January 16th, 2010
04:27 PM ET
4 years ago

Clinton praises and knocks Bush on same day

Former President Clinton was joined by former President George W. Bush at the White House Saturday, the same day that the DNC launched an automated phone call where Clinton criticizes Bush's economic policies.
Former President Clinton was joined by former President George W. Bush at the White House Saturday, the same day that the DNC launched an automated phone call where Clinton criticizes Bush's economic policies.

Washington (CNN) – As President Clinton stood alongside his successor, President Bush, at the White House Saturday to announce a new fundraising effort for Haiti, 400-plus miles to the north the 42nd president was blasting Bush’s economic policies in a new automated telephone call designed to cast doubt on Massachusetts Republican Scott Brown’s Senate campaign.

Clinton recorded the telephone call for the Democratic National Committee, which is trying to energize voters to turn out Tuesday for Democrat Martha Coakley in the special election to fill the remaining three years of the late Sen. Edward Kennedy’s term.

Flanked by his two predecessors, President Obama announced Saturday that they will head up the “Clinton Bush Haiti Fund.”

“I'd like to thank President Bush for agreeing to do this, and for the concern he showed for Haiti,” Clinton said in brief remarks at the White House event.

In Massachusetts, on a different topic, Clinton was not so embracing of Bush.

“The Republicans are spending millions of dollars to win Ted Kennedy’s Senate seat and they’re telling you that they’ve got a better economic plan, when all they want is to bring back President Bush’s economic policies,” Clinton said in the recorded message being directed into the homes of Bay State voters.

Clinton also appeared with Coakley Friday at a Boston campaign event.

Democratic leaders are hoping that Clinton’s interest in the contest and President Obama’s decision to hold a campaign rally Sunday in Boston will help encourage Democrats to show up and vote Tuesday in what is expected to be a very close race for the Senate seat.

Polls show Brown is a formidable opponent in what was supposed to be an easy general election for the Coakley.

Script of telephone call

Hello, this is Bill Clinton.

I’m calling to urge you to get out and vote for Martha Coakley on Tuesday January 19.

This election is critical, not just for Massachusetts but for our entire country. The Republicans are spending millions of dollars to win Ted Kennedy’s Senate seat and they’re telling you that they’ve got a better economic plan, when all they want is to bring back President Bush’s economic policies. They’re telling you they’ve got a health care plan, when all they want is to leave the health insurance companies in control of America’s health care and bankrupt the country.

So please, get out and vote for Martha Coakley on Tuesday Jan 19. I know her, she’s a good person, she’ll be a good senator.

Follow Mark Preston on Twitter: @prestoncnn

soundoff (176 Responses)
  1. Ethan

    Bush deserves everything that comes his way. Fact is, we are still dealing with the bad results of the Bush economy. Obama has done an amazing job. The only people complaining are people who are against ALL government spending except the $750B/yr we spend on the military. But God Forbid we spend about that much but spread over 10 years to fix problems with an unsustainable Health Care system. It is unbelievable that people believe the lies of the Republican Party when the FACTS SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES. GOD BLESS THE PEOPLE OF HAITI AND THE PEOPLE OF THE USA.

    January 16, 2010 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  2. Pam from Vegas

    H.R. 3590 (as enrolled in the Senate) leaves the insurance companies in charge of America's health care and will bankrupt this country. How is that different than what Clinton claims the Republicans are offering? CBO tells us premiums will go up 10-13% under the new laws ... they will fine companies whose employees get subsidies (families of 4 making less than $88K/year), so those companies may drop employer health care since they'll be taxed anyway. Think about ONE company: WalMart. Think about what this will cost them in fines with as many people as they employ at low wages.

    Sorry, Mr. Clinton, your argument holds no water with this Democrat-turned-Independent. If I lived in Mass., I would be voting for the independent for the specific purpose of killing this health care bill. Instead, I will be voting against Sir Reid come November.

    January 16, 2010 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  3. Larry S

    Bush has so much more class than the dork Clinton . . . Clinton is the typical liberal that blames others when he can not get the job done. Just the same with oBLAHma . . . it is talk, talk, talk and no leadership.

    January 16, 2010 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  4. Gary

    Politics.....fact is that the country is doesn't like the healthcare bill, the accelerated deficit spending or the way that the Democrats in congress are not listening to us. Coakley should and will lose. Hopefully with a split congress we will get more reasonable healthcare reform – – that doesn't raise taxes or give special favors to Nebraska or to unions and that does include medical malpractice reform!

    January 16, 2010 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  5. WeThePeopleofVirginia

    Let's just face facts . . . Democrats are going to run on an anti-Bush platform for as long as they can milk that cow.

    January 16, 2010 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  6. Herk

    Go for the Democrat Massachusetts. We need your vote.

    January 16, 2010 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  7. JonDie

    Thanks to Bush and Cheney, the United States almost collapsed on the trash heap of history, just like the former Soviet Union. Our country probably won't survive another Republican administration.

    January 16, 2010 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  8. ted

    Bill Clinton was a great president and is a much sought after statesman. George Bush was and is a complete ignorant idiot and I have no idea why he was selected when his father, a smarter man, should have been picked.

    George W Bush still has the incompetency of the Katrina mess in his legacy. He is not competent.

    January 16, 2010 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  9. Phillip

    Same sleeze ball slick willy tactics.

    Democrats have not advanced in their political strategies and neither have their liberal cronies, much of who lurk on this discussion boards. Basically, name call; blame Bush; throw out diversion; name call; blame Bush.

    January 16, 2010 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  10. Change You Can Believe In!

    Kinda sad, really.

    January 16, 2010 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  11. Looking for fact-based data

    Not sure on the depth of the facts....I wonder if Clinton was actually benefiting from the less government policies of Bush Sr....then Clinton in office put in policies and the "effect" of those policies took hold under Bush Jr. ... and now...Obama benefiting from the policies under Bush Jr.

    IE: Does it take awhile for policies to go into effect? Obviously Bush in office for 8 years, Clinton too....so maybe not relevant. But it would be an important thing to truly analyze.

    All of thse Presidents said and did stupid things at times. Bush seemed to flub up a lot verbally, which made him an easy target. Clinton much more polished and messages appealed to wide variety of people.

    Just a point that it's possible policies take a while to go into effect.

    January 16, 2010 08:08 pm at 8:08 pm |
  12. Jason

    That's it exactly, Bill from CA. While I think President Bush's entire administration was an amazingly bad train wreck, leaving the cleanup of two wars, however I respect that he has the class to help out during this time of major need in Haiti.

    I don't think there is anything at all wrong with Clinton simultaneously campaigning for Coakley. If Coakley doesn't win, then the legally won Senate vote for the reconciled House + Senate health care bill would be jeopardized by ALL of the Senate Republicans who are dutifully "towing the party line" instead of applying logic and reason to their voting decisions.

    January 16, 2010 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  13. Jay

    BC just did what politicians do. I was surprised to hear President Obama wanted them to work together for Haiti. Bush made a simple statement that bears repeating " send money". That is what the relief effort needs and can make most effective use of.

    Vote for Scott Brown. Don't reward a slacker like Coakley.

    January 16, 2010 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  14. Sam

    Sure is a lot of right wing revisionist history going on here. Under G.W. Bush, the unemployment rate was the HIGHEST this country has had since the early days of Ronald Reagan. Apparently some of these dimbulbs have also forgotten that Bush turned a record budget surplus into a record deficit thanks to tax cuts to the wealthy and corporations...and that's not counting the cost of the unnecessary wars that thanks to his creative bookkeeping wasn't inclouded in the budget deficits runup. And finally, let us not forget that the current financial crisis was due the deregulation of the banking industry for which Dubya and a Republican controlled Congress were responsible.

    mjm,Southern, MatthewDetroit, and all you other Bush apologists: you may be entitled to your own opinions but you are not entitled to your own facts. And those facts simply don't support your opinions, so don't be surprised if nobody but other Bush sycophants agree with you.

    January 16, 2010 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  15. A. Smith, Oregon

    Where did the $208 Million taxpayer dollars Bush-Cheney SUPPOSEDLY gave to the Haitian people for economic aid in 2007?

    No heavy equipment that is critically needed NOW even thou Haiti lies in a Hurricane and Earthquake zone. Sounds like fraud to me!

    No stockpiles of Medical Supplies that is critically needed NOW even thou Haiti lies in a Hurricaine and Earthquake zone. Sounds like fraud to me!

    No stockpiles of Medicine that is critically needed NOW even thou Haiti lies in a Hurricaine and Earthquake zone. Sounds like fraud to me!

    No new desalination fresh water plants at Port au Prince that is critically needed NOW even thou Haiti lies in a Hurricaine and Earthquake zone. Sounds like fraud to me!

    Was Halliburton/KBR involved in the shoddy construction of those modern concrete buildings that were not earthquake proofed and quickly pancaked upon its occupants?

    The outside contractors of those modern buildings should be held liable and the US Democratic lawmakers should hold Bush-Cheney accountable for what appears to be a wide scale FRAUD upon the Haitian people and American taxpayers.

    January 16, 2010 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  16. Robert

    For all those who think Clinton was great – I have to agree.........but the problem is – OBAMA IS NO CLINTON!!!!!

    January 16, 2010 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  17. Darth Cheney

    How is wanting to bring back Bush's policies slamming Bush? That's exactly what the GOP wants to do...

    January 16, 2010 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
  18. Annie, Atlanta

    mjm – may I remind you that we were on the brink of the second great depression in September, 2008, under President Bush. And may I further remind you that companies started letting their employees go back in late 2007, when this downturn appears to have started, also under President Bush. Stop spreading garbage. It's bad, yes, but I don't think we can actually lay that in President Obama's lap yet, after just 12 months. Do you, honestly, your partisanship aside?

    January 16, 2010 08:34 pm at 8:34 pm |
  19. bill

    Can't anyone let us get past George Bush...most of the country just wants to forget being raped by his administration. Obama...please don't bring up Bush anymore for ANY REASON. Nothing will come of having Bush involved with helping PEOPLE (remember Katrina)...oh wait...Bush's expertise is helping companies...guess that is why Obama called for his help.

    January 16, 2010 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  20. Dave, NE

    Bill Clinton is two-faced and he will always look where is bread is being buttered. He has no class on his own. I am happy to George Bush getting involved and I have confidence in his efforts and results.

    Barack Obama is trying to score some points by bringing in George W. Bush. Where is Moveon.org, MSNBC and Huffington Post.

    I wish you well President Bush.

    January 16, 2010 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  21. kcmark

    The rich benefit under Obama too. Its just a different group of rich.

    January 16, 2010 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  22. Squigman

    Bush, left office with the nation in financial ruin. Mr.Clinton, left office and the nation was in great shape. There were surpluses in all but a few states, and unemployment was not the worry it is today. Still, the people voted for a person not qualified for the office, and today they suffer the effects, all the time blaming the current administration. How short can the human memory be? Vote republican. Help eliminate the free market economy of the United States. They almost got it done, between 2001, and 2009.

    January 16, 2010 08:49 pm at 8:49 pm |
  23. billy123

    The only thing I will state look how being President ages a person. I wonder how President Obama will look after eight years?

    I remember when President Clinton and President George W. Bush were sworn into office both very young men.

    My only regret I wish President Clinton could have run in 2000. President Clinton would of won a third term easy.

    January 16, 2010 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  24. Keith in Austin

    The utter hatred for Bush remains a libby mantra. I for one think he is a good and decent man. NOT a egotistical, lying empty suit like our current excuse for a President.

    The high-water mark for Barry and his pathetic crew of czars, left-wing Congress and the liberal minions that support them has come and gone. In 1 short year Democrats have gone from the mountain top to an utter implosion setting a world record and a CLEAR MESSAGE just how damaging liberals and their Big Government, tax and spend ideology is to America!

    January 16, 2010 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  25. Mr Joshua

    Indeed.......... Stop the lying. Clinton's supposed surplus was a "Projected" Surplus. That went bye bye when the Clinton recession started. That's right, Bush entered office during a recession. The difference is he did not whine every day like Obama.

    January 16, 2010 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
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