IMAGE: Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton
AP
Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., will be speaking with former presidential rival Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., in the next few days about her role in his campaign efforts.
updated 6/20/2008 11:40:30 AM ET 2008-06-20T15:40:30

Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama's campaign announced Friday that he will campaign with former rival Hillary Rodham Clinton next week, a step toward unifying a fractured Democratic Party after a bruising primary fight.

Obama's campaign said in a brief e-mail that the two senators and former opponents will campaign together for the first time on Friday, June 27, and more details would be forthcoming.

A day earlier, Obama and Clinton also plan to meet in Washington with some of her top contributors in an effort to calm donors who remain frustrated with Obama's presidential campaign. The former first lady will introduce Obama to her financial backers.

Clinton, a New York senator and former first lady, suspended her campaign for the Democratic nomination earlier this month after Obama, an Illinois senator, secured enough delegates to clinch the nomination.

Obama's campaign disclosed the joint appearance — but offered few details — one day after announcing that he would reverse an earlier position and reject some $85 million in public financing for the general election. That announcement opened him up to a flood of criticism and dominated the news cycle.

Thus, Obama's campaign sought to redirect attention by putting word out a full seven days in advance that Obama and Clinton would campaign together.

Clinton ended her campaign on June 7, four days after Obama got enough delegates to clinch the nomination. "I endorse him and throw my full support behind him," she said at the time.

The two met privately on June 5 after ditching reporters to make sure there would be no photos or coverage of the first post-race meeting. Obama was asked Wednesday whether they were talking.

"I have not had conversations with Senator Clinton because she has been getting a well-deserved vacation," he said at the time. "We will be speaking I think in the next few days or certainly the next week and will be having an ongoing conversation."

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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