An angry, defiant Bill Clinton is threatening to walk away mad and not campaign for presumptive Presidential nominee Barack Obama, telling close friends and supporters that his wife has been "mistreated, maligned and smeared" by the party’s power structure.
Calls to Clinton’s office for comment were not returned over the weekend but sources close to the Clintons tell Capitol Hill Blue the former President is "pissed as hell" over his wife’s defeat for the nomination and blames the Democratic Party power structure for "turning their backs on her" when he felt they could have made the difference in the nominating process.
"President Clinton is very, very unhappy…that’s a fact," says one party insider. One source said the former President said it would "be a cold day in hell" before he would ever campaign for Obama.
Others say Clinton just needs time to "blow off steam" and "calm down" and that he will eventually agree to go on the campaign trail for the party’s nominee.
But no one contacted over the weekend would go on the record, one way or another, about the former President and his feelings towards the freshman Senator from Illinois who derailed his wife’s quest to become the first woman President.
"Both Bill and Hillary felt the Presidency was owed to them and something the Democrats should have bestowed automatically," says one Democratic strategist, who refused to allow use of his name. "The nomination was, in their opinion, some kind of divine right. Neither believed it would be denied to them."
Others Bill Clinton is "seething" over claims that his angry outbursts and campaign missteps might have cost his wife the nomination.
"One sure thing about Bill Clinton is that he never, ever, takes blame for anything," says a former Clinton aide. "It is not in his DNA to ever take responsibility for his action. It is always someone else’s fault."
Sources within the Obama campaign say the nominee is hesitant to use Bill Clinton on the campaign trail anyway because of the animosity the former President showed in the primaries and because no one is sure he can be controlled.
"It is important to stay on message in this campaign," one Obama strategist said. "We’re not sure President Clinton is capable of doing that."