The White House has not ruled out the possibility that US President Barack Obama could endorse either Vice President Joe Biden or former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the Democratic Party presidential primary.
That is, if Biden decides to run for president next year.
“I wouldn’t rule out the possibility of an endorsement in the Democratic primary,” White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest as saying at a press briefing.
Reponding to a question by an ABC News reporter, Earnest added: “There’s not an insignificant ‘if’ in that question and that’s what everybody is pretty interested to find out.
“The president has indicated his view that the decision that he made seven years ago now to add Joe Biden to the ticket as his running mate was the smartest decision he ever made in politics.”
Speculation that Biden, 72, might throw his hat into the ring heightened over the weekend following a secret meeting between the vice president and Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, who is also being urged by supporters to join the presidential race.
The briefing came while Obama and Biden sat down for a private lunch. The two men meet for lunch on a weekly basis when they are both in town, according to ABC News.
Praising the vice president, Earnest said a large part of what has been accomplished during the Obama presidency “would not have been possible” without Biden.
But he also volunteered to commend the 67-year-old Clinton.
“The president has spoken at quite some length about the appreciation, respect and admiration he has for the service of Secretary Clinton, particularly during her four years as secretary of state,” Earnest said.
Speaking again of Biden, the press secretary added: “I’ll just say that vice president is someone who has already run for president twice, he’s been on a national ticket through two election cycles now.
“So I think you could make the case that there is no one in American politics today who has a better understanding of what is required to mount a successful national presidential campaign.”
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