September 15th, 2009
06:01 PM ET
5 years ago

Bush on Obama: 'This guy has no clue'

Bush on Obama: 'This guy has no clue'.
Bush on Obama: 'This guy has no clue'.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Former President George W. Bush "seemed to feel considerable unease" with John McCain as the Republican presidential nominee, according to ex-speechwriter Matt Latimer in his tell-all memoir on his days in the White House.

In Latimer's new book, "Speech-less: Tales of a White House Survivor," set to hit bookstores on September 22, he reveals Bush's reactions to the economic collapse, the presidential campaign, and other memorable events. GQ published an excerpt from the memoir in its October issue.

Latimer said Bush liked Mitt Romney best and that he was "clearly not impressed with the McCain operation." Latimer said the former president wanted to appear with McCain at a campaign event in Phoenix, but after he was told the then-Republican nominee couldn't get enough people to show up, he called it a "cruel hoax."

"'He couldn't get 500 people? I could get that many people to turn out in Crawford.' He shook his head. 'This is a five-spiral crash, boys.'"

Bush presumed Hillary Clinton would be the Democratic nominee, according to Latimer, and was extremely critical of Barack Obama. Latimer said Bush was "ticked off" after one of Obama's speeches and he said the future president wasn't "remotely qualified" for the challenges of the job.

"(Bush) came in one day to rehearse a speech, fuming. 'This is a dangerous world,' he said for no apparent reason, 'and this cat isn't remotely qualified to handle it. This guy has no clue, I promise you,'" Latimer said.

Latimer also made the controversial assertion that after Sarah Palin was tapped as McCain's running mate, Bush reportedly asked whether she was "the governor of Guam" and said that she was "not even remotely prepared." A former Bush and Palin aide has challenged the accuracy of the charge.


Filed under: Extra • George W. Bush • Popular Posts • President Obama
soundoff (299 Responses)
  1. Nancy

    Bush is right. Obama isn't remotely qualified for the job. We are now seeing the results of having a community organizer as commander in chief.

    September 15, 2009 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  2. Fort Lauderdale, FL

    The American people are clueless. They elected both of these characters one after the other.

    September 15, 2009 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  3. Bo

    No no Mr bush...you have no cred...!! I voted for your father "WH" when I served in the military, then I somehow voted for you, but after viewing your performance during Hurricane Katrina and the outright fabrications over the decision to invade Iraq (causing us trillions of dollars) you loss all respect. I seems to me that your party does not care for the least of us. No empathy. all your party is talking about is fear, with no solutions.

    September 15, 2009 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  4. Charles

    9/11 happened nine months into Bush's first term, a clear result of intelligence failures of the Clinton administration. You can't blame Bush for 9/11 happening (though you can blame him for how he handled the aftermath).

    As far as Obama, at this point if you still have confidence in him, all I can say is it sucks to be you. Obama has been a total trainwreck. He's got supermajorities in Congress and he still can't get anything done? What the hell? The republicans don't have enough votes to do anything, and Obama still can't get legislation passed. He is weak and incompetent, and he needs to go, fast. As it is now, the republicans will probably slaughter the Democrats in 2010, and the sad thing is, they will deserve it.

    September 15, 2009 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  5. Annirich

    to Typical Republican: might I remind you that there was the bombing of the embassy and Clinton did nothing; then there was the 1st bombing of the WTC, Clinton did nothing; then the bombing attack on the USS Cole, Clinton did nothing; they knew the could waltz in and get us.

    September 15, 2009 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  6. Teddy

    I guess once a year, every year for the rest of our lives, we will have a memorial service and a moment of silence on Sept 11th, to remind us how much of a clue "W" really had......

    September 15, 2009 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  7. Wise Latina

    Once again, George was misunderestimated by the MSM. Turns out he was spot on about Obama's lack of qualification for the job - and we are now paying a dear price...

    September 15, 2009 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  8. Hopeful Optimist

    Bush probably doesn't believe in evolution either. Matter of fact, he's not so sure about gravity or relativity either.

    I am past the point of blaming Bush. He's not intelligent enough to be held responsible. However, I do blame every voter who cast a vote for him in either election. How they sleep at night is beyond me.

    September 15, 2009 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  9. Getrealpeople

    I'd rather have a "clueless" Obama than an evil Bush any day! Obama is far from clueless and is the only reason we are still holding together at all and haven't become a third world country after the damage Bush did to this country!

    September 15, 2009 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  10. Frederick in SC

    As if Bush would know a good leader when he saw one.

    September 15, 2009 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  11. Obama worst president EVER

    Bush got that one right.

    September 15, 2009 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  12. Anne E.

    Bush said the future president wasn't "remotely qualified" for the challenges of the job.
    _______________

    Neither were you, George.

    September 15, 2009 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  13. Florida Joe

    The only "clue" that Obama didn't have was how HUGE of a MESS W and his gang left.............

    September 15, 2009 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  14. LISA

    Speaking of not qualified....

    September 15, 2009 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  15. JV

    Forget about George Bush and focus on the present.

    September 15, 2009 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  16. Craig in VA

    McCain was no prize.

    September 15, 2009 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  17. Brain Dead in Ohio

    It seems to me only a former President truly has the experience...and if we were to pick one, living or dead, my guess is that Bush would be at the bottom of that list.

    BTW, we voted for different qualifications this time. More brain, less lobbyists, and less pandering to the lowest common denominator of our society...or as they're easily identified: Republicans.

    September 15, 2009 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  18. Bug3t | Ruth, CA

    This from a man who bankrupted EVERY SINGLE COMPANY his daddy ever bought him to run?

    Priceless.

    September 15, 2009 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  19. center

    You don't have to be on the left to agree that Bush is clueless and has no room to talk about anyone else being clueless!

    September 15, 2009 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  20. ken chicago

    Well, Bush has been proven correct. Obama is clueless and lacks leadership skills. He is the great orator without executive expertise and executive decision making skills. The country has become more divided under this administration than under Bush. I didn't think that was possible, but Obama and the Congress have managed to do it. There could be a civil war in this country if this Congress continues down the path of partisan fracturing of every idea. Osama can go get 'em all! and we can start over.

    September 15, 2009 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  21. ed minn

    Obama has no clue give
    Me a break king george
    Who ran the white house
    Cardnail chenney

    September 15, 2009 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  22. JB - NYC

    On the nosey, Sir!

    September 15, 2009 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  23. Jez

    ....and George W was qualified?? Talk about a cruel hoax for 8 years!

    September 15, 2009 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  24. JR

    So Bush thought Obama to be not "remotely qualified", well if anyone knows about not being qualified, it would be the Shrub.

    September 15, 2009 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
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