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Bill Clinton Talks Obama, McCain and Greatness

By Perry Bacon Jr.
Former president Clinton continued his complicated embrace of Sen. Barack Obama today when asked if he would call the Democratic nominee a "great man" -- a phrase he recently used to describe Sen. John McCain.

"Well, I don't -- look, I had my first conversation with him in my entire life in Harlem," Clinton told "Meet the Press" host Tom Brokaw this morning, referring to a meeting earlier this month with Obama.

Clinton elaborated on why he would use the word "great" for McCain: "What I mean by saying that about McCain is, you know, most people would've been broken by what he went through. Oh, we would've been happy just to give him an atta boy and a medal and let him wander through life.

"I think his greatness is that he keeps trying to come back to service without ever asking people to cut him any slack or feel sorry for him or any of that stuff because he was a POW.

"But I, I genuinely, you know, I am developing a really good relationship with Senator Obama and I certainly admire him."

The ex-president repeated his pledge to to do everything he can to get Obama elected and will hit the campaign trail soon on behalf of the Democratic nominee. But in the interview with Brokaw, he suggested he was still less familiar with Obama than McCain.

"I mean, he was, you know, until he was in the State Senate until 2005. And then he began a campaign for president, which is, in all probability, will be successful, and those are very great accomplishments," Clinton said. "But those are personal accomplishments. When he becomes president, he'll be doing things for the American people and for the world and he is -- and the greatness will then become apparent because of the good he'll do. And I, I think that's what I very much believe is going to happen."

By Web Politics Editor  |  September 28, 2008; 4:27 PM ET
Categories:  Barack Obama  
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Next: Obama Marvels at the 'Crazy' 2008 Campaign

Comments

I think this is an excellent piece about Obama and Bill Clinton.

Thanks for your insight.

I cannot agree with a post I read earlier about Mr. Clinton still feeling as bad and festered toward Obama as he once might have.

I believe Mr. Clinton is finally getting to know Barack Obama. And I believe he finally sees what a very rare person this man is.

He is seeing in Obama what many of his core people who has seen and has stayed steady against all the hate and ugliness being spewing about him on blogs, in e-mails, and from friends throughout the primaries and the general election process almost on a daily basis.

There is a strength of character one rarely sees in anyone. He stays true to his inner convictions with only very minor deviations. His is a personality that can listen to anyone and take the best of that person away with him. He sees what is within us, he feels what we feel, and it seems as if he knows and sees all the good and the not so good and the bad within each of us and still wants to help us.

And even knowing all of this he still wants to help give of himself to all of us. Not only the people in America, but to the world.

I pray to God to give him the strength to do all that he has set himself to do for all man kind. We should all pray for him, for he will soon have a great weight to bear.

Yes, I too think that in time his greatness will be shown to everyone. He has a lot to give.


Posted by: steffy_28838_C | October 1, 2008 2:20 AM | Report abuse

Thank you, Mr. Bill Clinton, for rightly showing support for Barack Obama, finally!

Posted by: AnjuChandel | September 30, 2008 4:39 AM | Report abuse

To CALIDUDE you must be one of those stupid people that has no COMMON SENSE and NO VISION for the FUTURE. I know I have COMMON SENSE because I'm a true INDEPENDENT that does not belong to any party because they are all to FAR LEFT or way FAR RIGHT to have any COMMON SENSE. I can answer your question about McCain and Obama. Both of those people do not belong to any of those Financial Committee's. So McCain has no clue about the State of Affairs of the Economy for America unless one of his Lobbyist worker's tells him how it works. At least Obama will listen to way is going on before he makes a stupid mistake like McCain has done and will continue too.

Posted by: gjhardtimes | September 29, 2008 8:59 PM | Report abuse

i would just like to make a comment that i dont understand why people continue to mock McCain and his decision to suspend his campaign to help with the bailout process. What you dont understand is that both candidates are senators, not president...yet. and what john mccain did, whether you like it or not, was do the job that our tax money is paying him to do...be a senator. and as far as trying to postpone the debate, that was a very noble thing to do he was trying to get the picture across, whether it was canclled or not, that the american economy is more important than a debate. Obama only cares about putting on a show for the people who will actually listen to the crap that he has to say. McCain has experience, obama has little to none. In these awful times, who do you really want/need to have control of our country.

McCain / Palin 2008

Posted by: calidude | September 29, 2008 7:31 PM | Report abuse

Bill Clinton is still mad because his wife did not get the President or V.P. position with the Democratic Party, also along with the Black Americans thinking Bill was stupid for opening his mouth about the comparatist of Obama to Jackson race in S.Caroline.
In my opinion I think the American People have LOST ALL COMMON SENSE AND OUR GOVERNMENT TOO. We used to be a Country that had a VISION TO THE FUTURE AND COMMON SENSE. For the last 8 years GREED, STUPIDTIY, and RELGIOUS RIGHT WING has HIGHJACK the American VISION AND COMMON SENSE. We need to get back those 2 things that America has being missed for the last 8 years. The QUESTION is which CANDIDATE has the VISION and the MOST COMMON SENSE. I think Obama has that over McCain. Because McCain shows that he still lives in the past and will not talk about the current present Problems with COMMON SENSE and his VISION for the FUTURE is still in the PAST.

Posted by: gjhardtimes | September 29, 2008 5:49 PM | Report abuse

Bill Clinton is still mad because his wife did not get the President or V.P. position with the Democratic Party, also along with the Black Americans thinking Bill was stupid for opening his mouth about the comparatist of Obama to Jackson race in S.Caroline.
In my opinion I think the American People have LOST ALL COMMON SENSE AND OUR GOVERNMENT TOO. We used to be a Country that had a VISION TO THE FUTURE AND COMMON SENSE. For the last 8 years GREED, STUPIDTIY, and RELGIOUS RIGHT WING has HIGHJACK the American VISION AND COMMON SENSE. We need to get back those 2 things that America has being missed for the last 8 years. The QUESTION is which CANDIDATE has the VISION and the MOST COMMON SENSE. I think Obama has that over McCain. Because McCain shows that he still lives in the past and will not talk about the current present Problems with COMMON SENSE and his VISION for the FUTURE is still in the PAST.

Posted by: gjhardtimes | September 29, 2008 5:49 PM | Report abuse

Bill Clinton is still mad because his wife did not get the President or V.P. position with the Democratic Party, also along with the Black Americans thinking Bill was stupid for opening his mouth about the comparatist of Obama to Jackson race in S.Caroline.
In my opinion I think the American People have LOST ALL COMMON SENSE AND OUR GOVERNMENT TOO. We used to be a Country that had a VISION TO THE FUTURE AND COMMON SENSE. For the last 8 years GREED, STUPIDTIY, and RELGIOUS RIGHT WING has HIGHJACK the American VISION AND COMMON SENSE. We need to get back those 2 things that America has being missed for the last 8 years. The QUESTION is which CANDIDATE has the VISION and the MOST COMMON SENSE. I think Obama has that over McCain. Because McCain shows that he still lives in the past and will not talk about the current present Problems with COMMON SENSE and his VISION for the FUTURE is still in the PAST.

Posted by: gjhardtimes | September 29, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

Bill Clinton is still mad because his wife did not get the President or V.P. position with the Democratic Party, also along with the Black Americans thinking Bill was stupid for opening his mouth about the comparatist of Obama to Jackson race in S.Caroline.
In my opinion I think the American People have LOST ALL COMMON SENSE AND OUR GOVERNMENT TOO. We used to be a Country that had a VISION TO THE FUTURE AND COMMON SENSE. For the last 8 years GREED, STUPIDTIY, and RELGIOUS RIGHT WING has HIGHJACK the American VISION AND COMMON SENSE. We need to get back those 2 things that America has being missed for the last 8 years. The QUESTION is which CANDIDATE has the VISION and the MOST COMMON SENSE. I think Obama has that over McCain. Because McCain shows that he still lives in the past and will not talk about the current present Problems with COMMON SENSE and his VISION for the FUTURE is still in the PAST.

Posted by: gjhardtimes | September 29, 2008 5:47 PM | Report abuse

I just have one comment for antares47. Ronald Reagan is just one example of a President who did not continue to, how did you phrase it, as if it's something nefarious in the first place, "redefine his historic legacy" all the way until his death. Reagan's final public speech was on February 3, 1994, during a tribute in Washington, D.C., and his last major public appearance was at the funeral of President Richard Nixon on April 27, 1994. He released a letter to the American people about his Alzheimer's Disease on November 5, 1994. He passed away almost 10 years later on June 4, 2004.

Posted by: MarkInAustin | September 29, 2008 4:14 PM | Report abuse

I didn't like Clinton and am unsure of who Obama really is, but I will say Clinton did manage to get the budget somewhat under control. McCain said first that he would go through our government and cut where he can (Obama said he would do that too, but was rather vague). McCain wants to put people to work drilling for oil and building Nuclear Plants now, while working on new energy; Obama wants to stop getting oil from the middle east, no new drilling and no new nuclear plants.
I would rather go to work and earn my way in this world thank you. Obama can try to give away more money if he wants (5% from the top?), but I won't vote for him for that reason.

Posted by: TMacPen | September 29, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

I am no great supporter of Bill Clinton, but he is allowed to have his own honest opinion. If you don't like him thats ok too. But to say you have to blindly support your party means you are asking for a long line of cattle going to the butcher.
Obama did fight through the Chicago Political Machine (proves he is a good fighter at least), but I STILL haven't heard one person tell me what he actually accomplished as a 'community organizer' when he was there. All I have heard about his time in there was his connection with Rizzo. So, is it a better place now? Is it safe to even go without getting knifed? I don't know and really don't even care. That is all behind him now.
McCain graduated almost last in his class (which was true of some of the greatest leaders of the Civil War: Grant, Jackson, etc..), but he did go on to serve with honor in a bad situation (Vietnam war, POW, etc...).
Obama keeps saying how he fought against the war in 03, c'mon now folks, he wasn't even in the Federal government at the time! Lets keep some reality here. He is one of your dedicated Democrats: votes almost exclusively 'Straight Ticket'. Ok, he does have the support of most of the European Union, but do I want to elect him for his popularity in Europe?
What has me most concerned is the whole concept of what the real messages are all about: McCain promises to get to work building Nuclear Plants, Clean Coal Tech Plants, Drilling for more Oil (we will still need more oil for some things, you can bet on it if for no other reason then to keep running till we find something to replace it with), and try to cut down on taxes and government.
Obama promises to work on a Health Care Program (like Hillary failed to fix when she was the First Lady, the system is a mess and she did try but failed), offer 'Change' (what ever that really means I still haven't found out yet, but a few small pieces don't look good: Missouri Governor issued a statement about Obama's supporters yesterday that didn't sound too good, and they also are trying to BAN ads from the NRA!), though I think its amazing that he expects to pay for all the promises using the money from just 5% of the population.
Lets fact it folks, we have a big bill out there that will be coming due called the National Debt. It won't be cheap or easy to even get it to a balanced budget. I don't really like to admit it but Bill Clinton actually did get our budget almost in control (not that he personally did much of it, it was on his watch). Obama isn't even looking at this problem. It appears that he is willing to shut down the country first! (No new drilling, stopping the flow of Middle East Oil, No new Nuclear Plants, but plenty of money for 'research for alternate energy', and all the time stripping the capital from those rich folks to pay for it all?) McCain is looking at it, but wants to get out of Middle East Oil without shutting down the country. I am offering no easy fix myself, but if we don't even look at the problems, then we will end up in default and our money will be totally worthless, then it won't matter who is president. Hit the books folks, we have a lot of fixing to do, but for my bet; I would rather keep my jobs and stop sending money overseas while I do it.

Posted by: TMacPen | September 29, 2008 2:28 PM | Report abuse

I totally agree with Bill Clinton. Is he expected to call Obama 'great' just because he is the Democratic presidential nominee and because is the first African American to maybe become President. I think not. If he becomes President, his accomplishments during his term will determine whether he will be considered a "great" person.

Posted by: shirley3 | September 29, 2008 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Obama is already historically great even if he has not yet been elected President. His words touch the "great dreaming" of many Americans. He is the future. Our future. President Clinton is the past. And like all Ex-Presidents until their death, he is continuing even now by his words and action to redefine his historic legacy. I wonder, however, based on his past policies and ongoing remarks, whether history will see President Clinton more as an Eisenhower Republican in a 28-year Reagan era, rather than a committed Democrat who used his 8-years as President to remake our times and to influence the future of our party and our country. Except for Hillary, who runs as a Clinton democrat? Obama is the future and it is he who has the opportunity to lead us all to do great things. Considering Bill Clinton's failure to criticize Bush 43, I am not surprised at his embrace of McCain.

Posted by: antares47 | September 29, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

I think Clinton is doing this a because Obama does not really want it to appear he is being endorsed by Bill. A lot of independents don't like Bill.

http://www.boppoll.com

Posted by: acarponzo | September 29, 2008 12:20 PM | Report abuse

OK, Clinton, you ruined your wife's campaign and brought yourself down in the process. Please go back to your corner of the room and keep your mouth shut until after Nov. 4. You're not helping!

Posted by: Vampirella | September 29, 2008 11:18 AM | Report abuse

wenotmeissue:

I am NOT just thinking of myself in protecting the unborn children, the least of these. I would argue prohibition of abortion would actually cut down the numbers of rapes and incest. First, maybe we would finally get serious about punishing rapists and other abusers. Second, eliminating the acceptabilty of the culture of death could actually INCREASE respect for women among men. Think about it, if more women actually LOOKED FORWARD to one of the greatest gifts in life. Regardless, more women would be "out of service" and therefore less opportunities to be victims themselves. So, I think the numbers of rapes and incest would decrease. If not, I would point out that we don't kill innocent victims of rape and incest, do we? Those mothers can always give up such a child for adoption. Again, that would require people to "stop thinking of just themselves".

Posted by: JakeD | September 29, 2008 11:15 AM | Report abuse

You vote for McCain: this will follow. More conservative Supreme Court Judges. Good bey to women having a say with their body, whether to keep a baby no matter the circumstances. More criminality against doctors. More incest and rapes on women. The rich will continue to benefit from his upper class tax cuts that will never, never have triggled down to the middle and poorer classes. No healthcare for the children, the single Moms, because they can't affort it, No health care for the ones who lose their job at age 40, 50, and 60, more surveilance of our privacy. more guns to kill each other (totally out of control in this country). I have nothing against having a gun to defend yourself, but a shotgun? what is wrong with a waiting period to get the gun. Seems we now ask people to show a drivers license and got forbit if your name has one letter wrong, you won't be voting, or you vote won't count this year. More money spend on military, the pentagon and rich corporate welfare programs. And the continued decline of jobs for the average american. Remember the unemployment is more like 15%, but sofisticated acounting practices have changed since the reagon era, so as not to panick the american naivity. And I don't even want to mention the mess we will get in if Palin gets to be the President. After all the cancer that McCain had, there is a good chance it will kill him within his presidency. Got help us all, we are indeed an imperial, rogue nation, or heading towards it. Stop being so naive. Forget what Bill said or did not say, look at what has been happening over the past two decades, especiallywhen republicans have rained. It won't affect me much but I am thinking of American society as a village, we all play a part in it. Stop thinking just of yourselves.

Posted by: wenotmeissue | September 29, 2008 10:42 AM | Report abuse

McCain is a brave man for what he endured in Vietnam he exemplified what character is but I would not classify it as Great.
It will be a pleasure to see Obama elected,
one aspect of Barak Obama that people do not speak of is Barak Obama was achild who grew up without a father present during his formative years and found his way through life with just a couple of mis-steps. He will show great compassion to the less fortunate who are truly a silent group of our country who may be spurred to better lives with a role model like Obama.
It takes great character to survive and flourish with just one parent. I can relate to Obama because I grew up the same way and made a success of myself and always give special preference to one parent children, they need all the help and support we can provide.
tommic856@verizon.net
tom mcmahon
millis ma

Posted by: tommic856 | September 29, 2008 10:24 AM | Report abuse

to Hermitage171...within your glowing remarks about Obama, you say..."he SEEMS to give a damn about policy" etc etc...and then you go on to use his campaign as example of how great he is!!! That's exactly the problem here, Obama does not have a track record to show us what he's capable of...other than running for office! McCain is a great man not just for his heroism as a POW, but his work in the congress. That's what President Clinton keeps referencing, his history of working across the aisle, and what he's accomplished. Obama for all his hopeful speeches has not been a uniter, he's managed to divide his own party right in half...and when he had the opportunity to unite it, he arrogantly chose Biden as his running mate. He could have been waltzing to the White House right now with no problem. Your candidate is not qualified to be president of our great country!

Posted by: jeleanoro | September 29, 2008 9:28 AM | Report abuse

What Bill Clinton REALLY wants to say is that he supports McCain for President over Obama!

Posted by: lorddunsmore | September 29, 2008 9:25 AM | Report abuse

What Bill Clinton REALLY wants to say is that he supports McCain for President over Obama!

Posted by: lorddunsmore | September 29, 2008 9:25 AM | Report abuse

Let's not forget (also via Bill Clinton, during the primary campaign) if Hillary were facing McCain, at least we'd have two candidates who love America. If you liked that Palin clip on SNL, you have to admit the Clinton sketch on "Weekend Update" hit close to the truth as well. The only silver lining in all of this is that every Obama voter finalily realizes what an a**hole Bill really is. Too bad they couldn't admit that during his impeachment ; )

Posted by: JakeD | September 29, 2008 8:51 AM | Report abuse

1950democrat:

Hopefully.

Posted by: JakeD | September 29, 2008 8:30 AM | Report abuse

Wow. Here's the thing: Obama is a great man. Anyway, that's my opinion. I'd like to think that I could be considered great at some point in my life, but this guy has risen to challenges and responsibilities that I can't even imagine myself taking on, and he has done so with a full knowledge of what's at stake. He is not an ordinary person; that should be clear to anyone who has been paying attention.

What is Bill Clinton's definition of 'greatness'? Obviously, there is no single, objective definition for this. But I'm pretty skeptical of any definition that includes McCain but not Obama. I don't mind calling McCain great. He's made a name for himself, to be sure. If suffering makes people great, then, yes, I imagine that he can stake a claim in this way. But what impresses me about Obama is that he seems to give a damn about policy, about truth, about establishing a coherent and logical vision for this country's future. Contrast this to McCain, who, for example, doesn't seem to care much about how our economy actually works; he has established an unshakable faith in the notion that lower government spending cures all economic ills, and focuses on that to the exclusion of any points to the contrary.

My point is that Obama's claim to greatness, I think, is based on qualities which in my view would be very useful for a US President to possess. He has not only personal charisma and an ability to handle enormous pressure with grace, but a depth of understanding and an intellectual seriousness that many politicians lack. In addition to this, I strongly suspect that he will maintain his ability to keep his hands off the White House interns, unlike President Clinton.

Is Obama tested? Yes, he's been tested over and over, both during the course of this campaign and before it. If he does win this election, his hardest tests may still be to come; certainly, we will have more opportunities to measure his greatness in the future. Even after the Presidency, he may still be tested. President Clinton has been tested in this election, and in my personal view, he has come up wanting. He has let personal, emotional distance from Obama prevent him from acknowledging--perhaps even seeing--the huge amount of hope that Obama represents, and the very legitimate reasons that people have for being hopeful about him.

It is sad.

Posted by: Hermitage171 | September 29, 2008 6:23 AM | Report abuse

Bill Clinton should stay outof making comments about this election. He is as relevant as stale bread. 4 things that influence Bill Clinton's so called admiration for John McCain at this point.

1. Age. They both have one foot in the grave.
2. White. Bill has shown during the primaries that he is a racist.
3. Hillary's 2012 chance to run. Only if McCain wins this election can Hillary make a run in 2012. Otherwise she has to wait until 2016 which is almost an impossibility given Hillary's age as well as Bill's age.
4. Bill is still angry at Obama for his wife's loss.

But it does not really matter. Bill finds comfort sitting between the ladies in the View. He is more or less irrelevent every where else. He disgraced the democratic party with his flings with Monica. He is still the only president in history who got impeached and his license to practice law revoked. Nobody other than some racist people are going to cast their vote based on Bill Clinton's recommendation. The rest of the country are smart and use their own judgement to vote.

Posted by: JohnMcCormick | September 29, 2008 3:13 AM | Report abuse

Bill Clinton is certainly a great man. And Hillary is a great woman -- her campaign proved that, if we didn't know it already.

Obama's campaign proved just the opposite. He didn't even try to win honestly. He had the deck stacked for him by Brazile, then pulled out the dirty tricks before the first round: packing the Iowa convention, playing the race card from the first -- kneecapping the Clintons with nonsensical charges of 'racism'.

HIllary offered him a Clinton/Obama ticket, which would have given him sixteen years in the White House. Eight with the easy job of VP, nothing to do but fly around giving speeches. Then a clear shot at POTUS with a united party.

And Obama REFUSED. He'd rather split the party and lose their chance, than earn his way honestly by serving as VP. He put his own ego above the issues that he claimed to share with HIllary. Rather than support her troop withdrawal, he's going to leave us with McCain's. HIllary could afford to vote against FISA, and she did; Obama had to pander. Hillary strongly supports choice; Obama had to pander.

I'm disappointed in Obama's character -- but glad we found out now, instead of him GETTING his sixteen years in the White House. Hopefully he will be the McGovern of 2008 and slink back to Chicago forever.

Posted by: 1950democrat | September 29, 2008 1:59 AM | Report abuse

Clinton's McCain's most effective spokesman, by a wide margin. Without him, McCain could very well be down ten points, if not more.

Posted by: info42 | September 29, 2008 12:59 AM | Report abuse

Clinton isn't going to fake it with Obama. I admire that.

Posted by: AWAustin | September 29, 2008 12:56 AM | Report abuse

IS THIS THE "OCTOBER SURPRISE"?

This was posted in the headlines section of Democracy Now! on 9/22:

Army Unit to Deploy in October for Domestic Operations

*** Beginning in October, the Army plans to station an active unit inside the United States for the first time to serve as an on-call federal response in times of emergency. The 3rd Infantry Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team has spent thirty-five of the last sixty months in Iraq, but now the unit is training for domestic operations. The unit will soon be under the day-to-day control of US Army North, the Army service component of Northern Command. The Army Times reports this new mission marks the first time an active unit has been given a dedicated assignment to Northern Command. The paper says the Army unit may be called upon to help with civil unrest and crowd control. The soldiers are learning to use so-called nonlethal weapons designed to subdue unruly or dangerous individuals and crowds.

***
The last sentence appears to be a reference to "directed energy (read: RADIATION) weapons" that are being widely deployed among the military, intelligence, and law enforcement agencies. These weapons emit silent and potentially deadly radiation of various forms, and "targets" of this weaponry may not even know they've been "dosed."

COULD THE FINANCIAL CRISIS BE THE FIRST SHOT IN A WAR ON DEMOCRACY?

AND DID GOV'T "TARGETING" OF AMERICANS HELP CAUSE THE MORTGAGE MELTDOWN?

For more: see http://members.nowpublic.com/scrivener OR members.nowpublic.com/scrivener

Posted by: scrivener50 | September 29, 2008 12:55 AM | Report abuse

Bill Clinton is increasingly becoming irrelevant to this country. I vow now to send much less time stressing over what this man thinks. Your welcome to put your two cents into the pot but I find they don't amount to a Hill(ary) of beans! Too many important things are going on to pay any more attention to you. Thank you very much for your service.

I now find listening to Barak Obama more instructive. There are more progressives now carrying water for the movement. It's OK Bill you can now put down your pail.


Posted by: WestCoast2 | September 29, 2008 12:16 AM | Report abuse

Bill Clinton was being honest in this case-not being a hypocrite about Barak- who does not have a record of greatness- although he is a great speaker and a great politician- he has no record of anything else- I don't think that we call people who ran the Harvard Law Review great just for their position, and I don't think that being a mediocre community organizer for 2 1/2 years makes you great...we all know his record as a legislator which was perhaps average- so where is greatness?

Perhaps if you wanted a more full endorsement of the ex-president you would not have labeled him a racist through your associates (Donna Brazille et al.) for saying that not fully covering what you say creates a "fairytale" of what you stand for. Or perhaps you would not have directly suggested that his was a squandered presidency as he fought a powerful right wing slime machine to balance a budget and maintain peace and prosperity and become our ONLY successful Dem president in the last 40 years. Perhaps you didn't have to go that route to beat HRC- but you did- so maybe there are some things he won't be false for you about.

I am supporting you Barak- but your superficial rhetoric rather than policy positions has allowed you to back out of most of your "progressive stands" that you suggested you held during the primaries- which I find very disappointing.

Leon
Leon

Posted by: nycLeon | September 28, 2008 11:53 PM | Report abuse

Bill Clinton was the best President we ever had and if we are going to attack him for being honest, I feel we are being hysterical.

Nobody knows yet if Obama is a great man we did not know Clinton was a great man until he became President, we just knew we needed a change and we took a chance on him. Now we are willing to take a chance on Obama and maybe he'll be a good President and maybe he won't, time will tell.

Posted by: doc5 | September 28, 2008 11:24 PM | Report abuse

It's fair to say that Obama has yet to accomplish acclaim things that can be described as "a great President", but Bill Clinton forget that there is greatness in all walks of life.

McCain was a great POW, which doesn't give cover to the fact that he was a not-so-great husband. He was a great truth-speaker in 2000, but he is also a great distortionist today.

Obama was a great student and a great idealist in giving up corporate success and choosing community service. He was not-so-great at being a legislator, but appears to have potential as president.

Bill only mentioned the first point for McCain and the last point for Obama. He really needs to think things through.

Posted by: quatzecoutl | September 28, 2008 11:22 PM | Report abuse

McCain Wins Independence Endorsement
By Special to the Sun | September 22, 2008

The New York State Independence Party is venturing into major party presidential politics for the first time to endorse Senator McCain.

The move might seem odd given that the party in 2004 endorsed consumer advocate Ralph Nader, a candidate best known for his left-wing politics. The organization's state chairman, Frank MacKay, said the state party felt that Mr. McCain, a Republican, was not beholden to partisan interests and therefore justified the nod. "It's not that we endorsed a major party candidate, it's that for the first time one of the major parties ran an independent," Mr. MacKay said in an interview yesterday. "He's a maverick and somebody who has driven his party crazy. The special interest groups in his party certainly didn't want him — I'm amazed he got through."

Posted by: thecannula | September 28, 2008 11:14 PM | Report abuse

Here's a taste of Obama doing things for Americans:

"Those times were one of the most uninspired and unproductive of my life."
_________as community organizer.

Posted by: peteonline | September 28, 2008 10:58 PM | Report abuse

So being a senator is just a personal accomlishment?

I thought being a potician and community organizer was public service too Bill?

This is why we cant have red-necks or hillbillys run the country anymore.

Posted by: Dano111 | September 28, 2008 10:56 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if Bill Clinton would have the same lavish praise for McCain if Hillary was running against him?

The first time he gets out of line on the campaign trail, I would call him out and yank his a$$ if I were Obama.

Posted by: Dano111 | September 28, 2008 10:52 PM | Report abuse

Bill Clinton surprised me in one sense. With all his pointed armchair etherealness, he made such a simple and devastating mistake for seasoned politician.

By not putting all support behind Obama, he kissed the African American community support behind Hillary’s chances good bye forever should Obama not win. They supported him and his response is a slap in the face. By his own premise, people don’t just vote on issues, essentially gaiving them permission to practice what he preaches.

If I was Obama I would take what he said to Brokaw and use it against McCain under the premise Obama represent the future and McCain the past just to break his balls.

Posted by: Dano111 | September 28, 2008 10:43 PM | Report abuse

Poor Bill. He's become irrelevant, and he doesn't know it yet.

Posted by: thaimex | September 28, 2008 10:37 PM | Report abuse

On the analysis and possible role of dem. presidents and candidate on the root cause of the wall street turmoil, read the following article in today's Philadelphia evening bulletin:
http://www.thebulletin.us/site/index.cfm?newsid=20138682&BRD=2737&PAG=461&dept_id=576361&rfi=8

Posted by: ypcchiu | September 28, 2008 9:45 PM | Report abuse

Bill

Get over it. If hillary would have ran for the senate seat in her original home state we would all be saying barack who.

Posted by: r4147824 | September 28, 2008 7:43 PM | Report abuse

Yesterday's Washington Post

"When Sen. John McCain made his way to the Capitol office of House Minority Leader John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) just past noon on Thursday, he intended to "just touch gloves" with House Republican leaders, according to one congressional aide, and get ready for the afternoon bailout summit at the White House.

Instead, Rep. Paul D. Ryan (Wis.), the ranking Republican on the House Budget Committee, was waiting to give him an earful. The $700 billion Wall Street rescue, as laid out by Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr., was never going to fly with House Republicans, Ryan said. The plan had to be fundamentally reworked, relying instead on a new program of mortgage insurance paid not by the taxpayers but by the banking industry.

McCain listened, then, with Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (S.C.), he burst into the Senate Republican policy luncheon. Over a Tex-Mex buffet, Sens. Robert F. Bennett (Utah) and Judd Gregg (N.H.) had been explaining the contours of a deal just reached. House Republicans were not buying it. Then McCain spoke.


"I appreciate what you've done here, but I'm not going to sign on to a deal just to sign the deal," McCain told the gathering, according to Graham and confirmed by multiple Senate GOP aides. "Just like Iraq, I'm not afraid to go it alone if I need to."

For a moment, as Graham described it, "you could hear a pin drop. It was just unbelievable." Then pandemonium. By the time the meeting broke up, the agreement touted just hours before -- one that Sen. Lamar Alexander (Tenn.), the No. 3 GOP leader, estimated would be supported by more than 40 Senate Republicans -- was in shambles.

An incendiary mix of presidential politics, delicate dealmaking and market instability played out Thursday in a tableau of high drama, with $700 billion and the U.S. economy possibly in the balance. McCain's presence was only one of the complicating factors. Sen. Barack Obama played his part, with a hectoring performance behind closed doors at the White House. And a brewing House Republican leadership fight helped scramble allegiances in the GOP.

It is unclear whether the day's events will prove to be historically significant or a mere political sideshow. If the administration and lawmakers forge an agreement largely along the lines of the deal they had reached before McCain's arrival Thursday, the tumult will have been a momentary speed bump. If the deal collapses, the recriminations spawned that day will be fierce.

But if a final deal incorporates House Republican principles while leaning most heavily on the accord between the administration, House Democrats and Senate Republicans, all sides will be able to claim some credit -- even if the legislation is not popular with voters.

"If there is a deal with the House involved, it's because of John McCain," Graham, one of the Arizonan's closest friends in the Senate, said yesterday.

In truth, McCain's dramatic announcement Wednesday that he would suspend his campaign and come to Washington for the bailout talks had wide repercussions.

Democrats, eager to reach a deal before McCain could claim credit, hunkered down and made real progress ahead of his arrival. Conservative Republicans in the House reacted as well, according to aides who were part of the talks.

The Republican Study Committee, an enclave of House conservatives, had already begun turning against the Paulson plan. When McCain announced his return, the conservatives feared he would forge an agreement largely along Paulson's lines, with slight alterations and the GOP leadership's blessing. "
*************

A much better bill than the one Frank, Dodd,Pelosi, and Reid declared as "done" on Thursday is now posted on the internet. They "blamed" him for stopping it and now amazingly forget all about it! By getting the House Republicans at the table, the insurance branch of the deal was included, sheltering the American public from risk. McCain got Blunt to the table. Now we all profit by McCain's suspension of his campaaign and visit to Washington DC. On ABC this morning, Stephanopolous asked McCain if he took credit for this breakthrough. He declined. So have the Democrats in congress...WILL YOU?

Posted by: thecannula | September 28, 2008 7:35 PM | Report abuse

Jake:

Al Gore got more votes in 2000 too. But that doesn't make him President, does it?

Posted by: ManUnitdFan | September 28, 2008 7:14 PM | Report abuse

Bill Clinton, a man who I met in 1996 and worked locally to get him re-elected, has disappointed me with his pettiness and political myopia. I am shocked and appauled that this man yet refuses to whole heartedly endorse Senator Obama. I believe that Clinton does not want to be eclipse in the page book of history as the only Democrat to be elected to the presidency twice since FDR. I believe it is less about Obama and more about Clinton and his sick ego. I frankly believe that he is making himself look more and more pathetic and less like an elder statesman. I applaud the Obama-Biden ticket for frankly not giving a damn what Clinton thinks. He is a has been. We are looking to the future with a new kind of politics.

Posted by: vobiscum36 | September 28, 2008 6:59 PM | Report abuse

First of al Bill Clinton was an excellent, brave and skilled politician & president.
To me it seems that he hasn't recovered from the crushing of his dream of an historic husband/wife presidency.
But Bill has to realise that a lot of we Dems. feel that if it wasn't for his fellatial philanderings, he would've been able to be less of a millstone around Gore's neck and we would never had the last 8 years of a dangerous, imbecilic President who cost this country thousands of lives and as yet uncounted billlions.

So Bill, do us all a favor, remember you're a historic DEMOCRAT and get to work for your party...and us!

Posted by: IrishAmerican | September 28, 2008 6:45 PM | Report abuse

First of all, Bill Clinton was an excellent, brave and skilled politician & President.
To me it seems that he hasn't recovered from the crushing of his dream of an historic husband/wife presidency.

But Bill has to realise that a lot of we Dems. feel that if it wasn't for his fellatial philanderings, he would've been less of a millstone around Gore's neck and we would never had the last 8 years of a dangerous, imbecilic President who cost this country thousands of lives and as yet uncounted billlions.

So Bill, do us all a favor, remember you're an historic DEMOCRAT and get to work for your party...and us!

Posted by: IrishAmerican | September 28, 2008 6:44 PM | Report abuse

First of all, Bill Clinton was an excellent, brave and skilled politician & President.
To me it seems that he hasn't recovered from the crushing of his dream of an historic husband/wife presidency.

But Bill has to realise that a lot of we Dems. feel that if it wasn't for his fellatial philanderings, he would've been less of a millstone around Gore's neck and we would never had the last 8 years of a dangerous, imbecilic President who cost this country thousands of lives and as yet uncounted billlions.

So Bill, do us all a favor, remember you're an historic DEMOCRAT and get to work for your party...and us!

Posted by: IrishAmerican | September 28, 2008 6:44 PM | Report abuse

What do you expect? the Clintons were spit upon their faces by Obama and his campaign,, labeled racists and destroyed the legacy of a great president.

You think Bill and Hillary are fools? No, they will keep on signaling their supporters not to vote for a fraud.

Posted by: tim591 | September 28, 2008 6:33 PM | Report abuse

McCAIN NEVER TRIES TO GET ANYONE TO FEEL SORRY FOR HIM BILL? McCain hasn't spoken to anyone in months without saying, "Hey, look at me. I'm a POW." What would you call that if not trying to get people to feel sorry for him? He wants to guilt America into voting for him. We owe him gratitude and honor, but we don't owe him our vote, our country or the presidency. Bill wouldn't have to go on every show in America if he didn't want to help. He could be busy elsewhere. He chooses to go on the shows and he chooses to subtly try to undermine Obama. He's looking at people saying yes I support Obama while he is shaking his head no. I felt really good about Bill after his speech at the convention. I wish he hadn't decided to steal that good feeling away from Democrats. We wanted to love him again and he's spoiling it.

Posted by: karela | September 28, 2008 6:19 PM | Report abuse

Near the end of may, rumors and warnings came from the Clinton camp of Obama's unelectability due to an october surprise being held by McCain. If this is the case, and it involves Bill Clinton and racial overtones, it will wreck the Democratic party for years.

Posted by: seemstome | September 28, 2008 5:47 PM | Report abuse

To be fair, Hillary DIANE Clinton got more primary votes.

Posted by: JakeD | September 28, 2008 5:24 PM | Report abuse

I agree with the comment below about Clinton being unable to put the primary in the past. During the interview today, Clinton all but endorsed the McCain/Palin ticket while expressing and generating doubt about Obama. It's such a shame to see him not fully supporting Obama, even though Obama was supported by the majority of Democrats during the primary. Clinton's legacy will continue to go downhill as he continues to try and spoil Obama's run for the presidency.

Posted by: Joseph8 | September 28, 2008 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Bill Clinton, still choking on the sour grapes of the primary campaign, refuses to put the party above himself yet again. I've lost so much respect for him over the last year.

Posted by: ManUnitdFan | September 28, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

SNL had a great skit with Clinton.

Posted by: JakeD | September 28, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse

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