June 30th, 2008
03:30 PM ET
12 years ago

Bill Clinton, Obama speak

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/06/30/art.billobama.gi.jpg caption="Bill Clinton and Obama spoke Monday morning."]

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former President Bill Clinton and Barack Obama talked by phone Monday morning, representatives of both sides said, as the Democrats sought to quash rumors that Clinton holds a grudge against the man who knocked his wife out of contention for the party's presidential nomination.

Obama called Clinton and they spoke for about 20 minutes Monday morning, the Obama campaign told CNN.

Clinton wants to campaign "with and for" Obama after the hard-fought primary campaign between Obama and Hillary Clinton, Clinton spokesman Matt McKenna said. Clinton "renewed his offer to do whatever he can to ensure Sen. Obama is our next president."

Watch: Obama, Clintons: Hard feelings?

Obama "had a terrific conversation with President Clinton and is honored to have his support in this campaign," Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton said.

The chairman of Sen. Hillary Clinton's unsuccessful presidential bid, Terry McAuliffe, said Sunday the former president was angered by media reports suggesting he did not plan to actively support Obama in the general election.

"He was angry that these ridiculous stories were out here, and these supposed close friends of the president - none of the close friends ever got called," McAuliffe said, referring to anonymous sources quoted in some stories. "What happens, a lot of time, is people like to pretend they're close so they can tell the reporters that they're close, but, you know, they're just talking."

McAuliffe said he spoke to Bill Clinton on Sunday morning. The former president recently returned from a trip to Europe.

Obama and Hillary Clinton appeared together Friday in Unity, New Hampshire, where the former first lady said of her ex-rival, "we may have started on different paths ... (but) today our hearts are set on the same destination for America ... to elect Barack Obama as the next president of the United States."

The two had met the night before at a gathering of Clinton's biggest political donors, at which Clinton delivered the maximum legal donations to Obama's campaign from herself and her husband and Obama and his wife, Michelle, donated the maximum to Clinton's campaign - which remains mired in debt.

But some analysts read bitterness into the fact that Bill Clinton did not appear at either event and had made no personal comments supporting Obama since his wife conceded the nomination. Instead, the former president released a statement through a spokesman saying he "is obviously committed to doing whatever he can and is asked to do" for Obama.

McAuliffe said Bill Clinton merely was waiting in order to avoid taking the public's focus off of Obama and Hillary Clinton's joint appearances.

"Any time that Bill Clinton and Barack Obama speak, it's going to be big news," McAuliffe said. "They wanted this out of the way first. Now that that's over, they will speak. And I'll bet you they speak within the next 24 hours, 48 at the most."

He also joked at rumors that the ex-president remains angry at Obama from the Democratic campaign.

"This man doesn't stay mad," he said. "He can get mad for 24 hours. It's his Irish ancestry."

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (451 Responses)
  1. CA Loves Obama!

    Didn't realize how many bitter people there are on this blog.

    Bill Clinton will always be one of the greatest presidents!!!! McCain does NOT stand a chance – mind as well quit and join that cold and rigid wife of his at the beach.

    June 30, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  2. LES_Chica

    LarryH WI – Bill Clinton was never "impeached" he served out his full 8 years.

    June 30, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  3. kcmookie

    MY GOD! Please stop it. If you people really are Hllary supporters who will vote for McCain in the Fall, SHUT UP and just do it. Why do you even read this political ticker? Your candidate lost, and there is little left except for you to come on here and whine or discuss how somehow your candidate has a .00001% chance of coming back "if only some dirt on Obama is found".

    If you are for real (I am guessing more likely Repubs pretending in an effort to try and attrack some of her supporters), then you truely show your ignorance every time you open your mouth. Please understand I am not criticizing the people who are for Hillary, but rather the one who claim they will take their vote to the other side. That is by far the DUMBEST thing I have ever heard.

    You are acting like a child on a playground, "Oh my team is losing, so I am going to switch to the other team". I think as adults we realize the name for that is a turncoat, or TREASON. Your lame attempt to hold us hostage with a TREASONOUS THREAT is not only pathetic, it WILL NOT WORK.

    OBAMA 08

    June 30, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  4. Gary, MN

    Trust, but verify.

    This campaign has taught me that you have to be suspicious of Republicans and Democrats. Especially Democrats who throw loyal supporters under the bus.

    Watch your back, man.

    June 30, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  5. Fed up with the lies

    Welcome aboard President Clinton; better late than never.

    June 30, 2008 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  6. Obama 2008 and 20012

    Obama = Substance, Experience and LOGIC!

    He'll make much better decisions than McCain and thats a fact!

    Unity people!

    June 30, 2008 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  7. Billiam the Kid

    Very good that we are moving forward from here. As far as the weak minded crybabies, why do you all even pay attention?? You know they mean nothing...

    June 30, 2008 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  8. Former Dem for McCain

    Well that's it. I'm officially voting for McCain. HIllary or Obama – it makes no difference. After this primary, the Dems really let me down after years and years of supporting them from Bill Clinton to John Kerry.

    I look forward to voting for McCain.

    June 30, 2008 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  9. Lisa

    Why would Bill support Obama when he knows he's not fit for the job?

    June 30, 2008 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  10. hello

    without both clinton Obama will be doomed.

    June 30, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  11. Republican for Obama

    I don't care for Billy-boy: The man that slept through the entire planning of the twin tower bombings has alot to be ashamed of. He murdered all the people in those towers and as such very much for half the blame of us going to war. We reacted to our homeland being attacked. It took many years to plan that entire thing, and he was too incompetent to stop it before it happened. No, I don't like him for allowing us to get attacked.

    But if it helps get Obama in the White House and clean up after the Clintons and the Bushes, then so be it.

    June 30, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  12. jean

    suck it up and welcome aboard Mr. Clinton!

    June 30, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  13. Loyal Dem

    We are fielding a crazy socialist. I'm for an amedment that allows Bill back in the WH. BO (crazy nickname!) is going to blow it eventually. Bet me!!

    June 30, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  14. Kat, Huntington, West Virginia

    Rita, I AGREE!! This childish name calling only shows their ignorance and most probably have no clue of the good that both clinton's have done. In they've gone to college over the last 10-15 years they should thank President Clinton for the Direct Loan program, but I feel confident they have done little of any research. They are certainly a big reason why I can't support obama, unless he choses Hillary as his VP and even then it will be hard to swallow. Grow up kids, you need BOTH Clintons to win in Nov.!!!

    June 30, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  15. Walter from California

    Hillary supporter all the way, accept when it comes to Barack Hussein Obama…Barack Hussein Obama needs all the advice he can get from one of the best Presidents ever …Former President Bill Clinton . With that said, Barack Hussein Obama will never get our family vote, even if Hillary is on the ticket…..Hillary Rodham Clinton 2012…!

    June 30, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  16. Christopher,Germany

    We all know that these ridiculous stories always start with people like Wolfang Blitzer.He pretented as if he did not know that Prez Clinton attended the 90th birthday of the legnd, Nelson Mandela in London as part of a five nation trip.It was just an attempt to feed the public with wrong notion.

    June 30, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  17. Sally on Cape Cod

    I hope Bill Clinton tries to pursuade Hillary to run as an Independent. She's the only one qualified one to be president.

    June 30, 2008 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  18. McCain for President

    To Sukari Hayes: NEVER!!

    June 30, 2008 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  19. NV Female voter for Obama

    I suppose this is good news for Barack, but if I am not wrong, BARACK won the primaries WITHOUT the help of Bill or Hill...in fact, oh yes, that's right, he BEAT them in the primaries, so am not sure if Bill's endorsement is essential to Barack winning the election come November. Enough about the Clintons already! We have our candidate with or without their endorsement(s)!
    OBAMA '08 & '12!!

    June 30, 2008 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  20. Dave in Atlanta

    Clearly journalism isn't for me because I will never see how the fact that two people had a conversation is a news item all by itself.

    June 30, 2008 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  21. Ann

    CNN, don't you get it? Haven't you learned? Quit making a big deal out of every thing and repeating it over and over and over again. We are bored with your news reporting. Why don't you report something that really matters? We don't give a rip about whether you think Bill Clinton is angy or not. He has a right to his emotions and opinions like the rest of us do. You continue to bash people that you don't approve of. Give us all a break, please and save your reputation and our sanity.

    June 30, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  22. Kofi

    I'd just like to point out that Obama's poll numbers actually went UP the minute the Clintons suspended their campaign and disappeared.

    Does he REALLY want Bill stumping for him? Don't think so.

    I doubt Obama really wants Clinton to do much more than stand in the background and show tacit (read: SILENT) support. Too much talking and squabbling happened in the primaries already.

    June 30, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  23. dee

    Why are we wasting so much time placating the Clintons? Once again, we are wasting time and energy on their sour dispositions which takes away from the task at hand. Win the Whitehouse!!!!!

    The Clintons need to just get over it and quit the infantile behavior. Sometimes – most times – they act like spoiled children!

    June 30, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  24. Justice League


    June 30, 2008 05:06 pm at 5:06 pm |
  25. tj

    CNN – ProObama's network never post my message.
    Bill, don't do this.
    After Obama & DNC tried to destroyed your legacy and paint you as recist you owe nothing to this party.
    Their campaign make me and many-many other moderate democrats switch to independts.
    Remeber we will not vote for him even if you campaign for him

    June 30, 2008 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
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