March 11th, 2008
09:50 AM ET
15 years ago

Does Clinton benefit from so-called 'dream ticket' talk?

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption=" Could Clinton and Obama appear on the same ticket? Clinton appears to be fueling the speculation."](CNN) - It's an idea that's increasingly getting kicked around, especially by one campaign in particular.

The prospect of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama running on the same ticket has long been the subject of speculation, even before voters started weighing in at the polls earlier this year.

But following Clinton's wins in Texas, Ohio, and Rhode Island last week - a trifecta of victories that essentially salvaged her presidential hopes - the New York senator and her surrogates have repeatedly raised the issue themselves; raised it so often, in fact, that Obama made sure to shoot down the idea at a campaign event in Mississippi Monday.

"I want everybody to be absolutely clear," he said. "I'm not running for vice president. I'm running for president of the United States of America."

"This kind of gamesmanship, talking about me as VP but not ready for commander-in-chief, that's exactly the kind of doublespeak, double-talk that Washington is very good at," Obama added.

Obama isn't the only one who thinks Clinton has something up her sleeve when she raises the issue. CNN Senior Political Correspondent Candy Crowley says the Illinois senator's campaign clearly recognizes its rival benefits from the increased speculation of a joint ticket.

"They understand that this is a way for the Clinton campaign to play some politics here," Crowley said. "If you suggest to voters, who might have some question about Barack Obama's experience, but they like his message of hope and change, that they could have both, and that maybe he could get eight years of seasoning, that's the suggestion here."(Watch Candy Crowley's analysis of Dem dream ticket talk)

Obama's comments Monday followed a week in which the prospect of a joint ticket was pushed by Clinton or a member of her campaign on at least four different occasions. Clinton herself raised the issue twice - once with a CBS interviewer on the morning after her March 4 primary wins, and on Friday during a campaign stop in Mississippi.

"I've had people say, 'Well I wish I could vote for both of you,'" she said. "Well, that might be possible some day. But first I need your vote on Tuesday."

Former President Bill Clinton also weighed in on the possibility over the weekend, calling the possible ticket 'unstoppable.'

"I know that she has always been open to it, because she believes that if you can unite the energy and the new people that he's brought in and the people in these vast swaths of small town and rural America that she's carried overwhelmingly, if you had those two things together she thinks it'd be hard to beat," he said in Mississippi Saturday.

And Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell, a fervent supporter of Clinton's, said on two different occasions he thinks whoever wins the Democratic race should offer the vice presidency to the other.

Gloria Borger, a senior political analyst for CNN, called the comments a Clinton "talking point."

"They're trying to say to people, you know 'wink, wink, if you make Hillary Clinton the nominee, she'll bring Barack Obama along.' It's a talking point, which is that with Hillary you get two for the price of one—if she is at the top of the ticket."

But there's no denying the Clintons recognize the strength Obama would bring to a presidential ticket. Each has attracted a distinct segment of the Democratic electorate: He consistently does well with upscale voters, independents, and African-Americans while she has performed well among women, older voters, and members of the working class.

"Thee Clintons clearly believe that Obama on the ticket would both unify the party and be a draw, particularly to those African-American voters who have been flocking to him. There is clearly some sense it would cement a Democratic victory."

So would Clinton herself accept the No. 2 slot should Obama finish the race on top?

"I don't make any predictions," Borger said.

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

UPDATE: Clinton said Monday all the V.P. speculation has taken on a life of its own:

"This thing has really been given a life of its own. A lot of Democrats like us both and have been very hopeful that they wouldn't have to make a choice, but obviously democrats have to make a choice, and I'm looking for to getting the nomination and it's preliminary to talk about whoever might be on whose ticket," she said while campaigning in Pennsylvania. "But I believe I am ready to serve on day one."

soundoff (1,377 Responses)
  1. Darnell

    ...Would someone mind informing Bill and Hill that Barack Obama is running for President of the United States.

    March 10, 2008 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  2. Life28SBK

    Hillary Clinton is a secret Obama supporter also... lol

    March 10, 2008 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  3. Ben in Minneapolis

    CNN you are so predictable. Set up blogs for these obsessed Obama sheep to rant and rave. I hate to say it, but I am another in long line of Clinton supporters turning to FOX news for un-baised reporting. Honestly makes me sick.

    March 10, 2008 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  4. Anonymous


    March 10, 2008 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  5. Paul

    Clintons are now making people realize are they really sure to have Obama as President ...the more posts I read it is evident that even Obama supporters deep inside their heart are now skeptical to see him as President. People are now forced to think how important experience is for the post of 'President of USA'. Talk and personality are important but the most important for a President is to be able to take decisions when asked upon and not just say 'I am present'. Hillary is the one who can take decisions; Obama needs some more time to mature.

    Vote Hillary 08

    March 10, 2008 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  6. Sarah L, Fayetteville, AR

    Let's be clear, if Hillary cared about unifying the party, she wouldn't still be in the race.

    March 10, 2008 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  7. Kim

    For those touting Obama as VP then as President in 2016, have you forgotten Al Gore??? Obama would no more be able to springboard to president after serving under Hillary Clinton than Al Gore was able to use his vice-presidency as a springboard to the presidency after 8 years of Bill Clinton. Obama would be better served to stay in the senate.

    March 10, 2008 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  8. Anonymous

    Please people start seeing just how devisive and corrupt Hillary Clinton is and for the person who thinks she is brillant with political acumen I don't agree with that at all. Why on earth would we as a nation ever want a person in our highest office with the kind of junk Hillary is putting out.It really says something about those you continually tell us what a great political Bill Clinton is because he has duped, connived, and lied his way into the White House. They are corrupted on evry level. I say this says more about us them them.I was fooled by them (Bill and Hillary) once I have finally awaken and will not be fooled again! Just one more thing, Let's examine Hillary judgement I' m remembering how she stood by the Gov.of New York with his immigration views what happening with him right now.Oh well, I guess another one of Bill's friends has been caught!!!!

    March 10, 2008 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  9. Illinois

    The ONLY way to bring the party together at this point, whether anyone likes it or not, is to put them both on the same ticket. That way neither side gets the chance to alienate the other candidate...which is a stupid thing to do because we'd definitely lose the White House if people resorted to vindictive behavior just because their candidate didn't get the top spot or the nomination. While both senators are running for president and not willing to take the VP slot AT THIS TIME, it will be a very different point of view once one of them becomes the nominee.

    I can't understand why people think that these two candidates will end up hating each other. It doesn't make any difference what happens on the campaign's all politics and anyone who has any common sense about politics knows that. At the end of the day neither one cares about what one has said about the's all political positioning.

    March 10, 2008 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  10. Bill

    The race is over. At last the "Billary" ticket has thrown in the towel. They finally have admitted they can not win on their own...they need someone else to get them back to the White House. Obama has really stepped up to the plate today and said no way to this final ploy of the Clintons. Finally, AMERICA WINS! No more Bush and no more Clintons....what a breath of fresh air this will be.

    March 10, 2008 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  11. Rick

    I do not know why people are blaming Hillary. Hillary just mentioned that it is possible that one day she and Obama could be on one ticket. President Clinton said it would be a dream ticket to have both on the same ticket because Obama has infact mobilized a good amount of African American support who tend to live in urban areas and Hillary has carried the rural areas. Obviously the Clinton campaign can only say Clinton/Obama and not Obama/Clinton because she is still running for president and she also feels she is better prepared than Obama.

    Media is adding its own spin to what was told by Clintons.

    One thing is clear Obama is just acting defensive about a ticket with Clinton… this shows how arrogant and over confident he is about himself. He could have just said yes a ticket is possible but weather its Obama/Clinton or Clinton/Obama, only time will tell. “Fox painted by the media hype as a Lion is infact thinking it is a Lion” One rain-wash will expose everything.

    March 10, 2008 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  12. Kirby

    It doesn't really matter – alone or together they are unelectable. The Dems can't get their act together to find someone worth a second thought.

    March 10, 2008 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  13. Justin from West Haven, CT

    Clinton/Spitzer '08

    The Dream ticket for federal investigation.

    Clinton-Peter Paul
    Spitzer- the US attorney

    March 10, 2008 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  14. HILLLARY 08

    Once FL & MI delegates count a revote or not, HILLARY WINS THE NOMINATION! Hillary has won all the major states needed she will have the majority of the vote, more delegates and that will be that. So for all you little dweebs who are dilusional about how significant obamas little red state wins are, think again, they aren't. Get over it Hillary will be the next President of the United States, she is the most qualified her accomplishments back up her abilities to make things happen for ALL Americans, not just the few as obama has demonstrated nothing but getting into bed with rezko, exelon; lying about NAFTA and the IRAQ WAR and the lack of conviction to follow through on anything and obama has got to have won of the most arrogant demeaner I have ever seen. A 1 1/2 year U.S. Senator believes he is entitled to the Presidency, why? because he was a community organizer for 3 years? a state senator who failed at making tuff decisions? who has never accomplished anything during his time in National Service that includes tending to his FOREIGN POLICY DUTIES? I don't think so, NO OBAMA, HE ISN'T DESERVING OF THE HARDEST AND HIGHEST JOB IN THE UNITED STATES!

    March 10, 2008 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  15. Rawr Veroflraptor!- Ca

    Its things like this that really help me desicion to never vote for Hillary, period. If she somehow steals the nomination, I'm writting in Obama, or maybe, just maybe, voting for McCain. Anyone would be better than Billary. You got to admit though, that the Clinton's are SO good at manipulation.

    March 10, 2008 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  16. C.Jeyabalan

    Inexperience! inexperience!! inexperience!!

    What is her experience?

    She is not able to manage her husband and her compaign team; do you expect anyone to believe her that she would manage a Super power?

    Never. Let's not think about this.

    Experience means CLOSED LOOP. Inexperience is OPEN MIND. I will vote for OPEN MIND. Open minded Barack is my choice for today and tomorrow.

    March 10, 2008 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
  17. Chuck

    Dream Ticket!!!
    Bill and Hillary are dreaming!!!
    They have been since his impeachment!!!
    This NY governor scandal reminds us of
    why we should not vote for Hillary!!!
    The first lady of NY and the former
    first lady–standing by her man!!!!

    March 10, 2008 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
  18. Linoq

    The fact is that those are all distraction by the MONSTER. When she was not attacking but discussing policies she was losing ground. Now she went so negative that uneducated people that made up their minds at the last moment voted for her. She will do her best to keep this campaign about anything but fair policies discussion.

    Superdelegates, where are you?!?!?!?!??!

    March 10, 2008 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
  19. Jane, College Park, MD

    I see through her so so clearly.
    It is yet another deceptive Karl Rove strategy to get the people of Mississippi to vote for her. When she gets to PA, she will pounce on him again. Mrs Hillary Jerkyl and Hyde.
    PA, we are relying on you to put an end to this treacherous drama by the Clintons.

    March 10, 2008 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  20. Rebecca - CA

    She's getting desperate again............................ can't blame her, her advisers must have broke the news to her.... She needs him in order to win in Nov....... but he doesn't need her. She must also know that.....without him agreeing to give her the top spot , her only hope will be to convince the super delegates (the Dem establishment) to go against the will of the people....and steal the nomination. Still, without Sen. Obama on the ticket, she likely loses much of the coalition he has created, energizes the Repulicans......and "poof," there goes her self-described life-long ambition..... up in smoke!

    The super delegates need to be concerned..... if they overturn the will of the people, it may be at their own peril.

    March 10, 2008 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  21. Steve Boyer

    Obama is running for PRESIDENT, not vice president. And righ tnow, he has more votes, more states, and more delegates than Clinton. How dare any of you suggest he is only "good enough to be her VP?" HE IS WINNING!!!! She is not even fit to be on the ticket. Google search her history and read about her crimes.

    March 10, 2008 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  22. David T., Toronto, Canada

    Why on earth is no one in the Democratic Party calling Hillary Clinton out regarding her overt praise of John McCain while at the same time criticizing Obama? Is this supposed to help the party?

    She MUST be well connected! Then again, maybe she has pictures??

    March 10, 2008 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  23. CA

    To Solutions,

    We all can tell by your hostility and imature name calling that you are for Hillary!.

    Why doesn't CNN show clips of Hillary in the debate when she said and I paraphrase..."With all this mud slinging some will stick"

    All she does is sling mud. in fact, I am waist deep in her mud right now.

    Obama for VP..this is arguably as good as Obama has to swppe OH, TX, RI and VT or he is a loser.

    Where is john edwards in all this???

    March 10, 2008 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  24. onecandidate

    Which democrat (not a spelling mistake) is promising to end the war?
    Which one voted for it?
    Which one votes to fund it?
    Which one will end it in a year?

    Ron Paul is the only candidate.

    March 10, 2008 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
  25. Janet

    This is just another example of Hillary trying to win by any means. So far, she's cried, told voters that they helped her find her voice, claimed the press was victimizing her, and suggested that votes from MI and FL should count even though Barack wasn't even on the ballot in MI. She's been riding Bill's coattails into the White House since the beginning of the campaign and now she's trying to ride Barack's. Is this the kind of woman we want to be the first female president? I don't think so. I want the first female president to be a strong woman with integrity who achieves the presidency on her own merits.

    March 10, 2008 07:27 pm at 7:27 pm |
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