Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Hillary Clinton's Man In New Hampshire

There are gets and then there are "GETS!".

Bill Shaheen, campaign Veteran/Guru/Superman, announced his decision today to endorse Hillary Clinton for President and serve as her campaign's New Hampshire Co-Chair.

Bill Shaheen is a "GET!" - campaign Chair for John Kerry's 2004 New Hampshire Primary win, Co-Chair for Carter's 1976 New Hampshire Primary win, Chair for Al Gore's 2000 New Hampshire Primary win and Co-Chair for Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter's 2006 win.

John DiStaso, Dean of the NH Press Corp, has the first full write-up of the endorsement here.

Meanwhile, the AP and New Hampshire Presidential Watch are still trying to sort-out who broke the story first.

Never mind.

GreenMountainPolitics1 and Blue Hampshire's Dean Barker and Mike Caulfield sat down with Bill Shaheen at Manchester's Merrimack Diner this afternoon to talk about what all this means for Team Clinton.

Crib Notes: Shaheen coming aboard is good news for HillaryLand.

Crib Notes2: Clinton NH Communications Chief Kathleen Strand and Clinton Director of Online Organizing Sarah Foy's decision to reach out to GreenMountainPolitics1 (and other Bloggers) is Noted. And appreciated.

And, while we cannot believe that any man is so humble as to not be a little (just a smidgen?) self-satisfied with the fact that a national TV news reporter told us this past weekend (no Snark), "Shaheen is the best New Hampshire organizer hands down." (pause, drag on cigarette) "Hands down!", we came away from our meeting with him extremely impressed.

Hey, we're humble too! But no where near as impressive.

Some Noteworthy quotes (again, although we take every precaution on how we quote people we're not reporters and we don't have editors so please check with someone at Clinton's campaign if something seems wacky. Of course, we always tape record so...):

On why he chose Hillary over other Democratic candidates:

"She can win and she is real. I want to help her break a glass ceiling that needs to be broken."

He continued, "Hillary knows what she wants me to do. She has done her homework. She wants me to make sure that her campaign is fun, that it will stay focused and that I make sure that it is run the way a New Hampshire campaign should be run. She also wants me to be help her in reaching out to the Arab community."
On the need for an Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement:
"I know for a fact that Hillary is committed to peace in the Middle East and that she believes that helping the Israelis and the Palestinians find a peaceful solution to their problems is a big part of that. The only thing I made Hillary promise in return for helping on her campaign is that she will send me over to the Middle East to help her work for peace in the region."
On the importance of the New Hampshire Primary:
Shaheen begins, "Hillary loves coming to New Hampshire to campaign..."

Strand breaks in, "And Hillary Clinton has come 3 times in the last few months and hopes to come back soon!"
Hey, it's the New Hampshire Primary. It's important. And Hillary knows it.

On the wisdom of New Hampshire Primary voters:
"If the country had listened to us (NH Primary) in 2000 we would had either Al Gore or John McCain as President and we would have been better off. I don't think we would be in a war in Iraq if that had happened and I don't think we would have had 9/11 if that had happened. It's what I believe in my heart. Both men would have been great Presidents and I don't think we have a great President now."
Bottom line: Bill Shaheen is a great pick-up for Team Hillary.

While we still believe that John Edwards is a greater threat to HillaryLand than people think, Shaheen will go a long way towards putting out any potential fires in New Hampshire.

We're just saying.