This is a rush transcript from "America's Election HQ," August 20, 2008. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
E.D. HILL, HOST: Is there a sign that John McCain is winning over some of Hillary Clinton's supporters? Local Pennsylvania Clinton backers reportedly met with Carly Fiorina, McCain's top economic advisor at a private gathering this week and there was an even more amazing guest there — Hillary Clinton's own brother, Tony Rodham. So, what we read into this?
Joining me now is the former senior advisor to Hillary Clinton, Kiki McLean. She now is in the Obama campaign.
Thanks for being with us.
KIKI MCLEAN, FMR. CLINTON CAMPAIGN ADVISOR: How are you, E.D.? It's nice to see you. I'm glad to be here. I'm an Obama supporter; I'm not a staff on his campaign.
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HILL: OK. What do you read into this then — you got Tony Rodham over there and talking to Carly Fiorina?
MCLEAN: I read this are the doldrums of August. The boring summer days just before a V.P. pick. You know, I have known Tony for many years, he's a lifelong Democrat. And from what I can tell and sure I've seen, he was simply on a social call to a friend of his, somebody he knew from Pennsylvania.
HILL: Oh, Kiki, come on. This is presidential politics in America. He has been.
MCLEAN: Oh, I think.
HILL: He is a member of the Clinton group. He knows that every single step he takes will be analyzed and overanalyzed. Why take that risk if it doesn't mean anything?
MCLEAN: E.D., you don't have enough to focus on. I think people are over-reading this in a significant way, because here's what we do know — we know that Senator Clinton is backing Senator Obama. She just campaigned in Nevada. Tomorrow, she goes to Florida to campaign in three different locations for him. This is about working up to all the great energy that we're going to have in Denver to send Barack Obama out as our nominee — with a united party, campaigning on the things that are important — like our economy, like national security.
And the reality is, Tony Rodham went and saw a friend who happened to know McCain. I'd like to think that it's not the end of the world if I happen to know somebody who's a Republican if I'm social and collegial with them.
HILL: Your friends will think it's the end of the world for you.
If it is nothing — you mentioned that Hillary Clinton went out and spoke for Barack Obama — why did it take her from June at their Unity rally to the 9th of August to go out and do that?
MCLEAN: Well, that's not all that was going on there. I think you also know that they've helped one another raise money for her debt, for his campaign. There's been a lot of work that goes on.
You know, campaigns aren't just a public event. There's a lot of work that goes on. She also deserved a little bit of a break after her own grueling presidential campaign. But she's been very engaged helping from the beginning. A lot of cooperation between Senator Obama's campaign and her support and, I think, it's just been great.
And, I think she's been getting rave reviews on the road. I think, Senator Obama and his campaign have been doing a great job and they're glad to have her on the team.
HILL: All right. Kiki McLean, thanks so much for being with us.
MCLEAN: Thanks, E.D.
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