June 16th, 2008
07:12 PM ET
10 years ago

Unhappiness in Clinton camp over Obama hire

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The news of Patti Solis Doyle’s hire by Barack Obama is not being well-received by many of those close to the New York senator and by former members of her campaign team, according to a longtime adviser, a top campaign staffer and several major donors.

Doyle, long rumored to be in talks with the Obama team about a position on the Illinois senator’s presidential campaign, was officially named the chief of staff for Obama’s future vice presidential pick on Monday.

According to one longtime adviser, the move is being seen by many of those close to Clinton as a message she will not be Obama’s vice presidential pick.

An aide to Obama insists the hire should not be read as indication of who their choice will be.

The official reaction from the Clinton camp contained no criticism of the the hire. “Patti will be an asset and good addition to the Obama campaign,” said campaign spokesman Mo Eleithee. “After nearly two decades in political life, she brings with her the ability to tap an extensive network that will be a huge asset to Senator Obama. As Senator Clinton has said, we’re all going to do our part to help elect Senator Obama as the next President of the United States.”

But many of those close to Clinton remain "angry and furious with [Doyle]" over the campaign’s performance early in the primary season, and share a widespread belief she "grossly mismanaged our campaign," according to one former staffer.

"[T]here was no modicum of planning, none of the backup plan that would be in place at any smart campaign in the event we'd lose Iowa, no planning after Super Tuesday," said one former aide. Others say there is plenty of blame to go around.

A top Democrat close to Solis Doyle says Solis Doyle would not have accepted the job if she believed Senator Clinton would be Obama's choice for vice president.

soundoff (440 Responses)
  1. Robert

    I think everyone needs to just give Obama space to get his VP stuff figured out. The Clintons, the media, and the public need to stop obsessing and meddling.

    June 16, 2008 09:51 pm at 9:51 pm |
  2. kevin

    Who cares? I thought Clinton didn't want the VP job. She'd get a lot more done in the Senate anyway...

    VPs have little to no bearing on voters. So the choice of who leads a committee to select a potential VP is not a huge deal. It is surprising Obama selected someone so inept though...

    June 16, 2008 09:52 pm at 9:52 pm |
  3. Raymond

    Isn't she a Democrat? Then why shouldn't she be on Obama's team....isn't this about a Democrat winning the election in November.... Please guys try and grow up and stop this stupid bickering

    June 16, 2008 09:52 pm at 9:52 pm |
  4. Lisa

    How sad it is that Hillary claims to care about women issues, and yet she lets personal feelings get in the way of women advancing in their careers. Why would Diane Finestein tell Obama not to dare select any woman other than Hillary as VP? Even if another woman was a better match for the position? Is Hillary that entitled that she would stand in the way of other women because she wasn't the chosen one? Patty has served Hillary well for many years, and if Obama feels he has a position that matches her skills, why should Obama not hire her? Imagine if you were a woman trying to get hire based on your skills and experience and some other woman was vindictive about your getting hired.

    June 16, 2008 09:52 pm at 9:52 pm |
  5. Jess

    NO she will not mismanage the campaign because she has intelligent ppl in the campaign.. 🙂 Who care what Clinton's ppl think sorry is not about them this time!!!!!

    June 16, 2008 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
  6. Tom

    This is just the beginning of all the affirmative action hirings. If Obama becomes president our government will be more incompetent than the Hillary Clinton campaign was.

    June 16, 2008 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
  7. Asian4Hillary

    Patti Solis Doyle, has to make a living, if he wanted to be in the payroll of NOBAMA there's nothing wrong with that. Three LOBBYISTS are in the payroll of Obama, Doyle can be in the same payroll too. C'mon boys! take money from the sucker, he deserve every bit of it.

    About endorsement of Al Gore, it doesn't matter. Although I voted for Al Gore in 2000 and campaigned for him, his endorsement of NONAME doesn't carry an ounce of weight for MODERATE democrats like me.

    June 16, 2008 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
  8. sdn

    I think his VP pick is sitting on stage with him tonight.

    June 16, 2008 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  9. Marc PDX

    It does look like Obama will win in November. And it will probably be the worst thing that has ever happened to him. And the worst thing to happen to the Democrat party since Jimmah Carter.

    Obama will pull one Keystone Kops blunder after another and (I predict) very quickly find himself up a creek of his own making. For example, if he pulls out of Iraq (and he'll have to now that he's promised it) he'll probably wind up with a spiralling mess of epic proportions on his hands, with Iran and Saudia Arabia on opposite sides (figuratively and literally) of a conflict. Muqtada Al-Sadr, safely tucked away in Qom right now, will return to try (perhaps successfully) to stage a coup and create an Iranian-style Shiite Theocracy. Scenarios that are likely (not just possible!) to come out of that would soon draw us back in. It would be inevitable and Congress would be at a near riot state. And Obama would find himself unsure about what to do. Why? Because he has ZERO experience in any of this kind of thing. And this is just the Iraq scenario. Obama will most likely create several other major mistakes – again due to inexperience.

    Dems will blame the previous administration for all the woes they cause. But the bottom line is it will be up to them, as the elected administration, to manage all of it. Blaming Bush then will be an impotent argument. You break it, you own it. And if you think it's bad now, well it can get a helluva lot worse!

    NObama N'08

    June 16, 2008 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  10. Indiana Bob

    This is Obama's way of saying HRC will not be his VP. He doesn't have the courage and professionalism to tell her himself. He would rather drag it on and make it hurt even more. They call Hillary a sore loser, Obama and his followers are sore winners. They reek with hate and arrogance. Our country doesn't need that in the White House. McCain and the Republicans better prepare for the hate that Obama is about to unleash on them. I witnessed it first hand as a Hillary supporter and it was not pretty. They still spew personal hatred towards Hillary, even though they have won. I guess hate is all they know.

    PUMA - Vote McCain

    June 16, 2008 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  11. Lisa

    Terry – So Hillary is such a great leader that she lost because of her workers screwing up? Where was her leadership skills in running her campaign? In hiring the right people? Or was she merely a puppet, and did what her workers made her do when they pulled her strings? Either way, she doesn't seem as if Hillary is very competent. Oh, and that 11 loss losing streak came after Ms. Solis Doyle left the campaign – so whose fault were those?

    June 16, 2008 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  12. Joe Reg

    The vetting process has

    different set of criteria.

    We shall see who 'll prevail.

    June 16, 2008 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  13. austbill

    Why? I simply do not understand.

    June 16, 2008 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  14. OMG

    Who cares what the Clinton camp thinks. They're toast!!
    We must keep looking forward, not backward. Use the talent that is available, and keep the efforts focused.

    Bil/Hillary will get over it and so will their supporters................if they are smart. Otherwise they are destined to 4-8 years of more Bushiness with McCain.
    Hopefully, they aren't is that stupid or selfish.

    June 16, 2008 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm |

    If they are unhappy then they will get their act together. Now that they have ran one campaign into the ground for Democrats, I guess they want to do the same with Obama.

    Hmmmm NEWS FLASH!!! Not happening Folks

    June 16, 2008 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  16. Brian Knoxville, TN

    Oh no! An Obamabot has weaseled off with my name and has been using it to undermine my right to express myself fairly in our political system… oh no!

    Wait a minute…

    now where could a little mindless Obamabot have learned a trick like that?

    Oh, that’s right, the Presumptuous Nominee formerly known as Obama Almighty taught him how to do it when he weaseled off with a nomination that he did not earn and does not deserve by means of blocking the counting of votes, taking delegates in Michigan that he did not earn and delegates in Michigan that Hillary Clinton DID earn, and by using his money or whatever to deceive the supposed leaders of the Democratic Party to enable him contrary to common sense and the party's principles…

    Oh, you poor Obamabots. How hard it must be to work day and night for an empty cause... I'm proud of what I'm doing, and I feel sorry for you and for the fact that you have to descend to pathetic and sleazy tactics to have even a chance of beating me.

    Puma PAC

    June 16, 2008 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |

    NEVEROBAMA.............. Obama and his UGLY wife will go down in November!............MRS OBAMA is a beautiful BLACK Woman......MRS CLINTON........NO BEAUTY QUEEN............MRS CAIN looks likes JAMES CARVILLE

    See ya!!...........GOOD BYE

    McCain 08............SORRY OBAMA 08

    June 16, 2008 10:05 pm at 10:05 pm |
  18. Dora Smith

    I'm puzzled; Obama's campaign staff until now are the best in the business and have done excellent work; why change?

    June 16, 2008 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  19. Voice of Reason

    Patti Solis Doyle's biggest weakness while working for her LONG-TIME FRIEND Senator Clinton seems to be the widely known fact that she was not very professional in her phone follow-through. I am sure that this is something that Senator Obama's staff will be monitoring closely~strange how yet another good friend of the Clintons has decided to actively endorse Senator Obama. When are the mad and spiteful Clinton supporters going to recognize that THE PEOPLE WHO KNEW HILLARY BEST AND UP CLOSE, AND NOT JUST THROUGH T.V. AND WEBSITES, HAVE DECIDED THAT SENATOR OBAMA IS THE BETTER CANDIDATE. Patti Solis Doyle is a white female that has known Hillary for years...how can you make this out to be sexist or racist?

    Support the candidate who is going to make our lives better provided that we are willing to work with and trust our government a little more than we are accustomed to.

    Obama '08~REAL change we can believe in.

    June 16, 2008 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm |
  20. Bill - Charlotte

    Why would one think that it would be a good thing for Obama to trash Doyle as did Hillary? Solis became just one of many "scapegoats" for Penn, Bubba, Ickie and Hillary's campaign failures. Remember, they were once good friends, now they are not talking. That is the Clinton gift to those who don't play ball with them.
    This is a talented woman who deserves another chance.

    June 16, 2008 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm |
  21. Lynn

    What happens if our presumptive nominee dies before the convention?

    June 16, 2008 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  22. Pat M

    If Doyle had any integrity she would have refused the offer by Obama.
    Of course, if she had any integrity she wouldn't have been sacked by the Clinton Campaign. Seems pretty clear now why the Clinton Campaign severed their ties with Doyle. If she is so quick to join the Obama Campaign now where were her loyalties when she was a staff member of the Clinton Campaign? I feel the inuendos that Doyle was responsible for Hillary's Campaign problems carries weight.

    And why would the Candidate whose Campaign is all about change and who relentlessly referred to the Clintons as Old Washington Politicians, choose Hillary's Campaign Manager as a integral member of his team? Something wrong with this picture? You Betcha. I smell fish.

    June 16, 2008 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  23. Pat in Cali

    If she was being used as a scapegoat, the truth will see the light.

    Obama's organization probably has specific plans for her for which she's best suited. VP chief of staff sounds like a position that requires a very competent person.

    Obama's campaign is full of gifted, talented individuals. I guess that means Patti's pretty smart. We should all know by now to not underestimate the Team Obama.

    Patti, you go girl!!

    June 16, 2008 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm |
  24. dash

    Another game to push Hillary out. Hillary shouldn't accept VP spot anyway. Because people vote for President, however strong the VP and other guys may be. And people won't vote for Obama. Write Hillary's name on ballot.

    June 16, 2008 10:13 pm at 10:13 pm |
  25. Molly

    Who cares who obama picks for VP – I will NOT vote for obama.
    The Millions of Hillary supporters feel the same way – obama is NOT qualified to lead our country and will never be elected – he is too RADICAL. He is very Arrogant to pick a Clinton team member – guess he is trying to UNITE us – NOT!-
    The only reason obama is the nominee is because the DNC selected him – he did not win the popular vote – Hillary did, so, 2nd choice – McCain.

    June 16, 2008 10:14 pm at 10:14 pm |
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