November 19th, 2008
10:10 AM ET
12 years ago

Bill Clinton makes big return to the campaign trail

Bill Clinton is campaigning in Georgia Wednesday.

Bill Clinton is campaigning in Georgia Wednesday.

(CNN) - Jim Martin gets some major league help today in his runoff election battle against freshman Republican senator from Georgia, Saxby Chambliss.  And the surrogate stumping with Martin today is Bill Clinton - about as big a name as you can get.

The former President will join Martin, a former Democratic Georgia state lawmaker, at a campaign event in Atlanta.

Martin and Chambliss face off in the runoff election on December 2 for the U.S. Senate seat Chambliss won six years ago. Chambliss won a plurality of the vote two weeks ago on Election Day, but Georgia state law calls for the winner to grab 50 percent plus one vote. Due to the inclusion of a third party candidate, Chambliss fell just shy of that threshold, forcing a runoff contest.

Former President Clinton is the first big name Democrat to campaign in person with Martin, although President-elect Obama has sent resources and workers from his presidential campaign to Georgia to help out. Clinton carried Georgia in 1992 in his first presidential election victory. He won re-election as President in 1996 but lost Georgia that year.

Today's campaign event is scheduled to be held at Clark Atlanta University

Chambliss is getting plenty of big name visitors. Last week Sen. John McCain returned to the trail to campaign with Chambliss, just nine days after losing the presidential election to Obama. On Sunday, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, who ran for the Republican presidential nomination before dropping out in March and backing McCain, campaigned with Chambliss. And on this Friday, Mitt Romney will campaign with Chambliss in Atlanta and Savannah.

A spokesman for Romney also announced that Romney is contributing $5,000, through his Free and Strong American PAC, to Chambliss to help with the runoff election. Romney's PAC donated $2,300 to Chambliss earlier this fall.

Like Huckabee, Romney was a candidate for the GOP presidential nomination before dropping out in February and endorsing McCain. Both Romney and Huckabee could have designs on making another run for the White House.


Filed under: Bill Clinton
soundoff (165 Responses)
  1. Limbaugh is the Messiah

    Chambliss will fail.Its good to watch the slow agony of the right wing facists grip on their Senate power come to an end.

    November 19, 2008 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  2. Pat F

    Go home, Bill. You're yesterday's news. Be graceful, for once in your life. You aren't president, neither is your wife. Go home and shut up.

    November 19, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  3. Georgia for Martin

    I am going to vote for Martin, Saxby have not done anything for Georgia so many people are losen there jobs in Georgia,,,,,I wondering why Saxby talk about Cleland being in a wheelchair.

    Georgia for Martin

    November 19, 2008 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  4. LyonsPhilly

    Good for you Bill.

    November 19, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  5. GA for Obama

    Scott Tucson- It's sad you're a pathetic Repug.

    Change means:
    -changing our tone with each other
    -change in policies
    -change in attitude
    -change in mentality
    -change in manner of diversity
    -change in bipartisanship form
    -change in everyday dealings
    -change in attitude of religion, gender, race, background, creed, hate crimes, hate, fear, negativity, in looks, in manners
    etc.

    Change is a broad term that defines what President Obama will do.

    November 19, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  6. Call From GA

    Yo Mr "there's something about Kool-aid", (@ 10:21)

    wake up and drink some coffee..GOP supporters are the biggest Kool aid drinkers ever known...like the ones who think Sarh Palin is "intelligent" and is the future of the GOP. Like the ones who will vote for Saxby. Give me a break.

    November 19, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  7. carol kesling

    go get em bill!!!!!! i love bill clinton and think he is a great american , he had fought for people all over the world !!!!! that should not stand in the way of hills appointment to the state job if she chooses !!!! its is her turn to shine, and bill knows that and he will do the right thing !!!!

    November 19, 2008 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  8. bitter_in_pa

    Seems like Obama works for the Clintons. He's turning out to be an empty suit after all.

    November 19, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  9. ran

    Chambliss needs to go. He is an example of what is wrong with the Republicans and their style of politics. We need true change and those who are willing to work for the people not their greed/power hunger/simple minded ideologies.

    November 19, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  10. Virginia

    Boy, with friends like Bill, who needs enemies! I would not want him in my corner–he is the MOST shameless president we have ever had in my estimation. Him campaigning for the Dem in GA will certainly help Saxby Chambliss win.

    November 19, 2008 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  11. KLEE

    Another "shot across the bow" of the GOP party. Pay attention – what do people really want now!

    Change – Change from the last 8 years!! Change to thinking about the working folks in this country – don't worry – I know how the political thing works – we get help for awhile – then the ball changes courts – and the higher ups get help – kind of like breathing – In comes the good air – out goes the bad air.....its a metaphor for our crazy little lives on the little blue planet – watch the History Channel – you get some great insights there.

    November 19, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  12. karen-phoenix

    Thank you President Clinton!!!! Get rid of Chambliss!!! What that man did to Max Cleland was disgusting and shows just how low the republican party will stoop!!! The rep party needs a complete overhaul–and this coming from a 40 year long republican who will NEVER vote rep again until they start getting honest and get someone with intellect and came up from the ranks of average Americans–NO more stupidity and NO more boys born with a silver spoon in their mouth!!!

    November 19, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  13. Maggie in NYS

    Scott, "CHANGE" means a democrat for president!

    November 19, 2008 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  14. Tom Eyemdaman

    Georgians need to come out and vote – put Chambliss back in office if nothing else but to keep some semblance of the checks and balances of our government.

    Four or even two years of unopposed democratic rule is not what this country needs. Bipartisanship doesn't come through absolute power.

    Democrats have successfully used fear of the economy to push the bailout and will continue to use fear to push socialistic policies down our throats – and all the while they will claim Republicans use fear to influence.

    November 19, 2008 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  15. Ed, Santa Fe, NM

    Ya now that the Clintons WANT something, they're all over the place... funny how absent they were from the campaign trail after Bitter Shrillary lost.

    November 19, 2008 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  16. Pat F

    @Roofin Reality, Houston, Tx, and the other people who are justifiably mad at Chambliss because of his 2002 attack on Max Cleland:

    Look in the mirror, people. Your disgraceful attacks on McCain were just as bad. Calling him senile, doddering, drooling – ageist garbage like that! The Democrats won a battle, but lost their souls in the process.

    November 19, 2008 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  17. Sue in MI

    I love the Clinton haters on these boards, as well as the Obama skeptics bashing him before he even is sworn in. Since your party has done such a great job of trashing not only the Constitution, but the economic system,the military (losing 5000 or more of our lives, and countless innocent Iraqis and Afghans), our standing in the world, letting war criminals Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, and more run around encouraging more and more socialist and fascist agendas, we are really not paying attention to your snide comments about "change." "Change" will occur, if only in the tossing of the Republican so-called conservatives who will fight for one unborn life, but care nothing about anyone's health, retirement, and sons and daughters of all nationalities lost to illegal wars. Snipe all you want, but you can never, ever defend what you have left Obama to deal with.

    November 19, 2008 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  18. Abyssinian Lion

    Saxby Chambliss is a bigot and should not win this run-off.

    November 19, 2008 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  19. chazz

    Ah sooki now. The race towards 60 is heating up. wooHoo:) batting down the hatches, and lets take the hill mateys!!!

    November 19, 2008 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  20. Matt in Dallas

    Georgia won't elect a Democrat. They'll do the RIGHT thing!

    November 19, 2008 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  21. Tom Eyemdaman

    Mark 10:22:

    Clinton benefitted from a great economy – the economy didn't benefit from Clinton. Presidents have little control over the economy as is currently being proven by the failures of the bailout which the fake Republican Bush proposed and Democrats pushed through. We need to stop the bailouts and put failure back into the hands of the people.

    November 19, 2008 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  22. jenny

    Bill will be campaigning in the day and hunting in the nights.Women Beware! it could be Fun or Frolic.

    November 19, 2008 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  23. Who Cares

    If I were Chambliss, I'm not sure I would want such a steady stream of proven losers campaigning for me.

    November 19, 2008 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  24. And?

    When are they going away for good?

    November 19, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  25. rachel

    Bill should just say screw the democrats the way they question his motive him and his wife's character and claim they only bring drama. Bill and Hillary chill on the beach and stop helping people don't appreciate you. Obama is the new adorable baby, well untill he starts stinking making poo all over the place and then the democarts will want Hillary and Bill to help come change the diapers and make him smell good again.

    November 19, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
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