Charlie Baker Joins Clinton Campaign as Chief Administrative Officer

An experienced, respected strategist joins the Democratic front-runner's team.

Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks on stage with Gates Foundation Co-Chair Melinda Gates and Clinton Foundation Vice Chair Chelsea Clinton for the official release of the No Ceilings Full Participation Report which coincides with the start of the 59th session of the United Nations' Commission on the Status of Women on March 9, 2015 in New York City.

Photographer: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Democratic strategist Charlie Baker has joined Hillary Clinton’s campaign as chief administrative officer, a campaign official told Bloomberg Politics.

A founding partner in Dewey Square Group, a political strategy firm close to the Clinton campaign, he has a long history in presidential politics dating to Michael Dukakis’s 1988 campaign and Bill Clinton’s 1992 campaign. He was also a senior adviser to the 2004 John Kerry campaign.

His hiring is especially significant.  Baker is one of the most respected, veteran strategists in the Democratic Party and will reassure a lot of old hands that Clinton has an additional experienced operative on board with longstanding and high-level presidential campaign experience, while many of Clinton’s other senior aides are relatively new to presidential politics.

Baker combines a disciplined sense of strategy with a Boston brawler’s feel for hard-nosed tactics. A person familiar with Baker’s portfolio says that among other matters, he will deal with legal issues, the Democratic National Committee and national convention, and party constituency.

‎While many in Clinton's current orbit have something to prove professionally to the world and to the former first couple, Baker, like campaign chairman John Podesta, is at a different phase of his career. He is unlikely to be intimidated by the Clintons or rattled by the chaos and intense scrutiny that follows them wherever they go.

Baker was on the board of Priorities USA Action, a super-PAC that supported Barack Obama in 2012 and is expected to support Clinton in 2016, but has resigned from that position, the campaign official said.

Dewey Square's staff includes several people with deep ties in Hillaryland, including Clinton confidante Minyon Moore. The firm played a key role in helping Clinton prepare for the campaign, beginning with a summer 2013 briefing for the former secretary of state about what it would take to win. That briefing was led by Baker and colleagues Michael Whouley and Jill Alper.

Baker's hire reinforces expectations that Whouley, a veteran field organizer, will take on a bigger role whether from within the campaign or from the outside.

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal.