June 19th, 2008
02:51 PM ET
6 years ago

Blitzer: When will Bill Clinton back Obama?

Blitzer: How active will Bill Clinton be on the trail for Obama?
Blitzer: How active will Bill Clinton be on the trail for Obama?

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Bill and Hillary Clinton attended the memorial service for Tim Russert at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington on Thursday. That was the first time I have seen them since Senator Clinton dropped out of the presidential race and endorsed Barack Obama. She was very enthusiastic that day. It dawned on me yesterday that we still haven’t heard the former President formally endorse Senator Obama. I am sure he will be on the Obama bandwagon openly and energetically fairly soon. But I wonder what’s taking so long. Then again, is it really all that long?

As our CNN contributor and Democratic strategist James Carville has pointed out, it was only the other day when Al Gore endorsed Obama. We shouldn’t be surprised that Bill Clinton is waiting for the right moment to deliver his big endorsement speech. And having covered the Clinton White House, I can predict that it will be a major media event when he does. Bill Clinton is just one of those remarkable political figures. When he wants to do something, he has a knack of doing it in a spectacular way.

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But after that big endorsement is made, how active will the former President be on the campaign trail?

The answer is: I don’t know. I suspect some Obama supporters will want to see him very actively out there. He remains very popular with a lot of Democrats. Others might want him to step back. I remember that Al Gore, back in 2000, didn’t use Bill Clinton all that much, even in states where he might have made a difference. I am referring to Arkansas specifically. Had Gore won Arkansas in 2000, he would have been president. That one state’s electoral votes would have made the crucial difference.

We will soon begin to learn what roles the two Clintons will take. Those of us who are political news junkies will find it fascinating no matter what they do.

One final thing: what about Chelsea Clinton? She was an amazing campaigner for her mom. Let’s see what she does for Obama.


Filed under: Wolf Blitzer
soundoff (252 Responses)
  1. Don Ingalls

    Bill is in it for Bill. It is and always has been all about him. Obama spoiled his plans....

    June 19, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  2. Michael

    "When he wants to do something, he has a knack of doing it in a spectacular war."

    I think you meant "spectacular way," Mr. Blitzer. Our current president is the one who has gotten us into a "spectacular war."

    June 19, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  3. PA for Obama

    Hillary and Bill will get in line and do what they are told if they want any part in the Obama Administration. I know they have some hurt feelings, but so does every candidate aside from the nominee. They will have to grow up and get over it. They lost, DEAL WITH IT!!!

    June 19, 2008 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  4. 2Nurselady

    There are an awful lot of Democrats WAITING for Barack Obama to sincerely offer the VP slot to Hillary Clinton and put her on the Democratic ticket – to FINALLY give Democrats something to be excited about and to actually unite the Party like he promised to do.

    June 19, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  5. woman over 60!!!

    he will back obama before the summer is over, go bill!!!!

    June 19, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  6. Trisha, Monsey NY

    Angry or not hes a Dem and he Must show a good example and back Obama otherwize how are Clinton supporters supposed to heal if Bill cannot.
    This should be a wonderful time in our history, lets all come together and win this folks, do you good people really want the republicans to win....have we not as a country suffered enough!

    June 19, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  7. JOYCE

    you people are sick
    let him have time to rest
    he will be out there on the trail and he will have a job on obamas term
    they both will

    June 19, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  8. PatriciaC

    What!!....After the way Obama and the Dirty DNC did Hillary......I hope NEVER..... She should do as most of her supporters are doing.....go independent... ..what does she owe the DNC for the way they treated her...Nothing ....Come on Hillary do whats right for this Country and run as a independent and take it all the way to the white house.....I know you can do it......

    June 19, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  9. Geo AR

    Obama ...Just save your self

    June 19, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  10. John McCain

    I would like to take this time to officially endorse Barack Obama.

    June 19, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  11. HRC3655

    Please Bill DO NOT endorse BO. He and his supporters have fractured the Democrats beyond repair, slammed both you and Hillary, and disrespected ALL women in general. Let him clean up his own mess!

    June 19, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  12. Bacusla

    Obama does not need Bill to ratify his victory over Hillary. If Bill volunteers it, Obama should accept it and move on to more important work. If Bill doesn't, it will not make a difference ... but he'll read it in newspapers, hear it on the radio, or see it on TV when Obama is sworn-in.

    June 19, 2008 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  13. Never

    Do what you have to do Bill... for the party.

    As a HRC supporter who watched the way Hillary was disrespected and the way your presidency was trashed by the Pro-Obama camp and media and DNC.... I will use my one vote to protest those dirty politics.

    Obama will never get my vote. Cheating and manipulation and politics of hate can not go unpunished.

    June 19, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  14. ladyatlaw2

    Let both of this take a leap in the mighty mississippi

    June 19, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  15. Karl

    Bill should work for McCain. His great presidency was brought to disrepute by the Obama campaign. He was portrayed as a racist. He should support John McCain!!

    June 19, 2008 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  16. Louise

    NEVER, wolf....he should not endorse him. The clintons are not responsible for party unity, Obama is. I am very disappointed of the process. Will never vote for Obama. He stole the nomination. For the first time in my life, I will vote republican.

    June 19, 2008 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  17. ANA G. LOS ANGELES. CA

    Bill who?

    June 19, 2008 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  18. bumble bee

    I don't think an enthusiastic endorsement is a certainty. It is possible that Pres. Clinton feels like many others, that Sen. Obama is just not qualified or fully vetted.

    June 19, 2008 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  19. obama=underhanded liar

    What is it going to take for you people to realize that obama is a liar to the core? He would cut your throat and flush you down the toilet just to be president.

    June 19, 2008 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  20. northern view

    It wouldn't surprise me if we didn't hear much from Bill Clinton. I think he still holds are huge grudge about their campaign loss. He's not a fair individual who can be trusted. It would be better if he just stayed out of sight. Obama doesn't need any help from the Clintons thankyou. Who is Bill Clinton anyway?

    June 19, 2008 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  21. too good

    The Clintons were too decent to attack Obama.

    Meanwhile he spared no punches... bashing Bill's presidency and attacking Hillary.

    It was shameful to watch the Obama adoration and the Clinton witch hunting that the nation gleefully took part in.

    I stand by HRC. Obama does not get my vote.

    I hated the "clean" campaign of unethical hateful tactics that Obama exploited to steal the nomination.

    June 19, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  22. Bella from Florida

    Obama needs to raise more than 80,000,000 to run his general election campaign. Senator Evan Bayh has just said that he will need a lot of money to defend himself from all the smear about him and his wife. I think he is going to need more than money to convince the American people that he really is the man he says he is.

    June 19, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  23. 08 and 12 for Obama

    WE DONT NEED the Clinton's to win...

    June 19, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  24. Kat in NY

    Not really Cameron... remember that John McCain and the Clintons are friends. They are very experienced politicians, and considering the state of the Nation, isn't that what the US needs, experienced people in the White House working together beyond party lines? Just food for thought!

    June 19, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  25. Karl

    I wonder why Bill attended the memorial After all it was Russert who jeopardized Hillary's campaign

    June 19, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
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