Washington, Aug.23 : Aides of presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama appear to be wary about what former president Bill Clinton might say during his speech at the party convention next week.
Clinton is yet to formerly endorse Obama as the party's choice for president, and the latter's aides say that his reluctance to be shackled to a set text is giving the Obama camp the jitters.
Allies of Clinton say that he wants to use the bulk of his speech in Denver next Wednesday to attack the record of George W. Bush, accusing the current president of squandering the economic gains of the Clinton years. Obama aides see this development as an indirect yearning for a "Clinton restoration", rather than a boost for Obama.
A Democratic Party official said: "There's not much communication between the two. The campaign wants to see the text but it's been slow in coming. They don't want headlines about a Clinton snub to Obama."
In the words of one of his former aides, Clinton would like to "just go out and say what's on his mind".
In the recent past, Clinton has made off the cuff interventions that suggested a dismissal of Obama as a "fairytale". He also compared Obama to the twice-failed black presidential candidate Jesse Jackson, and those words were widely interpreted as racist.
Recently asked whether Obama was qualified to be president, Clinton responded: "You could argue that nobody is qualified to be president."
A senior Democrat who used to work for Clinton said: "Bill Clinton does not think Barack Obama will be a great president and he doesn't want to say so. But he's a pro. He'll give an endorsement. He also likes doing things last minute and he likes to just go out there and say what's on his mind."