Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Possibly the most intense phone conversation I have ever had

Many people have been waiting to hear what Senator Clinton and her campaign's immediate plans are. I have just got off a call with Terry McCauliffe, Senate Clinton's National Campaign Director and Jonathan Mantz, her National Finance Director. The other participants were top fundraisers in the midatlantic region.

First some key information:
  • Senator Clinton does indeed have enormous primary debt that she must retire and that is a key focus for her staff right now.
  • Any money donated to Senator Clinton's campaign at her website goes to that retire the debt, so long as those funds are coming from people not already maxed out to the primary.
  • If you are maxed out to the primary, and you donate to the website, you will be asked, eventually, if that money can be reallocated to Senator Clinton's campaign fund for reelection to the U.S. Senate in 2012. The campaign's legal team says that money cannot go to retire the debt but it means that Senator Clinton and her supporters can focus on the debt and free her from worry about funds for that Senate race, which itself would cost at $20 million. (A note from me, NOT the campaign: should Senator Clinton end up running for President, either this election year or in 2012, she could ask donors if she could use funds from her Senate campaign war chest for that purpose.
Now to the rest of the call's substance: Rest assured, neither Terry nor Jonathan nor any of the people who spoke on the call (including me) are happy with the D.N.C.'s treatment of Senator Clinton. However as always on calls like this, Jonathan started by thanking us for our help and for being on the call today; he and Terry noted major goals achieved during the past eighteen months. And then they opened the call to questions.

This is when things got as intense as I have heard on almost any phone call I have participated on in my life, professional or personal.

Many commented that Senator Obama had not said a word to stop the abusive treatment she received during this campaign season. Much bigger fish than I who were on the call explained that neither they nor their "networks" would contribute a dime to the D.N.C. any time soon and nobody I heard was stepping up to raise money for Senator Obama. Speaker after speaker made it crystal clear that they and their contacts simply will not accept the current state of affairs regarding the D.N.C. and Senator Obama's treatment of Senator Clinton.

As always, Terry and Jonathan really listened. Terry McAuliffe himself said that he has never seen a major candidate treated so disgracefully - "like dirt" - by the media, and he is well aware that Howard Dean, Nancy Pelosi, and Senator Obama did not raise a finger to object.

Terry encouraged those of us still willing to work to put a Democrat in the White House to work "with and through" Senator Clinton, to stick with her. He and Jonathan put no pressure on people not to work with PACs or even with McCain, but they made it clear that if one's priority is to empower Senator Clinton than anything one does for the general election should be done via events she will sponsor.

For myself, after the call I communicated to the campaign the following three points:
  • I am going to get Senator Clinton's debt retired, singlehandedly if I have to.
  • I would urge Senator Clinton not to be careless with the political support she has accrued with voters by jumping in too quickly to raise money for either Senator Obama or the D.N.C.; I will respect her choices no matter what, but my network cannot be counted upon to do so.
  • The Clinton staff should always feel free to call upon me any time to ask me to do anything for Senator Clinton. I am always willing to be asked, even if I cannot say yes. I have already booked a stay in Denver for the convention week to be there "live" come what may.
As for what may come, it is clear that much is up in the air. Senator Clinton is NOT releasing her delegates. She and Senator Obama have not broached the topic of the vice-presidency; indeed, the two campaigns have just begun trying to find a time to schedule a joint appearance by Senator Obama and Senator Clinton. There will be such a joint appearance.

Senator Clinton does remain firm in her conviction that it is best for the country and best for her politically to have a Democrat in the White House. She will act on that conviction. Furthermore, she will campaign for downstream Democrats who supported her during the primary season. Of these measures, all I can say is that I would expect nothing less from a person of Senator Clinton's integrity, grace, and loyalty.

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Anonymous adamonis said...

I hope the people on the call stick to their principles and remember "loyalty is not transferable!"

June 10, 2008 at 4:53 PM  
Blogger Mary B said...

Thank you for posting this information. I will support Senator Clinton and help to retire her debt, but will not go so far as to support Senator Obama in any way, shape or form.

June 10, 2008 at 5:07 PM  
Blogger Double Jointed Fingers said...

Thanks so much for your updates. It is comforting to know that people are still dedicated and the campaign is still listening to the supporters.

June 10, 2008 at 5:08 PM  
Anonymous kavala007 said...

As usual you are a voice of sanity and reason while supporting Hillary Clinton all the way. Thank you.

June 10, 2008 at 5:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I think Tell Terry Mac should send out an email to online supporters about the debt issue and ask for help.

Our (wife and I) wish only: Sen Clinton should complete her senate term then get out of politics. She and Bill can do better by running a charity org or something like that. Enjoy life you know. Thanks

June 10, 2008 at 5:12 PM  
Anonymous lorieaselin said...

Thank you Heidi for your update and for everything you do for Senator Clinton.

June 10, 2008 at 5:34 PM  
Anonymous Tvlcrazy said...

thanks so much for keeping us posted. As always, you are keeping us sane :)
What Sen. Clinton has gone through in this primary season is almost too much to bear. I admire her strength, courage and grace - she is an amazing woman. I hope her supporters continue to lift her up and call on the DNC and BO to right their wrongs. She is not my number one choice, she is my ONLY choice.


June 10, 2008 at 5:36 PM  
Anonymous DWPforHILL said...

I, too, remain firm in my conviction that we must elect a Democratic President in November - a true Democrat: Senator Clinton. I cannot believe a true Democrat would condone the things said and done against her during this campaign, or the violation of the Party's Charter and Bylaws in order to steal 59 Michigan delegates and give them to Obama. I still hope and pray that this will be decided on the Convention floor, and that Senator Clinton - along with 18 Million of us - will prevail.

June 10, 2008 at 6:05 PM  
Blogger Lucy-Ann said...

thanks so much for this update!! :) Good to know that Hillary's aids are as unhappy as we are about her treatment. Keep up the great work, Heidi!!

June 10, 2008 at 6:39 PM  
Anonymous mamamimi said...

Thank you for constructive direction to my lingering anger.
Contribution sent!

June 10, 2008 at 8:15 PM  
Anonymous kavala007 said...

Just took at look at the blogs and it has info on it about the DNC still pushing on Hillary.
It sounds to me like the DNC and the Democratic leadership and the media are in panic mode. I wonder what is really up. State Senator Geller of Florida has filed a lawsuit against the DNC that alleges constitutional violations and violations of the Voting Rights Act. It was filed on May 22nd and the judge issued a summons for Howard Dean to appear with 20 days of being served. Check out the lawsuit at:

June 10, 2008 at 8:17 PM  
Anonymous oceancitygirl said...

FYI...I posted this at camille424, but it was suggested I post here too so you would not miss it:

I contacted super-delegates in my home state of MA. I had a great response from one. Here’s a bit from her reply:

“The Hillary delegates in MA will stand with her. I am a super delegate and will be the last standing if I have to. I am with Hillary…”

This super delegate is Diane Saxe (from MA) and she’s awesome!

June 10, 2008 at 8:18 PM  
Blogger GrandMe said...

Thanks for the post. I was encouraged reading what had been said. If each of the 18 million donated $2 to $5 dollars, the debt would dissolve. I am now writing to all the friends that I know supported Hillary asking them to do just this, to send even a token anount and to fwd. the request to their mailing lists. Every little bit......

June 10, 2008 at 8:23 PM  
Anonymous Kavala007 said...

Just read grandme's comment. What a great suggestion.

June 10, 2008 at 8:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you Heidi for a wonderful blog!

I sent Hillary money today for the debt and will do it again.

June 10, 2008 at 10:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Many Clinton supporters have voiced concerns about contributing through her website and whether the money would go to her or potentially to the DNC because the website has become "infected" after her suspension speech. The campaign should put something up on the website for reassurance purposes. Personally, I don't want the DNC to get a cent of my money after the stunts they've pulled.

June 10, 2008 at 11:31 PM  
Anonymous Carol said...

Thanks HLF,

I was beggining to feel like a crazy person or something.

Your post made me feel sane again.

I just have to keep away from all the blogs for awhile.

If I will balance my checkbook later this week and give what I can to help Hillary's debt.

I hope we can all work together again someday to elect Senator Clinton as POTUS.

June 11, 2008 at 12:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for this post. I will do what grandme said...every little bit from everyone will help. I'm still in a daze thinking about this primary and what has transpired these past months. Dean is now finally making a statement about how the media has been sexist. Gee, the guy is a genius. I will never vote for a person whose supporters think it's okay to call a 60 year old lady the c-word. Beyond vile.

See you in Denver Heidi...it's hot here in August and will be a whole lot hotter once the Hillary supporters descend on the mile high city...yeee haww!

June 11, 2008 at 12:26 AM  
Blogger jangles said...

HLF: It is so good to read your posts again. I used to read you at TM but ----things change. I will join you in retiring HRC's debt. Thanks for taking this leadership and making the commitment. Your news from the conference call with MacAuliffe I find very encouraging. I like that HRC wants us to do what we do, if anything, to support Obama through her efforts. I will join her in just about anything, altho I am not likely to vote for him. I hope that as HRC considers her options for the future that she thinks outside the box of the current political options of the Senate, NY Gov, or Obama or McCain admin. post. I think she should create her own job and fill it. If she does an Admin post for either O or Mac, I personally would like to see her become Sec. of Defense: the military is badly broken and we desperately need a big brain to figure out how to fix it; we need to get out of Iraq safely and with dignity and that will take a big brain; it would crash a big part of that glass ceiling hanging up there---a woman in charge of the Pentagon!

June 11, 2008 at 1:22 AM  
Blogger CognitiveDissonance said...

Heidi, thank you so much for this post. I've been so disheartened when the MSM has made it seem as if everyone is abandoning Hillary. It's good to know that there are a few loyal people left.

For me, the hardest part of what has happened is the total betrayal by the party leaders and the supposed democratic principles of the party. If I thought it had been a fair campaign and Hillary had been fairly treated, then maybe I could eventually vote for the nominee. But as far as I'm concerned, he didn't earn it, it was handed to him even after he showed that he didn't deserve it.

Obama reminds me of a 5 year old kid standing on the front seat of daddy's car moving the steering wheel back and forth pretending he's driving. I just can't pull the lever for him.

June 11, 2008 at 3:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Like everyone else I was nervous about donating because I don't want even one little penny of my money to go to Obama! However, yesterday I was assured that it would go to retire the debt so I contributed $12.45. 12 = 2012 and .45 = 45th President - even though I have not yet given up on 2008. The DNC leadership should be ashamed - especially Pelosi and Brazille. Oh yes - isn't Brazille supposed to be resigning since the sd's will decide the race - even though they are being strongarmed with a new kind of politics? Donna, you don't even have to write a letter - just turn in your keys and ID, we'll take it from there!

June 11, 2008 at 1:50 PM  
Blogger GeekLove said...

Thank you for the information. I am trying to encourage people to retire the debt. Anyway that you can help me in asking the campaign to post a debt meter as motivation for us and others?

I called the Clinton Campaign this morning and asked for a debt meter to help motivate people and the person said they will relay the suggestion.

Maybe if enough people call, they will do it. The debt meter will also let us know when the debt is paid off, for those worried that any money will be used for other purposes.

Please call them and ask them to put up a debt meter: 703-469-2008

June 11, 2008 at 1:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi. thanks for the clarification. It's the biggest obstacle at the moment to get HRC supporter to donate because we are afraid that the money will find a way to DNC or BO campaign. Your post will help clarify that it will not be the case.

I'm taking it as my business to help HRC retire her debt. We need to give her the financial freedom so she can make her next move forcefully.

June 11, 2008 at 2:04 PM  
Blogger dwwenz said...


Thank you for this and for all you have done during the primary. I used to read Taylor Marsh, and you always inspired me to give more, do more.
Will you please ask Taylor to clear up her post on Senator Clinton giving up her delegates? It is disheartening and incorrect.

Thank you, HLF.

June 11, 2008 at 2:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks Heidi. I only did some lurking on TM site. I'm really disappointed in the direction she is taking.

I've been trying to find your blog so that I could donate through you to retire Hillary's debt. I too was concerned that the DNC or Obama would get the funds that I sent to Hillary to retire her debt on her site. I need to do some account balancing but will be sending money.

June 11, 2008 at 3:12 PM  
Anonymous LCSusan said...

Have just sent a donation to help HRC retire her debt.

I am in total agreement that all the so called healing words mean very little when nothing was done to stop the sexist commentary by Obama-ites during the campaign.

While my heart is certainly with sending a message to the DNC, my head tells me we have to do more than send a message and part of that realization is knowing that BO is not the presumptive head of the party and that he, his supporters and his wife do not like the Clintons. I think we should go slowly in trying to make HRC part of the ticket. If the Dems win in November, she will be marginalized as VP and if they lose she will be blamed.

We are strong enough and angry enough to be the makings of a formidable third party - a party to whom the Dems will have to come if they want anything done. My thoughts are toward mobilizing toward 2010 and local elections. We can be not only the change about which Senator Obama speaks, we can also be the accomplishments that Senator Clinton would have made.


June 11, 2008 at 3:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heidi, I just can't keep quiet, I must say this.

My greatest fear is that Hillary will be trapped by her own sense of party loyalty into accepting the VP nomination. If Obama/Clinton were elected, that would effectively be the end of her own career and her own influence. By 2016 she will be 68 (and Bill too feelble to help).

Please let us ask her not to consider sacrificing herself that way!

http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/hillarynovp -- for Hillary supporters who do not want her trapped ironing Obama's shirt


June 11, 2008 at 4:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As another TM lurker I always enjoyed the site--not so much anymore. Just sent Hillary $50 towards her debt. I'll never vote Obama. Thanks for all you do.


June 11, 2008 at 7:17 PM  
Blogger Michaela said...

Just Saying:

Thank you Heidi for the great update, it sure fills in so many questions I was tossing around in my head. I agree with the others, I have no problem donating to retire Hillary's debt..but not a red cent to the DNC or Obama...

On another note, I hope to God Hillary, if asked, has no part of that ticket.I would be terrible disappointed if she signed on...he's bad news and I don't want her anywhere near him.
Thanks again for keeping us posted..

June 11, 2008 at 7:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for giving us an update. I hope she will fight on to the convention. I changed by registration to Independent today. I am with her all the way if she wants the VP position or not. I'm been with her since day 1. I don't think he will offer it to her because he is so arrogant. I'm waiting for my stimulus check and I'm sending all of it to Hillary to help retire her debt. I wish I could go to the Convention in August.

June 11, 2008 at 7:38 PM  
Blogger Robin said...

Thank you so much for this information. I too wish that they would email us supporter directly. We can no longer get our posts on the HillaryClinton.com site because they are now censoring us. I will contribute to Hillary, and help her any way I can. I too am going to the convention. I WILL NEVER VOTE FOR HIM. Everything in my spirit tells me no. Not even for Hillary.

June 11, 2008 at 7:40 PM  
Anonymous hill4pres said...

Heidi, thank you for this posting.

Does anyone believe in or out of the campaign that something could change the outcome of the nomination? (ie go Hillary's way)? is that 0% or 5%?

Does anyone believe that Hillary's delegates can/will force her in as a unity ticket? Is that what she wants (do we think)?

Finally - the number of supporters and outrage by so many people, has she thought at all of running as an Independent?

Yes, I know it would ruin the democratic party and prospects for 2009 - but after how she was treated, who cares?


June 11, 2008 at 11:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heidi - Thank you for this haven on an increasingly foreign and hostile web. I gave to Hillary after her last speech. I had hoped there would be 1 or 2 million people who would contribute, and if she retired her huge debt quickly it would put further fear in the hearts of the DNC and him.

Like others who've posted, I will support Hillary in whatever she chooses to do, except I will not vote for him.

June 12, 2008 at 12:05 AM  
Anonymous SensibleWomanNOTforBO said...

Thank you, Heidi! I've wanted to help her retire her debt, but like others I've been hesitant out of concern she wouldn't be the one benefiting.

I'm still hanging in there for miracles to happen in Denver so my donation will be two of them. One at $20.08 and one at $20.12.

I will keep my eye on your blog and contribute through your links so as to help others you so wisely include.

Bless you, Lady, for all you are and have been doing!

June 12, 2008 at 12:11 AM  
Blogger femB4dem said...

Thanks for this information. I really like this idea of donations with .08 and .12 at the end. Let's all get busy, there's a lot of debt to retire, but since we won't be giving $$ to the DNC, the DCCC or the DSCC (at least I won't), we should have some spare cash to get Hillary free. The idea of her needing to rely on BO and his supporters for money makes me queasy.

June 12, 2008 at 12:55 AM  
Blogger gendergappers said...

Thanks to all for info and sticking with our candidate. Hope soon to see the debt meter. I don't have much more to give but what I have I want it to go to her.

June 12, 2008 at 12:11 PM  
Anonymous minty said...

I am glad I wandered to this site. I give a little every pay check.

I am not leaving the party and I am not voting for McCain. That is all I can promise at this point.

The debt meter is a good idea.

Keep us informed and let us know how to stay involved with Senator Clinton's efforts.

June 12, 2008 at 7:53 PM  
Blogger beachnan said...

DNC will never get a red cent from me if it has any connection to Obama. I will go to Hillary's site and contribute. I had been afraid that it would go to the DNC. We need to get this done quickly. I agree, the sooner we can do this, the better it will look for Hillary. Money Meter please.

June 12, 2008 at 10:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks Heidi,
I am a 63 yr old black female Hillary supporter, one of the 8% forever. I contributed $800 to Hillary over the course of the campaign and will contribute another $100 to help retire her debt. Like you, I was afraid that the money might go to the DNC or Obama. However, I decided that I would do as I did during the campaign; go to the website, click on contribute by mail, print mail in form (address on form), then mail check to the address stated. This worked through the campaign because my cancelled checks were documented by the bank. I will never vote for Obam due to the fact that he smeared the Clintons with false charges of racism in SC. For that reason and others I detest him, can not stand to look at nor listen to him.

June 21, 2008 at 7:49 PM  
Blogger Rosann said...

What bothers me is that Obama's own personal insults toward Hillary are getting a free ride by the press. When Obama-supporting guest talking heads say he didn't personally do it, the moderator lets them get away with it. It wasn't someone else's finger on Obama's hand, he personally did plenty against both Hillary and Bill that fell into name-calling and personal insults.

It was curious to see Obama demand that Michelle was out of bounds when he no longer needed to treat Hillary with such blatant disrespect.

I gagged at Michelle's overly kind words for Hillary yesterday, and Obama's insincere compliments for her today. NH was great; they gave her the accolades and cheers she deserved without Obama giving them permission to do so!

June 27, 2008 at 3:44 PM  

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