August 25th, 2008
05:15 PM ET
10 years ago

Obama denies rumored discord with Clintons

Sen. Obama and Sen. Clinton had a joint event in Unity, New Hampshire in June.

Sen. Obama and Sen. Clinton had a joint event in Unity, New Hampshire in June.

(CNN) – Amid reports that Bill Clinton is frustrated with his speaking slot at the convention and Hillary Clinton wasn’t considered for Barack Obama’s running mate, the Illinois senator refuted both Monday, telling reporters that former President Clinton can speak about anything he likes and argued that Hillary was in fact looked at.

CNN reported Monday morning that President Clinton is not happy he was asked to speak Wednesday night when the theme is national security. Clinton prides himself on his administration’s economic success, a pillar of his 1992 campaign.

Watch: Hillary Clinton calls for unity

Obama says he told Clinton last week he could discuss whatever he likes.

“Bill Clinton is a unique figure in our politics,” Obama told reporters at a hastily assembled news conference Monday afternoon. “This is the only person, the only Democrat that has been re-elected since FDR and he is somebody who is equally adept at talking about domestic issues and foreign policy issues.”

“Wednesday night most of the focus is going to be about foreign policy, but Bill Clinton knows a little bit about trying to yank an economy out of the doldrums and trying to help middle class families,” Obama added. “It wouldn’t make much sense for me to want to edit his remarks to prevent him from making a strong case about why we need fundamental economic change in this country.”

Obama also pushed back against questions about his campaign not vetting Hillary Clinton, saying “one of the things I don’t want to do is start getting into all the details about my vice presidential process.”

“I’ve said publicly and I will repeat again that Senator Clinton would have been on anybody's short list and so I took her very seriously,” said Obama.

What she on his short list?

“I think you can draw that conclusion,” Obama responded.

Obama said he wasn’t concerned about the possibility of protests by Clinton supporters at the convention because the Clintons have been clear about their support for him and will “be active parts of our campaign for the remaining 70 days.”

“There are going to be some of Senator Clinton’s supporters who we’re going to have to work hard to persuade to come on board, that’s not surprising,” said Obama. “But if you take a look I think at this week, I am absolutely convinced that both Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton understand the stakes…”

soundoff (117 Responses)
  1. Nancy

    It's reports like this one that make me really happy we are not nominating Hillary Clinton as the Democratic party's presidential candidate. Whew we dodged the bullet and avoided 4 more years of that brat.

    August 25, 2008 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  2. MikeH

    The Republican Rumor Fabrication Machine is in full production. It has an eager outlet named Cable News Network (CNN) that will print without question every concocted rumor.

    "Bill Clinton won't give Obama the time of day"

    "Hillary Clinton supports McCains Candidacy"

    "Barack Obama has a 666 birthmark "

    Michelle Obama is Angela Davis's illegitimate daughter"

    And so on....

    August 25, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  3. Jan

    Sounds like a threat from the Chicago senator–what stakes is he referring to?

    August 25, 2008 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  4. Wake up America

    CLINTON, CLINTON' CLINTON.... who cares about them!!! Let them join the ranks or become completely obsolete in the upcoming OBama administration...

    Hillary would make a great Secretary of State... Bill... well... Bill is Bill...

    OBAMA / Biden 08

    August 25, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  5. tedious898

    I wish some of these PUMAs, NO DEAL, Notfallinginline, people would buy a frigin' clue.

    Its so amazing they disregard the way McCain has demeaned women over the years – in so many ways. One that should hit home is the poor and tasteless joke about Chelsea. Leaders don't do that. Men of character don't attack children of political opponents. Yet Barack was supposed to have mistreated, disrespected the Clintons. Chelsea was on the campaign trail everyday and Barack never mentioned her once – Did he? But no.....Just say no . Let the country go to heck under the republicans. I don't understand these people.

    August 25, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  6. Kurtis in CT

    The only people who hate Hillary these days are Obama Democrats. She has made huge strides to work across the aisle, and even earned the respect of FoxNews mad man Bill O. Republicans don't hate her as the Obama Dems would have us believe. Rather, they fear her.

    BO made a game ending mistake by not choosing Hillary. But I am glad. Hillary Clinton is better than that. She doesn't deserve to be marginalized in an Obama presidency. It should have been the other way around with Hillary as #1, and Obama #2. It is BO that has divided the party. He should have waited his turn. But the Power Dems installed him as their preferred candidate. As usual, the Dems have picked the wrong guy. What a terrible shame.

    Now I am forced to vote against the power brokers in the Democratic Party and vote McCain. If they hadn't worked so hard to supplant Hillary by installing Obama, I might feel differently. What they've done is no different that what happened in Florida in 2000. Vote NO to Dean/Pelosi’s installed candidate. Vote NO to Obama.

    To Obama Kids Incorporated: Soon enough, you will end up the same kind of people that were hippies in the 60s (fighting for change and an end to war) who turned into the 80s and 90s yuppies (caring about only themselves and what they can consume / “help the poor but don’t take a slice of my pie”). Why should I care what you think now? It will never hold up to the test of time.

    I can’t wait for a chance to vote FOR a President rather than against one. Maybe 2012.

    August 25, 2008 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |

    Hillary supporters need to remember that voting for McBush is voting for 100 more years of careful, the draft is coming for a loved one near you!

    August 25, 2008 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  8. Citizen Watch

    Come on. Hillary fought hard, and Bill Clinton was one of the better presidents of the 20th century. It's only human for both of them to be a bit "weak of heart" when it comes to supporting Obama. Does anyone really understand how difficult this is for them? I think they deserve a lot more than Obama and his camp have extended. I think the Clintons are doing their best to be gracious and supportive.

    August 25, 2008 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  9. Cynthia

    The Clintons have as much if not more at stake as Senator Obama – there legacy and Senator Clinton being elected again.

    August 25, 2008 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  10. tedious898

    sharon = GOP plant. Watch out there missy! You might get sued by Shaun Hannity for stealing his rep. talking points. This the general election. Unless this is the first for you, understand this, during every general election all the politicans move closer to the center. Its called politics 101. Here endeth the lesson! Now study so more and try again.

    August 25, 2008 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  11. stone

    OB will go down

    August 25, 2008 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  12. Mike

    There should be a reversal of roles, Hillary should be behind that podium.

    August 25, 2008 07:03 pm at 7:03 pm |
  13. Bob

    Bill Clinton is another one of those out of touch socialists. The era of the Clintons is thankfully finished.

    August 25, 2008 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  14. Travis

    Are those Clintocks still in the news?...

    What did they have for dinner?

    Did they go to the bathroom?


    August 25, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  15. Vegas

    Love the picture...
    You can see what Hillary is thinking...

    Hi... here I am.... standing next to this joke.... try to smile, try to smile...

    Hillary 08/12

    August 25, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  16. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    Notice how often Obama backs down and compromises when there is just a little resistance? I bet our enemies have.

    August 25, 2008 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  17. RSB

    I don't think as much of the Clinton's as they do of themselves. I understand they think they ARE the Democratic party. Does Kennedy ring a bell?
    It will be hard to win an election when you have to worry about members of your own party.
    I wish someone that knows how to read body language would analyze Hillary the next time she shows her support for Obama.

    August 25, 2008 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  18. Emma, San Jose, CA

    The Ticker is like a gossip column. There is no question but what you introduce conflict and controversy.

    August 25, 2008 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |



    August 25, 2008 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  20. Louis

    EVERYONE SHOULD VOTE FOR McCAIN if they want to continue the endless debacle in Iraq, overturn Roe v. Wade, drill offshore, perpetuate a stagnant economy, continue the real estate collapse...if you agree with Bush 95% of the time, McCain is your man!!!!

    August 25, 2008 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  21. braggingrights

    If Hillary has no problem with the VP selection! who are you to talk on behalf of her? Shut Puma and get over it!

    August 25, 2008 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  22. G. Rodriguez

    There seems to be a theme among Hillary Clinton PUMA's. They are all victims, who pout and spitefully threaten to vote for McCain. Here is a reality check. If the Democratic Party thinks that Hillary and/or Bill tried to sabotage Obama's campaign in any way, her political future is ZERO. Just as all of you PUMA's won't vote for Obama and will vote for McCain, so will the rest of us follow suit in 2012. So wake up, get over the pouting, grow up, and support the anti-Republican troops. If you really want McCain, then you have been a closet republican all along.

    August 25, 2008 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  23. KenB, MI

    I would not have said a thing...let the opposition continue to attack what they think they know and let them continue to spend money...right up until Wed. when Hillary speaks.

    August 25, 2008 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  24. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    Hi Jack,

    the media should give more credit to the Clintons instead of having fun at reporting whatever republicans wants to create more of a soap opera drama! Frankly, they are not dumb people. These people are hard working and they will never give up on the american people and on the democratic party! Frankly, when you hear republicans putting down people and giving them a label of being liberals….woo be scare be very scared of that word! Worst, they still instill fear in people by using the word socialism….well we know that at the heart of the republicans social issues are not at the heart of their party period! Words to fear : liberals, socialism, marxism! Please give us a break from so much stupidity in 2008! Maybe democrats and media should explain to republicans and anyone not understanding in the word democrat if you take out the letter T and replace it with the letter C and add at the end the vowel Y you will discover the society you have been privilege to be part of because of all your fathers : the right to live in a democracy…and the democratic party has been the party at the forefront of all the big social democratic changes in the country!

    August 25, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  25. Disgusted American

    No Hillary, No Vote.

    However as a lifelong Democrat, I could not bear to pull the lever for the Republican McManiac.

    I'll just not vote on the Presidential ticket and pull the lever for the rest of the Democrats.

    The Democratic Party leaders made a huge miscalculation on Obama and may just lose the election. But I am not naive enough to believe McManiac's new ads. How low can you go in politics.

    What a darn shame!

    August 25, 2008 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
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