Rep. Clyburn tells Bill to "..chill a little bit"

From CNN it appears that Bill's continued lies about Barack Obama are starting to take their toll. Clyburn has of course said he will not endorse but I think the Clintons are pushing him to getting about as close to unofficially endorsing Obama as possible.

Read below from CNN:

(I take note I think CNN must have transcribed the statement incorrectly. It really only makes sense if its "But you CAN do that in a way that won't engender the kind of feelings that seem to be bubbling up as a result of this.")

Bill Clinton's attacks on Obama, Clyburn said in a CNN interview, were unfair because a former president's viewpoint "carries with it extra weight." Watch Clyburn tell Clinton to 'chill' »

"I think they would say in 'Gullah Geechee' country he needs to chill a little bit. I hope he understands what that means," Clyburn told CNN.

"I can understand him wanting to defend his wife's honor and his own record, and that is to be expected. But you can't do that in a way that won't engender the kind of feelings that seem to be bubbling up as a result of this."

"Gullah Geechee" refers to African Americans who live in South Carolina's Low Country region near the Atlantic coast.

"He is revered in many sections of the African- American community, and I think he can afford to tone it down," Clyburn added.

Tags: Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Clyburn, Hillary Clinton, South Carolina (all tags)

Comments

31 Comments

I'll read between the lines

South Carolina is the African American primary, chill Bill and let Obama win this one please.

by dpANDREWS 2008-01-21 12:30PM | 0 recs
I hope that Clyburn does endorse

I'm tired of these people who say that they are neutral when in fact they really are for Obama. They aren't neutral. People like Donna Brazile and Clyburn need to go ahead and endorse Obama. Why constantly use the threat of endorsement when obviously the Clintons don't care if Clyburn endorsed or not?

What difference will it make if Clyburn endorses anyway? Will Obama get even more AA votes b/c of it? I just don't get this endorsement blackmail strategy that Clyburn is employing here.....

by ademption 2008-01-21 12:30PM | 0 recs
Re: I hope that Clyburn does endorse

I believe Clyburn expressly promised not to endorse for some reason or another.  Maybe to get SC as one of the early states.  You're right that it's kind of an open secret who he supports.

by Steve M 2008-01-21 12:33PM | 0 recs
Re: I hope that Clyburn does endorse

I think it was a condition for South Carolina to become an early state if Clyburn agreed not to endorse. But to me, I would prefer that he just come out and endorse Obama rather than this fake stuff. It annoys me to no end....  

by ademption 2008-01-21 12:37PM | 0 recs
Re: I hope that Clyburn does endorse

I saw him interviewed the other day - I think it was CNN - I think he's holding off endorsing anyone until after the debate sponsored by CNN and the Congressional Black Caucus Institute, of which he's a member. I think he may have made an agreement not to endorse before the debate.  I'm guessing he'll endorse Obama, if he does decide to endorse.

by AnnC 2008-01-21 03:05PM | 0 recs
Re: I hope that Clyburn does endorse

I agree. Almost everyone knows that Clyburn has threatened to endorse Obama...He should just go ahead and do it. I don't care.

Obama will win in South Carolina. After that, the road gets much tougher for him. He's in a bad position:

Win a primary that everyone expects his to win and get no real mileage out of it. If lightning strikes and he loses, then his campaign is over.

by arkansasdemocrat 2008-01-21 12:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn tells Bill

We've all heard about the off-the-record warnings Rahm Emmanuel (who I don't believe is nonpartisan) and Ted Kennedy (who does seem to be) supposedly gave to the Clinton campaign.

I'm going to be honest here.  I think there is a certain segment of the party establishment that is pretty certain Hillary will be the nominee, but worries that if things get too heated along the way then the African-American part of the coalition might not calm down in time for the general election.  The publicity that's been given to these off-the-record chats is another way the party signals to the African-American community that "don't worry, we know the guy is out of line."

So whether Bill really has been over the top, or whether any of these people honestly believe Bill has been over the top, is really beside the point.  There are no absolute standards in politics and the only thing that really matters is how people perceive you.  I think the intervention is like 50% well-intentioned and 50% overly paternalistic, to tell you the truth.

by Steve M 2008-01-21 12:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn tells Bill

No absolute standards, sure, but there are very certain standards that most former Presidents are held to, especially with inter-Party battles.  Because of the uniqueness of the situation most people have given him greater latitude, but he crossed that line long ago. Can you imagine Jimmy Carter acting in such a way?

by Piuma 2008-01-21 12:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn tells Bill

I don't see any evidence of what such standards might be other than what you want them to be in your own mind.

Perhaps my comment wasn't clear enough.  I do not think this is about enforcing some amorphous standard regarding ex-Presidents, as though the world will end if Bill Clinton doesn't follow the etiquette guide.  I think this is entirely about not wanting to alienate black voters.

If Bill Clinton had gone off on John Edwards for whatever reason, I cannot imagine the party elders giving him a stern talking-to simply because "ex-Presidents aren't supposed to behave that way."

by Steve M 2008-01-21 12:49PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn tells Bill

I disagree.  There is an expectation of Statesman-like behavior and to be above the fray,  for Party unity and all.  They are admittedly rather amorphous ideals.  But if he had used the kind of tone against Edwards that he did against Obama with the "give me a break, this is the biggest fairy tale"...I have no doubt that Party elders would have had the same complaint.  Look at the measured tone that people like Kerry and Leahy have used in their endorsements which stressed they were not against anyone but simply for someone.  That is what is expected.  It's one thing for Bill to be a strong advocate for his wife, it is quite another to be the attack dog.

by Piuma 2008-01-21 01:11PM | 0 recs
nonsense

Kerry and Leahy's wives are not running for President.  Clinton is not held to any standard that  Michele and Elizabeth are not held to.

Unfortunately for Obama his advisers pulled a boner. They allowed him or suggested that the campaign should call "racism" where there was none.  In an attempt to get a short term benefit in SC they have made Obama "the black candidate".  I am honestly going to be surprised if he even does as well as Jesse did in his first run.
I think they blew it and should stop blaming their own failure on Clinton.

by MollieBradford 2008-01-21 01:29PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn tells Bill

I disagree- this "statesman-like" is some sort of comedy of manners.  He's not frozen in that position just because people want him to be.  If he wants to define himself instead of letting other people do it- so be it.  If the Clinton Presidency was such a failure which no one wants to see return, as Obama has been harping on for months, then it shouldn't be a problem for him.

by reasonwarrior 2008-01-21 02:47PM | 0 recs
crossed what line?

what specifically did he do that crossed the line?

by MollieBradford 2008-01-21 01:35PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn tells Bill

We've all heard about the off-the-record warnings Rahm Emmanuel (who I don't believe is nonpartisan) and Ted Kennedy (who does seem to be) supposedly gave to the Clinton campaign.

Heard about them from Obama campaign memos transcribed by the media.

by hwc 2008-01-21 12:50PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn tells Bill

Well, that seems to be where the media gets most of their stories, but I can see where the Establishment might see it as in the party's best interest to get word out of these little chats.

by Steve M 2008-01-21 12:54PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn tells Bill

I'm going to be honest here.  I think there is a certain segment of the party establishment that is pretty certain Hillary will be the nominee, but worries that if things get too heated along the way then the African-American part of the coalition might not calm down in time for the general election.

That's not quite the real issue.

The reality is the fear that the African American block in the Democratic Party is missing the train as it pulls out of the station.

Clinton is assembling a new Democratic Party coalition that relies more heavily on the fastest growing demographic segment (Latino/a voters) and the largest voting block (women). This new Democratic coalition turns much more to the Southwest and away from the solidly, and hopelessly Republican, Deep South.

Clinton, of course, is far too committed to issues of importance to African Americans and to civil rights to ever turn her back on that part of the coalition. They will have a seat at the table no matter how ugly they treat her and her husband (calling them racists is pretty damn ugly). But, for now, Clinton is going to just respectfully step out of the way and let that part of the Democratic coalition do their thing. She is being so demonized in the African American community right now that trying to compete for their votes would simply inflame an ugliness that the Democratic Party doesn't need.

She'll concentrate on the Latino/a base in Arizona, New Mexico, and California.

by hwc 2008-01-21 12:58PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn tells Bill

I agree. I'm so excited about that. I hope our tribe(not latino) will contribute a little bit in supporting her in CA...

by prisonbreak 2008-01-21 12:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn tells Bill

Basically, the whole South Carolina primary has blown up in the DNC's face. The idea was to give a particular racial group more early influence in the nominating process. But, the unintended consequence is that South Carolina becomes essentially meaningless as a "favorite son" primary.

Here's the interesting bet. Will this year's favorite son candidate win as many states as Jesse Jackson did in 1988?

by hwc 2008-01-21 01:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn tells Bill

This doesn't make a lot of sense to me.  Why would the trends you identify cause the party elders to give Bill Clinton a warning?  Does the Big Dog not understand what his own coalition consists of?

by Steve M 2008-01-21 01:21PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn tells Bill

Because the "elders" of the Democratic Party are stuck with the tired old politics of the 60's and 70's. They are having trouble grasping the changing demographics of the United States and the new politics of the 21st century. They are having trouble grasping that a healthy Democratic Party may, in the future, require a diminished role for some groups and an increased role for other groups that are enthusiastically helping to bake the Democratic Party bread.

I don't want to get more specific than that because I've already been threatened with a ban here.

by hwc 2008-01-21 01:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn tells Bill

Sure, Bill Clinton understands his coaliton. He also understands that part of that coalition is now calling him a racist. Funny how the party "elders" are not telling Jesse Jackson, Jr. and Rep. Clyburn to "chill out", isn't it?

I don't know about you, but I don't think Democrats calling Bill Clinton a racist is particularly constructive for the Democratic Party.

by hwc 2008-01-21 01:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn tells Bill to
I found it interesting that he wanted Bill to chill but when asked what it was that Bill did that was over the line and made him ask that...Clayburn expressly said Bill had not stepped over the line he just wanted him to be careful. This is all so stupid it makes me head hurt. Will Obama just go away if we let him win this one?
by americanincanada 2008-01-21 12:39PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn

Spoiled 'hope' brat needs another daddy to protect him... No surprise.

by prisonbreak 2008-01-21 12:46PM | 0 recs
clyburn needs to chill

wait he needs to chill because he carries "extra weight" behind what he says?

This is a PRIMARY

by sepulvedaj3 2008-01-21 01:05PM | 0 recs
clyburn afraid of backlash from AA community

Clyburn just said on CNN that he hasnt crossed the line, he is just causing a lot of anxiety in the base (AA voters).

by sepulvedaj3 2008-01-21 01:15PM | 0 recs
on Reagan

Now he says Reagan's agenda was horrible for AA, and he cringed when Obama praised him.

Said "its one thing to talk about his personality, he had a great personality" but different from talking about his policies...

just an FYI while we are on Clyburn's comments

by sepulvedaj3 2008-01-21 01:17PM | 0 recs
Re: on Reagan

With all due respect to Rep. Clyburn, after he called Bill and Hillary Clinton racists, I don't give a rat's ass what he says.

by hwc 2008-01-21 01:22PM | 0 recs
Re: on Reagan

me either, go fuck himself...

by prisonbreak 2008-01-21 01:24PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn

This video of the Big Dog is too funny not to share.

by Steve M 2008-01-21 01:35PM | 0 recs
Re: Rep. Clyburn

I almost fell asleep listening to that guy for just over a minute!

Poor Bill. That was the morning after the Nevada primary. The Clintons had flown to St. Louis for a big rally after the victory speech in Vegas, then on to New York in the middle of the night.

by hwc 2008-01-21 02:54PM | 0 recs
You forgot to add

That Clyburn chided Obama over his Reagan comments as well and said he should be "careful" with that in the future, and reminded people that Reagan was no friend of African Americans.

by dpANDREWS 2008-01-21 03:05PM | 0 recs

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