CBS 'Early Show' on Obama/Clinton Meeting: ‘Was the Dream Ticket On the Agenda?’

Still Shot of Julie Chen, Harry Smith, and Maggie Rodriguez, June 6 On Friday’s CBS "Early Show," co-host Maggie Rodriguez speculated on the reason for Barack Obama secretly meeting with Hillary Clinton late Thursday: "Breaking news overnight. Obama and Clinton sneak off for a secret meeting. Was the dream ticket on the agenda?" Co-hosts Harry Smith and Julie Chen then simulated what the meeting may have been like:

HARRY SMITH: I'm tired. You must be tired.

JULIE CHEN: Yeah, I'm tired too. You tired?

SMITH: You tired?

CHEN: No, I'm more tired. But you might be more tired. That's what they talked about.

SMITH: Maybe, probably.

Despite the fawning over a possible "dream ticket," correspondent Bill Plante did report on the media’s frustration at being out of the loop: "Last night's meeting at the home of California Senator Dianne Feinstein surprised reporters traveling with Obama. They were upset. They didn't find out he wasn't coming back to Chicago until just before takeoff." A clip of an unidentified reporter was featured talking to Obama communications director Robert Gibbs: "Is there a reason why we didn't go with him in the motorcade all the way. This is what we're out here for and now we're on this plane with no candidate."

Later, Smith talked to liberal Amy Walter, editor of The Hotline, about divisions in the Democratic Party, but Walter put a happy face on the party’s problems:

SMITH: Or is there a sense within the Democratic Party: 'we really need her [Hillary Clinton], we need this for unification. How are we going to go forward without her?'

WALTER: You know I've been a -- skeptical for some time about this idea that the Democratic Party is deeply divided and there are all of these voters that are just --

SMITH: Although we have -- there's a lot of poll data to suggest that.

WALTER: There is. And here's a, I think, a really important step back. And of course all of us are trying to take a deep breath right now, which I think is important. When you look back historically, and this isn't any different from just typical human nature, which is when you are supporting one candidate and that candidate loses, it takes some time before you decide you're going to go over and support the nominee. I mean, this has happened campaign after campaign. The good news for the Democrats is, first of all, it's not ideology that splits supporters of Hillary Clinton.

It is interesting that while talking to Smith Walter uses the phrase "all of us" when talking about reunifying the Democratic Party.

Here is the full transcript of the segment:

7:00AM TEASER:

MAGGIE RODRIGUEZ: Breaking news overnight. Obama and Clinton sneak off for a secret meeting. Was the dream ticket on the agenda?

7:01AM TEASER:

RODRIGUEZ: What did they talk about? That's the million dollar question after Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton met privately last night in Washington. We'll have more on that in just a moment.

HARRY SMITH: I'm tired. You must be tired.

JULIE CHEN: Yeah, I'm tired too. You tired?

SMITH: You tired?

CHEN: No, I'm more tired. But you might be more tired. That's what they talked about.

SMITH: Maybe, probably.

7:02AM SEGMENT:

MAGGIE RODRIGUEZ: But we begin this morning with that private meeting in Washington last night between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. CBS News senior White House correspondent Bill Plante joins us. Bill, good morning. Do you know what they talked about?

BILL PLANTE: Good morning, Maggie. What did they talk about? Was it the vice presidency? Which a lot of Senator Clinton's supporters hope she'll be offered. Senator Obama wasn't talking.

BARACK OBAMA: The next time you hear from me about the vice presidential selection process will be when I have selected a vice president.

PLANTE: Moving to smooth things over now that he's the presumptive nominee, Obama held a secret sit-down meeting with Senator Clinton last night in Washington. The Obama and Clinton campaigns released a joint statement short on details of the meeting saying only that it was a productive discussion.

ROBERT GIBBS: Senator Obama and Senator Clinton did have occasion to meet this evening. It's the end of the primary process. They wanted to talk about bringing these campaigns together in unity and bringing this party together as we go forward in the fall.

PLANTE: Last night's meeting at the home of California Senator Dianne Feinstein surprised reporters traveling with Obama. They were upset. They didn't find out he wasn't coming back to Chicago until just before takeoff.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMEN: Is there a reason why we didn't go with him in the motorcade all the way. This is what we're out here for and now we're on this plane with no candidate.

GIBBS: It wasn't an attempt to deceive in any way.

PLANTE: Tomorrow in Washington Senator Clinton will officially suspend her campaign, throw her support behind Obama and urge her supporters to do likewise. But, as for the second spot on the ticket, will she be offered it? That's the question. She's told CBS News she's not campaigning for it. But would she take it? I got a very interesting answer to that question yesterday from somebody near the inner circle who said if she takes it and they lose, that will make it harder for her to run again. Maggie.

RODRIGUEZ: CBS's Bill Plante in Washington. Thank you, Bill. Now here's Harry.

SMITH: Alright Maggie. Joining us from Washington with more on last night's pivotal meeting is Amy Walter, editor of The Hotline. Good morning, Amy.

AMY WALTER: Good morning.

SMITH: My question this morning, from what you hear, does she want to be asked to be the vice presidential nominee?

WALTER: Yeah, you know, you said 'what were they talking about?' 'Boy, I'm tired. Aren't you tired?' Trying to get into the heads of anybody at this point is somewhat of a ridiculous process. But -- but I think that there are a couple things going on. The first is that if you're Hillary Clinton, regardless of what -- I don't know what she wants in her future, but showing that she is a good team player, the sit-down is the first start, 'we're a unified party, we're on the same team.' What she says tomorrow to her supporters, the kind of tone she takes, the kind of work she does on the trail for him. Look, she has a lot more power, I think quite frankly, just as a campaigner, as a surrogate going to women, going to Hispanics, other voters who haven't been part of the coalition for Barack Obama, that will, I think, go a long way.

SMITH: Is there any kind of consensus among Democrats whether or not she is better, as you suggest, off the ticket than on the ticket? Or is there a sense within the Democratic Party: 'we really need her, we need this for unification. How are we going to go forward without her?'

WALTER: You know I've been a -- skeptical for some time about this idea that the Democratic Party is deeply divided and there are all of these voters that are just --

SMITH: Although we have -- there's a lot of poll data to suggest that.

WALTER: There is. And here's a, I think, a really important step back. And of course all of us are trying to take a deep breath right now, which I think is important. When you look back historically, and this isn't any different from just typical human nature, which is when you are supporting one candidate and that candidate loses, it takes some time before you decide you're going to go over and support the nominee. I mean, this has happened campaign after campaign. The good news for the Democrats is, first of all, it's not ideology that's splits supporters of Hillary Clinton.

SMITH: Right, because they're so close, yeah.

WALTER: Right, because they're so close on that. It's really just about -- and this is where Hillary Clinton's -- the next few weeks become so important, what she decides, in terms of setting the tone of bringing those people on board.

SMITH: And -- and very quickly, Amy, any chance he shows up there tomorrow at the end of the -- her rally?

WALTER: I don't think so. I mean, I think that this is Hillary Clinton's time.

SMITH: Alright. Amy Walter, thanks so much. Good to see you.

WALTER: Thank you, good to see you.

Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen is a News Analyst for MRC