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Albright Helping Obama Bridge Differences with Clinton

By Anne E. Kornblut
Former secretary of state Madeleine Albright appeared to do a bit of shuttle diplomacy on Wednesday right here in Washington. Immediately after meeting with Sen. Barack Obama as part of a national security working group on Capitol Hill, Albright headed to the memorial service for NBC's Tim Russert, where she sat next to Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and was seen on television whispering in her ear, while Clinton nodded.

In a press availability with reporters a short time earlier, Obama said he had not spoken directly to Clinton in recent days -- that she had been on vacation. Asked how he would repair the damage done to him on the issue of national security during the hard primary against Clinton -- who, like McCain, depicted Obama as naïve -- Obama said that in fact he and Clinton shared many positions, which is why he has been able to incorporate Clinton foreign policy advisers into his team. Albright is by far the most prominent Clinton adviser to be seen in Obama's presence since the end of the primary.

"I have not had a conversation with Senator Clinton because she has been getting a well-deserved vacation and we will be speaking in the next few days certainly within the next week," Obama said. "If you look at my positions and Senator Clinton's, there is not a lot of difference, which is why it's so easy for senior advisers of Senator Clinton's to support my candidacy."

At the end of the meeting, Obama was seen whispering with Albright (an image he was likely not sorry was captured by photographers before they were ushered from the room). Albright, a longtime friend and confidante of Clinton's, offered only a few vague remarks about Obama afterward, saying that the meeting had gone well and that he and Clinton shared views on restoring American standing in the world.

By Web Politics Editor  |  June 18, 2008; 4:27 PM ET
Categories:  Barack Obama  
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