Choose Your Language Of Preference Below

French Version German Version Russian Version Spanish Version 

 
Posted by Foon Rhee, deputy national political editor 

By Michael Kranish, Globe Staff

Some of Hillary Clinton’s most loyal supporters today disbanded their effort to push Barack Obama to pick her as his running mate, responding to reports that she has been chosen to give the keynote speech at the Democratic National Convention.

Clinton’s speaking role would be the latest sign that Obama is looking elsewhere in his vice presidential search because the running mate historically does not also give the keynote address.

“We hope you are as pleased as we are that he has tapped Senator Clinton to deliver one of the most important messages of that crucial week — the very role that Barack Obama had four years ago,” the founders of Vote Both, a group pushing the “dream ticket,” said in a message posted on their website. “Regretfully, this means that Senator Hillary Clinton is no longer under consideration as Senator Obama’s running mate.”

Obama’s campaign refused today to confirm Clinton’s role at the convention in Denver late this month, and remained tight-lipped about the running mate search. Clinton’s office referred inquires to the Obama campaign.

But Gus Bickford, a Massachusetts member of the Democratic National Committee and a superdelegate who initially supported Clinton, said today that he was told that Clinton will deliver the keynote address.

“It was said as though it was a done deal,” Bickford said of Clinton’s speaking role, adding that he understood that to mean that Clinton would not be chosen as Obama’s running mate.

Bickford said he was told about the convention schedule during a conference call Tuesday night with an Obama campaign official. The call was first reported by the New York Daily News, which reported that the aide also said that the vice presidential nominee will likely speak on Aug. 25 and 27 — the first and third nights of the convention.

The keynote address is scheduled for Aug. 26, which is the 88th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment, which granted women the right to vote, and Clinton talked often during the Democratic primaries about trying to break the “highest, hardest glass ceiling” in her bid to become the first woman to be elected president.

Bickford said that while he still thinks an Obama-Clinton ticket would be “fabulous,” he said that most Democrats would be supportive of whomever Obama picks as long as the ticket has a strong chance at victory in November.

James Roosevelt, another DNC member from Massachusetts who was on the conference call, also said today that the Obama official said Clinton would deliver the keynote address.

But Roosevelt said there was a still a chance Clinton could be picked for the ticket. “Having been through many types of hiring processes, until you decide on who it will be, I don’t think you can rule out who it won’t,” he said.

US Representative Niki Tsongas of Lowell told editors and reporters at the Globe’s Washington Bureau today that talk has died down about the possibility of Clinton joining the Obama ticket.

“You don’t hear it so much from the Obama campaign and from Senator Clinton herself,” she said, while adding that “the dynamic could shift again” before a decision is made.

While Clinton won 18 million votes during the primaries, she might conflict with Obama’s new politics message because she would bring quite a bit of political baggage.

“Because it seems that Senator Obama has made his decision to offer the slot on the ticket to another candidate, we believe that continuing to ask him to pick Hillary is no longer helpful to our party’s chances of winning in November,” Vote Both co-founders Adam Parkhomenko and Sam Arora, who are former Clinton staffers, told the 40,000-plus people who signed an online petition for Clinton to be chosen.

Advertisements