Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton will end her campaign for the White House and endorse rival Barack Obama on Saturday. Some Clinton supporters in congress were unhappy she did not immediately endorse Obama Tuesday night after he had secured the party’s presidential nomination, but Senator Tom Harkin says Clinton needed the extra time to adjust.
"I’m very sensitive to Senator Clinton’s position and to her supporters. They worked very hard…and I know how they must feel today and I have just a small inkling of how Senator Clinton feels," Harkin says. "You know I ran for president once and I got beat by some guy named Clinton." Harkin, who ran for president in 1992, says he’d be the "last person" to prod Clinton to end her campaign.
"After I’d won three states and had a pretty good thing going, but ran out of money (I) had to bow out…I had Wisconsin yet to go and Pennsylvania and I had all my supporters there wanted me to campaign there…You feel like you let them down, so it takes a while to decompress and so I understand that," Harkin says. Harkin, who had remained neutral in the presidential race this year, endorsed Obama Wednesday. While some in the party are pushing for Obama to choose Clinton as his runningmate, Harkin is not among them.
"I do think that’s inappropriate and I will not be any part of putting pressure on him to pick one person or another. I know Barack Obama well. He’s a deliberative person. He’s going to be very careful about who he picks as vice president and I don’t think it’s going to happen right away. I think it’s going to take a little time. He’s got to decompress a little bit himself and get his fall campaign going," Harkin says. "I don’t think it would be appropriate for anybody to put pressure on him, one way or the other."
Harkin won Iowa’s Caucuses when he ran for president in 1992, as well as contests in Minnesota and Idaho. Harkin endorsed Bill Clinton when he ended his own race for the White House in March of that year.