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. Byron in CA

    I understand it's much more entertaining for CNN to spin this in a negative light at Mrs. Clinton, but in fairness to each candidate, why don't I see the other side of the coin in a positive way for Mrs. Clinton if the report is to be really valid. You know, perspective!

    March 10, 2008 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
  2. korn

    Please All,

    either Obama-Clinto or Clinton Obama would make a best case against Mccain, the media again love to spin this up!

    March 10, 2008 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
  3. Paul

    As a Delegate for Senator Obama in Colorado, I voted for Clinton in 1992, I did not know him or the first lady, as most did not. Senator Obama, represents America just as Bill Clinton. Senator Obama has provided leadership and directions in both parties. Senator Obama , won't lead us to UN-NEEDED wars, when others (Clinton's) did so politically . We are in a time, that does not need division, no matter here in the USA or World Wide. I truly believe America is ready for change that We All Can Believe In.
    By the way, I was terminated by a private employer, after being asked after the Caucus, who I was pledging too. They were non supporters of Obama, of course they were Hillary's. (O:

    March 10, 2008 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
  4. The Truth

    Look, I'm waiting for the Obama/Clinton sex scandal to come out... You can smell the sexual energy in the air between these two. I look for the ticket to happen, eight years of hillary and then eight years of Barack, with a love child born between them midway. Billary O'Clinton...

    March 10, 2008 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
  5. Elle

    While it is strategy on Hillarys part,it only shows her brilliant mind and
    allows us to view Obama on the defensive,showing himself rather undemocratic and arrogant in his effort to reject the thought of being a VP.Furthermore to consider Hillary as part of his team is not even a consideration in his campaign.
    Obama does not lead the popular vote unless you leave FL and Michigan out of the democratic race which would be unconstitutional.
    In addition as a Indiana resident I have the confidence to see Hillary win here as well as Pennsylvenia which puts the majority vote back in Hillarys corner even without seating FL and MI.
    Obama is not viable as a candidate.He has not any primaries that will be secure the democrats the white house in the general election.
    For a better tomorrow Hillary 2008

    March 10, 2008 11:07 pm at 11:07 pm |
  6. brenda

    I think it is a wonderful idea! President Clinton and VP Obama. History would surley be made because then we would have the first woman and the first black in the oval office. These two groups of people have been kicked around and never allowed to advance since the beginning of this country. The white man has always ruled and look at where that has gotten us! Im tired of wars and corruption and spending like there is no tomorrow. Women are always better at budgeting money and "running the household". A famous Frenchman sat back and observed this countries birth and the role that each person played. It was determined that, in fact, the women of this great country DID and continue to do the hard work. If you really wnat to know what this country is about and where we all came from, read DEMOCRACY IN AMERICA by the great Alexis DeTocqeville.

    March 10, 2008 11:08 pm at 11:08 pm |
  7. Charlotte

    Yes, It shows her desire to unite the party.

    March 10, 2008 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  8. sharong

    For America the beautiful and Anne E:
    I voted for Bill Clinton twice and yes, I thought he was a good President, even if he had no morals. Hillary showed how prestige
    hungry she was even then. Threre was women coming out of the
    walls saying they went to bed with Bill. Most women would forgive a man one short affair but would not stay with a guy who was cheating on her all over the place for years and having it brought out on national
    TV! Why didn't she divorce him? She wouldn't be 1st lady anymore!
    Now it's payback time, so she's making him go out and campaign for
    her to atone for his sins! It's no wonder the man has aged so much
    in the last 10 years, she's got him by the balls. I never liked her then and I do not like her now! I remember seeing a bumper sticker on a car back then that said, "IMPEACH THE PRESIDENT . . . AND BILL TOO! She was arrogant and pushy and manipulative back then too.
    I believe Barack will straighten things out but it may take him longer
    than 4 years to undo the damage Bush has done.

    March 10, 2008 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  9. Cindy

    Hillary's being totally disengenuous. Sorry, but I do not trust this woman. Why offer him the VP spot? Why not offer herself as the VP instead?

    It's so obvious.. she is so totally incensed that this young upstart Senator is stealing her thunder. She offers him the opportunity to allow her to ride on his coattails? Gimme a break. She is not the nominee.

    No respect, Hillary. You show no respect to your opponent, or the Democratic process in place.

    Come Wednesday, after Mississippi is done voting, you'll return back to your normal kitchen sink self. You're so obvious.

    March 10, 2008 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  10. PeterO

    Too funny.... almost all analysts agree that he will have the lead in delegates and popular vote with or without FL and MI, and she has the audicity to ask him to be VP at this point.

    March 10, 2008 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  11. LMAO

    These comments are hillarious. the Obama camp is NUTS!!

    Hillary never offered him the VEAP, though she should have, she simply talked about a joint ticket.

    J-O-I-N-I-N-G...Remember that old slogan called unity? I swear I heard that some where during this primary season.

    By the way, equating the VP slot to the Commander in Chief is also quite silly. How many presidents were actually sworn in from that position? 2 out of 43?

    March 10, 2008 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  12. Little Lance

    What are you people ragging-on about? The Idea of a combo ticket has been around for a long time. This is nothing new. When did Edwards drop out? That was day one for this suggestion.

    March 10, 2008 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  13. Gerry

    All HIllary should do is focus on releasing her tax information, the presidential papers and a list of donators to the presidential library and the Clinton charity.

    That all has to be vetted before Obama would ever consider her as VP.

    March 10, 2008 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  14. Jesse

    Last time I heard Obama is in the lead! Hillary has the right to inflate her ego and pick any VP she wants, but she looks really ridiculous doing so! Its a way for her to attract glorified undecided voters. Obama will not be taken by her manipulations!

    March 10, 2008 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  15. Frankie

    America the Beautiful is the dumbest poster I've ever read.

    ATB, you do know that Hillary is not Bill and she wasn't the President back in the 90's? She was his wife. That's it. The "Clintons" weren't President. Bill Clinton was. By your logic, Chelsea or Roger Clinton could be President.

    I'm frightened that people this dumb are allowed to vote.

    March 10, 2008 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  16. Jim from Kingwood, TX

    We the people are tired of dynasties (Kennedys, Bushes, Clintons). My wish is that BOTH Clintons would go back to private life and be do-gooders like the Carters. That is where their work is need the most.

    Frankly, the most important issue to me is health care. Hillary had 8 years as the surrogate Vice President to do something about it (her goal). She FAILED miserably. Why should I believe that she can NOW do what she couldn't before?

    It is time for change and I believe that it starts with the Presidential ticket and continues with Congress. VOTE OUT ALL the Congress (especially Senators) ,that have been there more than 8 years.

    Elect Obama and let him lead by inspiration, like Reagan did in the 80's. We need a strong cheerleader now that can rally America behind the government.

    Hillary, go back to New York, or Arkansas, or wherever you are from.

    March 10, 2008 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  17. J. McKinney SW MO

    Sorry, I mistyped above. Her mother said she was "crying and trembling", not shaking and trembling. Correction.

    March 10, 2008 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  18. Esther

    Well, since "independent or republicans" are supporting Sen. Obama (can you watch de red states he won?) there are a lot coincidencies betwenn He and all republican politicians. For me Sen. Obama represent the secure ticket for Republicans keep de White HOuse.
    In a normal primaries, where Florida and Michigan votes count...we are talking about more 200 hundred delegates "discount" to Hillary Clinton! Please, the democracy of this country in the right to express politically in the vote. If Democrat Party want to rules de constitutional right of the democrats.... Now I could understand why republicans are laugh a lots about how stupid things happen in the blue party.
    Hillary technically are winning in the BIGGEST States, traditionally blue, so real democrats are decide, BUT republicans are supporing Sen. Obama (monetary and with vote) and are destroying the Democrat party! What going on now?
    Since republican are select the candidates, now they will playing in the democrats primaries and in consecuenses.......the Democrats will divided and destroy. Can Sen. Obama understand that or He will be the next Joe Lieberman?

    March 10, 2008 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  19. Abralex

    He is going to be the president of The United States of America.You can't even be the VP when he become the president because you are not the kind of person America needs at this moment.

    March 10, 2008 11:12 pm at 11:12 pm |
  20. sand

    I think HIllary has integirty and is qualified...Obama is the most arrogant male I have ever seen...I am a Demo but I will not vote for him ....he needs an serious attitude adjustment and his wife certainly needs one...I am a woman and I cant see any woman voting for this man, as he certainly does not know how to respect a woman ,,,,and is so self absorbed it make me sick

    March 10, 2008 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  21. Frankie

    The Clinton's and Vanilla Ice.....3 things that should have been left in the 90's

    March 10, 2008 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  22. Gillis Phoenix, AZ


    If your orders are always followed. Why would it be necessary to transfer Santiago off the base? If all Obama brings is the speech he gave in 2002. Why would it be prudent in your “judgment” to make him your vice president? YOU CAN’T HANDLE THE TRUTH!

    You hid your tax returns and are doctoring your documents. My fellow democrats I move that we go to the article of impeachment, candidate Hillary has rights.

    HILLARYous, is it?

    March 10, 2008 11:15 pm at 11:15 pm |
  23. Mark

    Rather than campaigning, Bill should give advise to Mr. Spitzer and Hillary to Mrs. Spitzer. We'll see Billary will achieve more of these experiences once they are in WH

    March 10, 2008 11:15 pm at 11:15 pm |
  24. ab

    from all those blogs pro I feel, hear, read tremendous amount of hate from Obama's supporters. They go with hate, no spelling, no good grammar, hate, hate, ridicule, insults..... they are ignorant, not intelligent to me. They lack any modesty, any respect, any thing which makes human being human -real human. They call pro-Hillary people old and uneducated. How arrogant! How intelligent is this comment?

    Why crowds get so hypnotized? Not only in this case, but in history it was few of leaders ( which were nothing to be proud of – they caused a lot of suffering).

    In Obama's response is very much of arrogance, very much of some kind extreme egoism and selfishness, not being able to cooperate with party he claims is part of. And complete lack of diplomatic approach to this subject.
    Obama is very self centered individual. All is about him, not nation, not people. He will not care about this nation if elected.... if he would think about us, he would not say either he will be elected or forget it. What kind of approach is this? Very immature, selfish, not caring about anything else but himself and himself and himself. His glory. Not people, economy, education. Not the service to people, to country. It is either him or no one?
    Is there anything to un-hypnotize people?

    March 10, 2008 11:17 pm at 11:17 pm |
  25. Charlotte

    I cannot believe the Obama-bots, they actually believe Rush was able to get Republicans to vote for Hillary. Isn't it Obama who is always talking about the Obamakins?

    March 10, 2008 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
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