January 14th, 2010
07:20 PM ET
8 years ago

Bill Clinton, George W. Bush pitch in on Haiti relief


Former Presidents Clinton and George W. Bush have accepted President Obama's request to lead a private fundraising effort to help Haiti. (Photo Credit: Getty Images/File)

(CNN) - Former Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton have agreed to help the Obama administration's efforts to help bring swift aid to Haiti, according to two officials familiar with the discussions. The two former presidents will reprise the role that Clinton and ex-President George H.W. Bush played after the tsunami, and are expected to tape public service announcements urging American to make charitable donations. The two leaders are also likely to travel to Haiti at an appropriate time, according to the officials.

Update: Former Presidents Clinton and George W. Bush issued the following statement Thursday evening.

We are deeply saddened by the devastation and suffering caused by the recent earthquake in Haiti. The people of Haiti are in our thoughts and prayers.

We are pleased to accept President Obama's request to lead private sector fundraising efforts. In the days and weeks ahead, we will draw attention to the many ways American citizens and businesses can help meet the urgent needs of the Haitian people.

Americans have a long history of showing compassion and generosity in the wake of tragedy. We thank the American people for rallying to help our neighbors in the Caribbean in their hour of suffering – and throughout the journey of rebuilding their nation.

For information on how you can contribute, please visit www.georgewbushcenter.com/haiti and www.clintonfoundation.org/haitiearthquake.

Filed under: Bill Clinton • George W. Bush • Haiti
soundoff (54 Responses)
  1. A Guy

    Good for them!! Bravo!

    January 14, 2010 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  2. dave from pa

    This is good news, but a question just popped into my head. What is "W" doing? Why is he not jumping in to help? Perhaps he is too busy having lunch with Pat Robertson and Rush " I'm a drug addict racist" Limbaugh.

    January 14, 2010 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  3. ChicagoDB

    Oh great, that is all Haiti needs. W to the rescue...cause he did so well with katrina.

    January 14, 2010 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  4. If you want something ruined, put a republican in charge

    Even though "W" spent most of our money on tax cuts and an unnecessary war, maybe his wealthy cronies will donate some of their windfall to Haitians if Bush asks them nicely.

    January 14, 2010 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  5. Fitz in Texas

    Wonderful.....now throw in a few of your millions to help out as well and ask the rest of the Democrats and Republicans up there in Washington to do the same.

    January 14, 2010 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  6. Maverick

    "W" is helping victims of natural disasters? Why start now?

    January 14, 2010 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  7. Duck Fallas


    Those of you who are opposed to the United States coming to the aid of the Haitians are disgusting human beings and are an embarassment to this great country.

    January 14, 2010 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  8. Michelle

    And just where is the last President in all of this? Couldn't GWB be bothered to lend a hand? Oh, right, he couldn't even be bothered when the last tragedy happened in our own country, but "Brownie" did a "great job." And I haven't heard anything from wannabePres Palin either. Guess she agrees with Pat Robertson that the poor people of Haiti deserved what happened. Or she is trying to figure out what continent Haiti is on. Maybe she hasn't figured out how to cash in on this tragedy yet. But yeah, let's promote her as Presidential material.
    Meanwhile, two men who know what Christian service really means will get their hands dirty, raise a lot of money, and show what true patriotism is. Keep up the great work, Presidents Bush One and Clinton!

    January 14, 2010 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  9. Dutch the Great

    I knew you were good for it Bubba, but Dubya? After his Katrina response, this is a shocker. I wonder what Kanye has to say about this.

    January 14, 2010 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  10. AEK

    It has been very interesting and frankly uplifting to see these two ex Presidents working together on humanitarian projects. Haven't heard much from George W though. Probably hasn't gotten to the "H's" yet on learning the countries of the world.

    Mr. Clinton and Mr. Bush had better be careful supporting President Obama because from what Rush Lamebrain has implied, any money contributed to charities at the White House web site are apparently going to be stolen by someone? Idiot, bigot, racist, I could go on and on!

    January 14, 2010 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  11. GI Joe

    Hey – it's a start. Only took two democrats to get one republican moving for the good of others.

    January 14, 2010 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  12. Sniffit

    more bailouts?

    engouth already

    unless...............you plan to tax them in 2013 to get our money back

    January 14, 2010 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  13. TruthHurts

    Oh yes, lets raise several hundred million and throw it at Haiti just to make ourselves feel good. Where were we before the quake?? Do you realize that over 80% of the population lives on less than $2 per week? That they have over 80% unemployment?

    When all of this is said and done, the general population will be in the same situation and few U.S. supported "leaders" will be much richer.

    Go ahead silly Americans and make yourselves feel better!

    January 14, 2010 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  14. Mesa Mick

    And Dubwa's gonna help by...

    A. Selling pictures of him picking up dog poop...

    B. Headlining at some "Get Rich Quick" grifter seminar and sending a small portion of his speaking fee to some evangelical charity that demands becoming "born again" in order to get money.

    January 14, 2010 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  15. Betty in Texas

    Crikey– George Sr. can barely get around now. The public service announcements would be fine, but he needs to stay home from Haiti so he doesn't go fall & kill himself.
    For any Bill Clinton detractors, pay attention– this guy's foundation has been doing charitable work in Haiti & many other countries for years– quietly & with no fanfare– just doing good to try to help people.

    January 14, 2010 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  16. Betty in Texas

    Follow-up to first comment:
    Oops– I see now that it's George Jr. that will be working with Clinton, not George Sr.

    Original comment:
    Crikey– George Sr. can barely get around now. The public service announcements would be fine, but he needs to stay home from Haiti so he doesn't go fall & kill himself.
    For any Bill Clinton detractors, pay attention– this guy's foundation has been doing charitable work in Haiti & many other countries for years– quietly & with no fanfare– just doing good to try to help people.

    January 14, 2010 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  17. Teena

    Oh please! Will W act any faster now that he is not at the kids' school room reading?
    You are a joke–Bill Clinton knows the meaning of the word "Swift" where you do not!

    January 14, 2010 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  18. gary davis harbor oregon

    its great that these two eople can get together and help . no polotics involved just the power of helping .. also listening to Pat (racist ) Robertson . he needs to get slapped up side the head and publicly appologize to the world . this man is a typical jesus freaking evangelical . racist putist pig
    his parents must have had sex with a goat and along came Pat Robertson . Mr. GOAT HEAD . gives goats a bad name . :)one can only hope pat robertson gets a call from his GOD . because if there really is a GOD , he /she isnot the same as Pat Robertsons so called God. THIS MAN IS ONLY ABOUT HOW MUCH MONEY HE CAN MAKE an teach fear . Hell he sounds like the purist republican core .. KKK ,SS, Gestapo, skin heads, 🙂

    January 14, 2010 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  19. Tim

    How long before Obama calls this an unprecedented crisis?

    January 14, 2010 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  20. LacrosseMom

    How gracious of George W. Bush to help. It is obvious, that conservatives need someone from their own ranks to get them to donate.

    Amazing how two rivals can come together for the good of humanity, but in the Congress the only thing the GOP does is obstruct.

    January 14, 2010 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  21. GI Joe

    They should NOT built another palace in Haiti as long as there is even ONE hungry person in that country. I won't send money until I'm sure it goes to the weakest - NOT the palace dwellers.

    January 14, 2010 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  22. Connie in Tennessee

    This should have read Bill Clinton to help Obama get aid send. W sure doesn't know anything about helping in a disaster. Look at Katrina!!

    January 14, 2010 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  23. Johnny B

    In CNN's poll of "How are you making your donation to help Haiti?"
    Texting, Tweeting, Cash/Credit, Not giving. It is sad to see that 59% of people are "not giving" anything. Times are hard for Americans, but a 10 dollar donation a month isn't all that much. Please consider donating something to help those with little or nothing.

    January 14, 2010 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  24. About Time

    About time Bush is doing something useful.

    January 14, 2010 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  25. yuri

    Now, that's a team and it shall deliver to the needy.

    January 14, 2010 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
1 2 3