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CNN Larry King Live

Democratic Show of Unity

Aired June 27, 2008 - 21:00   ET


LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight, they're together. Is it for real or for show?
She said all the right things.




KING: So did he.


SEN. BARACK OBAMA (D-IL), PRESUMPTIVE DEMOCRATIC NOMINEE: We need both Bill and Hillary Clinton as a party and as a country.


KING: But did their actions speak louder than words?

The Barack Obama/Hillary Clinton unity rally -- we're going to take it apart.

Oh, and where was Bill?


A big day in New Hampshire.

Candy Crowley is going to comment on this. And the this she'll comment on is this thing we'll show you right now.



Now I don't think it's at all unknown among this audience that this was a hard-fought primary campaign. We have traversed America making our case to the American people. We have gone toe-to-toe in this hard-fought primary.

But today and every day going forward, we stand shoulder to shoulder for the ideals we share, the values we cherish, and the country we love. (APPLAUSE)

CLINTON: We may have started on separate paths, but today our paths have merged. Today our hearts are set on the same destination for America. Today we are coming together for the same goal -- to elect Barack Obama as the next president of the United States.

SEN. BARACK OBAMA (D), PRESUMPTIVE NOMINEE: I've admired her as a leader. I've learned from her as a candidate. She rocks. She rocks. That's the point I'm trying to make.


OBAMA: I am proud to call her a friend. And I know how much we need both Bill and Hillary Clinton as a party and as a country in the months and years to come. They have done so much great work. I don't think it's been 40 years. I -- you know, maybe for the last couple, you know?


OBAMA: But it's amazing how much they got in five years' time.


OBAMA: But we need them. We need them badly, not just my campaign, but the American people need their service and their vision and their wisdom in the months and years to come (APPLAUSE)

OBAMA: ...because that's how we're going to bring about unity in the Democratic Party and that's how we're going to bring about unity in America and that's how we're going to deliver the American dream in every corner of every state of this great nation that we love.



KING: Governor Ed Rendell of Pennsylvania will join us in a moment.

Candy Crowley was there today in Unity, our CNN senior political correspondent.

What was your read -- Candy?

CANDY CROWLEY, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: It felt a little like a first date. But it was an OK first date. I mean he gave her a kiss on the cheek when they met. There was -- it just sort of felt awkward just because we've spent all this time watching them really go at each other. This was their first public campaigning since she conceded. So obviously, there were just those moments when you thought oh, wow, look, there they are together.

But I've got to tell you, I think both of them have been really good in their roles. He complimenting her, talking about what she and her husband have done for the party. And she saying to her voters, if you're thinking about voting for John McCain, think again -- terrible mistake. We need to get on board.

Do I think that they are best friends now?

I don't.

Do I think that both of them harbor some grievances?

I do. But they're big boy and big girl here. They understand politics. It's very pragmatic. They know that for either of them to have a leadership role going forward, no matter what that leadership role is, they've got to get the Democrats together. And I think they're doing, on the surface, a great job. They will work out the other stuff.


Thanks, Candy Crowley, back in Washington.

Now to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and Governor Ed Rendell, a strong supporter of Hillary Clinton and now, of course, staunchly backing Barack Obama.

How did you think it went today?

GOV. ED RENDELL (D), PENNSYLVANIA, SUPPORTED CLINTON, NOW SUPPORTS OBAMA: Well, I thought it was great. I agree with almost everything Candy said. Except I do believe there's a residual affection between the two of them. They were good friends when Barack Obama first came into the Senate -- actually, the two Clintons and Barack Obama occasionally would travel together. And when you get into a campaign with someone who previously has been your friend, obviously there are moments during the campaign when you're angry, you dislike that person -- how could they say that about me?

But then when it's over and you get a chance to breathe and let the reality sink in, the things that made you friends come back together. And people don't understand that Hillary Clinton is -- sure, she's a political animal.

but she cares very deeply about the causes she's fought for since she was in law school. And universal health care, for example, is probably the guiding achievement she hopes to be part of in her life.

KING: Yes.

RENDELL: And the only way to achieve that is to elect Barack Obama.

KING: Will Bill Clinton...

RENDELL: So I think...

KING: Will Bill Clinton listen to -- let's say he joins the campaign -- to the Barack people who say go to Virginia tomorrow? RENDELL: Yes, I think he will. First of all, for those people who say where was Bill today, it wouldn't have been appropriate to have Bill there. This was about the two candidates who slugged it out toe to toe. And they're coming together.

And Hillary Clinton will be even more important in the -- this campaign than Bill Clinton. Bill Clinton can help. I think if asked, he will do everything that he's asked to do and he will do it very well.

But the key person here in persuading the Clinton voters, whether they're the women voters or the blue collar voters that are so prevalent in places like Pennsylvania, Larry, the key person in persuading them is Hillary Clinton. She's the person who became, really, the spokesperson for blue collar America, for working class America. She's the person who's been the spokesperson for women over all these years. And they want to hear from her, first and foremost.

KING: Speaking of key states, you're the governor of a very key state.

Would you run with Obama?

RENDELL: I think you and I have discussed this once before. I'm not constitutionally suited to be a number two person. I've been my own boss for 31 years, with the one exception, Larry, the year I was DNC chairman. And I spoke my mind that year and got into a whole lot of trouble for doing it.

So I think I'm better as governor of Pennsylvania, trying to help Senator Obama carry this state.

KING: Always good seeing you, Ed.


RENDELL: Well, thanks, Larry.

Have a great night.

KING: You, too.

RENDELL: And a good day for Democrats today.

KING: Governor Ed Rendell. Always good seeing them. Obama and Clinton -- were they saying things without speaking?

We're going to read their body language next.


KING: Now we're going to check a little body language reaction here.

Joining us in Washington, Janine Driver, body language and deception detection expert, standing by our big board. And here in Los Angeles, by the big board out West, Dr. Charles Sophy, psychiatrist, board-certified in three specialties, including adult psychiatry.

All right, in checking body language, there's two people on a plane sitting together. Clinton and Obama flew into New Hampshire together. That was Hillary's former plane. It will now be Barack's.

Janine, what does this tell you?

JANINE DRIVER, BODY LANGUAGE EXPERT: It's very interesting. They're not mirroring each other right here, Larry. But in a couple of seconds, what you actually see is some mirroring. So we see Obama with his hand up on his mouth. In a couple of second, Hillary actually takes a drink. So they're actually in sync. People like people like themselves. Ninety-three percent of what we communicate with others is nonverbal.

A very interesting strategy, dressing alike. I'm sure it was not a mistake. It speaks volumes.

By the way, Obama right here with his hand on his chin, it tends to be a thinking pose. He's really processing what's going on, listening to Hillary here. But he's doing something else that's very interesting.

KING: All right...

DRIVER: He's creating a wall with his arm between him and Hillary.

KING: Dr. Sophy...

DRIVER: So he still has a little bit of a barrier.

KING: OK. I'll get back to you, Janine.

Dr. Sophy, how do you read it?

DR. CHARLES SOPHY, PSYCHIATRIST: You know, I tend to agree with that. You know, we're dealing with people trying to reestablish a relationship. They were on opposite sides for a little while and now they're kind of navigating themselves and they're talking. They're getting to know each other again. As Candy said earlier, they're on a first date. They're really trying to get to know themselves and reestablish.

Their heads and their hearts are not in sync and they're trying to re-navigate that back to where they can become a united force.

KING: Janine, Hillary was the first to speak.

What do you make of her demeanor, her attitude, the tone etc.?

DRIVER: You know, I think it's interesting. She gave her and her husband a little bit of a pat on the back, saying that out of the three elections that Democrats were elected, her and her husband were on two of those. And so she gives her little pat on the back and then she rolls it over to Obama.

Out of the two, I really felt that Hillary is treating Obama with respect. She angles her belly button toward him. She's treating him with respect. She has her hands in a fig leaf position, which tends to be a passive position, really turning the power over to Obama. We face our belly buttons and the core of our body to people we like, have affinity toward and people we respect. And she's doing it.

KING: Dr. Sophy?

SOPHY: I tend to agree. But let's also look at the fact that this is a woman who has had many years of being poised and practiced at this for her husband in many different ways. So I think it's just natural for her to be respectful and poised.

So, you know, I don't know if that really means that's what she feels, but I definitely think that she's had practice at it.

KING: Let's start with Dr. Sophy this time.

Let's contrast Obama's demeanor when he spoke and Hillary standing up during Obama's speech.


SOPHY: You know, again, Larry, I think it's indicative of this is a woman who has had a lot of practice at being poised, a woman who has been able to smile when she may not feel she needs to smile. Again, I think she's really conflicted at this point. She's trying to figure out, you know, I know I've got to support this guy. I want to support this guy. I have to role model the way that I feel. And it's hard for her. Her head and her heart are really, you know, in a place where it's difficult for her to navigate.

Let's remember, you know, Obama got to step right up into this role. She had to step aside and then step up. It's harder to do that sometimes. But I give her a lot of credit for having the guts and the ability.

KING: Janine?

DRIVER: Yes. You know, I agree. And, you know, one of the things that I want to bring up is Obama. When Obama starts talking about the importance of having Bill Clinton and Hillary on the campaign and how they're going to be a vital connection to making it actually happen, he does this gesture like this. He talks about the American dream. This is an inch. This is not the American dream. The American dream is this big. So I find it interesting. It's as if he's saying Hillary and Bill being part of my campaign, this is how much they're actually going to help me. Maybe that's not what it means but...

KING: By the way, is it...

DRIVER: But that's what I noticed. KING: Is this a pure science?

DRIVER: It is a science, Larry. As a matter of fact, there have been studies done that shows there is actually a brain wave that disconnects. When I say, I'll have a peanut and butter jelly on my socks, your brain does this little brain hiccup.

And when you are saying something like this is the American dream and your body language doesn't match what you're saying, your brain does that same exact brain hiccup. So it is a science.


All right. There are a few unscripted moments during today's event, like this one when the crowd started chanting during Hillary Clinton's speech.

Let's check this out.


UNIDENTIFIED SUPPORTERS: Obama! Obama! Obama! Obama! Obama! Obama! Obama! Obama!

CLINTON: You know...


CLINTON: You know...

UNIDENTIFIED SUPPORTERS: Hillary! Hillary! Hillary! Hillary! Hillary! Hillary! Hillary!

CLINTON: I've been involved in politics and public life in one way or another for...


KING: Obama and Clinton seemed to get kind of cozy after she finished her speech and he got up to give his.

What do you make of those dynamics, Janine?

DRIVER: You know, our intimate space is less than 18 inches. And so they give a little hug to each other. But you know what, their eye contact literally connects for less than two seconds. Bill Clinton, when he shakes your hand, he hangs tight even longer than two seconds.

So I felt that it was not as genuine as I would have liked to have seen. There was a little bit of a disconnect. Again, you get a brain hiccup when you're saying hey, we're a team and you break too early.


Doctor, it's a little difficult to make this out, but during the crossover, Obama and Clinton did exchange a few unscripted words.

Watch and listen.


OBAMA: Are you sure you don't want to sit on this?

CLINTON: No. I can stand.

OBAMA: All right. Well, don't fall backwards, though.


UNIDENTIFIED SUPPORTERS: Thank you, Hillary! Thank you, Hillary! Thank you, Hillary! Thank you, Hillary!

OBAMA: Thank you, Hillary!


KING: And that looked affectionate and real to me, Dr. Sophy.

SOPHY: Yes, I tend to agree. I think he really feels that he doesn't want her slipping back. I want you, Hillary, to embrace everyone's thank you. I want you to feel it. Everyone is appreciative for what you've done. Let's join forces for the greater good and really bring this party to where it needs to go.

I tend to agree.

KING: Janine, after the speech there was another -- after Obama's speech -- another bid to demonstrate he and Hillary were unified.

In your opinion -- and we don't have much time -- do they look quali -- do they look comfortable together?

DRIVER: No. I think it's going to take some time. I think that they don't look comfortable just yet. And, you know, again, body language, 93 percent of what we communicate with others. I'm not really seeing it. I'm seeing a little bit of a disconnect. But I think the time will come. It starts with intention and I think the intention is there, so the body language will eventually follow suit and pair up to the words.

KING: Do you agree, Dr. Sophy?

SOPHY: I agree. Let's give these two people time to weave themselves back together on new ground.

KING: Thank you, Janine. Thank you, Dr. Sophy.

A major panel discussion ahead.

Don't go away.


Would you like to see an Obama/Clinton ticket?

Go to and cast your quick vote now.

A great panel ahead.

James Carville is in New Orleans, CNN political contributor and Democratic strategist.

Kevin Madden is in Washington, Republican strategist, the spokesperson for Mitt Romney.

Michael Feldman is in Washington, Democratic strategist and founding partner for the Global Park Group.

And in Washington is Todd Harris, press secretary for John McCain's 2000 campaign. He was communications director for Fred Thompson.

Mr. Carville, what do you think of unity today?

JAMES CARVILLE, CNN CONTRIBUTOR, SUPPORTED CLINTON, NOW SUPPORTS OBAMA: Well, I thought it was -- I thought these are two very professional, very talented people. It went as I expected it, that it was a very good event. They're both at the top of their game. They had a historic battle for the nomination. It went down to the wire. Senator Obama won. There was never any doubt in my mind that Senator Clinton was going to endorse him. And I thought it went off as expected, very well.

KING: All right, now, gentlemen -- Kevin and Michael and Todd -- I want you to watch this little clip we're going to show and then get into a discussion of what might be a very, very interesting upcoming race.



CLINTON: Senator McCain and the Republicans may have hoped that we wouldn't join forces like this. They may have wished that we wouldn't stand united to fight this battle with everything we've got. But I've got news for them. We are one party. We are one America. And we are not going to rest until we take back our country and put it once again on the path to peace, prosperity, and progress in the 21st century.

UNIDENTIFIED SUPPORTERS: Yes, we can! Yes, we can! Yes, we can! Yes, we can! Yes, we can! Yes, we can!

OBAMA: It's fitting that we meet in a place called Unity, because the truth is, that's the only way we can solve the challenges facing this country. Today, we look back at the votes that took place here in the snows in January -- 107 votes for Senator Clinton, 107 votes for me. But now we look at them as 214 votes for change here in America.


OBAMA: Votes cast by young and old, by men and women, by rich and poor, by Democrats and Independents, and even some Republicans who have said enough is enough, it is time to bring about change here in America.


OBAMA: And that's why in this moment, we have to come together not just as Democrats, but also as Americans, united by our understanding that there's no problem we can't solve, no challenge we cannot meet as one nation, as one people.

Now, the decisions we make in this election and in the next few years on Iraq and climate change, on our economy and making sure that it's working for everybody, and not just some, those choices will shape the next generation and possibly the next century.


KING: Kevin Madden, does this look very tough for John McCain to take on?

KEVIN MADDEN, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST, SUPPORTS MCCAIN: Well, look, I think right now that Republicans see a lot of opportunity. If you look at Hillary Clinton's comments, she almost made a nod toward the fact that Barack Obama has a significant problem with a large bulk of Democrat voters. We see polls that show 25 percent of Hillary Clinton's supporters are saying they're going to support John McCain.

So I don't think that the McCain campaign looks at this as any -- with any peril, but instead they see opportunity.

And I think Hillary Clinton -- today she talked directly to those voters in a way where she's trying to connect to them and get them to vote for Barack Obama.

KING: All right...

MADDEN: And Barack Obama seemed to almost pay a homage to Hillary Clinton today in an effort to get those disaffected Hillary Clinton voters so that they support him.

KING: Mike Feldman, are you very concerned about John McCain?

MICHAEL FELDMAN, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST, SUPPORTS OBAMA: Well, look, it's going to be a close campaign. I don't think there's any doubt about that. But I think it's wishful thinking -- and Senator Clinton said it best and I think Todd and Kevin are probably engaged in a little wishful thinking to think that the Democratic Party isn't going to come together very quickly.

Look, it's been three weeks since this nomination was decided and already in that period of time, you've got the various strands of the nominating electorate in the Democratic Party coming together. The other thing you see in the polls, that Kevin referenced, is Senator Obama is pulling ahead in major battleground states. He's got a significant lead in the national polls.

So I don't think they take too much comfort from that. But it is, of course, the beginning of a process -- and a pretty strong beginning at that.

KING: All right.

Todd Harris are you, for want of a better word, concerned?

TODD HARRIS, PRESS SECRETARY, MCCAIN 2000 CAMPAIGN, SUPPORTS MCCAIN: I'm not concerned, Larry. You know, in another important battleground state, Michigan, there's actually a town called Hell. There really is a Hell, Michigan. And I think a lot of Hillary supporters -- the hard core Hillary supporters would have just preferred to be there today. At least that's how they felt. And it's for all the reasons -- you know, it's, as Kevin said, 25 percent of them saying they're going to support John McCain.

And the reason for that, Larry, is because it wasn't that long ago that Bill Clinton was saying, you know, Obama as president would be a roll of the dice. Hillary Clinton questioning whether he has the experience to be president.

KING: So...

HARRIS: And so, you know, these are going to leave long scars for a very long time. You're already seeing Web sites popping up, Democrats, Clinton supporters supporting John McCain. And we're going to make a welcome home for them.

KING: All right, James, Kevin and Todd are not concerned.

Should they be?

CARVILLE: Right. Yes, that -- let me congratulate them. They're the only two Republicans in America that are not concerned. But I congratulate them. I didn't -- that's the first time I've heard a Republican in this cycle say I'm not concerned. But optimism is a good thing to have, I guess.

KING: All right. Let me get a break. We'll come back. This panel, by the way, will be joining us in the last two segments of the program.

We'll come back with Rob Reiner and Congressman Shays and Arianna Huffington.

Yes, Rob Reiner is here right after the break.


KING: Three distinguished Americans from three walks of life. Here in Los Angeles, Rob Reiner, director, producer, actor, political activist, originally backed Hillary, now supporting Barack Obama.

In Stanford, Connecticut, our friend, Congressman Chris Shays, Republican of Connecticut, backed John McCain's presidential bid since early last year -- one of the first to jump onboard.

And in New York, Arianna Huffington, co-founder, editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post.

All right, what do you make of the body language, Rob?

ROB REINER, DIRECTOR, PRODUCER & ACTOR, ENDORSED CLINTON, NOW SUPPORTS OBAMA: Well, first of all, I want to say that my belly button is lined up with Arianna's and with Chris' and I believe yours, too, Larry. So I think we're all in sync here.

KING: We're all in sync?


KING: Are you happy with the way things went today?

REINER: Yes, I thought It couldn't have gone better. The two are -- they are professionals and they're politicians, and they're unified now and they are moving forward. It was a very tough, hard- fought campaign. But now you've got two people coming together. And they'll -- we're unified as Democrats.

KING: Congressman Shays, the other two -- we'll go back to them later -- our Republican consultants are not concerned about this campaign. Are you?

REP. CHRIS SHAYS (R), CONNECTICUT: Well, I mean, of course we're concerned. When you look at Democrat/Republican generic, people go Democratic. But what we're not concerned about is the fact that we believe in John McCain. We -- he goes where the truth takes him. He has authenticity that people like. He's willing to go to Iowa and tell people he's not for price supports for farmers, or go to Detroit and say, I'm not for big cars.

I mean, this guy speaks the truth. And he basically brings people together. He does what Barack Obama says we need to do.

KING: Arianna, how do you view this match up coming?

ARIANNA HUFFINGTON, "THE HUFFINGTON POST": Well, first of all, you know, what Chris Shays is talking about refers to the John McCain of 2000, not the John McCain of 2008, because the John McCain of 2008 has really sacrificed everything he stood for, from tax cuts -- remember, he said he could not in good conscience vote for the tax cuts that George Bush wanted. Now he wants to make them permanent. All the way to torture. This man was tortured himself. Voted against the bill that would have prevented the CIA from using torture.

So, unfortunately, Chris, the John McCain that you love, and I loved in 2000, is not on the ballot in 2008.

SHAYS: Let me just say, I think that's baloney. I would love to just step in. He went to Iowa in this election, not the last one. He went to Detroit in this election. And this guy is against torture. When they put torture amendment in a larger bill that he opposed, he voted against the larger bill. This is -- if this is a campaign about issues, John wins. If it's about just rhetoric and change, he'll lose.

KING: OK, guys, we're going to take a look at another excerpt from today's event and we'll get your thoughts starting with Rob Reiner. But first, watch.


CLINTON: I was honored to be in this race with Barack, and I am proud that we had a spirited dialogue. That was the nicest way I could think of phrasing it. But it was spirited because we both care so much and so do our supporters, each and every one of you. And I am so proud and privileged today, here in Unity, to help bring together the 36 million Americans who supported us to create an unstoppable force for change we can all believe in.

OBAMA: As somebody who took the same historic journey as Senator Clinton, who watched her campaign and debate, I know first hand how good she is, how tough she is, how passionate she is, how committed she is to the causes that brought all of us here today. When Hillary Clinton gets up in the morning, even in the face of the toughest odds, the most vicious attacks, she is doing so with the same motivation that took her and Bill Clinton to sign up for their first campaign in Texas all those years ago, the same passion that led her to work for the Children's Defense Fund, and caused her to fight for health care as first lady, what has made her one of the finest senators that New York has ever seen, what has made her a historic candidate for president, an unyielding desire to improve the lives of ordinary Americans, no matter how difficult that fight may be.


KING: You were a supporter of Hillary, Rob.


KING: It was pretty tough going there.

REINER: It was a tough campaign, no question about it.

KING: You watch Obama. What do you feel?

REINER: You know, the truth of the matter is, there's less than a sliver of difference between the two on the issues. But now at this point, we're rallying behind Barack Obama. He's our nominee. And the differences between him and John McCain are vast. And I think, you know, what we're seeing now is we're seeing a coalescing. People are concerned about some of the Hillary supporters. It was an historic campaign; first African-American, first woman. You have very passionate people on both sides. And going forward, as we get closer to the election, people are going to see those differences, and they're going to coalesce behind Obama, because when we look at those two candidates, it's a very, very clear choice.

KING: We'll take a break and ask Chris Shays and Arianna Huffington about Bill Clinton's role after this.


KING: Arianna, does Bill Clinton come in soon, and does he come on strong?

HUFFINGTON: He will come in, and he will come strong. But there's no question that this is a much harder relationship, because this primary has been very hard on the Clinton legacy. And he's angry, from everybody that I've talked to who knows him. He's angry at the way that the media treated him. He's angry at the way he's been presented as playing the race card, especially after the South Carolina comment. And so this is going to be a harder relationship to heal. I think Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have done a remarkable job in healing, and the Bill Clinton/Barack Obama phone call has not even happened.

KING: Not yet. Congressman Shays, do you, for want of a better word, fear Bill Clinton coming into this?

SHAYS: No, I don't fear Bill Clinton. This isn't about Bill Clinton. This is about Hillary Clinton, an extraordinary candidate, winning most the races at the end, an amazing individual in Barack Obama. I think you're going to have some really classy dialogue and debate between Barack Obama and John McCain. And there are going to be very real differences. John McCain will be happy to have those differences made clear.

KING: Bill Clinton will not be a major figure in the campaign?


KING: All right. There was a lighter moment today. Watch, and we'll ask Arianna to comment. Watch.


OBAMA: But I also know that while this campaign has shown us how far we have to go, it's also proven the progress we have made. I know that because of our campaign, because of the campaign that Hillary Clinton waged, my daughters, and all of your daughters, will forever know that there is no barrier to who they are, and what they can be in the United States of America. They can take for granted that women can do anything that the boys can do, and do it better, and do it in heels.


KING: That last one there, Arianna, a little sexist?

HUFFINGTON: I thought he was great. He's absolutely right about our daughters. My oldest daughter voted for Barack Obama, for the first time. But she every day would say something positive about Hillary Clinton as a role model, what it meant to her. So I think it's absolutely right. This was an amazing moment for young women everywhere.

KING: Rob, how active are you going to be?

REINER: I'm going to do whatever the Obama campaign asks me to do. This past week on Sunday, I met with Barack Obama's education policy adviser, Danielle Gray, who's a really brilliant woman, talking about education policy, which I'm very concerned about. And he's right on the same page as me with early childhood education. That's part of his overall education plan. And I'm hoping to be working closely with the campaign on those issues.

KING: You're very close with Schwarzenegger, with the governor?

REINER: Yes, sure, we're friends.

KING: He has a problem with offshore drilling, right? Is he going to campaign heavily for McCain?

REINER: Well, I don't know. You know, that's a good question. It's interesting. You've got a very split household there. You've got Maria Shriver who has endorsed Obama. The other day, I was coming out of the Beverly Hills Hotel, and I saw, there was Arnold getting into his car with his family, and there was an Obama bumper sticker on the car. I thought that was kind of interesting.

KING: Chris, it's going to be a big turnout, you think, huge?

SHAYS: I think it's going to be a huge turnout. I think it's going to be one of the best campaigns you've seen in years. I think whoever is elected will have a mandate.

KING: You do?


HUFFINGTON: You know, Larry, I think we need to actually account what Chris is saying about the best campaign, because the GOP and the McCain campaign has already started fear mongering. We had Charlie Black this week basically trying to scare the American people about Obama not being able to keep them safe. All those tactics have already been put into effect. So it's very nice for Chris and John McCain to say it's going to be a nice campaign, but I don't know if you can control all the people on your side.

SHAYS: You know what, I don't think you should try to intimidate anyone. You're making a negative campaign just starting. I think it's going to be about issues. I think these are two classy people. And I think you're going to see real differences. KING: Let's hope. And we'll have you all back frequently. Rob Reiner, Chris Shays, Arianna Huffington. How far can John McCain distance himself from President Bush without alienating the GOP base? Our panel returns ahead on LARRY KING LIVE.


KING: Back to our panel. Kevin Madden, will Senator McCain have to distance himself from President Bush?

MADDEN: Look, Larry, I fundamentally disagree with the argument that you have to run away from the president or run away from your party. I think the most important thing John McCain has to do, and you've seen this with the series of policy announcements and events, is he's run on a separate identity.

John McCain has a very strong, independent maverick brand. People identify him with very strong attributes of doing the right thing above party, and being strong on issues like national security. So he has to reinforce that in the minds of Republicans, Democrats, and independents, in order to reach the calculus he's going to need in the general election.

KING: Michael Feldman, what do you think?

FELDMAN: I think other than sneaking the president into high- dollar fund-raisers when the cameras are not turned on, you won't see a lot of President Bush on the campaign trail this fall. You're also not going to be seeing him a lot in Republican down ballot races in their television advertising. In fact, you saw Senator Gordon Smith the other put Senator Obama in his TV ads.

Look, Senator McCain is in a very difficult position. He has to embrace the president enough to get conservatives and hard-core Republicans and the base of the Republican party on his side. But he's got to move to the center and away from the president to reach out to independents and moderates. That is a tough dance for him.

KING: Is that logical, Todd?

HARRIS: Yes, actually I think that is logical. It's not important for Senator McCain to run away from the Republican party. It's important for him to be above party. Throughout his career in Washington, Senator McCain has always put principles before party. And he's always put his country first. It's one thing, frankly -- and this is a new theme that I think the McCain campaign has been rolling out over the last few days. It's one huge contrast with Senator Obama, because time and time again, when it comes time for the big votes on things that would actually change Washington, despite all of Obama's rhetoric, he's actually just an agent of the status quo. He doesn't take the tough votes.

KING: James Carville, Hillary dealt with it a little today about Bush and McCain in one of the parts of her speech. Watch and we'll ask James to comment. Watch.


CLINTON: Now, Barack and I both have a great deal of respect for Senator McCain and his heroic service to our nation. But in the end, after eight devastating years under President Bush, Senator McCain is simply offering four years more. He sees right-wing judges appointed to the Supreme Court and says, why not a few more. He sees billions of dollars in corporate tax cuts exploding our deficit and says, why not billions more. He sees five long years in Iraq, and he's willing to stay for years, even decades more.

In the end, Senator McCain and President Bush are like two sides of the same coin, and it doesn't amount to a whole lot of change.


KING: James Carville, was that fair?

CARVILLE: Yes, of course it's fair. And I think Senator Clinton likes Senator McCain. I like Senator McCain. I think everybody -- he's a likable man. But his party is horrendously unpopular right now. The president is horrendously unpopular. He doesn't have very much to go, so he's campaigning in Canada, in Mexico, and going to Europe and everywhere else. He needs to come back to the United States to run his campaign. It's a tough environment here, but it's not going to get any better by going to Mexico.

KING: You're a strategist, James. How do you leave a president out of a campaign?

CARVILLE: You know what, it's very difficult. If I were Senator McCain, I would basically, after the convention, say, I will form a unity government. And I will -- and it's no secret, everybody on this panel knows the Democrats are going to keep the Congress and expand the majority in the House and the Senate. And if I was Senator McCain, I would offer something different. I would say I would appoint four or five Democrats to the cabinet. I can work with them. I can check the worst impulses of the Democratic Congress.

I would acknowledge what the reality is, and that is that Republicans are in for a drumming and campaign on that. Right now, you're right, he's having a very difficult time about whether you embrace the president or not, whether you're a Republican or you're really for principle. And his campaign is going through a very, very difficult phase right now. And he's got to move this dialogue to a different place. He's not doing it very successfully right now.

KING: He did say on this program that he would appoint Democrats to his cabinet. We'll wrap it up right after this.


CLINTON: I'm proud that we had a spirited dialogue. That was the nicest way I could think of phrasing it.

You are not going to wave a magic wand and have the special interests disappear. OBAMA: She has taken more money from lobbyists than any candidate.

CLINTON: My opponent has been so negative these last few days.

OBAMA: While I was working on those streets, you were a corporate lawyer sitting on the board of Wal-Mart.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's 3:00 a.m. and your children are safe asleep.

OBAMA: Shame on her. She knows better.


KING: Let bygones be bygones. Kevin Madden, who would you like to see your candidate pick for vice president?

MADDEN: Larry, you know I have a very strong affinity for Governor Romney, especially with the economy front and center. I think that would be a very good pick. But I tend to think that John McCain is going to lean towards somebody who has a personal relationship with. I think at the top of the list would be somebody like Tim Pawlenty, who was there through the dark days of the summer of last year, who's in a swing state, and is somebody that I think social conservatives and economic conservatives would like.

KING: Michael Feldman, who do you want Obama to pick?

FELDMAN: Well, of course, I think Senator Obama should take his time and give him as much space as he wants. It's a personal and important decision. I like your earlier guest, Governor Ed Rendell. Not only is he a great campaigner, not only does he help secure Pennsylvania, which I think is already going to go for Senator Obama. But he loves to govern. And he's one of the smartest, most innovative thinkers in the Democratic party.

KING: He said he didn't want it. But they all say they don't want it. Todd Harris, who would you like?

HARRIS: You know, I'm a big fan of Governor Pawlenty. I think Minnesota is going to be an important state. It's one of the states the McCain campaign is already on the air advertising in. And he's down by double digits there by most public polls. I think that Governor Pawlenty could help him a lot in his home state and the entire upper Midwest.

KING: James, you're a master strategist. Strategically, who should Obama pick?

CARVILLE: I tell you, I thought the visual today with Senator Clinton was pretty good. It was -- Actually, when you saw them together, it was one of these things that it went off pretty well. Certainly, that's something that he's going to have to consider. But there's a wealth of talent in the party right now. There are a bunch of names. I won't go through them for fear I'll forget an obvious one.

You have Governor Rendell, Mike, that's a very good point. He's governed that state very, very well. He turned the city of Philadelphia around. I've spent a lot of time there. He's a great guy. Certainly, he would be on anybody's list. But I could think of seven or eight other people that would be right at the top of the list, too.

But I will say that I think when Democrats sort of visualize Senator Obama and Senator Clinton together today, your mind just drifted toward the possibility.

KING: Your old friend Bill Clinton, is he going to campaign heavily, James?

CARVILLE: He's going to certainly campaign. You know, one thing about politics is that this was a long, bruising process. And we just need to acknowledge that there's some bruised feelings here. People are coming together or healing, you know, much quicker and much better than expected. I think that, you know, Senator Clinton was the one that went out and got the vote. And I think she was going to be front and center helping Senator Obama. I'm sure that President Clinton will do some things, as Senator Obama wants him to do. And I'm sure they'll work this out. It will happen in due course.

KING: Kevin, it is interesting that your candidate and Senator Clinton are very good friends in the Senate.

MADDEN: Well, I think that, you know, Senator McCain is going to do everything he can to remind Hillary Clinton voters of exactly that point, especially in these swing states where it's going to matter the most, and where Barack Obama showed during the primaries that he had a very tough time with a lot of these blue collar Democrats, places like Ohio and Missouri and in Pennsylvania. So he's going to remind them that they had a very long working relationship together in the Senate, and also that he has the accomplishments of bipartisanship, whereas Barack Obama's only talked about it.

KING: By the way, a quick program reminder. We're going to do a major program on oil prices on Monday night, including the CEO of Chevron will be with us. Luke Russert was a guest with us the other night, the son of the late Tim Russert. And we asked him to give us his remarkable imitation of James Carville. Watch.


KING: Want to do a quick James Carville, Luke?

LUKE RUSSERT, SON OF LATE TIM RUSSERT: Bah, Larry King, get down here, talk about, well, Hillary Clinton. He ordered (INAUDIBLE) and he bring out steak. It wasn't for the dog. It was breathing on my plate. I said that's it, I don't want it. I don't want it. I don't want it. I don't need it. I don't want it. That's it.

KING: OK, OK, calm down.


KING: James, he has you to a T.

CARVILLE: He does. He's a very -- you know, he's made everybody proud. I think he conducted himself magnificently in the wake of the tragedy. He and I do a radio show together. And by the way, Larry, you're coming on. We're going to talk some baseball here. The all- star game coming up and everything else.

KING: Thank you, James.

CARVILLE: Thank you.

KING: Thanks to all of you. Go to our website Our new podcast is available, Jerry Seinfeld and Bill Maher remembering George Carlin and our all star tribute. That show, by the way, replays Saturday and Sunday. Monday, how high will gas prices go? We'll go straight to the top for answers. The head of Chevron, as we said, will be here. It's an exclusive. And Ed Begley and Robert Kennedy Jr. will discuss energy alternatives. That's Monday night on LARRY KING LIVE.

Right now, Anderson Cooper and "AC 360." Anderson?