July 11th, 2008
02:00 PM ET
13 years ago

Wolfson says Clinton not being formally vetted for VP

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/11/art.ticket.gi.jpg caption="A former Clinton adviser says Obama is not formally vetting the New York senator."]

(CNN) - Is the so-called Democratic 'dream ticket' off the table?

Despite speculation that Barack Obama's presidential campaign is seriously considering Hillary Clinton for the No. 2 spot on the Democratic presidential ticket, a former senior advisor to Clinton said Thursday he doesn't think the New York senator is being formally considered for the job.

Howard Wolfson, the former Clinton campaign communications director, told Fox News Thursday he isn't aware of any official effort on behalf of the Obama campaign that suggests the Illinois senator is considering his former rival for his running mate.

"Not as far as I know," Wolfson said when asked if Clinton had been "asked to participate in the vetting process for VP."

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But the longtime Clinton confidante quickly added there is more information available in the public record about the former presidential candidate "than just about any public figure in America."

"She's been vetted now for a long time - she's got thirty years of taxes in the public record and financial disclosure forms. She ran for president for 18 months and every news organization in America had multiple teams of reporters look at all aspects at her career and her biography," he said. "So there's a lot of information out about her that I know Senator Obama is privy too, that may be sufficient for him to make whatever decision he wants to make."

iReport.com: Whom do you see as VP?

The comments come amid reports the Obama campaign has asked other public officials to hand over information about themselves as part of a formal vice presidential vetting process, including former presidential candidate Chris Dodd.

The five-term Connecticut senator said Thursday that he has been asked to provide "a lot of stuff."

“There’s been some inquiries, yeah,” he told the Associated Press. “They ask for a lot of stuff. I’ll leave it there." The Obama campaign and Dodd’s Senate office have yet to comment on the report, though the Republican National Committee has already leveled attacks on Obama for considering the Connecticut senator, in light of accusations he received preferred loans from Countrywide Financial – the same attack that led to the resignation of the original head of the Illinois senator’s vice presidential search team.

The Obama campaign also reportedly approached Virginia Sen. Jim Webb about the job, followed by an announcement from the freshman senator that he had officially taken himself out of the running.

Other potential candidates for the position are remaining far more circumspect about their interaction with the Obama campaign.

"The decision and timetable for the best person to help Sen. Obama lead the country is entirely up to him. All of us who support Sen. Obama have been asked to direct questions about his choice for vice president to the campaign," Kathleen Sebelius, the popular Kansas governor said in a Thursday statement.

"I'm not going to talk about it," longtime Obama supporter and freshman Missouri senator Claire McCaskill said Wednesday.

UPDATE: Adam Parkhomenko, the founder of Voteboth.com, said Friday it's time Clinton is asked directly if she is being vetted for VP.

"It's time to ask Hillary if she is being vetted. It's not responsible to assume she is not being vetted because a former campaign adviser said he does not know," he said.

soundoff (189 Responses)
  1. Willam from Texas

    Why vet Clinton when you know she's the only one for the job?

    Obama/Clinton 08

    July 11, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  2. Ed, Santa Fe NM



    July 11, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  3. Kevin Leo (Jonesboro, GA)

    Hillary's people kill me! One minute they are demanding that Barack pick her as his VP, next minute they are saying it is totally his choice, then they start back talking again by airing complaints that he is not vetting her.

    At this point, I pray that Barack does not bring her on board as he will have to worry abou allof the drama that her team brings with it. On her own merit, Hillary deserves strong consideration but Barack has run a very well organized and cohesive campaign. this is the same way that I believe he will run the White House. Team Hillary has been anything but that an could seriously ruin an Obama presidency.

    July 11, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  4. DPerry

    And start the crazy republican PUMA comments

    July 11, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  5. NotPayingHilaryDebt

    Puma Pay Hilary's Debt

    put your money where your mouth is ...

    July 11, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  6. Tim

    Don't try to change the subject CNN. Why is "Whiner Gate" Not at the top? Also, what about the vote that McSame was bashing Senator Obama about not being present when he forgot that he wasn't there himself?

    July 11, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  7. Nick

    Of course she's not being vetted. She'd BEEN vetted for years! I mean there was tons of investigations into her affairs, and what did her bitter Republican rivals find? NOTHING. Obama 2008.

    July 11, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  8. J. Richter

    To Clinton supporters who start threatening the world with support McCain:

    This man is no supporter of women or Clinton. He allowed her be called the b word and laughed about if in Nov 2007 at a campaign event.

    He planned a fundraiser with the man from Texas who says women should lie back and enjoy it once rape is inevitable. And said he had forgotten the comments because they were 16 or 8 years ago. Like victims ever forget.

    And dont even start on his promise of supreme court judge.

    July 11, 2008 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  9. JOEL


    July 11, 2008 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  10. Wayne

    The Dream ticket is a media manifestation. It is not a realistic or good choice for VP. This country, somehow has given the highest office to just 2 families for the last 20+ years. The Bush's and the CLinton's will not go quietly. Now they pressure the true choice of the people to give power to one of the two families who have had power for far too long.

    THe Clinton era has ended. It's time we all accepted it and moved on.

    July 11, 2008 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  11. jean HUISSEIN




    July 11, 2008 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  12. karen-phoenix

    I'm a republican for Obama!!! Never wanted Hillary at the top but I do believe she could be a very good VP. She just had to many connections to lobbiests! As VP she can just tell the lobbiests her boss doesn't want them anymore. Solves problem. AND I do believe she would be a great VP and could head up the National Health Committee!!!

    July 11, 2008 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  13. Larry-Minn.

    I hate to say it,,,but it may be a good thing that he doesnt have her with him... When he goes down in Nov. because her supporters vote for McCain she wont look so bad. Unless everyone is in a daze,, NUMBER 2 means nothing. I am a Democrat voting for McCain this time unless the DNC gets it right.

    July 11, 2008 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  14. rachel

    Okay lets see how many clinton bashers we get? If he doesnt he doesn't. I saw that women for obama breakfeast and she did a wonderful stump speech, so i honeslty think if he dosen't use her to the best of his ablity its's his and the country's loss. Okay Okay I know here it comes Clintons are evil the devils and selfish, whatever I have long come to the conclusion that you can't change anyone's mind's unless they are open, but I still need to speak my peace.

    July 11, 2008 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  15. Chris11

    Too bad for him, but great for the rest of us... She is his only chance, but the idea of her regularly being subjected to his unfounded arrogance is really too much for most people with common sense. She is the better candidate and she is too good to be his VP. I won't be dissappointed, but it can guarantee that I won't be voting for him!

    July 11, 2008 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  16. Any one but Hillary for VP

    One can only hope!

    July 11, 2008 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  17. Annie

    Not surprising, considering the fact that Obama thinks he is better than Clinton and all of her poor, uneducated, blue collar supporters.

    What a shame because if he doesn't pick her for veep, he's likely to loose a large portion of her 18 million supporters, myself included.

    July 11, 2008 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  18. Enlightened Voter

    As a staunch Obama supporter including financially from day one and looking at how she acted shamelessly during the campaign I have no respect for her and could not vote for him if she were on the ticket. She could not manage her campaign or its finances how could she run our country.

    July 11, 2008 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  19. Angel

    Oh...please. The VP isn't announced until a week or two before the party convention. Hillary Clinton has plenty of time between now and then to get vetted. Whats the rush !!!

    July 11, 2008 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  20. Steve in DC

    Wow...this is the kind of speculation that leads to rumors and negative feelings. It stands to reason that Clinton would not go through the normal vetting process...after all he just spent over a year campaigning against her in a very tight race...I think they know all they need to know about her.

    July 11, 2008 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  21. No Hillary? No vote for Obama

    My decision is simple really – no Hillary on the ticket – no vote for Obama. I actually have no regrets jumping from the Dem side over to Senator McCain. Mr McCain has been able to reach over the aisle on many many issues; Senator McCain's views on Iraq appear to be inching ever more closely with the view of Obama – and barack continues to waffle and change on just about every position out there. I also trust Senator McCain, and I believe he has the fortitude to take a position and not bow down to pressure and change it. Barack, on the other hand, does not seem to be able to make up his mind on anything, and once he does make a decision, he seems to bend to political pressure and changes it

    July 11, 2008 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  22. Tim

    Don't try to change the subject CNN. Why is "Whiner Gate" Not at the top? Also, what about the vote that McSame was bashing Senator Obama about not being present when he forgot that he wasn't there himself? And to make matters worse, what about McSame’s other advisor talking about Viagra being covered by insurance and birth control not being covered and McSame stating that is wrong. Problem is he voted against making Insurance companies cover birth control. But then again, he can’t be required to remember what he says, right? LOL!!!

    July 11, 2008 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  23. Ed

    Thank goodness! Why would Hillary want to board that corrupted, sinking ship? It would mar her reputation forever.

    Hillary 2012

    July 11, 2008 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  24. Down with Obama

    GOOD, we do NOT want Hillary on the losing ticket with Obama.

    Obama will self destruct and we don't want Hillary to be any part of that destruction!!!

    Go Hillary!!

    Bye, bye Obama!!!

    July 11, 2008 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  25. Barbara

    If he doesn't pick Clinton, he doesn't get my vote. To not even consider her is a slap in the face to everyone who voted for her. I will write-in Clinton on my Nov. ballot.

    July 11, 2008 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
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