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Patrick reiterates concern about Clinton’s front-runner status

Governor Deval Patrick, who said this spring that Hillary Clinton’s perceived front-runner status might hamper a potential White House bid, reiterated those concerns today and said he and the former secretary of state were not friends.

“It’s not like we’re pals. I don’t know her very well. I respect her enormously,” he said, speaking in his monthly appearance on WGBH-FM.

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Patrick said he had a chance to visit with her during a conference he attended in San Diego in June, after his previous comments about her might-be candidacy gained national attention.

Yet he did not back away from those concerns today, saying there is an air of inevitability around her potential 2016 candidacy for president.

“The worry about that is that can be interpreted by people as entitlement — and that’s off-putting to folks! I mean I think voters want you to sweat for it, you know? They want you to be hungry for it, they want you to persuade them why you’re the right person,” he told hosts Jim Braude and Margery Eagan.

“I worry about the campaign — I don’t think it’s so much her — but the campaign and the kind of whole sort of movement is: Now’s the time,” Patrick said.

“Sort of like last time she ran against your friend,” Barack Obama, Braude interjected.

“And I think it was a factor then,” Patrick said.

The governor, for his part, has said repeatedly he’s not interested in running to succeed Obama.

Joshua Miller can be reached at joshua.miller@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @jm_bos.
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