June 24th, 2008
02:50 PM ET
15 years ago

Bill Clinton 'committed' to Obama, spokesman says

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/06/24/art.clintonsob.gi.jpg caption="Bill Clinton has not formally endorsed Obama yet."](CNN) - Former President Bill Clinton is committed to helping Sen. Barack Obama get elected to the Oval Office, a Clinton spokesman said Tuesday.

The comments are the first from Bill Clinton's office to offer support to the presumptive Democratic nominee since the party's prolonged primary race ended two weeks ago.

Watch: Where is Bill Clinton?

"President Clinton is obviously committed to doing whatever he can and is asked to do to ensure Senator Obama is the next president of the United States," Clinton spokesman Matt McKenna said.

The former president was sharply critical of Obama on the campaign trail earlier this year, and has yet to publicly endorse the Illinois senator, even though his wife officially pulled out of the race June 7.

The comments come three days before both Obama and Hillary Clinton are set to appear together in Unity, New Hampshire, to show their support of a unified Democratic Party. The former president is not slated to attend that event.

Watch: Should Bill stump for Obama?

UPDATE: Responding to the statement, the Republican National Committee notes the former president has been highly critical of Obama, specifically in an interview with PBS' Charlie Rose shortly before the Iowa caucuses when he suggested voting for Obama is a "roll of the dice."

"I mean when is the last time we elected a president based on one year of service in the Senate before he started running?" Clinton said then. "He would have been a senator longer by the time he’s inaugurated, but essentially once you start running for president full-time you don’t have time to do much else.”

soundoff (282 Responses)
  1. Ilona Proud Canadian

    "President Clinton is obviously committed to doing whatever he can or is asked to do to ensure that Senator Obama is the next President of the United States"


    Folks, what do you think the chances are that he is really committed as he says?

    June 24, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  2. obama=underhanded liar

    I'm ashame that you are allowing that no good to use you like that. Bill Clinton, please don't do it. Obama isn't worth it. He's only using you.If you help get that traitir in office people will never trust you again. Where is your pride.........PLEASE don't do it.

    June 24, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  3. Joe Six

    Go Bubba. Campaign for Obama. Make sure you continue with foot in mouth. Be visible. Energize Conservatives. Remind us all of the fairy tales and what you said about O playing the race card. On second thought, Obama would have to be nuts to have Bubba as a vocal supporter.

    June 24, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  4. michelle

    The only people voting for Obama are people who DON'T KNOW THE FACTS.

    June 24, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |

    At this point, who cares who is backing Obama? Hopefully, John McCain's people will stand tall and expose him for the empty suit that he is. Of course, Nobama will whine and cry that he or his bigmouth wife are being picked on...and all the suckers will buy it.

    June 24, 2008 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  6. dirty politics backfire

    Admire the party loyalty...

    But as a voter I can not reward the party or its nominee for the dirty politics they played against Hillary Clinton.

    No vote for Obama

    June 24, 2008 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  7. Nikki

    I can only guess what God sees in the heart of hearts of man.

    June 24, 2008 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  8. Susan of Ohio

    Clinton's support has proven not to be helpful, even to his wife. Hopefully he will not contaminate Senator Barack Obama chances.

    June 24, 2008 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  9. Tasha Houston, TX

    The Clinton's are doing what they do best...pout and act like spoiled children. Its doesnt shock me that they are not fully supporting Obama. Bill didnt fully support Gore in 2000. The Clinton's are selfish. The are holding out for 2012 and if they are, Hillary will not win. They have done too much damage in this presidential race. All of the kitchen sink strategies will come back to bite them. If Hillary have any chance at saving her political career, she and Bill need to get their stump speeches together.

    June 24, 2008 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  10. TW

    Some of the rookie Obama supporters need to get over themselves. The Clintons are great for Obama. Just because Hillary fought for the nomination doesn't mean they are enemies anymore. Grow up, get over your grudges, and let's elect Obama the next president! p.s. all the posers saying you supported Hillary and are now voting for McCain....please go away!

    June 24, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  11. Still for Hill but now ONLY for Hill

    I would vote for Clinton in a heartbeat...

    But the fool race-card playing lying boastful, cocky arrogant Obama...not so much.

    Not ever actually.

    Good luck to you, Hillary.

    June 24, 2008 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |
  12. Jessica in IL

    Whatever. The only person Bill is committed to is Bill.

    June 24, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  13. Obama/Hillary 08

    Welcome Bill Clinton and you are really appreciate. We are one party and we are not divided. I welcome Hillary, and Bill Clinton, I welcome Joe Biden, I welcome the independent and Joe Liberman. I also welcome repulican who are tired of this incompetent president.

    June 24, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  14. Jaime

    Bill Clinton shouldn't do anything for Obama after he played the race card on him. And Bill already said that he will not campaign for anyone anymore.

    June 24, 2008 12:17 pm at 12:17 pm |
  15. Anita from Arizona

    Remember folks, it was not Bill's campaign. It was Hillary's. And Yes, Obama will help her with her debt. Maybe not all of it, but some of it for sure. Try to look at Hillary as her own individual self and not lump her with Bill. This was her campaign. She's work hard for that and deserve that respect. This Obama supporter welcomes Hillary and her supporters. Now, let's get to work.

    June 24, 2008 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  16. ginger

    The Clinton's and Obama's have a history.

    In 1992 Sen. Obama was behind the huge voter registration in Chicago to help Bill Clinton get elected. And Hillary supported Sen. Obama during his run for the Senate.

    I think it's great of both Hillary and Bill to support our next President, Barack Obama.


    June 24, 2008 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  17. Jeff D, South Bend, IN

    Yeah, he's "committed" – just like he was for Al Gore.

    June 24, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  18. Upon Further Review

    I will gladly get you a job at Big Box Mart today, if we can give your tech job to India on tuesday.Thanks for the influx of n1b1 visas to help lower wages and lose jobs here Bill.

    June 24, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  19. norma - Wisconsin

    I don't think Bill Clinton has to do anything he doesn't want to. Remember, he wasn't running for office when all the Obamoites were trashing him and parcing every word he said. He can't ever raise his voice, or "he's out of control." Well if he were to campaign for Obama and raise his voice in any manner, "would he again be out of control?"

    Its not mandatory that he has to tell anyone who he is supporting. When he goes in that booth in November, its between him and his God who he votes for. Please note that James Carville's wife is and has been a Republican staffer, while James is an avid Hillary supporter, and a staunch Democrat. They are married and are able to live in harmony which is extraordinary since their both political activists. Many husbands and wives differe on their political beliefs, and no one feels they have to crossover just to save face.

    I applaud Bill again – he always shows where his heart is, and in spite of all the horrible treatment he and Hillary have gotten through the years, they are never spiteful nor looking for revenge. They are first of all, true loyal Americans and will do what is best for our country.

    June 24, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  20. Saad from NJ

    Of course Bill will help. He is a charismatic and a sensible man. He just strayed a little while campaigning for his wife but you can't blame him for that.

    June 24, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  21. BOB


    June 24, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  22. Mike

    Just remember,

    How many times was it that Bill torpedoed Hillary's campaign???

    Hillary did tell him to be quite and leave.

    Maybe Bill wil do the same for Obama.

    June 24, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  23. Ted

    Looks like Bill has gotten it together. Enough of this division, let's beat John McCain!

    June 24, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  24. Patrick Henry

    If his support provides the same outcome as his support for Hillary–BHO is in trouble.

    Besides, whats the actual outcome of the November election going to be when the conservative white males of both major parties vote for the Libertarian candidate?

    June 24, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  25. joe in VA

    To Maggie Muggins from Selwyn:

    I suppose your comment displays you and your candidate's inclusive beliefs. You sound brainwashed by the BHO spin doctors. Good luck.

    June 24, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
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