February 4th, 2008
09:30 PM ET
9 years ago

Clinton chairman: Obama would be good running mate

(CNN) - One of Hillary Clinton's top advisers said Monday Barack Obama could make a good running mate if the New York senator is the Democratic Party's nominee.

Appearing on NY1's "Inside City Hall," Clinton Campaign Chairman Terry McAuliffe praised Barack Obama’s ability to “excite people,” adding that Clinton “needs to make sure the next, whoever the next vice president is, could take over if anything happened to her” - though he said it was too early to seriously discuss potential vice presidential picks.

When he was asked directly whether adding Obama to a Clinton ticket would be a good idea, he responded: “Sure it would. Absolutely. How could you deny consideration of someone who has excited so many people?”

NY1 is owned by Time Warner, the parent company of CNN.

At CNN's debate in Los Angeles Thursday, both candidates were asked about the possibility of a joint ticket, regardless of who held the top spot – a suggestion that prompted cheering from the audience. Both suggested it was too early to discuss potential running mates.

-CNN's Alexander Mooney

soundoff (702 Responses)
  1. xargaw

    This is pure political calculation. Of course Obama would be an aset to a Clinton ticket because Clinton will not get all of Obamas voters. She does not enthuse new young voters or Independents. Obama draws from all segments, even some Republicans. He is a much stronger general election candidate. Hillary as his running mate would be a drag on the ticket. Here's hoping he is the nominee and chooses someone else; Jim Webb, Mark Warner, anyone but Hilllary. Besides, who would want to be VP under Hillary and BILL? Talk about a job from H–l.

    February 5, 2008 02:18 am at 2:18 am |
  2. Katie

    EXPERIENCE, how tired am I of hearing about Hillary's proclaimed EXPERIENCE. Here's the facts Hillary claims all her working life she has worked to make peoples lives better, what people would that be? FACT is she worked for ONE non profit organization for a year and a half, after that she worked for a BIG league law firm representing corporations and sitting on boards, from there she became first lady in AK and then first lady in the white house. Here campaign folks would like you to believe she's mother Theresa.

    Senator Obama, comes straight out of Harvard and could have had his pick of law firms to work for and made mega bucks, instead he works as a civil rights lawyer, organizing and working in the poorest neighborhoods in Chicago and makes a "real" difference in the lives of people struggling, and while doing that teaching Constitutional law, from there on the become a legislator in Chicago, then a Senator.

    February 5, 2008 02:20 am at 2:20 am |
  3. Chris, Arizona

    Why have 1 totally unaccomplished candidate on a ticket if you can have two?

    February 5, 2008 02:24 am at 2:24 am |
  4. Paul

    President Truman told JFK he had no experience and to wait his turn. JFK didn't listen and look what we got America. Hillary had her stay in White House, now give it up!

    February 5, 2008 02:24 am at 2:24 am |
  5. Patricia

    Rechi... you are wrong my friend. Obama has the experience and meat and potatoes. You just don't want to look. Your loss!

    I do not want Clinton on the same ticket as Obama.

    Hillary's lack of integrity would make it a joke.

    February 5, 2008 02:27 am at 2:27 am |
  6. Dan Campbell

    After reading some of the irrational views on here, I have to ask myself exactly "what" the Obama campaign supporters actually stand for. Its sounds like many of you are more involved in a "HATE HILLARY" campaign than supporting your new mesiah? I've supported the 'principles' of the democratic party for 16 years and have faithfully supported the accomplishments and goals of the Clintons. While I'm not opposed to Obama, I refuse to join a movement that is more AGAINST Hillary, than is FOR another Democrat. That's no campaign that will win my vote. When I hear people say they will vote for Mitt Romney over Hillary (if Obama isn't the nominee), you lose all respect.

    I'm sticking with a movement that I can trust – Hillary 08 !

    February 5, 2008 02:28 am at 2:28 am |
  7. gobama '08

    Hey Rechi-

    Some people are born with a gift. Mozart didn't need a lifetime of training to write symphonies at age 9. Bill Gates didn't need a college degree to become the richest person on earth. And BARACK OBAMA doesn't need 5000 more votes in the senate to understand what is best for our country.

    Eyes on the prize, peeps. BARACK OBAMA is a visionary. As all legendary leaders will do, he has first and foremost set his mind on a vision of hope. His approach recognizes that without hope, even the weakest of plans and policies will die. Hope is not "pie in the sky." Quite the opposite- hope is the necessary foundation upon which we can rebuild a broken nation. With this kind of true leadership, our nation's collective imagination can be called into action to create something truly amazing.

    Obama '08

    February 5, 2008 02:28 am at 2:28 am |
  8. Ni

    Hillary should be begging to be Obama's VP. He is more experienced (12 years elective) to her 8 years and is definitely the visionary.

    This is a pathetic attempt by the Clinton campaign to marginalize the Obama candidacy.

    February 5, 2008 02:34 am at 2:34 am |
  9. rachel from oregon

    oh wait.... so he's not good enough to be president now, but if hillary were to die or something he would be qualified?

    im confused. somebody explain this to me.


    February 5, 2008 02:35 am at 2:35 am |
  10. rafael

    all you obama haters need to realize what is happening americans are saying they are ready for change, and the only one that can do that is obama. how can you say you want change and then vote for a candidate from the early 90's. Hillary hasn't changed since the 90's she like her husband still has old ideas that can not help us in this new age they are yesterdays news. If bill hadn't discraced the white house with his scandals the republicans wouldn't have got in the white house in the first place. Now you hillary lovers want to put him back in the white house. So mccain can make short work of hillary and get in the oval office. The polls even the polls say mccain would beat her in a general election. The republicans want hillary to win so they can air all her dirty laundry and bills scandals and win the election hillary has too much dirt the republicans can use against her wake up people barack is the best person for the job.

    February 5, 2008 02:50 am at 2:50 am |
  11. Jim , Escondido, CA

    I can't believe the bogus experience issue still has legs – reminds me of the Republican "flip-flop" attack on Kerry. ...but then the Clintons' political behavior resembles the Bushes' in so many ways. Let's see, long legal career distinguished by social activism, 2 years in Washington at a time of great disfuntion in our nation, gee, isn't that about the same experience Abraham Lincoln had? Leadership, character, integrity, and the ability to change people's hearts is so much more important in a president than time in Washington.

    February 5, 2008 02:54 am at 2:54 am |
  12. CNN CA

    If Hillray does not get the nomination and Obama does, I will volunteer/vote Republican.

    February 5, 2008 02:55 am at 2:55 am |
  13. Brien Sink

    Clinton-Obama ...in that order. We need to fix our problems first. I'm 23 years old, but when I see a crowd of wide-eyed Obamabots at a rally- ...it's like i'm watching lemmings. I urge you to put the kool-aid down and really look at the big picture. Obama-Clinton would be a bottom heavy ticket, just like Bush-Cheney was ...it's awkward looking. ..and might I add a note to CNN's producers. Your Obama bias is becoming INCREDIBLY blatant. I've always enjoyed (and trusted) you, CNN ...but I can't help but feel as if you're attempting a big experiment here by seeing if you can swing the election at the expense of our country. Please go back to being neutral and just give us the facts, no spin.

    February 5, 2008 02:59 am at 2:59 am |
  14. anti-dot

    I had a friend who reasons like chicken, she never did her homeworks, she never believed in herself, she doesn't know about little people that do big things, she was oblivious that big things come in little packages, she has never though that bush had all the experience in the world atleast his dad was a former president and he was a governor, and where is America today with all that experience.... Now this my ex-friend did not also realize that a Nation is not about the president, but about the people, Without the people there is no nation and thats why a mover is needed... America needs someone to inspire us to believe in us. My frineds name was Rechi.

    February 5, 2008 03:01 am at 3:01 am |
  15. Beverly Hill

    Obama made the comment that Hilliary's supporters would be quick to support him , but his would not support her.

    Well, he is wrong. I am a Hilliary suppoter, I will not be an Obama supporter. Someone who flashes around with just talk and can't show much accomplished in the past, is not who I think should run this country.

    We need someone who walk their talk and not vice versa.

    If Clinton choses Obama as a running mate, then I will support the party, but if it is just Obama, I cannot. Experience will count and he will lose to McCain.

    Yes, there is youth, but there is also the baby boomers-the largest voting group in the U.S. who everyone is over-looking. I am all for the youth to vote, but again, they need to look past the speeches made by speech makers. Oh, they sound so wonderful, but they don't accomplish anything in the end.

    The way he flaunts Oprah, the Kennedys is sickening. I can make my own decisions. How dare they think I have to vote as they tell me to.

    I am an intelligent voter and I have listened to every debate, done my research, and Obama just does not have the experience that this country needs now. He plays the race card saying he knows he is going to get the black vote. This voice that says, "I am black first", really bothers me.

    Everyone should say they are an American first, and vote for what is best for our country now.

    So you Obama supporters actually want someone who has never driven the boat, nor has had any experience, take over this huge task –this huge ship- and steer it? I hope not.

    February 5, 2008 03:03 am at 3:03 am |
  16. eric barthel

    vote for Obama win the the white house a canadian who loves american policy.

    February 5, 2008 03:11 am at 3:11 am |
  17. Liberty

    Experience my foot!!! What has all the experience that the Bushes have among them given America. We need ideas, not experience, we need hope, not experience. We have already experienced the clintons. Its not time for Hope to take over...

    OBAMA 08

    February 5, 2008 03:37 am at 3:37 am |
  18. AtlBill

    You Clinton folks have all drank the "kool aid" that these people apparently are handing out. Specifically, you have bought into the "35 years" and "ready on day 1" self-declarations put out by these folks. Please do us all a favor and list HRC's three substantive accomplishments in future posts that qualify her to be president. By the way I am a 64 year old male who has never voted repub and also have voted twice in the past for Bill C. I am liberal to my core but should Hillary win the nomination, I will definitely cast my first vote for the republican presidential candidate. Hopefully, that would be McC and hopefully he would only serve a single term.

    February 5, 2008 03:38 am at 3:38 am |
  19. john

    Obama is more electable than Hillary if only because he hasn't all her baggage.
    If conservatives sit this one out because of controversial McCain, Obama will
    benefit. He will out-debate McCain easily. Then go on to be the 44th president.

    February 5, 2008 03:46 am at 3:46 am |
  20. J.C.T.


    February 5, 2008 03:53 am at 3:53 am |

    ToRechi: Regarding your comment about Obama supporters I find your comment about people who support obama very offensive .I myself grew up very poor and a single parent home with four other siblings and one of the only things that held our family together was hope. I remember many times around holidays there times when we might not have had enough to eat or around christmas there wasnt allways presents for all of us. But as bad as that may have been(and at times things were really bad) My mother never gave up hope, she never gave up beleiving that one day the struggles that we all endure will bare fruit. One day we will make a difference not only in our lives and the lives around us. And you know what she was right because know i own my own business and i can say that i do very well for myself and i thank a large part of it to that thing that a lot of clintonites refer to as EMPTY RHETORIC. I dont think its' empty it's full all things that people stand for , ambition,courage,inspiration and hope.In a few short months me and my wife will welcome our first child into this world and i HOPE that i can inspire him to dream, dream of anything and evrything and work hard for it because to me that's one of the feundamental basics about being an American. Thank you

    February 5, 2008 03:54 am at 3:54 am |
  22. Doreen Augusta Maine

    Absolutely, another attempt by the Clinton campaign to marginalize Barack Obama. I can guarantee you one thing, she will not be Obama's vice president. She is way too divisive and polarizing.

    February 5, 2008 03:57 am at 3:57 am |
  23. Jason Davies

    This is a very interesting trap McAuliffe has set for himself and Hillary. Hillary's running on the argument that she is more experienced on day one. In order to be a VP, one is just a heart beat away from the Presidency. While it may be an attempt to marginalize Obama, the CLinton campaign has just destroyed their own argument by saying Obama woudl be ready to be President, as anyone selected as a VP would have to be. And, the fact that they are acknowledging they could use someone to excite people, is an admission that their own candidate is less charismatic. So, if Obama is more charismatic – which translates into a better ability to gain more support for the Democratic party's agenda – and, he's experienced enough to take over as President in a time of crisis, McAuliffe has essentially just endorsed Obama for President.... : )

    It's a logical trap they just stepped their way into. They can't have it both ways. If Obama isn't experienced enough to be President, he can't be a good running mate. If he isn't experienced enough to be President and the Clinton campaign is considering him as their VP, then they are "rolling the dice" themselves. And if Obama adds more excitement to the Clinton ticket, they have just admitted that their own candidate isn't exciting enough and could stand an injection of inspirational leadership from Obama.

    Whoops. Put that in your pipe and smoke it Terry!!


    February 5, 2008 04:02 am at 4:02 am |
  24. You Zombie Voters

    First fix the mess then change wil come eventually. Who cares about changing the world? Keep your jobs, increase your livelihood are more important, you dorks.

    February 5, 2008 04:12 am at 4:12 am |
  25. Mario

    no way,Obama isn t 2nd banana to anyone,especially to Shillary...OBAMA 08!!!!

    February 5, 2008 04:12 am at 4:12 am |
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