June 30th, 2008
03:30 PM ET
6 years ago

Bill Clinton, Obama speak

Bill Clinton and Obama spoke Monday morning.
Bill Clinton and Obama spoke Monday morning.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former President Bill Clinton and Barack Obama talked by phone Monday morning, representatives of both sides said, as the Democrats sought to quash rumors that Clinton holds a grudge against the man who knocked his wife out of contention for the party's presidential nomination.

Obama called Clinton and they spoke for about 20 minutes Monday morning, the Obama campaign told CNN.

Clinton wants to campaign "with and for" Obama after the hard-fought primary campaign between Obama and Hillary Clinton, Clinton spokesman Matt McKenna said. Clinton "renewed his offer to do whatever he can to ensure Sen. Obama is our next president."

Watch: Obama, Clintons: Hard feelings?

Obama "had a terrific conversation with President Clinton and is honored to have his support in this campaign," Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton said.

The chairman of Sen. Hillary Clinton's unsuccessful presidential bid, Terry McAuliffe, said Sunday the former president was angered by media reports suggesting he did not plan to actively support Obama in the general election.

"He was angry that these ridiculous stories were out here, and these supposed close friends of the president - none of the close friends ever got called," McAuliffe said, referring to anonymous sources quoted in some stories. "What happens, a lot of time, is people like to pretend they're close so they can tell the reporters that they're close, but, you know, they're just talking."

McAuliffe said he spoke to Bill Clinton on Sunday morning. The former president recently returned from a trip to Europe.

Obama and Hillary Clinton appeared together Friday in Unity, New Hampshire, where the former first lady said of her ex-rival, "we may have started on different paths ... (but) today our hearts are set on the same destination for America ... to elect Barack Obama as the next president of the United States."

The two had met the night before at a gathering of Clinton's biggest political donors, at which Clinton delivered the maximum legal donations to Obama's campaign from herself and her husband and Obama and his wife, Michelle, donated the maximum to Clinton's campaign - which remains mired in debt.

But some analysts read bitterness into the fact that Bill Clinton did not appear at either event and had made no personal comments supporting Obama since his wife conceded the nomination. Instead, the former president released a statement through a spokesman saying he "is obviously committed to doing whatever he can and is asked to do" for Obama.

McAuliffe said Bill Clinton merely was waiting in order to avoid taking the public's focus off of Obama and Hillary Clinton's joint appearances.

"Any time that Bill Clinton and Barack Obama speak, it's going to be big news," McAuliffe said. "They wanted this out of the way first. Now that that's over, they will speak. And I'll bet you they speak within the next 24 hours, 48 at the most."

He also joked at rumors that the ex-president remains angry at Obama from the Democratic campaign.

"This man doesn't stay mad," he said. "He can get mad for 24 hours. It's his Irish ancestry."


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (451 Responses)
  1. Fred

    Hey I am all for Bill Clinton ( the best President we ever had since
    Franklin Roosavelt ), but I would like to see Obama run on the
    people's ticket and not the black ticket ... He is both a white man
    and a black man.. His mother was white is father was African
    American. All I hear is African American man , Black man.
    Hey it really makes me feel like it is a race issue, I would like to
    see Obama run on the " I am both white and black ticket.
    I would only thank that is an appropriate thing to dp. Let the
    truth of race speak for itself ... I thank he needs to clarify who he
    really is before he earns my family's or my vote. But you go Mr.
    President Clinton... Again Mr. Obama , Run on the people's
    ticket and not the black only ticket.. I hate it when people use the
    race card for anything... I feel we are all American's. Using the
    race card dosen't cut it with me. That is not in the word ( CHANGE)
    I look at CHANGE in a different way. When you tell people change
    you are speaking as an African American man and not as an
    American man.... This is not ment in any racial way at all. I know
    that Mr. Obama is both, he needs to run that way...

    June 30, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  2. Larry

    I'm still waiting for 'complete and accurate' biographies of Obama and his wife. I'm not gonna vote for someone just becaus he went to Harvard, or he can give a good speech or he was a community organizer; there has to be a lot more to him and his wife than that. I've read his wife's thesis and I hope I'm not the only one who has read it.

    I'm not voting Republican; however, unless I get the whole jacket on the Obamas I will not vote in this election.

    June 30, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  3. Sandra

    Um, the Clintons aren't mad because Obama supposedly "knocked her out of contention." They might be mad because the Obama camp called them racists. I hope they stop suporting this duplicitous liar!

    PUMA!!!!

    June 30, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  4. dylan fan

    Dear Mr. Obama,
    Sometimes you don't have to shake hands with the devil. Sometimes a phone call will do.

    June 30, 2008 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  5. Martha

    I wish everybody would just stop the negative comments.

    June 30, 2008 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  6. Paris

    PUMApac – wow – who are you losers? "We will use our mighty internet skills to shut down, deface, and discredit all who dissent or oppose our Great Cause!" – you sound like fascists to me...

    June 30, 2008 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  7. Michael G- Ventura ca

    The Democratic Party is uniting because the alternative is another four years of lies, deciet, hate and war.

    June 30, 2008 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  8. helen

    I wish BO would stay away from the Clinton's. They will tarnish his campaign. and message. Who cares about B& H – they're history.

    June 30, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  9. Giovanni

    A NOMINEE IS VOTED ON, NOT SELECTED!!!

    June 30, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  10. Dekonti

    Kevin – You're among that very small minirity that think it is still 1963. One great thing about this country...it knows how to reinvent itself for the betterment of the world.

    We (i.e. all races in the USA) will continue to pray for people like you.

    June 30, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  11. SAY WHAT

    Clinton wants to campaign "with and for" Obama ...............Welcome aboard Presidenr Clinton ..........time to get these low repulicans inorder.............they are flat out of control.................Obama talks about CHANGE ..........they complain about That ..........What they don't know is the time is HERE and NOW ............REPUBLICANS WILL DO ANYTHING TO WIN!!!! ..........I beg of them to STOP NOW

    June 30, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  12. LT in Texas

    Love all the MC Cain people coming in pretending to be HRC supporters who will not vote for Sen. Obama.

    Love all the negative vibes claiming the Obama campaign made so many negative comments towards Hillary when the OPPOSITE was the case.

    June 30, 2008 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  13. Francisco in NY

    Who cares. B. Clinton shouldn't have to speak to Bama, rather it should be the other way around. Bama needs all the help he can get because he's certainly losing a lot of us democrats (mind you I was never a staunch supporter of Hillary but I preferred her to Bama any day and now McCain more than Bama, heck, even Nader is better than Bama !!).

    June 30, 2008 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  14. katie

    Its about time

    June 30, 2008 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  15. Obama/Hillary 08

    I wonder if Joe Liberman is the one that is going to launches the new terror attack. Please stop scaring people for political reason. America, it is not true no terror attack in 2009. If there is one Joe Lieberman and the Republican Party is behind it.

    June 30, 2008 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  16. Double edged sword!

    He should be publicly apologize to his wife. He is the reason she was even able to run for president and he is the reason she failed.

    Half the Democrats knew from the very beginning that there were not voting for Clinton. The thought of Bill anywhere near the White House again is horrifying.

    Obama does not need the Clintons. Also, the Republicans can't throw nothing at him that the Clintons already hadn't.

    I can't wait until November when I get to place MY VOTE FOR OBAMA!

    June 30, 2008 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  17. Clinton, no, wait, McCain Supporter

    Even with the support of both Clintons, people I admire more than most, I cannot vote for Obama. I will not reward the DNC. Candidates come and go, but the DNC is forever. Reject them and their puppet now to ensure that something like this won't happen again.

    McCain 08

    June 30, 2008 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  18. EMJ

    I'm voting Republican this year because who cares about our country's future? It's all about personal and racial attacks. I don't have a single thing in common with John McCain, and I kind of like Barack, but what kind of fear mongering, hate spewing, liar would I be if I didn't vote for that old man?

    I'm voting Republican because my candidate did not get the nomination and by God screw the country's future, the supreme court, our nations' standing in the world, a stupid war, no none of that matters because my candidate lost and I'm a bitter sore losing excuse for a Democrat.

    June 30, 2008 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  19. xddy4u

    This is the Democratic Party, not the Clinton Party. Let's not forget the Clinton Party left the White House in disgrace. When you are trying to get rid of skunk odor, you don't bring the skunk back. This is Obama's show. He is the nominee of the Democratic Party, not a faction of the party. So you party agitators, either you support the party, or get the h-ll away. The Obama train is rolling folks.

    June 30, 2008 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  20. Patty P

    Give me a break...after all of the Obama bashing by the Clintons it seems what little credibility the Clintons once had amongst their
    supporters is history.
    Now Hill and Bill are selling their votes to the Obama campaign to recoup there campaign debt..??? The Clintons are a JOKE!

    June 30, 2008 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  21. Sam

    Voters need to believe what people do – not what they say. CNN when will you do some serious reporting and tell the American people about Obama's voting record? What he is saying simply doesn't match his record and all of the superflous stories such as this don't do the American people any favors.

    June 30, 2008 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  22. BIFF, BIFFINGTON...

    Was a Democrat-Now an Independent: said:
    And for all those people who say,"how can you possibly support McCain when his positions are diametrically opposed to Hillary's?" I must disagree. Barack Obama has flip flopped on so many issues since the GE started, I am not joking when I say I can't keep up.
    _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

    In the 90's I was on the front lines of supporting and defending all things Bill Clinton. So I tried to read your post with an open mind. BUT.. when it came time to BACK UP your argument for NOT supporting Obama, you went with right-wing-talking points. THIS USUALLY EXPOSES EACH AND EVERY FAKE "EX-HILLARY-DEM" out there.

    The FACT remains... DEMOCRATIC principles "are" polar opposite of republican. AND ALL OF THE DENYING IN THE WORLD CAN'T CHANGE THAT.

    your argument falls short.... and you are exposed as a poser....

    NOTE THAT ALL OF THE POSERS WIND UP SPOUTING RIGHT-WING TALKING POINTS........

    June 30, 2008 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  23. wah..wah..wah...PUMA boo...hooo....

    Still whining about the loss.

    The CLINTONS loss fair and square!! Quit crying.

    June 30, 2008 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  24. Enlightened Voter

    Hey all you still moronic hillary supporters. Go ahead and vote for mccain. You think it's bad now? You ain't seen nothing yet.

    June 30, 2008 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  25. Lisa

    Obama is such a wimp!!! He needs the Clinton's approval for everything!!!
    The DNC should have just selected Hillary as the nominee. We have an inexperience, scared to debate, loser, as the nominee.

    Bill & Hill 08

    June 30, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
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