Marc Ambinder reports:
In politics, Hillary Clinton speaks for the Clinton family now, and aside from her campaign debt, she has no real difficulty supporting Barack Obama privately and publicly.
But Bill Clinton has a beef. A Democrat who has spoken directly to Clinton about his feelings said that the former president remains “miffed” for two reasons. One is that he feels that Obama’s candidacy was essentially an anti-Clinton candidacy; that Obama ran against Clinton’s presidential record at times, implying that it was timeworn, divisive, and damaging to the party while adopting policy positions that seemed to flow directly from the Clinton oeuvre. Why should Clinton embrace a guy who spent the past twelve months bashing him and his accomplishments?
Two: Clinton is convinced that the Obama campaign went out of its way to portray the former president as a racist. Clinton wants a private meeting with Obama to sort these things out; he has reconciled himself to the reality of Obama’s nomination and does not want to sit on the sidelines.
"President Clinton is obviously committed to doing whatever he can and is asked to do to ensure Senator Obama is the next President of the United States," said Matt McKenna, Clinton's spokesperson, in a statement provided to news organizations today.
How does this play out? I don’t sense much of a desire from the Obama campaign to completely placate the former president, but his absence from the campaign trail will be noticed, and I do get the sense that they’re willing to meet him halfway. So – don’t expect a public apology from Obama. Perhaps, at some point, he will murmur some private words of regret, and that’ll be the end of it. After all, as famous as Bill Clinton is for holding grudges, he’s also a guy who forgives.