June 9th, 2008
03:30 PM ET
10 years ago

Laura Bush applauds Clinton, has advice for Michelle Obama

Laura Bush addresses the press at the Presidential Palace in Kabul Sunday.

Laura Bush addresses the press at the Presidential Palace in Kabul Sunday.

(CNN) - First Lady Laura Bush said Monday that as a veteran of the rigors of the campaign trail herself, she "admired Hillary's grit and strength."

"I know what it’s like to run those campaigns, to be the candidate and how very difficult it is both emotionally and physically,” Bush told ABC News. “It's a huge endurance, process of endurance, and so I'll have to say I have a lot of admiration for her endurance and strength."

"I know it's hard," Mrs. Bush said, "It's hard to do that and I think she did great."

Bush also defended Michelle Obama over a controversial comment that drew criticism from many conservative pundits – but offered caution for the wife of presumptive Democratic nominee Barack Obama.

Earlier this year, Michelle Obama told the crowd at a primary season campaign event that "for the first time in my adult life, I'm proud of my country." (WATCH what Michelle Obama said)

Later, she said her remarks had been misinterpreted, and that she had been referring to how proud she was that Americans were engaging in the political process as never before. (WATCH: Michelle Obama responds to her misinterpreted remarks.)

"I think she probably meant 'I'm more proud,'" said Laura Bush Monday, adding that "you have to be very careful in what you say" when you’re campaigning.

"That's one of the things you learn and that's one of the really difficult parts both of running for president, and for being the spouse of the president, and that is everything you say is looked and in many cases misconstrued."

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Laura Bush • Michelle Obama
soundoff (336 Responses)
  1. peter

    wow, now she is in giving advices.......

    June 9, 2008 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  2. Chris from NY

    What a lady Laura Bush is. I wish her husband is half the woman she is. Thanks for the tips.

    June 9, 2008 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  3. No McCain

    Does it mean, she is a Democrat now?

    June 9, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  4. Penelope

    Did we "misconstrue" her reply when asked if she would vote for Hillary? I think not.

    June 9, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  5. Helen, NY

    I do not believe what Michelle Obama said. Also it is immaterial what she said because, Obama does not serve to be our president. He does not have resume while CNN tries to portray him as capable candidate. Media wants to blind all the American people. I wonder if CNN will publish this message. Vote John McCain.

    June 9, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  6. Robert in Toronto,ON

    Notice how there is now advice for Cindy McCain? Maybe fo her to lay off the Botox injections...lol.

    June 9, 2008 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  7. Mike

    Mrs. Bush, advice Clinton on the following:

    1. Keeping a SCORE CARD

    June 9, 2008 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  8. Jean

    Until you live through the years of of history in the USA as a black American you can not comprehend the dept of these feelings. Mrs Bush have you ever lived as an Africian American woman????????
    It is not the same I am sure!!!!!

    June 9, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  9. Marie

    Maybe CNN Could actually post the accurate quote and include the full quote.

    June 9, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  10. Molly

    Laura Bush is Nice!


    Just one thing : NO WE WON'T!!!

    I will NOT unite with obama – he is NOT qualified to lead our country – BUT McCain is!

    June 9, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  11. Ken Austin, TX

    Nice words and advice First Lady. I wish your husband was as smart as you.

    June 9, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  12. Stacy Clarks

    thanks but no thanks from the wife of the WORST PRESIDENT IN HISTORY!!!

    although I agree that Hillary CLinton has done a GREAT job, and that Michelle Obama's words were soooo misrepresented!!

    i still don't like the Bush policies!!!!

    June 9, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  13. matilda Johnson

    Laura Bush is a real lady. I have all wasy appreciated the kind a gentle sprit she has exhibit through out her husband adminstration.

    June 9, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  14. wiley coyote

    much more gracious than her husband

    June 9, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  15. Mary from Sarasota FL

    I believe in all the years Laura Bush has been First Lady we have heard more from her in the past few months.
    Too bad. She never got a chance to practice this art of speaking she is referring to. Poor Laura. Dubbaya just couldn't let her out of her cage. If he had, maybe things would have been better for HIM as well.
    Mary from Sarasota, FL

    June 9, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  16. Sharon Snider

    Laura Bush: You have not been where Hillary has been. Michelle Obama you can advise, but Hillary is out of your league. You are the wife of the president, remember? Not the president. Which, by the way, Hillary probably should have remembered, too, when she claimed the Clinton presidency.

    Hopefully Michelle has learned to watch her mouth in the future...

    June 9, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  17. Proud of both

    I was also very pleased with how Hillary handled her suspension speech. She is a very admirable woman and did herself and women everywhere proud that day. I've been a little concerned that she didn't actually conceed, I'm not sure what that means in the long run, I guess she wants to keep one foot in the race so to speak, but it means her delegates stay with her instead of being released to Obama. Does that affect anything, I'm not sure?
    I hope her supporters can muster the grace and strength of character she herself showed and rally behind the democratic nominee. He is a worthy man, just give him a chance to show you. I feel very proud of his dignified campaign and how he and his staffers refrained from dragging Hillary and Bill's baggage into the campaign. I'm sure McCain would not have been so kind in the General Election race.

    June 9, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  18. Jeff

    Good for you, Laura, you're more of a Diplomat than your husband could ever dream of being. I'm surprised we didn't hear more from Laura over the last several years. I know she's a fairly active First Lady with her initiatives, but she actually seems like one of the smarter ones, and I think First Ladies should be more vocal and prevalent.

    This is coming from an ardent Bush critic and Barack Obama supporter.

    June 9, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  19. Paul

    Michelle Obama meant exactly what she said. BO means exactly what he says and does. To try and "undo" statements and actions to be politically expedient is slowly going to register with the American people and they will see through the vail of deception. As far as Hillary bringing supporters' votes to BO? Good luck. Not this Democrat and I know I am not alone. I would rather have another Republican as president than a liar and a hypocrite. I love America too much to risk her future on BO and his recently proud of America wife.

    June 9, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  20. Sam

    Mrs. Bush, advice Clinton on the following:

    1. Keeping a SCORE CARD

    2. Not to manipulate the media with a story line.

    3. Keep it real and know when to bow out by listening to experts.

    4. To have a strategy and rules of the game.

    5. Not to feel entittled and control the country and the whole campaign

    6. Not about her and her family but about America and it's people which connects with Obama.

    7. Aknowledge defeat and congratulate the winners and not look down on him.

    I wish all the best to the Clintons!

    June 9, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  21. Pepou

    I always thought that Laura Bush had the brains in the family. Too bad she was not running for President instead of her husvband.

    June 9, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  22. Keith

    It's very gracious of the First Lady to recognize that Michelle Obama has had her comments miscontrued. Go Laura! Go Michelle! You're both wonderful!

    June 9, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  23. CTP

    Why can't George be more like Laura? Oh well, I'm glad it's almost over!

    June 9, 2008 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  24. Sharon from Dumfries Virginia

    Thank you Laura Bush for giving Michelle Obama that advise. You are a great first lady.

    June 9, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  25. Ginny CA

    Oh, if only that were the only misstatement from Michelle. Unfortunately there have been so many, they now identify who she is. From those slips, we see her for what she is. I wish it were a prettier sight.

    June 9, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
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