September 17th, 2010
09:32 AM ET
4 years ago

Bill Clinton has advice for Obama

 Former President Bill Clinton has some advice for President Obama.
Former President Bill Clinton has some advice for President Obama.

(CNN) - Former President Bill Clinton, himself no stranger to a difficult midterm election environment, has some advice for President Obama:

Make a better case to voters about what he's done in the last two years.

"I'd like to see the president go around the country and explain it just like I did, say we've stopped digging," said Clinton on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Thursday.

"And then talk about what we need to do now," continued Clinton, whose party suffered massive defeats in the 1994 midterm elections. "How we are gonna get out of this. How America's best are days ahead. How are we going to reduce the role of government in the economy and have a private sector that works again."

The former president, who said today's economic conditions are like those of 1994 but "on steroids," also proposed three initiatives the president should pursue:

"So these are the three things you need to do," he said. "Focus on where the jobs are – small business, manufacturing, and clean energy - figure out how to loosen the money and banks and corporations, and train people to do the jobs that already opening. The cheapest and quickest thing to do is the last.

"Have you said this to him?" Stewart said to laughter, adding later, "I don't know if that was a Jedi mind trick, but I believe you."


Filed under: Bill Clinton • President Obama
soundoff (86 Responses)
  1. aneanderthal

    Obama has already committed the high crimes and misdemeanors and is in a class by himself when it comes to lying, corruption and incompetence. What possible advice can Clinton give, although Obama should be the student here, he is in the process of surpassing the master of deceit and will go down in history as the most corrupt, incompetent and inept president we ever had and move Clinton out of second place to third.

    September 17, 2010 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  2. Liz the First

    And it wouldn't hurt if the media focused on the major accomplishments of this administration rather than harping on the petty distractions the opposition is setting up to turn attention from all the good things Obama and the democrats have accomplished despite their efforts to make him AND the country fail! the media spend one sentence on a major piece of positive legislation and then you hear 'but...' and they ramble on for five minutes about some nonsense like people bitching if the Obamas went on a well-deserved vacation. no wonder there are so many people out there, including a few regular posters here, who think he's done nothing.

    September 17, 2010 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  3. vegas01

    Dear Bill,
    I tried that, but it seems they do not like my definition of health care reform, my ideas on how to create or save jobs, my energy initiatives, my environmental policies, my ideas on immigration policy and enforcement, or just about anything I have done or supported.
    It seems like they are fine with 'having a beer' with me, but do not trust me to govern.
    Maybe I will be as lucky as you, and my ratings will go up after Congressional power shift in mid-term elections. If not, I do not know what to do to get the people to like my agenda.

    September 17, 2010 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  4. lenoirlady

    Why, oh why, do these expresidents not wait for someone to ask their advice before starting on these diatribes? Certainly, Mr. ExPresident, it's all clear as a crystal now, after the facts of your own administration many slips and failures, for you to be able to solve all the woes of the POTUS who is now in office. Looking back? Not so clear for you back in the day. You need more humility.

    September 17, 2010 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  5. kmp

    It could work and better yet Clinton you should go along with him to help spread the message.

    September 17, 2010 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  6. CommonSense

    One great President to another great President...with the mess left behind from Bush Presidents....Seems like history will repeat it self and President Obama is poised for greatness no matter what the Republicans say and don't do!

    September 17, 2010 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  7. John Gatch

    Clinton is suggesting that Obama abandon his Socialist/Marxist ways; is he serious?

    September 17, 2010 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  8. Marilyn G

    Sorry, President Clinton, I'm a Democrat and nothing President Obama can say will change the minds and opinions of these radical nutcases. It is obvious they all have short memories about the shining Bush years. Right here in Ohio we had 16 years of Republican rule, the last being Governor Taft who was a do-nothing and now Governor Strickland is losing to Mr. Wall Street-Fox News Kasich. Good luck America.

    September 17, 2010 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  9. curious steve, boston, ma

    whatever you do, obama, don't do what bill tells you to do.

    then again, you two are of the same kind: snake-oil salesmen for wall street.

    September 17, 2010 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  10. Trish

    Only in America can folks organize like the Tea Party and express concerns they care deeply for. This is Great and I welcome it....but don't for one minute think that our President is illegitimate. I don't vote for illegimate folks. I voted for a GREAT Competent MAN. A man who is charismatic, educated, hard working, and a uniter not divider. So, if you continue to chose to divide us, don't cry later.

    September 17, 2010 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  11. cm

    Everybody wants to give 2 cents

    September 17, 2010 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  12. Karen

    Obama will not listen to anyone.

    September 17, 2010 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  13. mike

    Thats the problem with Obama he cant take Former Clintos advice. He does not believe in reducing the governments role in private sector. Obama does not believe believe in the private sector solving the economic issues we have . If thier is one area Clinton was right as president was when he leaned to the right and the country prospered..

    September 17, 2010 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  14. Jess C

    Wise advice! Most people don't realize how near the brink we were in '08; it's all been forgotten and re-directed to this stupid rage that has been turned on the Demo's. If it wasn't for the Dems, we'd be in far worse shape. Of course this economy will not recover quickly; where are people's heads? Train wrecks take time to fix. Why blame those who are getting their hands dirty by trying? The "no solution" party is so very happy so many people buy their lies and blame game. Hard to believe our short-term memories.

    September 17, 2010 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  15. Mary

    From one baffoon to another. LOL

    They should get Carter in the mix two. Then the three worst presidents in history can all comiserate!

    September 17, 2010 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  16. jim

    Actions speak louder than words and just because Obama says it doesn't make it true.And nothing has convinced the public that King Obama has stopped digging in the hole.

    September 17, 2010 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  17. Amy Dugan

    I remember that Bill Clinton said to Wolf in the summer how to fix the spill in an easy 1, 2, 3, 4 way.
    On the Daily Show last night Bill Clinton said he spends 1 hour a day on the economy. JUST THINK HOW much MORE time he would if Hillary was president. The dem establishment ditched the Clintons even though they fixed the economy in the 90s. If they lose their seats it is their fault.

    September 17, 2010 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  18. Nancy

    Thank you Mr. Clinton. We will win this mid-term election.

    September 17, 2010 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  19. SUSAN

    Why does Obama need a Past President to explain HOW HE SHOULD DO HIS JOB? Pretty scarey!

    September 17, 2010 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  20. New Age Independant

    "Make a better case to voters about what he's done in the last two years. "

    Probably not the best idea. Obama will want to talk more than 30 seconds.

    September 17, 2010 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  21. Sound advice

    I've had many Commanders in Chief during my time in the service. And although I never voted for Clinton, I had no problem serving under him since he still displayed leadership. Even when facing tough midterm elections, he didn't run around complaining, whining, and crying about how he was treated. Instead, he presented the best argument he could with constructive dialogue. Regardless of what party is in the office or controls Congress, Americans just want sound leadership, less whining and cliches, more integrity with our elected officials, and peace of mind knowing legislation is in fact being enacted that is in the best interest of American citizens and not based on party agendas.

    September 17, 2010 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  22. AudreyinGa

    Clinton should help President Obama and the country by reading all of
    President Obama's speeches and whitehouse.gov. Then Clinton should go around the country and explain what we need to do now over and over again just like President Obama has and continues to do.

    September 17, 2010 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  23. Richard Anderson

    Considering Bill Clinton's policies (derivative deregulation and lack of control of stock market speculation) CAUSED the dot.com debacle and collapse and CAUSED the mortgage and bank meltdowns, he is in NO position to advise Obama on anything.

    September 17, 2010 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  24. Pat Gellan

    Good advice, Bill. But Obama has no interest in reducing goverment influence on all aspects of American life. He believes that more government is the solution–no matter what the problem.

    September 17, 2010 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  25. Henry Miller, Libertarian, Cary, NC

    It's not enough for Obama to merely "stop digging"–his efforts have already blown a crater in the US economy from which we may never recover.

    September 17, 2010 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
1 2 3 4