Thus fulfilling the pressing need within his campaign for a woman known for watching soap operas on the job and blowing $30 million on a de facto uncontested senate re-election campaign. Jake Tapper’s not sure what it means and neither am I. But one Hillary bundler thinks he does:
A former bundler to Hillary Clinton just called in to tell me that Barack Obama’s selection of Patti Solis Doyle as chief of staff to the campaign’s eventual vice presidential nominee is the “biggest f*** you I have ever seen in politics.”
The donor, speaking on background, said that everyone in Clinton circles knows the two have hard feelings towards one another and haven’t spoken since Clinton removed Solis Doyle as campaign manager, and that Clinton loyalists view her with deep suspicion and believe that she is shopping around a book deal and acted as a background source for an extremely harsh Vanity Fair piece about Bill Clinton…
“You don’t hire Patti Solis Doyle for her operational expertise,” said the bundler. “You don’t do that. This is someone who failed dramatically at her job. You only bring her on to f*** someone else.”
She’s supposed to serve as chief of staff to whoever the VP candidate is, although as Noam Scheiber says, she’ll probably be more of a liaison between Team Barry and the veep’s real COS than someone running day to day operations. The obvious read on this is that it’s Obama’s way of luring Hillary supporters, but why would he do that by hiring someone who let her down (and may now be a full-fledged enemy) instead of bringing in, say, Wolfson or Maggie Williams? If there’s a backlash in the media from Clinton loyalists in the next few days, it’s only going to deepen the “party unity, my ass” sentiment and Obama surely knows that. Exit question: What’s this really all about, then? Talk Left notes that Axelrod and Solis Doyle are friends of long standing, so maybe he simply did her a solid by setting her up with a sinecure? That’s one expensive favor if it ends up hardening Hillaryland’s grudge.
One thing the move does suggest, insiders believe, is that Hillary Clinton’s chances of being tapped for the vice presidency are now slim to nil.
“This alone means that Hillary won’t be the V.P. choice,” wrote one.
According to two close Clinton confidantes, the Senator and Solis Doyle have not spoken since her firing months ago. And there is a sense that bad blood lingers between the two. Some officials in Clinton’s orbit were disappointed, if not angered, by the fact that Solis Doyle had been in touch with the Obama campaign about possibly coming on board. Solis Doyle, meanwhile, is rumored to have felt particularly scapegoated by her firing.
Said one individual with knowledge of the Clinton campaign’s political leanings: “It would be pretty awkward if Hillary Clinton were picked as vice president and Patti was there to be her chief of staff.”