WASHINGTON (CNN) – Members of Sen. Barack Obama's vice presidential search team had a "good, long discussion" with top House and Senate Democratic leaders on Capitol Hill over potential running mates Monday, one participant said.
Two members of the team, James Johnson and Eric Holder, met with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid for just over 30 minutes before heading over to speak with House leaders, a senior Democratic aide told CNN. They wrapped up their sessions Monday evening after a meeting with House Democratic Caucus Chairman Rahm Emmanuel, leaving without answering reporters' questions.
But House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said he had a "good, long discussion" with Johnson and Holder and added, "They mentioned a lot of names."
"What they're doing is talking to, I think, a lot of people about the alternatives and views that people have about the alternatives," said Hoyer, D-Maryland. Asked whether anyone raised the possibility that Obama's former rival, Sen. Hillary Clinton, could be on the ticket, he responded, "I think it would be reasonable to assume that all of the alternatives were considered."
One aide described the meetings as a chance for the Obama campaign "to show respect for party leaders and ask advice." The aide downplayed the significance of the meetings, noting there have been similar consultations in previous elections.
Obama, the Democrats' presumptive nominee, told CNN last week that he will not rush the selection of a running mate. He said he will "be deliberate and systematic about it, because this will be my final counselor when I am making decisions in the White House, and I want to make sure I get it right."
In addition to Johnson and Holder, Caroline Kennedy is on Obama's vice presidential advisory team.