The Green Zone
In N.Y., Obama Belatedly Makes the Ask for Clinton
By Perry Bacon Jr.
NEW YORK -- Stevie Wonder's song "Signed, Sealed, Delivered " was playing, as Barack Obama had just ended his speech at a fundraiser at the Grand Hyatt in New York.
"Hold on a second," Obama said, coming back to the microphone in front of several hundred of his supporters. "One more thing.... Senator Clinton still has some debt. And I could have had some debt if I hadn't won, so you know the drill. There are many supporters of mine here who have not yet given something to help her retire that debt... I would be very grateful if you looked under your chair, I think there should be an envelope or a pledge sheet or something.... That is part of the process of making sure that we're unified. Alright, turn on the music again, let's keep on partying."
The Illinois senator, after speaking for 35 minutes to raise money for his own campaign, had nearly forgotten another financial obligation he has taken on: helping Clinton repay her campaign debt. The New York senator, still needing to recoup millions she loaned from her personal funds to the campaign and owes to vendors and consultants, had joined Obama on his campaign plane for the trip, along with Caroline Kennedy, an Obama supporter who is on his vice-presidential search team.
Clinton did not attend the fundraiser at the Grand Hyatt, instead joining Obama for a later event. She will also appear with him at a women's event in New York on Thursday.
The campaign debt has caused tensions between the two camps, as some Obama donors feel Clinton waged a harsh campaign against their candidate after she had no chance of winning, while the New York senator's backers aren't sure Obama is serious about helping with her debt.
But he sounded serious on Wednesday night, swaying some of his supporters in the direction of helping Clinton.
Leah Kozak, an information technology consultant who came to the event, said she was convinced by the Illinois senator's message, saying "I will do it because it's helping to build unity" for the party.
Her friend Enika Bodnar, who works for the state government, said she would also donate to Clinton, but said "we're doing it for the cause, even though we may not agree."
"You have to do it, but you're going to do it while doing this," she said, holding her hand on her nose, as she said she felt Clinton was too negative in her campaign against Obama at times.
At the joint event with the pair, with a group of mainly Clinton donors at the Loews Regency, Clinton emphasized the importance of the party coming together, saying "since I've been an adult there have been ten presidential elections, and Democrats have won only three of them."
Speaking after Clinton, Obama described her as "extraordinary as a campaigner" and praised her "graciousness."
Posted at 9:34 AM ET on Jul 10, 2008
The Green Zone
Share This: Technorati | Tag in Del.icio.us | Digg This
Previous: Obama's FISA Vote Goes Against Dem Leadership Grain | Next: Critics Ask: Is Obama Too Hard on Blacks?
Please email us to report offensive comments.
Posted by: Daddio on the Paddio | July 11, 2008 4:28 PM
Posted by: Daddio on the Paddio | July 11, 2008 4:25 PM
Posted by: Anonymous | July 11, 2008 4:33 AM
Posted by: david | July 11, 2008 3:56 AM
Posted by: Lynn E | July 11, 2008 1:35 AM
Posted by: kamala | July 10, 2008 11:37 PM
Posted by: Ebonyflash | July 10, 2008 10:40 PM
Posted by: Joel | July 10, 2008 12:50 PM
Posted by: jwalker | July 10, 2008 12:01 PM
Posted by: Anonymous | July 10, 2008 11:54 AM
Posted by: Christina | July 10, 2008 11:02 AM
Posted by: cspolj | July 10, 2008 11:02 AM
Posted by: cspolj | July 10, 2008 10:46 AM
Posted by: Susan | July 10, 2008 10:38 AM
Posted by: Anonymous | July 10, 2008 10:24 AM
Posted by: justadad55+ | July 10, 2008 10:16 AM
Posted by: Anonymous | July 10, 2008 10:14 AM
Posted by: Anonymous | July 10, 2008 10:11 AM
Posted by: justadad55+ | July 10, 2008 10:10 AM
Posted by: Premier | July 10, 2008 10:05 AM
Posted by: justadad55+ | July 10, 2008 9:57 AM
Posted by: JL | July 10, 2008 9:56 AM
The comments to this entry are closed.