Governor Bill Richardson said today that he has spoken with former U.N. Ambassador Dick Holbrooke, a Clinton loyalist, about supporting Barack Obama and said that he will suggest to the Obama campaign that they include Holbrooke on Obama’s foreign policy team.
At a Council on Foreign Relations event today, I asked Richardson why he thought Holbrooke’s name was missing from the working group on foreign policy that Obama announced and met with today, and whether Holbrooke potentially had a useful role to play as part of such a working group.
"I think he does," said Richardson. "Getting the reintegration of the Clinton people, that will take a little time. But yeah I think he has a lot to contribute. He will. He will."
The integration between Clinton and Obama policy wonks is already a careful, deliberate process and Holbrooke’s strained relationship with Obama’s senior foreign policy adviser Tony Lake is well known in Democratic foreign policy circles.
I asked Richardson about the slow pace of outreach.
"I think Dick Holbrooke would be a valuable addition," he said. "I talked to him about it already. He has pledged to support Barack Obama, but these things take a little time. It takes a little time to heal but I think he’ll be a member of the team, I don’t see a problem with that. I’m going to suggest it."
Richardson said that his conversation with Holbrooke happened three weeks ago, and when asked about the possibility that Obama campaign simply wasn’t reaching out to Holbrooke, Richardson insisted that he would eventually be welcomed into the fold.
"That’s going to happen," he said. "The primary just ended two weeks ago. Give it a little time."