June 4th, 2008
04:17 PM ET
6 years ago

Clinton backer – and VP prospect – tries to cool joint ticket talk

Rendell has been a powerful Clinton surrogate.
Rendell has been a powerful Clinton surrogate.

(CNN) - Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell – one of Hillary Clinton’s staunchest supporters – said bluntly Wednesday that the New York senator was in no position to bargain with presumptive Democratic nominee Barack Obama.

“There’s no bargaining. You don't bargain with the presidential nominee,” Rendell told NY1. “Even if you're Hillary Clinton and you have 18 million votes, you don't bargain.”

Rendell – the governor of a major November battleground state who has often been mentioned as a possible vice presidential pick – said Obama would need to be an “enormously big person” to invite Clinton to join him on the ticket.

But in a reversal from earlier statements – and remarks at odds with recent comments from many major Clinton supporters – Rendell seemed to signal that a joint ticket featuring the party’s two candidates was not ideal.

He said that if Clinton were Obama’s running mate, her husband - former President Bill Clinton - could be a wild card during the general election.

“The Obama campaign would have to make strict rules, you know, about what President Clinton could and could not do during the campaign...” said Rendell. “For example, the Obama campaign would have to control his schedule - where he would go into, what states.”

“You know, normally politicians don't want to be outshone. Well you know you've got Bill Clinton lurking in the background. But Hillary Clinton, a very charismatic figure for many Americans - generally a lot of politicians don't like to put somebody like that on the ticket," he added.

"You know rule one for the vice president is make sure you never upstage the president, right? It’s rule one. You know, Hillary Clinton in some ways couldn't help but upstage, even if she was trying not to.”

In an interview two months ago, Rendell responded to a question about the prospect of a joint ticket with a much different reaction. “I can’t speak for Senator Clinton, but I would love that,” he told ABC News, calling Clinton and Obama "a history-making duo.”

soundoff (221 Responses)
  1. jerri in KY

    Those clinton folks are such playground bullies. Thank goodness they will not be in the white house again. we really need to move on and back the winner, not the whiner.

    Jerri

    June 4, 2008 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  2. BARAKFORLIFE

    Even Eddie understands that her time has come–to sit down and take a good bite of reality. Thank you Gov Rendell for speaking the truth, though Hillary may be able to take it. The truth is directed towards free-thinking and this is a true dose of what Hillary needs. When you have close friends who look you in the eye and tell you to sit down, maybe you'd better.

    June 4, 2008 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  3. eugene

    Her ego is larger than Mount Everest. There is no way she could be VP without trying to usurp the presidency. The Clinton era is over.

    June 4, 2008 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  4. Dave

    HILLARY, GO INDEPENDENT !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    June 4, 2008 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  5. Stop the hate

    Stop hateing on Hillary, I think she will come around but I still lost a lot of respect for her last night during her speech in NY.

    Most agree, even though a lot of Hillary's supports want this, a joint ticket is a death sentence for the Dem party. Sorry but true!!

    June 4, 2008 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  6. So Pchapin, what would have been your solution?

    You don't like the fact the DNC gave Obama delegates from Michigan who voted uncommitted, so what would you have done? Given him no delegates? Do you really think that would represent the will of the people? Of course not....that election wasn't supposed to count anyway (and HRC and her supporters, especially Harold Ickes), conceded that fact when she didn't need the delegates – Hillary's lucky Michigan counted at all....

    Bottom line is, she'll end up losing by so many delegates that it wouldn't even matter if Florida and Michigan's delegations were seated entirely...she lost...she lost...she lost. Get over it, already

    June 4, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  7. CONCERNED DEMOCRATIC VOTER

    WELL I'M WATCHING CNN WHILE TYPING...HILLARY WILL QUIT THE RACE ON FRIDAY....BREAKING NEWS!!!

    June 4, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  8. Critical View

    Rezko was found guilty on 16 counts. Hillary Clinton can wait until Obama is finally cleared of his dealings with this guy.

    June 4, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  9. griffin

    I don't think Clinton should be forced on the ticket, I beleive she can do good to help the party without becoming the VP, just so you understand the VP dont make any decisions at all and this is not Hillary style. She can be part of the administration in charge of reforming health care. That way Bill will be at home doing his on thing until Hillary comes home from work, just like now she is the New York Senator and she goes home to Bill, trying to get them back in the White House with Bills temper will cause big problems, Michelle Obama is not having this nonsense.....

    June 4, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  10. Dave

    Pchapin – "Was it fair the the DNC awarded Obama the uncommited delagates?"

    I'd ask if it's fair or even very democratic to give ANY delegates to a candidate who basically ran unopposed in MI, after everyone else agreed to withdraw.

    This isn't the 2000 general election, it's an internal party nominating process. Nobody has been disenfranchised.

    June 4, 2008 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  11. George, Los Angeles

    Hillary should not ever make the statement "I quite" or "I concede". A lot changes in politics from day to day. And no one really knows WHAT's in Obama's closet. I don't like what I see so far.

    It's not over until Denver. Keep that in mind you mean-spirited Obama supporters.

    June 4, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  12. Arkansas Undertaker

    I still think that Obama & Clinton would make great running mates! We just have to lock Bill up and hide the key for about 8 years!!!!

    I love the Obamas and the Clintons!

    BARACK & HILLARY 2008!!!

    We Love and Need you Both!!!!

    June 4, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  13. RB TX

    CHICAGO – A prominent fundraiser for Sen. Barack Obama and Gov. Rod Blagojevich was convicted Wednesday of fraud and money laundering after a high-profile federal trial provided an unusually detailed glimpse of the pay-to-play politics that has made Illinois infamous.

    "CHANGE" we can believe in. Yeah Right!!!
    Obama is just another slick and mirror politician who says one thing and does another.

    Go Hillary, if not Hillary go McCain

    June 4, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  14. Karen

    When were you yeseterday?? This chance was never real, even long before Clintons called on Obama to be her VP.

    June 4, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  15. G. Penley

    As we have all known: Hillary clinton does not care about the nation, nor about her own party. She cares only about herslf, and now she is trying to blackmail the nominee into selecting her as his VP candidate. Gee, what a surprise!
    Let's do ourselves a favor, and get rid of the Clintons once and for all. What a relief that would be.

    June 4, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  16. Obama-Junkie, IL

    Finally an important Clinton supporter that makes sense!

    Obama in 08!

    June 4, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  17. Adam Morgan

    I'm not certain what she needs to think about. She knew for quite some time that this moment was coming and should have had something prepared to concede graciously and come out still a winner by being a decent, honest, fair playing person. Instead she looks like a sore loser who is trying desperately to find any way to stay in this that she can.

    Gov. Rendell seems to understand the situation exactly, and I admire him for stating it despite being her most loyal supporter. That takes courage and honor and I respect him a lot for that.

    June 4, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  18. Todd from Michigan

    No bargaining needed, because there is the Democratic National Convention who decides the nominee and the V.P. spot, if necessary.

    June 4, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  19. Randy - Denver

    Pchapin you ask was it fair that the DNC awarded obama the uncommitted delegates. I will ask you this in response, is it fair they awarded ANY delegates from Fl or MI? can ANYONE say that the elections in either of those two states was fair? No one can, the twisting of facts about FL (both names were on the ballot therefore it is fair) is not an acceptable argument. The fact is, as I often see stated on these post, the no one knew Mr. obama in FL at the time of the vote, the facts show, until the end of the race, that everytime he campaigned in a state his numbers went up and her numbers went down. So explain to me how having a candidate with name recognition working against an unknown candidate is a fair election? If oyu had to choose between Bill clinton and Fred Snort who would YOU pick and why?

    I hate this continued arguement. I agree the final decision about FL and MI was WRONG but the ONLY FAIR way would have been poolitical suicide for the party and that would have been to enforce the rules as written.

    Fianl comment on the FL/MI recount to compare it to the 2000 VOTE shows a GROSS misunderstanding of the laws of the US and the difference between an ELECTION (as in 2000) and a selection (as in who will represent the DNC). THERE is NO RIGHT to vote in a selection, implied or otherwise, it is a PRIVLEDGE GRANTED BY THE PARTY! They can remove that PRIVLEDGE at any time for any reason. SOrry but that is REALITY!

    June 4, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  20. kene - CHicago

    No wonder, why Republicans are looking forward to run against Clintons....I am glad it is over. However, i don't see how She will hold her 18 million voters not to vote for OBAMA., thats totally utter nonsense. Another thing i don't think that she will be good running mate, she gave false statement that she won porpular vote, while Obama was the one that won Porpular votes by 13,000 votes including Michigan and Florida.

    June 4, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  21. Mike, CA

    Pchapin, following party requests Obama removed his name from the ballot, but Clinton did not. So obviously nobody voted for him, and many who might have voted for him just didn't vote rather than vote "uncommitted." How can anyone say it's fair to award Clinton delegates from Michigan based on her percentage of the vote when she was the only one running, and not also award delegates to Obama under those circumstances? A do-over would have been a fair thing, but after millions of dollars spent on it would the result have been any different? Jeez!

    June 4, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  22. Jane

    It's time to put the ole girl out to pasture in a Hillary custom tailored straight jacket.

    June 4, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  23. Bob the FL

    Obama/Hillary, we want to win first and foremost

    June 4, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  24. Nobama in Nov

    Such hateful Nobama supporters who are delusional about the fact that it isn't just Nobama supporters voting in November. Of course you've been delusional all along it seems but come November when Nobama doesn't win without Hillary on the ticket who will you blame? Hillary? Hillary supporters? Now you're saying you don't need HER and US. Remember that when he loses. You chose the weaker candidate like Dukakis. You have no one to blame but yourselves. And especially since you're so mean spirited and think nothing can stop the inexperienced guy who gives good speeches and no ideas from losing I look forward to his loss. And all the Bill Clinton bashing is comical. We had economic prosperity during his two terms. I guess you don't think that's something to be comended for. Oh.. I so can't wait till Nobama loses. This will be sweeter than the koolaid you've all drank to delusion.

    June 4, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  25. Informed voter from florida

    There's millions of us who don't WANT Hillary to join Obama because she is better than that! Rendel needs to cool his jets because one, he won't win without Hillary and two, even with Hillary a lot of her supporters will be voting Mccain. Believe it or not, Americans actually CARE about there country and I believe that we will not turn our beloved future over to a racist.

    June 4, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
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