September 8th, 2008
05:21 PM ET
10 years ago

Bill Clinton to join McCain, Obama at Ground Zero on 9/11

Bill Clinton will attend the September 11 memorial ceremony at Ground Zero, Thursday.

Bill Clinton will attend the September 11 memorial ceremony at Ground Zero, Thursday.

(CNN) - Bill Clinton will join Barack Obama and John McCain in visiting Ground Zero this Thursday in memory of the victims of September 11, and deliver a speech focused on national security threats.

“But just as we reflect on the past, we must look ahead to ensure we are doing all we can to support families, unite our communities, and protect our country from future acts of terrorism," said the former president in a statement released by his office.

The McCain and Obama campaigns released a joint statement over the weekend announcing that both men will appear together in New York to mark the seventh anniversary of the attacks. The campaigns have also pledged to abstain from all negative campaign ads on that day.

Also Thursday, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama will meet at the former president's Harlem offices - their first extended in-person encounter since the tense primary season.

(UPDATED to clarify McCain and Obama are visiting Ground Zero Thursday, but will not be at the memorial ceremony.)

Filed under: 9/11 • Bill Clinton • Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (318 Responses)
  1. rooting for change

    the other blog was closed so i decided to post this on this one. someone said that mccain had never requested an earmark at all during his whole career so i decided to do some research of my own. and speaking of which obama has publicaly stated how many earmarks he's requested and did hesitate to do so which he's tryin to be honest with the people while palin and mccain lie. i figured that mccain had at least one earmark skeleton in his closet and low and behold here it is. this is from the washington post.

    practice of earmarking, where lawmakers insert money for special projects into congressional appropriations bills. The Arizona Republican now running for president has routinely tried to highlight such spending provisions as wasteful "political pork" and last year year he called the rapid rise of earmarks during Republicans' decade-long control of Congress "disgraceful."

    "If we don't stop the earmarking, we're not going to stop the abuses of power here in Washington," McCain told his colleagues.

    It turns out, McCain may not have always been so averse to earmarks.

    As part of a story published today on the McCain campaign's efforts to woo lobbyists and their big money client The Washington Post reviewed years of the senator's official correspondence to agencies that have been released over the years under the Freedom of Information Act.

    That review located this 1992 letter in which McCain privately pressed the Republican administration of President Bush's father, George H.W. Bush, to secure such a $5 million earmark for a wastewater project in Arizona after Congress had rejected the request in its own spending bill. Spurned by his colleagues, McCain took his case to the head of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

    "I would like to request that EPA either re-program $5 million out of existing funds or earmark the amount from an appropriate account," McCain wrote in his Oct. 9, 1992 letter to then-EPA Administrator William K. Reilly, calling the earmark "crucial to protecting the public health and the environment."

    Reilly wrote back a few months later - in the final days of the first Bush administration - saying his agency had "no options with which to fund this project."

    September 8, 2008 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  2. tammy

    You know...I laugh at Obama and his bots. I can't remember how many post I read that Obama didn't need Hillary/Bill democrats. it seems they do. Sarah doesn't seem like a bad choice in that it has brought the Repubs. together. The Obama/Biden ticket didn't. One thing I heard over and over again was about Hill's debt. Well...she still has one. Instead of helping Obama...maybe she should take time to raise money for her debt. Remember...Obama is all about change and doesn't need the Clintons. I think he and his Obamabots were suffering from reading all of the positive articles and thought that they ruled the world alone. News man is an island. (Oh...that to talk down about a small town/mayorship and gov. experience of a small pop. state is very bad business.) If you don't have respect for people in your own country, how can we expect you to respect other countries?

    September 8, 2008 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  3. The Nightingale Sings in Berkley Square

    Hey I heard Monica was going to be in New York as well. That would make for some excitement.

    Obama is risky and it is a gamble for him to say he would protect us and our values.

    Only one candidate will do both. McCain will protect our country and our values. I don't know why Mr. Dean and the DNC picked Obama for contender but come to find out he is only a pretender.

    People in the mid west know what Obama thinks of them. They voted in droves for Hillary and against Obama. Now Obama is trying to get their votes. Amazing. And he called the Mid Westerners bitter people and people that he really didn't like because they cling to God and Guns in hard times. Let me tell Mr. Obama something. I am not bitter , but a fighter. I love my God and my guns.

    I see better days ahead and they will be ushered in by our new President of the US of A John S, McCain

    September 8, 2008 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  4. randy

    the cnn political ticker asking why obama lost his lead. the answer is clear he is can arepublicans with the worst record of achivement in history still have candidate who is pro war ,to be running even with obama.last point that i will make on this is that if obama loose this election it will set us back to 1950s when it comes to race issue.before god and man there is know way in this life that republicans should win the white house with all the worst things the have done if the do win i will see it as pure racism.people still hide there racial filling.
    i am in tears right now typing this ,but as my father always say black people have been in this country for 400 yrs and have been through a lot .if obama does not win the spirit will not be down but the movement will continues.

    September 8, 2008 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  5. obama-biden 2008

    sarah palin is a liar, and the media is just not revealing her dirty underground works, the media wants to make her a popular figure, so that Obama supporters (the majority of Americans) would again watch CNN, so that CNN can make money out of this whole thing, but the truth is, after the election is over, it's us, the people of AMerica that have to suffer. So, make your choices wisely in this election, we don't need 8 more years of the same policies that has put our country in trillions of dollars of debt, and has brought our dollar far lower than it used to be 10 years ago. Now even the Canadian dollar is worth more than the American dollar, where is our country going ? People wake up, don't fall for these stupid media frenzy, look at the issues our country is facing, and Obama and the democrats are the right choice, we need a new generation of leadership, not McCain-Palin. Palin is good lookin, but this is not a beauty contest for god's sake. Wake up America, Vote for Obama-Biden. God Bless America.

    September 8, 2008 07:40 pm at 7:40 pm |
  6. financeman

    I remember the day when your word meant everything. Telling the truth was expected and lying was condoned. After watching the RNC and seeing the consistent lies between McCain and Palin and the recent polls, my god where have we come to in our Nation? Have we dropped our stanard so low that lying is acceptable? We used to set the standard. I now see that it has all gone away.

    September 8, 2008 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  7. Christian

    Go Clinton! I'm among Hillary supporters who switched Republican after all the Obama's have done to us. He should have picked her as VP in the firts place. Very wrong move! Now I'm excited for our maverick persident full of experience. I will always love my country first before the world!!!

    September 8, 2008 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  8. Ann

    Lynn in NM September 8th, 2008 2:15 pm ET
    "How fitting! John McCain should be there. He ais the only one of the three that ever defended our country."

    McCain is no more fitter to be at Ground Zero than anyone else. He was bombing North Vietnam, got shot down by the North Vietnamese, became POW and that was it. With due respect, he didn't exactly fight a pitch battle anywhere in our country in order to defend America from the North Vietnamese attack.

    Let's have some perspectives instead of citing the Republican party lines.

    September 8, 2008 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  9. Loretta

    Where is Bush? Should he not be there too? I know he's made some huge mistakes, but he is still an American President.

    I cannot believe I just typed that.

    Democrats Unite!!!!

    September 8, 2008 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  10. maynard hopkins wi


    September 8, 2008 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  11. Mom from Grayslake IL

    This may stop the polls moving. In Colorado Springs, Sarah Palin claimed that lending giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac had "gotten too big and too expensive to the taxpayers." Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are private corporations. The taxpayers are getting screwed by the takeover, not being saved from it. Its pretty sad when I know that and the potential VP doesn't. And so it starts….

    September 8, 2008 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  12. No Hillary = No Obama

    They can't live with him and they can't live without him or her. Obama thought he was the center of the universe – hardly.

    September 8, 2008 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  13. paul Revere

    It's elections like this that turn normal people like me into a rabid partisan, and it's wrong, very wrong. CNN and the other media outlets need to show some backbone and grille these folks who want to commandeer the USA. There is no entertainment/ratings value here.

    After the lights go out and the mikes are cut, we still ALL have to live here, and sleep at night, which cannot what the mainstream media can be doing. Obama has been heavily vetted fort most of his life as a Black man, and Sarah Palin, if she is to be taken seriously must be vetted in kind. You folks cannot tell me that you're willing to go thru another 4 years of this crap where the great nation of ours has become a shadow of our former selves.

    This way of blocking, dodging, avoiding hard questioning of Palin is a detriment to the process, to the nation and to people of all stripes, Republican, Democrat, Independent, etc.

    This world is at a tipping point. Oil issues, terrorism, and very quietly, a global water shortage, on top of global warming, locusts, well you get it.

    September 8, 2008 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  14. Hanna

    How soon we forget what is important and what is not. Palin has done her job in taking the issues away from McCain. He knows nothing about the economy and healthcare. We have focused on Palins soap opera family drama and McCain is sailing along. Fooled again!

    September 8, 2008 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  15. Lin Marelick

    From a friend who reads the bible everyday:Jesus Christ was a community organizer.
    Pontius Pilot was a governor.

    September 8, 2008 08:49 pm at 8:49 pm |
  16. Dorothy, White Salmon, Wa

    Dennis September 8th, 2008 2:13 pm ET

    Bill Clinton's FAILURE to respond to 3 seperate attacks against the U.S. was the fodder for 9/11.
    His appearance at ground zero is an insult to all who died that day.
    You need to check out you posts before you post such lies here. Bill Clinton responded to every attack or in the case of the World Trade building attack in 1993, they arrested the Blind Shiek and he is still in prison. The Cole attack happened in October 2000 but it wasn't determined that bin Laden did it until after GWB took over in January. GWB decided NOT to respond to it. Not a good decision.

    September 8, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  17. Tony

    It is so sorry for Bill & Hillary that now they are trying out to help the bad guy that not selected her as a running mate. OBAMA now behind the national polls and ask hillary for help. But she is really help him while she in debt more than 22 million dollars. Don't you think that hurt? It really is. Many of her campain workers are not get paid yet. Many TV network analysts say that it really STUPIT that Obama not bring her to his ticket. John McCain showed his records. Obama has NOTHING to show. That is very true. People can just on RECORDS not on PROMISES.

    September 8, 2008 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  18. Amy

    Why is Obama going to be there? Didn't the Reverend Wright say (on 9/16/01) that the America's policies were coming home to roost and that we deserved 9/11? And Obama continued in Wright's church for another 7 years? How disrepectful that Obama would even show his face.

    September 8, 2008 09:11 pm at 9:11 pm |
  19. veronica

    True Democrat. I do not believe Obama's would do the same if Hillary had won the primaries. I see the Clinton haters are trying to get nicer now that they need the Clintons. It is too bad Obama could not swallow his pride and selected Hillary as VP. The Democrats would have won by a landslide. Now, I think the Repub's might win the General Election. Obama has no one to blame but himself and his vicious supporters.

    September 8, 2008 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  20. V


    September 8, 2008 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |

    JAYDEN September 8th, 2008 12:26 pm ET

    I am a big supporter of this war, we must win no matter how many lives and $ it takes. VOTE MCCAIN so the cause can continue. Thank you America


    September 8, 2008 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  22. Z

    Why the hell does Billy need to make an appearance for. Your old news Billy boy you need to just sit down.

    September 8, 2008 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  23. maine dave

    The use of 9/11 images in the republican convention was shameful. I cannot understand how anyone can support McCain after the recent new and improved "slander and lie" campaigns. What happened to the Straight Talk Express? I guess he has experience on the receiving end with these tactics, it knocked him out of the primaries in 2000.

    We need positive leadership. Obama speaks of hope. McCain (and especially Palin) speak of negativity and fear. Hillary supporters need to understand that while it was a very close and contentious primary race, Obama is the victor. Obama needs your support, we need your support! If McCain wins, Hillary had no future as a President. Hillary and her supporters will be blamed for the loss. There will also be fewer democrats in this country. I will not live another 4 years under a neo-con, right wing, evangelical administration. I would rather leave than stay, watch and suffer from the continued downward spiral which began in Jan of 2001.

    September 8, 2008 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  24. GOP Supporter

    You guys have get this link open for comments for a pretty long time. You guys just love to hear about Clinton, don't you? They're done. Nobody wants them around anymore other than trying to get votes for Obama. It ain't going to enough.

    September 8, 2008 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  25. Carol

    What are the Dems paying Bill ( or promising) him to get him to show up along side of Obama? Must be something really BIG ! I don't believe a matter of a few weeks is enough to turn around a bitter defeat to the Clintons. Kind of makes you think about it huh? Think about where you will cast your VOTE>

    September 8, 2008 09:23 pm at 9:23 pm |
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