Bob Bauer and Howard Wolfson face off in press call.

A campaign blog.
March 4 2008 9:51 PM

Transcript: Clinton's Emergency Conference Call

Bob Bauer and Howard Wolfson face off.

Chadwick Matlin transcribed a portion of the Tuesday-night press conference call convened by Clinton's campaign.

BAUER: "Different than the one previously made against every other caucus so far."

SOMEBODY: "Please start over."

CROSSTALK

BAUER: Can you hear me?

WOLFSON: "Bob, how nice of you to call! How are you?"

BAUER: Glad to talk to you it's been a while. We haven't seen each other since Iowa, which is the occasion of the last series of complaints the Clinton campaign has made against the caucus process. I'd be interested to know…(chatter) Nevada where you filed a lawsuit. I was just curious to know how is this any different, in fact, from the series of complaitns that you've registered against every caucus that you lose.

WOLFSON: Actually Bob we haven't experienced this exchange since you made a series of complaints in Nevada. And tried to do everything that you and the Obama campaign could do to undermine the results there. You haven't been on any of these calls with us before. We welcome you to this one.

BAUER: Well I appreciate that.

CLINTON person: The first call of this nature we've had. What is happening in Texas is extraordinary. We, of course, don't hold you personally responsible for it. But we do believe that you share our commitment to a strong democratic values and a system that ensures everyone who wants to participate in our process be given an equal and fair opportunity to do so. So I would imagine that you would welcome this opportunity to join with us to ensure that the problems we are pointing out on this call are dealt with expeditiously so that every Democrat in Texas who wants to participate can do so.

BAUER: Well, Howard, I just – I appreciate the spirit with which you're engaging me on this, and I just want to thank you for that. I just wanted to make sure you're answering my question. In Nevada you filed a lawsuit in advance of the caucus. In Iowa, you threatened various students with potential consequences if they voted under Iowa law. Now in the evening of the Texas caucus, while it's virtually taking place you claim you have well-documented accusations and that this is somehow the first time you've raised issues like this, and that really isn't true. Is it, Howard?

WOLFSON: What I said Bob, and we can debate and then we'll let the reporters ask some of their questions, that this is in fact the first phone call of this nature we have had during this campaign. I am quite certain saying that because I would have been running them. The lawsuit that you referred to was not filed by us, as you know and saw fairly well. Again, I would ask you to join us this evening in ensuring that the serious problems that are ongoing as we speak in Texas are addressed with. We are all Democrats. We are all concerned about the process being fair and open for everyone. Again I would ask you with all the reporters on the line to join with us in helping to make sure that these problems are corrected so that everybody has an opportunity to participate.

BAUER: I'm happy to answer the challenge and let other people speak at this point, Howard. But I will say that I'm more than happy to enter into any commitment that you might have to actually for the first time in some period of time stop attacking the caucus process that didn't start bothering the Clinton campaign until it ran a series of fairly extraordinary losses, but I'm still we can debate that at some point in the future.

WOLFSON: This is not about the process, Bob. It's about the way that this particular set of caucuses are ongoing as we speak. Again, I just want to make sure all the reporters know that it was the Obama campaign that made a very long list of allegations about the caucus process in Nevada when you lost that caucus. Let's be clear about the facts there.

BAUER: I don't recall filing a lawsuit in Nevada trying to stop voting at the at-large precincts that were thrown-out as completely meritless by a federal judge. If we're the one who filed it it certainly escapes me. It was filed by your surrogates and is part of a string of accusations you've launched against the caucus process on no principle other than the fact that you seem to (garbled) seem to get the votes you need to win. But as I said, there are others who have questions, so we'll let them ask the questions that they need to ask. I appreciate you taking the questions, Howard, and I thank you for that.

WOLFSON: We look forward to asking our own questions in subsequent phone calls of yours.

BAUER: Pleasure. I can't wait to hold one and have you as my first questioner.

WOLFSON: Excellent. Next question please.