Pam Spaulding

Al Gore endorses Obama, Solis Doyle tapped for position

Filed By Pam Spaulding | June 17, 2008 1:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Politics
Tags: Al Gore, Barack Obama, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Patti Solis Doyle, politics, vice president

Al Gore endorses Obama. In all the Cali marriage hubbub, this news was buried, but it is significant.

Obama's first campaign appearance with Gore, at the Joe Louis Arena in downtown Detroit, came after Gore announced his support in a blog item on his website, In the item, Gore said he would "do whatever I can to make sure he is elected president of the United States."

Not unexpected, but it stirred up Gore VP talk again, which seems silly -- why would the former VP and Nobel Prize winner even want the job?

The real political news is in this same article -- what do you make of this?

Meanwhile Monday, Obama sent a strong signal that he was not considering Clinton as his running mate: He announced that Patti Solis Doyle, who was ousted as Clinton's campaign manager in February, would be chief of staff to the future vice presidential candidate.

The announcement outraged Clinton supporters, who said it proved that Obama was not taking Clinton seriously. Solis Doyle, who worked for Clinton most of her career, is barely on speaking terms with her former boss.

"It's a slap in the face," Susie Tompkins Buell, a prominent Clinton donor, said Monday. "Why would they put somebody that was so clearly ineffective in such a position?" She said it was a "calculated decision" by the Obama team to "send a message that [Clinton] is not being considered for the ticket."

I'm not sure how the selection of Doyle directly correlates to no VP for Hillary; after all, it's pretty clear that universally Solis Doyle was viewed as a major contributor to the chaos, high-$-burn rate, and disorganization of the campaign. I think many Obama supporters would question this pick. Of course the chief of staff for the veep is not exactly a mission-critical position; all I know is that I'd watch the bottom line, as Obama has run a tight, disciplined financial ship to date.

Some other additions to the Obama team were officially announced yesterday; the list is below the fold.

From a campaign press release:

The Obama campaign took a major step today in readying for the general election fight, announcing fifteen new members of the campaign's leadership team. The staff members--a combination of new hires and current staff assuming new roles will help broaden and deepen the reach of this campaign for change--from field organizing to constituency outreach to voter registration.

"From the beginning, we've asked the American people to stand up and take ownership of this campaign--and it's because of their overwhelmingly positive response that 16 months later we're poised to make history together," campaign manager David Plouffe said. "Today we're adding to our leadership team so that we reach even more Americans who share the belief that people who love their country can change it. These staff members bring a wealth of organizing experience to their new role, and they'll provide key insight and direction as we continue to build our coalition."

Constituency Director: Brian Bond - formerly LGBT Outreach Director at the DNC

National Field Director: Jon Carson - formerly Obama for America Voter Contact Director

Senior Advisor to the Campaign and Chief of Staff to Michelle Obama: Stephanie Cutter

Industrial States Regional Director: Paul Diogardi - formerly Political Director for the Democratic Governor's Association.

Battleground States Director: Jen O'Malley Dillon - formerly Iowa State Director for John Edwards for President

Chief of Staff to the Vice Presidential Nominee: Patti Solis Doyle

Latino Vote Director: Temo Figueroa - formerly Obama for America National Field Director

First Americans Vote Director: Wizipan Garriott

Northeast Regtional Director: Eureka Gilkey - formerly Obama for America Deputy Political Director

50-State Voter Registration Director: Jason Green - formerly Obama for America political and field staff

Campaign Chief of Staff: Jim Messina - formerly Chief of Staff to Senator Max Baucus

LGBT Vote Director: Dave Noble - formerly of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

West Regional Director: Matt Rodriguez -.formerly Obama for America New Hampshire State Director

Senior Advisor: Michael Strautmanis

African American Vote Director: Rick Wade

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I do find it a bit interesting - and curious, that the Obama campaign would appoint the VP nominee's chief of staff for them. Normally, you'd think the VP candidate would choose their own COS, with perhaps some right of refusal or oversight from the P candidate. Perhaps the role is to begin arranging campaign appearances and scheduling for the prospective nominee for VP. Solis-Doyle seems, by most standards, to have been a failure in such a position, in addition to whatever enmity exists between her and one of the more prominent possible nominees.

Here's another intersting note: I attended a Clinton rally well after Patty Solis Doyle was 'demoted' 'n she was where she'd always been during the campaign, right next to Senator Clinton. I could see Clinton as a likely VP choice as supported by Obama's appointment of the VP COS. I wonder what the Hillary malcontents will complain about if Obama does choose her as a running mate?

Gawd, I wish this campaign was over.

This is strange. Didn't Dick Cheney have this position in the GOP in 2000 and pick himself? Will we see an Obama/Solis-Doyle 2008 ticket?

I'm with Polar... The Pres chooses the Veep's COS? That seems odd...

But from the way Hillary stuck with Solis-Doyle even after everything, maybe they're not as pissed at each other as we'd think. Clinton has often said loyalty is most important to her - and Solis-Doyle has always been loyal to her.

Perhaps this is a signal that Clinton will be veep. Wasn't Solis-Doyle her handler once upon a time?