July 30th, 2008
04:40 PM ET
15 years ago

Richardson to help Clinton retire campaign debt

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/07/30/art.richardson0730.gi.jpg caption="Sens. Obama and Clinton appeared with Gov. Richardson at a New Hampshire debate in January."]
(CNN) – Is Bill Richardson about to kiss and make up with the Clintons? It certainly looks that way.

The New Mexico governor announced Wednesday that he will host two fundraisers to help Sen. Hillary Clinton retire more than $20 million in outstanding campaign debt accumulated during her failed White House bid.

"Governor Richardson's efforts reinforce Senator Obama's commitment to unifying the Democratic Party and assisting Senator Clinton's effort to retire her campaign debt," Bill Burton, a spokesman for Barack Obama’s campaign, said in a statement released by Richardson.

Richardson, who served as secretary of energy in Bill Clinton’s administration, decided to endorse the Illinois senator, now the presumptive Democratic nominee. The move was viewed as an act of betrayal by some longtime supporters of the Clintons. CNN Political Analyst James Carville, who has long and deep ties to both Clintons, even likened Richardson’s endorsement to Judas’s betrayal of Christ.

In late April, Richardson responded to Carville’s criticisms by saying that Carville and other Clinton supporters believe they are a “dynasty” and that they were “clinging to the throne.”

WATCH: Carville, Richardson on Larry King Live

Since announcing his support for Obama, Richardson has made numerous television and campaign appearances on Obama’s behalf. He is also mentioned as a potential pick for vice president.

In the statement from Richardson, Clinton spokeswoman Kathleen Strand said, "Senator Clinton is grateful for Governor Richardson's and Senator Obama's efforts to assist with retiring her campaign debt and she is looking forward to continuing to campaign for Senator Obama and help ensure victory for Democrats throughout the country this fall."

Senator Clinton will attend both invitation-only events in New Mexico in mid-August.

soundoff (339 Responses)
  1. Richpocket

    She should do what Romney did. He took responsibility for his own campaign debt. and said he would take the hit So should she.

    She ran her campaign long after her money ran out and now she wants others to pay for it??? NO WAY!!! Let's hope no-one shows up.

    July 30, 2008 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  2. ben

    She ran her campaign long after there was any hope that she could win.

    She really blew it. She lost this thing when she built her narrative of inevitability. That is what destroyed her. And its corollary, not needing to have any plan after Super Duper Tuesday. Or any money.

    July 30, 2008 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  3. California Voter

    OBAMA/ CLINTON or NO OBAMA. We need more than a slick talker with questionable judgment leading this country. With regard to Richardson, I certainly would not want him as a friend of mine, politics or no politics.

    July 30, 2008 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  4. Montana is Obama Country

    So Bill Richardson is being a stand-up guy... Good for Him..!

    now try and say the same for John McBush... you can't as he runs his 4th negative ad in a row...

    No to McShame..

    July 30, 2008 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  5. GG

    RichB is doing what he does best, negotiations. kudos Bill,

    July 30, 2008 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  6. John Driscoll

    Why do they refer to it as "retiring her campaign debt"?

    She's looking for other people to pay her bills...when she has $110 million in the bank. Does this make sense to anyone outside of Washington?

    July 30, 2008 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  7. seah5 Ohio

    Is he adding strings to it?

    Some how I do not feel this is out of the Goodness of his heart.

    Or is promised the VP slot or important position if he helps her.

    Im sure Everyone is curious to know his reasoning for it.

    Hillary would make a far better President than Obama ever could.

    Obama is Mr Hollywood with a speech. He still has nothing to stand on. except the peoples who's careers he has destroyed to move himself forward. Which is sinful and not presidential act.

    July 30, 2008 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  8. Debi

    If Hillary would have gotten out of the race earlier instead of trying to beat the dead horse that was her failed campagin, then she would not have to repay herself now. Live and learn. Hopefully...

    July 30, 2008 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  9. R.S.-St. Paul

    I think it's really hilarious how CNN, the stereotype of anti-faith network would have the nerve to write "Carville even likened Richardson's endorsement (of Obama) to Judus's betrayal of Christ". Ha! Do any of the other folks out there who actually "have religion" find this the most hypocritical statement to make?!!!!! This is why all the Hillary supporters who do not plan to vote for Obama need to take heed, and vote for McCain. Because CNN, NBC, CNBC and the other major network news agencies are playing "patty-cake" with Mr. Obama, presenting such a biased version of the news, with the hopes of helping him win the election (through corruption of the news). We need to show these jerks that this will not be tolerated. How dare they mention anything about Christ in there coverage!

    July 30, 2008 06:35 pm at 6:35 pm |
  10. Julie

    It's all a political game and Richardson did what he felt he had to do. He felt Clinton wouldn't win the Presidency and therefore endorsed Obama with the hopes of advancing his own political career. But his disloyality and lack of honor towards people who gave him is chance is sad and no matter how much he tries to bring himself back into the Clinton's good graces, his image has suffered a loss.

    July 30, 2008 06:35 pm at 6:35 pm |
  11. Anyone but these 2

    Of course Obama should help her. He wants to extend all kinds of welfare benefits to those who are irresponsible with their money. It's part of his platform.
    Pick a third party candidate and vote. That's the only way we can tell Washington that we REALLY want change. I lean to Nader, but there's also Barr and McKinney. We won't win, but if enough of us show our disgust at these tired "big" parties, they will eventually have to respond to the people. Don't let them keep scaring you into that two party nonsense.

    July 30, 2008 06:37 pm at 6:37 pm |
  12. Paula in WI

    I think everyone has totally missed Obama's message.His message of change,unity,reaching across.The man has gone this far because he is extremely intelligent.He wants us all to unite.Remember the debate when he said "Hillary and I were friends when we started and will be when it's done".He's never ruled her out and never said anything belittling about her.I still think he may put her as the VP but he has to allow time for people to see him and what he stands for.Now that he's done that he very well may put her in that spot.So far,he and his campaign has set a fine example of how things should be.This man is definitely a good christian in my opinion and whatever choices he makes always seem so far to be for the good of the people.We should all follow his example and learn from it.We must all work together to achieve peace and prosperity worldwide.All Mcain has ever offered is war,war,war.

    July 30, 2008 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  13. Terence Gaffney

    Richardson DID betray the Clinton's! I wouldn't trust him ONE INCH! He should resign from politics. He is a JUDAS. Get rid of him DEMOCRATS!!

    July 30, 2008 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  14. G

    My first response was, "good, Democrats pull together." However, after reading the venomous tripe spewed on here by deluded past Clinton supporters, I now have my doubts.

    July 30, 2008 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  15. Erin in Edmonds WA

    Nightingale in Berkeley: Find somewhere else to post your insolence. HRC wanted it both ways and discovered too late that she couldn't have it.

    Obama took down the "brand" in the democratic party, and soon the Clinton legacy will dissapate. If Obama could stop Hillary, no doubt he will trounce that jerk McCain. You sound like one of those PUMA pussies. If by some slight chance Obama loses, the Clintons will be blamed and they will be chased out of the country with flaming spears. Get out the shovels to dig the Clinton's grave and while you're at it, dig your own too.

    July 30, 2008 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  16. Ridgeway

    Watch out New Mexicans. He'll take something from you all to help pay the debt. Hmmm, he could sell the water rights to all the lakes in NM to Texas.
    Who cares what happens to Clinton. She should get a second job posing a poster child for cottage cheese. She and Obama are perfect examples of what happens when you don't eat your fruits and vegetables.

    July 30, 2008 06:42 pm at 6:42 pm |
  17. Brendan H., San Antonio, TX

    Perhaps somone is suggesting that Richardson should help a fellow Democrat the same way a fellow Republican's campaign helped McCain in South Carolin in 2000?

    July 30, 2008 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  18. Vietnam COMBAT Vet, OHIO

    I wouldn't help pay off the Clinton debt!!!! Use the money they stole off us taxpayers!!!! Stupid B should have seen the light and not loaned her money to a losing cause!!! Shame though, Bill may have to buy cheaper cigars!!!

    July 30, 2008 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  19. Bert

    Trying to buy back your reputation? No thanks, Richardson!

    July 30, 2008 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  20. Jackson

    I am certain that even though Bill R had his "senior moment" when he endorsed NoBama ... he knows how very vital the Clinton's support for him has been ... and will be ... long after NoBama is just another also-ran like Edwards.

    July 30, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  21. georgia

    Billary are always expecting others to bail them out of awful decision making as when supporters paid millions in legal fees because of Bill's escapades. Talk about entitlement ! Very nice of Richardson after they & their camp treated him in the press for not kissing the ring. Her campaign money was squandered on buying votes in spite of the lies & hate stirred to no avail.

    July 30, 2008 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  22. Anne E.

    would SHE have helped him, or Barack, or ANY of the other candidates, had it been the other way around? i doubt it; or at least not without naming her own price. Bill Richardson sounds like he's taking the high road. Too bad neither of the Clintons will "pay it forward."

    July 30, 2008 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  23. sjp

    the divorce must be coming, cause bill just made 10 million in 07' on the stump. but yet hill has to have others pay off her 20 million campaign debt?

    July 30, 2008 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  24. chris in va.

    Perhaps he can help her retire permanently! And good riddance!!!

    July 30, 2008 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  25. Awww

    Good to see Richardson helping out.
    I sorta feel bad for him.
    He stuck his neck out for Obama and got shafted like everyone else who supported this phony.

    July 30, 2008 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
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