This is for the none believers in change. Once aging racisim has shown its face. Black Amerians have fought in every war . Have been in this country since the start. They have participated in America before it was America. Even though they weren't even cosidered a human or a person when the Consitution was made. What more can be done to these people.Just face it no person of other race can be a commander and Chief. What does it take to become a president. Hum lets think the know how to lead a country with plans to make it better and fair for all Americans. You see anytime a change in leaderships has to come it needs to be a difference maker. This the person we should vote for. Not cause of color but because of values and morals. The Clintons have not been honest with us. She just admitted to loaning her campiang more money. Whats next yes of course Mr. Obama has not told us everything. But in my opinion he is telling more of the truth than the rest of them. Well the Clintons had there chance. And its over North Carolina said they are tired and they help pick the Demo President. But of Course Mrs. Clinton is stiking in the race so that at the end they superdelgets will pick her. Here will be another slap in the Afro Americans face. This country has to stop and people have to held accountable for there actions even if you don't want to be. This goes for everone not just Black America.

    May 8, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  15. Likashot

    So with a minute left in the game Clinton wants to review a call from the first quarter...OK, lets take a look at that for a second...

    In FL she won 50% of the vote, and with the democratic rules, that will not change her math at all, she would still need close to 70% of the remaining vote to get the nomination . Then in MI, she got 55% running unopposed...not what I'd call a commanding victory. With delegates, she still needs 65% of the remaining delegates, and Hillary hasn't proven to win 65% of anything these days. Rules are rules, if you agree to play by the rules, agree to lose by the rules. The only thing that this does is make thinks a bit more difficult for Obama, and give her a single talking point to try and sway super delegates. I can tell you this, the democratic party leaders are not going to by it. At this point Hillary needs to find a gracious way to step aside.

    Please do whats best for the party...

    May 8, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  16. Bob

    While Clinton is licking her wounds Obama is so ready to move on to the next phase. Time to start taking on McCain. Obama will be a formidable opponent and the Republicans know it. Can't wait for November!

    May 8, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  17. Donna Hughes

    I just left the Democratic party. I should say they left me. What choices did we have? A liberal and the most liberal. Why couldn't we have someone for ALL of the Democrats. For the first time in my life I started reading blogs. Never have I heard so many nasty people and so hateful. I come from several generatons of Democrats but my ancestors would be ashamed of what the party has become. Maybe someday the party will get the message. I know there are a LOT of people that has changed parties , being sick of what is going on. Clinton never split the party by going on so long. That is fair. The party has split its self. and I am not ignorant or stupid. I will vote for my beliefs which is my right.

    May 8, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  18. Angel for Obama

    This is the Obama that everyones wants to see. Let's move the the next chapter and get on the issues that matter to American's and be ready to face John Mcain. On the other note I think Hilary with the support she has pulled would be a formitable VP running mate for Obama. The deam ticket.

    "Obama 08 enough said"

    May 8, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  19. george in hammond in

    to softball wolf!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    May 8, 2008 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  20. Another vote for McCain

    Hundreds of thousands, if not millions ,will be voting for Mc. instead of O. Let's teach a lesson to this upstart! He does not have what it takes to be President, for starters he wants to play Robin Hood, tax the CEO's of big companies ( or steal) to give to the " poor". Forcing people to give their hard earned monies to others who did not have what it takes to climb to the top. I see big trouble for this man if he gets elected. I hope his war chest dries up soon, specially if big money has been behind his efforts to become president.

    May 8, 2008 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  21. Lynn N Dakota

    It's so disappointing to read all of the hateful remarks made by people.
    Yes, a person can have different points of view on a candidate. The nasty remarks are not neccessary and only make Americans look vengeful.

    May 8, 2008 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  22. A. Brown

    Wolf I thought your interview with Senator Obama was wonderful. He did seem really relax but who could blame him you are a great guy and a great contributor to CNN they are blessed to have you. I thought Barack Obama once again convyed to us Americans that he is ready to move the US forward. He also explained in detail tax cuts, tax breaks, foreign policy education, health care etc... GREAT JOB

    May 8, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  23. Obama team: Viciousness has serious consequences!

    Dear Unified Democratic Party 2008 – all I can say is dream on. You Obama supporters have been absolutely vicious from the beginning and the damage you have done to the Party is permanent. I talk to more and more Hillary supporters like myself every day. We will NEVER vote for Obama under any circumstances. You have hijacked the party, but will never win the White House. If need be, along with millions of other good Democrats, I will write in Hillary's name on the ballot in November.

    May 8, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  24. rose, texas

    he can't win without all of us coming 2gether and that is not is going 2 happen i guess i just have to work harder to pay 4 the high groc. bill and gas. and live with that 4, 4 more yrs.

    May 8, 2008 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  25. Paul Gordon

    Should Obama offer Clinton the V.P spot. In a word, No. Talk about your worst nightmares. Billary grabbing the wheel everytime Obama turned his back. President Obama has to be his own man.
    Richardson is the balance for Barack.
    Paul Gordon, Toronto, Canada

    May 8, 2008 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
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