January 8th, 2008
03:37 PM ET
15 years ago

Carville and Begala deny Clinton campaign return

(CNN) - Democratic strategists James Carville and Paul Begala categorically denied a FOX News report Tuesday that they would be joining Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign after the New Hampshire primary.

"It is patently false,” Carville told CNN Tuesday. “Whoever is telling you that has no idea what they are talking about. I have not spoken to anyone in the Clinton campaign about any role, any position anything at all."

"I am a maxed-out contributor, and I sympathize with her, and I have friends there with whom I talk from time to time, but I have no role."

Carville added that he does speak with former President Clinton from time to time.

Begala also categorically denied any kind of formal or informal role with the Clinton campaign.

Carville and Begala held key positions in former President Bill Clinton's back-to-back presidential victories in the 1990's.

FOX News reported that the pair would join the campaign as senior political and communications strategists, supplanting but not replacing the current team of senior advisor Mark Penn and campaign manager Patti Solis Doyle.

Both Carville and Begala are CNN contributors.

Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (129 Responses)
  1. Ron

    Hillary is a crook and a criminal. So is her husband. He did more to ruin the image of the Presidency than all others in history combined. He is an adulterer and a liar and so is she. Every business partner in your life dead or in prison says something. Why are so many people in this country so blind?
    All I can say is if we keep it up we should call ourselves Americans we should call ourselves sheep. We need less career politicians in our government. It used to be and honor and a privilege to serve but now it is a job that these cut-throats will do anything to keep.

    January 8, 2008 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  2. Amused, Las Vegas

    From bywill January 8, 2008 4:26 pm ET


    was this a joke?

    January 8, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  3. Jolee collins

    Wasn't that a perfect srtting for Hillary to tear up? She was sitting down having tea with the ladies,and lets her hair down. PERFECT!!– I wonder how many reherrsals it took. I think the tears were because she's loosing and getting really angry like her husband that things aren't going their way. Obama don't stoop to their tactics.

    January 8, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  4. P.Mosley

    Come on people! This is the first time in the history of this country the racial boundaries are going away. Hiliary has not gotten negative coverage she did not deserve to get. I do not hear anyone of you when Bill Clinton lost Iowa and New Hampshire, only to have the national media praise him as the comeback kid. So don't you Hilary lovers even try it.

    January 8, 2008 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  5. Amused, Las Vegas

    GWB has brought us down so low that we have Iranian boats sassing our navy.

    That's so sad.

    We need someone in the Whitehouse that will be able to handle the job immediately, and Obama is not that person.

    He would dishonor the office, and we have had enough in the last president. Not that he is not a good man, but he is not up to the job.

    January 8, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  6. Brian Barger Miami Oklahoma

    Come on whats wrong with old bomb throwers like Jim & Bob? If the Republican National Party could dig up Ronald Regan and prop him up in front of a microphone on Fox News to expouse all those noble conservative values.... they would. Please if I hear his name one more time I think I'll fall a sleep and wake up after the cold war is over... lol

    January 8, 2008 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  7. AJ, IL

    Sorry I don't buy the entire claim. Slick Willy is unofficially consulting with Carvelle. The Hillary campaign wants the Democratic base majority to support Hillary. Even if the Democratic party loses some independent voters to do so. Carvelle has already offered his advice. His advice was for Hillary to make her stand on Feb. 5th. In essence, pull a Rudy Giuliani.

    January 8, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  8. june gross

    Bill Bennett and Wolf Blitzer both publicly threatened a former President Bill Clinton, saying he was "in real trouble with the media" for criticizing them for not examining Barack Obama's background. Listen to the things the media says about Obama; how "he is sweeping the nation, people are swooning over him, it's a monumental movement, etc, etc." Give me a break!!!!! They should talk about Obama's record of saying one thing, doing another, his muslim background and upbringing. When did he register as a christian? Was it just because a christian would have a better chance to win the nomination? People wake up! This new and shiny is not what he tells you he is and he has been given a free pass by the press. I can't believe people are falling for this hype about Obama. I feel betrayed by announcers on CNN: John King, Wolf Blitzer and Bill Bennett.

    January 8, 2008 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  9. CJ

    Well, maybe not these two guys but definate change in rhetoric must occur for her to stand a chance. I actually like Hillary, but I will vote for Obama because I believe he would make a better president. The main reason being he has freshness to his approach, he isn't confined by previous veiws and opinions. FYI... being married to the president doesn't give you experience as president. If that were the case one could say My wife's a doctor, I should be the next Surgeon General!

    January 8, 2008 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  10. T Smith

    I whole heartedly agree that the news media is doing it's best to "highlight" Obama, and subjugate Hillary to a "losing" role (already!!) at the same time. It's so blatant, it's scary because it's so typical of the last eight years of US media twists! Obama touts change, and yes, his record shows he's good at change; at changing his mind, changing his stance on issues, dirtying his opponents, whatever it takes to "look" good. Hillary stands for true change. Change in status quo politics, change in vision, and the biggest change of all, the change for the first woman President in the US. Her chance to follow some the of truly great women leaders in the international arena. Do you think she'd let the chance of a lifetime become anything less than stellar? She will do her very best (with the support of many!) to go down in history as a truly remarkable and outstanding President! Let's do support change. Support Hillary Clinton and let the news media drown in their falsity.

    January 8, 2008 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  11. S K Coffelt

    Amazing to me that Hillary can get blasted for bringing her husband on the campaign trail, when Obama gets a free ride for bringing a friggin' talk show host on the his campaign trail! Obama bringing Oprah on the trial is acknowledgement that he appeals to the her audience...people who like "TALK!"

    Go Hillary.

    January 8, 2008 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  12. Will

    Is it me, or does Hillary's demise just warm the majority of Americans hearts? And isn't it great to see Bill acting so UN-presidential? Wake up Hillary supporters, she is a polarizing figure that all Republicans and half the Democrats don't want to see in the Oval Office. With that said, how will she lead all Americans and bring positive change to our country? Obama lacks experience which is concerning, but he is the best shot for the Democrats at the White House.

    January 8, 2008 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  13. Brenda

    I think Carvelle would be great, but he is also married to a republican and she might not want him helping the Clinton's out this time. I think CLINTON is the only real qualified one running to become PRESIDENT and she needs to add to her staff of whoever to help her accomplish this very important mission. I vote HILLARY ALL THE WAY FOR 2008.

    January 8, 2008 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  14. Marianne Beasley

    I am a yellow dog democrat. I was born and raised in Arkansas. I never thought that I would EVER leave the Democratic Party but Obama could force me to do that. He's not a Democrat's Dem, he's not a man's man, he's not a Christian's Christian, he's not anyone I would ever trust. Give me Bill Hill or give me death!

    January 8, 2008 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  15. Joerether Simons

    'Bill please understand that this election is not about you and I am disapointed that you are behaving in a way that is not in keeping with what we expect from a former President. I have always had the upmost respect for you and admire your sensitivity and compassion for others.

    Your outbursts are not helping Hillary's campaign or her chances of becoming the next President of the United States. Hillary is more than capable; however, with a loose cannon like you following her around spewing venom, she will lose what support she still has. Your outbursts sound desparate, work with Hillary not against her and maybe she will not lose more support.

    jr, Florida

    January 8, 2008 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  16. PW

    Hillary leads in delegates!

    Nothing in NH will "change" this fact!


    You go girl!
    Throw some more elbows!

    Obama is the Carter for '08. Big smile, big promises, no substance!
    Remember the recession, gas lines and hostages, oh my!

    Go Hillary Go!!

    January 8, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  17. Looking Forward

    Hopefully, Bill won't mind when Carville and Begala consult for Obama after he beats Hillary in the primary.

    January 8, 2008 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  18. Karen, NYC

    AJ, LOL!!! yep! That’s what Hillary will do!

    Who you're speaking about? Trigger Happy Rudy from NYC who made his name by walking down the street on 9/11 asking his staff what was a lockdown? Oh YES, I remember him well…..

    The only thing Rudy can pull out his hat on Feb 5th is another wife who just happens to be his cousin and a beat down for every American that asks questions or maybe an 81 year old woman that travels to the White House requesting additional security for the tough streets of NYC then gets kicked out and told not to bother him because she’s a crazy old woman????

    Oh YES, we know him VERY WELL….

    Let him make his stance on Feb 5th and watch how NYC send him a real sweet message….

    January 8, 2008 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  19. Glenda Snow

    You people make me tired. It is obvious none of you really know Hillary. She is a spontaneous, humble, person. A speech maker she is not. Hillary was a hard worker for women and childrens rights even before she married Bill. She has always had to defend herself, the lot of you are mostly cruel, indignant people always ready to fling accusations and inuendos at her. You can't stand it because she and Bill were able to work through their personal problems. I think it was honerable of them to work it out and save their marriage. Bill , right now is feeling like a husband, He is proud of his wife, and being protective of her. If he didn't, you would criticize him for that. No matter what they do, the majority of the media tries to crucify them. You want to put them down, scuttle them in every way possible until you need them to raise money for aids, hurricane victims, and the like. Bill Clinton is one of the most loved men through out the world, and Hillary has always been right there with him. I don't have a problem with Obama, or any of the other Democrats running, but I know without a doubt that Hillary is the most qualified candidate ever. What would be wrong if Paul and James did or said something to help her out. We need someone to balance things out, the rest of you media are trying your best to sink her. It's kind of like watching a ball game where no mater how well the team plays, bad referees make it impossible for them to win. Go Hillary. Glenda Snow, ARKANSAS

    January 8, 2008 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  20. linda derector

    I am so glad Bill said those things, since no one else has. The media has been awful to Hillary talking like she's lost it all. Who ever heard of Obama and what is it that he plans to do??? My vote is for Hillary, her time has come and I have the utmost confidence in her.

    January 8, 2008 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  21. pam

    Hillary is not getting FAIR and BALANCED reporting from CNN FOX or MSNBC none of the media like her, and they can not wait to report all the negitive they can if she fights back she looks bad if she does nothing they say she is not capable so no matter what she can not win with them And I say if people in this country vote based on what the media has to say then they should not be voting at all You need to look at experience and she has that Edwards can not relate to people in this country who are suffering but that is what he wants you to think, and Obama has been running for this office since he got elected in Illinois so he has experience in that respect, but not where it counts. To me most of the media do not want to see a women in the white house I guess they do not want to admit that when they voted for Bush again they made a big mistake and to me independents are just people that can not make up their mind till the last minute And I am tired of hearing that Iowa will decide our next president it will be the people that can think for themselves It is time for a CHANGE and that is what Hillary will mean to this country the men have had it long enough to get us into the MESS we are in today!!!!!

    January 8, 2008 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  22. Pat, NY

    I turn on the TV and I see- "Breaking News" Carville will not join the Clinton campaign tomorrow. A little misleading, don't you think? Sounded more like he backed out, than that he was denying an untrue FOX report. Disgraceful.

    Why can't we just get the news, without all the spin and hype? Why don't we demand it?!

    If you still don't believe that the media sold America this war, than you are still too easily manipulated by the press. It shouldn't matter who the press is biased towards or against, it should matter that THEY ARE.

    If you like Obama, then your guy may be getting the benefits of the distortions right now, but how will you feel when you find out you have been duped again.

    Fair coverage is the only acceptable coverage. It's what separates us from other countries that are only fed propaganda.

    Clinton is right, and you should pay attention to that, because next time it might be something that you care about that is being distorted.

    We simply have got to demand more from the media. If they would just give us the truth, I'm sure we would all make the best decisions.

    And Karen, NYC – stop embarrassing yourself by displaying such stupidity.

    January 8, 2008 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  23. Olivia

    I just received an email from a friend saying that Obama is a Muslim....did not use the Bible to take his oath of office. raised by a mother who was an atheist, his handlers are trying to make him to appear not to be a radical, he will not recite the pledge of Allegience nor will he show a reverence for our flag.Thile others place their hands over their heart, Obams turns his back to the flag and slouches.

    The muslims have said they plan on destroying the US from the inside out,;what better way to start than at the highes level – thoughPresident of the United States, one of thir own.(?)


    January 8, 2008 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  24. H. Buckalew

    I can't imagine who these people are that think the Clintons are so terrible. I remember the 90's as the best years of my life! The economy, as well as my family, was prosperous because of "their" presidency. The world was fairly peaceful and we were still respected by most of it. The thought of our country going from one unqualifed president to another (Obama) makes me REALLY scared. Just because somebody can make speeches does not qualify them for the job of president, and you don't have to love the person for them to be the best one for the job. There are plenty of bosses out there that you wouldn't want to hang around with after work, but at work they know what they're doing and make your life easier.

    I also don't understand why the media is working so hard to get Obama elected. If he had been scrutinized just half as much as Hillary has been, he wouldn't be where he is now. What happened to the unbiased reporting of the past? Where are the David Brinkleys and Walter Cronkites of today??? If some of our past presidents had been torn apart by the 'spinning heads" everyday during their campaigns, I'm sure they wouldn't be in our history books now.

    January 8, 2008 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  25. GIGI

    Why are you men scared of Hillary? Does this hurt your ego? There are dishonest people in politics everywhere. The women that are protesting Hillary as President, is it because she forgave Bill and stood by him or do you want a younger man who will change at the drop of a hat, too! Anyone can talk a good talk but can they bring it? That goes for all Presidential candidates, men or the woman. Too many politicians will tell you what you want to hear but they do not always keep their promises. Grow up America. Our military has been hammered to death. When will America bring them home. Our young men and women are dying everyday and some of the families do not have a man to carryout their families' name because the young man died in the war or the children are left without a mother or bother or sister. I remember Vietnam and other wars and I am sick and tired of the deaths from these wars. I want Peace, not war! All politicians need to look for a solution to this war and bring peace to the United States and the families involved. I cry everytime I hear a young man or woman died from this current war. Please quit running everyone down and join together to bring us peace. I am praying for all of the candidates and to GOD to bring us a leader and to stop the childish fighting and bashing of each other. I love America and I am proud of this country but I want PEACE!

    January 8, 2008 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
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