June 30th, 2008
03:30 PM ET
13 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. Arturo Sierra

    Of course Former President Clinton is playing nice with Obama, he has to, thats the way the DNC works...be loyal or we will cast you out!
    My message to the Clintons, do what you have to do but don't get too close too these people. I really think the DNC forced Obama on us Democrats and I hope he crashes and burns in November.
    The media and the DNC needs to look into allegations of drug use and homosexual acts as alleged by Larry Sinclair and find out if any of these stories are true. DON'T BURY STORIES FOR THE SAKE OF THE PARTY....LET THE TRUTH BE TOLD!!!!!!
    P.S. To latinos everywhere....VOTE McCAIN!!!!!!!

    June 30, 2008 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  2. Alan, Bonita Springs, FL

    I can't believe how much growing up so many people posting here need to do. Bill DID "suck up" and told Obama just today he's behind him and will do all he can to get him elected.


    Instead, we see the divisionary tactics - the outright hatred of Bill or HIllary or Obama when you must keep in mind we're after something here much bigger than who your favorite candidate was. We MUST unseat the Republican hate/war machine once and for all.

    Regardless of how you might now feel about Obama - he's our horse in this race and we MUST do all we can to get him to cross the finish line first.

    Does ANYONE here spouting off with such venom really want to see ANOTHER four-eight years of the current economic situation? Would the "spite" you get out of voting McSame really be worth that?

    Think, people. Grow up and think.

    June 30, 2008 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  3. AA MI Girl

    That's a start! Believe it or not and putting aside the negativity from the bitter and long drawn primary season, The Obama's contrary to what they were saying during the primary, NEED the Clintons. The clintons are still a strong force in the Dem party contrary to what the left wing media like to proport. Now that the shoe is on the other foot, everyone expects the Clintons to step up and do the right thing, or better yet, jump on the bandwagon to support the Dem nominee. Not right, had this gone the other way, I'm not so sure that Barack and Michelle Obama would be glacefully supportive of Hillary. Point being, everyone need to chill out and think before they put their foot in their mouth, cause you never know tomorrow. Wrong is Wrong, no matter where it originates!

    June 30, 2008 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  4. me in dc

    They talked...but no endorsement. Bill Clinton is a sore loser.

    June 30, 2008 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  5. S. Boatman Warrensburg Mo.

    I Guess The Fairytale Is True Huh Bill? Did You Know That Obama Is Winning In The General Election And Mccain Is Not!

    June 30, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  6. TRUE Hillary supporter for OBAMA!!!

    Speak up, Bill. YES WE WILL!!!

    All you fake Hillary supporters, stop using Hillary's name in vain! We all know you're just a bunch of right-wing conservatives trying to divide the party and the nation. BACK OFF!

    June 30, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  7. Down with Obama

    Even Bill isn't going to help Obama!!! Obama is done!!

    We love Bill and Hillary..but we will NOT vote for that empty suit Obama!!


    Puma Democrat

    June 30, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  8. Southern White Male For Obama Since '04

    This is absolutely fantastic and long overdue! Thanks Bill! You just may slowly win back some of the credibility you lost from me throughout the campaigning season.

    June 30, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  9. Robert NYC & Miami

    Benjamin: If it wasn't for the Super delegates neither would have gotten the nomination.

    He was not the best candidate and though Bill will help, he will not win the presidency.

    And the democrats will once again loose!

    June 30, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  10. Carlyncia

    Bill as VP? Don't count the thought out.

    June 30, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  11. jean

    Good for them. Now we can move on!

    June 30, 2008 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  12. Carol, Lansing MI

    To all you "so-called" disgruntled Hillary voters who state you support Hillary because of her work and direction but now are going to vote McCain. A man who diligently works AGAINST everything Hillary stands for.

    The MSM may not have done their homework as usual – but if they had, they would find that the majority of these websites, such as Puma Pac, Dems for McCain and the likes are not sites started, owned or maintained by disgruntled Democrats, but actually Republicans.
    Although the majority of these sites do not list anything other than contact phone numbers or addresses with Internic, a quick reverse lookup will give you the names of the owners. A quick lookup with the NEC will show that the majority of the owners of these websites and/or their spouses have contributed to the Republican Party and McCain LONG before Hillary suspended her campaign.

    Puma Pac, McCain/Hillary posters, we are not idiots. We know the majority of you are actually Republicans still trying to divide the Democratic Party and continue Rush's operation chaos.

    It will not divide us no matter how many fake "disgruntled Democrat" comments you post. You might as well save your energy, come November you'll see that it has been all for nothing.

    June 30, 2008 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  13. Hillary and Bill

    You both need to get "off board" with this guy. If you back him you will be making he bigget mistake of your lives. I think its time that you leave the democratic party, a lot of your supporters are.

    June 30, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  14. Mike, Raleigh

    Sen. Obama needs Bill and Hillary much more to win election then Clinton needs Sen. Obama in future. After trashing Bill and Hillary by Sen. Obama and other African American supporters, it is very difficult to support Obama whole heartedly. Only Joint ticket will help to patch this together.

    June 30, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  15. tamara

    Obama knows he need Bill and Hillary to win. Obama should not be like Gore and Kerry and put Bill on the sidelines, look what happened to them. Hillary for VP and Obama will be rocketed to the Presidency.


    June 30, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  16. Mauri

    Omagosh! What will all the pundits and anchors talk about now??? Poor Wesley Clark!

    June 30, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  17. JimS.

    Fortunately, Hillary and Bill's commitment to helping Barak get elected isn't subject to the stupid, childish, uninformed babblings of online bloggers.

    You all think you know so much about what Hillary and Bill think, and yet they turn around and do just the opposite of the nasty behavior you predict of them. Fortunately, they know better than you nitwits.

    And fortunately, Hillary isn't likely to skimp on her support of Obama just because some of her supporters are having trouble getting over it. A lot of people need to grow up and move on...Hillary and Bill have, despite the trashings they routinely get.

    June 30, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  18. IndependentGA

    Seriously, I believe that its a good thing. Although, I think the its a phoney alliance. They hate each other and we all know that.... It really doesnt matter. If McCain was running against Kenny from South Park, he'd still lose.....m'kay?

    June 30, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  19. NO Bama

    Wait a minute. Obama is happy to have the support of the very people he said were living in the past. GIVE ME A BREAK

    June 30, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  20. jp/michigan

    Obama's campaign is a fairy tale. He is riding in on Mother Goose! Will fall like Humpy Dumpy, no one will be able to put Obama back together again!

    June 30, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  21. Tristan, Bethesda, MD

    Bill's a smart guy. Right now its Obamamania so why get in front of that. In six months, he'll have lost the general election, and the Clintons can say I told you so and then hopefully try to get the Democratic party back to the center where it can actually win elections.

    June 30, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  22. Chut Pata

    Let the healing begin.

    Bill did great to the economy as a president and the next president needs his advice on this totally screwed economy like never before.

    June 30, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  23. Just Interesting

    That's Grrrrrreaaaa8t!!! Let's keep moving forward =)

    June 30, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  24. jmh


    June 30, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  25. dylan fan

    Stay away from him Obama. Billy-boy is an impeached president who's legacy is being the lewd liar that brought us NAFTA. Stay the course. The Time's They Are A-Changin'

    June 30, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
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