DES MOINES, Iowa – Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign manager David Plouffe endorsed Hillary Clinton Saturday, just ahead of a key Democratic Party event here, where Obama’s campaign first showed major signs of breaking past the thought-to-be inevitable Clinton.
“Now, to be honest, during the most intense days of the 2008 primary, I would never have imagined writing this piece. And I doubt Team Clinton felt any differently about me,” Plouffe wrote in a post on Medium.
It’s a major nod of support from the old Obama high command, especially as some — notably former top strategist David Axelrod — continue to hold out support and occasionally take shots at the Democratic presidential front-runner.
“We’ve come a long way. Still, eight years after that historic night in Des Moines, there’s so much left to do,” Plouffe wrote, referring to the annual Jefferson-Jackson dinner, which will occur again Saturday night. “And Americans still need a president who will wake up every day, prepared to overcome any obstacle on their behalf. Hillary Clinton should — and I believe will — be that president.”
Plouffe, now in the private sector, reportedly played a behind-the-scenes roll helping Clinton prepare for her presidential campaign. But his official nod could help encourage supporters of Obama – who remains hugely popular among Democrats – to rally behind Clinton.
It also serves to further underscore the close ties between the Obama and Clinton camps, and comes after Vice President Joe Biden decided against a bid this week.
Meanwhile, his endorsement comes as Clinton has a enjoyed the best two weeks of her campaign, after a strong performance at the first Democratic debate in Las Vegas and during a hearing before the House Select Committee on Benghazi.