Obama on Edwards: ‘I Want Him Involved and Partnering With Me”…but for VP?

Feb 13, 2008 10:26pm

ABC’s Sunlen Miller and Raelyn Johnson Report: Barack Obama told a Racine, Wis., crowd that he would want John Edwards involved and partnering with him if he becomes president.

The response came when an audience member asked if they should anticipate an Obama-Edwards ticket anytime soon.

Obama said he tries to avoid being presumptuous because he has not locked in the nomination but added, "I will say this, I think John Edwards is somebody who lifted up the issues of poverty and the working families, in a powerful way. I think he’s extraordinarily talented. He is going to be a major voice in the Democratic party for years to come and I want him involved and partnering with me in moving this country forward."

When he was a candidate, John Edwards consistently said that he would not consider another vice presidential slot on a Democratic ticket.  Aides chalked up Edwards’ strong feelings against second billing as "been there done that."

Even after a string of early losses, Edwards offered ABC News an unequivocal "no" when asked if he would consider a VP nod. However, since Edwards abandoned his presidential bid, one former aide explained that a VP position would offer Edwards another path to the presidency. Read more HERE.

But sources have said basically anything is possible since he dropped out of the race.

Obama has been actively courting Edwards’ endorsement, and has indicated the two talk regularly on the phone. A face-to-face meeting between the former rivals for the Democratic nomination was scheduled for Monday night in North Carolina, but was abruptly canceled same day.

"It will be rescheduled. We’re gonna make it happen," Obama said of the meeting on Monday.

Edwards has been very complimentary of Obama while out on the trail, and quickly came to his defense when he was criticized by Sen. Hillary Clinton and former President Bill Clinton. During a campaign stop in South Carolina last month, when he was still in the race, Edwards joked about an Obama-Edwards ticket saying, "I’m running for the Democratic nomination. I think maybe he should be running for my VP."

Hillary Clinton met with John Edwards last Thursday, and has similarly said she would have Edwards involved in anything she does in the White House.

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