April 15th, 2008
05:28 PM ET
6 years ago

Clinton: Bush was 'unready' for presidency

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Hillary Clinton invoked September 11 on Tuesday, accusing President Bush of squandering the goodwill in America’s favor following the terrorist attacks.

"We have seen the power of the presidency placed in hands unready or unwilling to address the tasks that lie ahead," Clinton remarked at a luncheon hosted by Newspaper Association of America in Washington, D.C.

"Just think of the days after September 11. Imagine if President Bush had tapped into the wellspring of American energy, initiative and goodwill," she said, making an argument reminiscent of her former presidential rival Joe Biden, who regularly offered similar comments on the campaign trail and at the 2004 Democratic National Convention.

Her advisers billed Clinton's speech as a wide angle envisioning of her administration and how it would differ from President Bush's.

(UPDATE: Republican response after the jump)


Clinton said that after September 11, Bush failed to encourage young people to enter national service programs, reach out to the rest of the world, or develop a renewable energy policy.

“The President literally could have asked us to do anything, calling on our patriotism and our unity,” she said. "But he only asked us to draw on our wallets and go shopping."

UPDATE: The Republican Party responded to Clinton's comments Tuesday evening. "Senator Clinton’s divisive and dishonest rhetoric may appeal to superdelegates, but it won’t help her win the trust of the American people,” said RNC spokesman Alex Conant.


Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (339 Responses)
  1. El Gordo

    My Fellow Citizens: Many of you don't seem to remember that Bush had 90% of us behind him (me too, I was just as stupid as you were) just after 9/11. We were slapping each other's backs and exchaging high-fives as our troops rolled into Bagdad like the afternoon express train.

    Now, most of you are like women who slept around a lot in high school and college but all they can remember now is going to Sunday School and doing their homework. We all made this stupid mistake together and we are all at fault. Hillary and other politicians caved in to our demands for fear of their jobs mostly. After all, being is Congress is a really sweet gig. There are no minimum standards, the pay is excellent, and the benefits are what the rest of us can only dream of.

    A democracy is only as good as its voters, God help us, and therein lies our problem.

    April 15, 2008 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  2. MARIA

    WHERE IS INFORMATION ON RON PAUL WHO IS ALSO RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT, WHAT IS THIS ? WHY THE BLACK OUT ON RON PAUL? I DON'T UNDERSTAND WHY ALLLLLLLLLL THE MEDIA OUTLETS EXCEPT FOR FOX NEWS, DO NOT HAVE RON PAUL'S NAME ANYWHERE AS A CANDIDATE ??????? I WOULD LOVE TO GET AN ANSWER TO THIS. NO MEDIA COVERAGE ………HMMMMMMM…………..IS THERE A FEAR OF COVERING RON RAUL?

    April 15, 2008 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  3. Joan Buch

    Hey guys ! A politician in our day is "for self". That includes Obama.
    Look at UK problems, Germany and France's problems w/rioting, destruction by young people, etc. That is headed our way w/Obama.
    I saw through him 2 years ago and it has been slowly coming out.
    Roosevelts and Truman said "they would not use their Office to feed their own bellies".....is that true today? Of course not.
    Joan

    April 15, 2008 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  4. MARIA

    WHERE IS INFORMATION ON RON PAUL WHO IS ALSO RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT, WHAT IS THIS ?

    WHY THE BLACK OUT ON RON PAUL? I DON'T UNDERSTAND WHY ALLLLLLLLLL THE MEDIA OUTLETS EXCEPT FOR FOX NEWS, DO NOT HAVE RON PAUL'S NAME ANYWHERE AS A CANDIDATE ???????

    I WOULD LOVE TO GET AN ANSWER TO THIS. NO MEDIA COVERAGE ………HMMMMMMM…………..IS THERE A FEAR OF COVERING RON RAUL?

    April 15, 2008 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  5. No Hillary

    Hey Hillary, while I am totally against G.W. Bush and his policies, you have used the term "not ready for persidency" so often against the wrong people at the wrong place and at the wrong time that now you are not credible anymore..... so now even if you are right – no one listens to you anymore and no one belieevs you anymore.

    April 15, 2008 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  6. MARIA

    WHERE IS INFORMATION ON RON PAUL WHO IS ALSO RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT, WHAT IS THIS ?

    WHY THE BLACK OUT ON RON PAUL?

    I DON'T UNDERSTAND WHY ALLLLLLLLLL THE MEDIA OUTLETS EXCEPT FOR FOX NEWS, DO NOT HAVE RON PAUL'S NAME ANYWHERE AS A CANDIDATE ???????

    I WOULD LOVE TO GET AN ANSWER TO THIS. NO MEDIA COVERAGE ………HMMMMMMM…………..IS THERE A FEAR OF COVERING RON RAUL?

    April 15, 2008 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  7. Zion

    The Republican Party responded to Clinton's comments Tuesday evening. "Senator Clinton’s divisive and dishonest rhetoric may appeal to superdelegates, but it won’t help her win the trust of the American people,” said RNC spokesman Alex Conant.

    Wow, even the Republican party sees past her crap. What is wrong with her supporters?

    April 15, 2008 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  8. noemi from los angeles

    I'm at the point that I don't even want to hear Hillary speak. She's crazy to me. I was a Clinton supporter when Bill was in office. I thought he was a great person... even shook hands with him at a rally in UCLA about a year ago. But if they want to keep the respect that I, as well as other Dems, have for him, they just need to step down and let our party smash McSame already. That grumpy old man makes no sense... have you heard his speeches? He's like the older version of Bush, just balding and a hot temper. This woman is not more fit than Obama to be our President. Didn't you look at her itinerary while she was 1st lady? She spent her time in parties, socializing, and traveling... pushing for a broken health care reform that never happened. OH and how can we believe anything she says after Bosnia, Penn, and those comments she made "Put me in the headline" when referring to Obama and Canada. She says ANYTHING to appeal to people. She is not "in touch" with everyday Americans... she grew up with a silver spoon and makes millions on doing nothing.... she's a "fighter" when we really need someone who collaborates with Republicans and negotiates what's good for our country.... that's OBAMA, look up his story! Obama's wife, Michelle, is right.. I haven't been so proud of this country in whole adult life.... meaning that for the first time, I feel like we are really going to become a stronger nation... rise out of recession, strenghten our U.S. dollar, stop depending on oil, and get our troops home. THAT'S WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT! I'd be stupid to say that I've been proud to be an American during the Bush Administration........ haven't you seen the mostrocities he's put our country through?? For the first time, I see people involved in politics like never before...... this was inspired by Obama and his message for change, for hope. Sometimes someone does not need the whole experience in the world, but good judgement, sound policy and determination is what we need to get our country ahead. I am a middle of the road Democrat, I am a U.S. Citizen, I voted for Barack Obama because I want our country and our children to see better days........

    PENNSYLVANIA:

    VOTE OBAMA!!
    VOTE DEMOCRATIC 08!

    COME ON PA... the fate of our country lies on your VOTES!

    April 15, 2008 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  9. karen from philly

    Obama is the nominee
    enough said!!

    HRC supporter give in, you lost!

    Derrick- you don't make sense

    April 15, 2008 09:23 pm at 9:23 pm |
  10. Jack the Dog

    Hillary Clinton is annoying.

    April 15, 2008 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  11. Jack in ND

    ""You must be a "typical white person" from small town North Dakota who clings to guns/religion when things go bad.""

    Actually I'm an independent and an atheist who is disgusted by Hillary's character.

    April 15, 2008 09:30 pm at 9:30 pm |
  12. New Yorker

    Hillary's life has been one long road to perdition. She may be rich, powerful, and famous, but she has given her soul in return...

    April 15, 2008 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
  13. Guy

    Stick a fork in her, she's done.

    Go Obama, Go...

    April 15, 2008 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
  14. Steveo

    What America needs now is Jimmy Carter!! Oh, Wait. We've got Obama. Great!!

    April 15, 2008 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  15. Prayu

    Yes Hillary, and a few years after this unready President was inaugurated, you voted for his war and supported it up until you started running for President.

    April 15, 2008 09:37 pm at 9:37 pm |
  16. Jane L.

    Senator Clinton is absolutely right. We have some serious problems facing us, and the last thing we need is another amateur in the president's office. She is by far the most competent, experienced candidate. She is the person we need in the White House at this time. Obama does not have the credentials we need.

    April 15, 2008 09:42 pm at 9:42 pm |
  17. FEDUP

    google REZKO…So Auchi –friend of Saddam, international fraudster, and business partner to one of Chicago’s premiere fixers– gave Rezko the money that allowed Obama to purchase his house. Without the loan, Rezko would not have been able to afford the $125,000 downpayment on the lot and Obama would not have been able to meet the terms set by the sellers.

    April 15, 2008 09:44 pm at 9:44 pm |
  18. MARIA

    RON PAUL FOR PRESIDENT........I KNOW A LOT OF YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW THAT RON PAUL IS RUNNING, THAT'S BECAUSE THERE'S BEEN A VIRTUAL MEDIA BLACK OUT ON THIS CANDIDATE...........WHY ??????

    April 15, 2008 09:44 pm at 9:44 pm |
  19. jimmy vekmen

    Barack Obama:Americans are bitter.
    Michelle Obama: For the first time in 44 years: I'm really proud of my country..
    Michelle: in South Carolina: America is down right mean.

    April 15, 2008 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  20. MARIA

    I WOULD NEVER VOTE FOR HILLARY CLINTON, SHE'S NOT READY FOR THE WHITE HOUSE.

    April 15, 2008 09:46 pm at 9:46 pm |
  21. Nowhere Man

    What a despicable thing ro say.

    To the good people of PA, please remove her ruby slippers, so her legs can shrivel up under the house for good, and the people of this country can rid themselves of the Clintonistas once and for all.

    Obama '08!

    April 15, 2008 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  22. MARIA

    I WAS WONDERING WHY RON PAUL'S NAME IS NOT ON YOUR CATEGORIES LIST, FROM YOUR OWN WEB SITE, IS HE NOT A PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE ? YOU HAVE PEOPLE ON THIS LIST THAT ARE OUT OF THE RACE. WHAT IS GOING IN HERE ?

    Categories
    Race to '08 (380)
    Presidential Candidates (3108)
    Hillary Clinton (1225)
    Barack Obama (1108)
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    Rudy Giuliani (323)
    John Edwards (316)

    April 15, 2008 09:50 pm at 9:50 pm |
  23. Juan Grain

    I was unready for Bush to be President, just like I am unready for Hillary to be President or Vice President.

    April 15, 2008 09:51 pm at 9:51 pm |
  24. Walt, Belton,TX

    I would imagine Hillary would have followed Carter's lead and surrendered to whomever was available or at least have become friends with the enemy like he did.

    April 15, 2008 09:52 pm at 9:52 pm |
  25. Matt

    Hillary Clinton – Republican Nominee '08!

    April 15, 2008 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
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