Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) confirmed that Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman addressed his caucus at a closed-door policy luncheon today.
John Podesta, former chief of staff to President Clinton and counselor to Obama, was also president of the Center for American Progress think-tank. He left the Obama administration in February and is no stranger on Capitol Hill.
Reid said Podesta and Amanda Renteria, Hillary’s national political director, “came to our caucus to introduce us in a very broad, quick fashion to Secretary Clinton’s campaign for president of the United States.”
“We know Amanda. We know John. Amanda was Debbie Stabenow’s chief of staff. John Podesta has been everybody’s chief of staff,” Reid added. “It has worked out — they were very, very informative to us. I appreciate their coming there. And we look forward to a number of other opportunities to be able to show the profile we have for the next president of the United States.”
Podesta told PBS that they’re aiming for a “tight and disciplined campaign,” with the ground game being run by Robby Mook, who “worked in the campaign in 2008 in the states” and managed Terry McAuliffe’s successful gubernatorial campaign. “He’s built a fabulous team. I think we’ll have the most diverse campaign in presidential history.”
“And we have a set of values in this campaign that means that people who remember what we’re about which is to improve the lives of every day Americans will succeed. People who are tight and disciplined will succeed. And if people are not that, then there will be no place for them in the campaign,” Podesta added.
Hillary’s chairman acknowledged he’s “confident we’ll have primary opposition.”
“And one of the things we’re going to do is fight for every vote. We don’t take any of this for granted,” she said.
“I said she will debate her primary opponent, you know. And of course, she’ll do that. We expect to be challenged and we will run a campaign in all 50 states and the territories to get the nomination and then we will run a national campaign if we are lucky enough to be the nominee of the party.”