Bill Clinton on Perry: He's a 'good-looking rascal'
August 15th, 2011
04:51 PM ET
3 years ago

Bill Clinton on Perry: He's a 'good-looking rascal'

(CNN) – Former President Bill Clinton was paying attention Saturday when Texas Gov. Rick Perry formally launched his presidential campaign

"I got tickled. I watched Governor Perry announce…for president," Clinton said Monday. "He's a good-looking rascal."

Clinton's comments, recorded in a video by the New York Observer, came in a speech to the International Association of Fire Fighters in Manhattan.

The former president had some choice words for Perry's platform on the need for smaller government.

"[Perry] said 'You know, I'm going to Washington to make sure that the federal government stays as far away from you as possible-while I ride on Air Force One and that Marine One helicopter and go to Camp David and travel around the world and have a good time'," Clinton said. "I mean, this is crazy."

Perry and other Republican presidential candidates have repeatedly said the federal government needs to have a more limited role in Americans' lives.

And while Clinton said every person-"even public employees"-can think of a tax that's too high or a regulation that doesn't make sense, he implied that the U.S. government is not the source of all problems.

"There is not a single solitary successful nation on earth today that does not have both an effective government and a good economy," Clinton said. "And in the world we live in, you can't have them unless you have both."


Filed under: 2012 • Bill Clinton • Rick Perry
soundoff (250 Responses)
  1. Zigzag

    Too funny. You really have to watch the clip. Sweet Jesus, I love Bill Clinton so much right now, I think I'll go try to finish "My Life" again.

    August 16, 2011 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  2. Daniel

    Maybe everyone should look at how good we don't have it, Obama promised change, where is the change? We are going in the wrong direction, backwards is not progress. Stop voting with race and gender, start getting rid of those who promise one thing and deliver something else. Nancy P. "If you want to know whats in the bill we have to pass it" Try that when sell cars or homes, we'll tell you what you paid later.

    August 16, 2011 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  3. Marjee123

    Gee but what else did Bill Clinton say about Perry....THAT HE WAS CRAZY. Isn't it just like CNN not to post the correct saying.

    August 16, 2011 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  4. KO

    Clinton is right–Perry and other "anti-government" conservatives diss the government, while at the same time enjoying the benefits and services that government routinely provides. Hypocrites.

    August 16, 2011 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  5. clarke

    LOL, yes he is.

    August 16, 2011 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  6. Malty

    Clinton is a smart guy. He was blessed when voters put the Congress in republican hands because he has been credited for a lot of stuff that was forced on him. He was also smart enough to take it and run with it.

    Perry would make a better president than both Clinton and Obama. His state is responsible for 35% of all new jobs in America. Obama's reckless policies are responsible for the loss of 3% of the jobs in the country. That said, I'd like to see Mitt Romney as president.

    August 16, 2011 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  7. Malty

    Oh, and less government would increase productivity, self reliance and personal wealth. Forcing people to be "charitable" isn't good governing.

    August 16, 2011 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  8. gandoman

    Texas gave us George '3 below plant life' Bush. I would think that a mistake like that is enough for 20 generations of Americans.
    There is something about Texas politicians that rubs me the wrong way.
    They somehow equate barbeques & football & with good politics. I continue to look for the analogy, though it continually escapes me.
    I can only assume that "Barbeque" expertise sends the message that if you use enough sauce, you can cover up anything that's gone bad. Bush ruined the economy with that notion.
    Being a big "Football" fan seems to say, winning is everything & unless you get caught cheating, you are smarter than everyone else & to hell with the consequences. Bush started 2 wars with that notion.
    I think what game really sums up a GOP NAZI PARTY RIGHT WING CANDIDATE is CHECKERS;
    Only one color counts, jump over every person in your way, eliminate those who are no longer useful & change the rules when it suits you. Unfortunately, the future of America is not a game & people who seem to be more qualified as' game show hosts' than serious politicians should not be the choices we Americans are stuck with.

    August 16, 2011 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  9. That Guy...

    To "Black guy in America"...maybe you should stick to worrying about who will do the most for education reform. That would "HUGHLY" help your ability to make a point on this site, or others like it.

    August 16, 2011 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  10. CCMars

    WDinDallas: Why do you think President Obama "just takes joy rides on Air Force One"?

    I agree with what someone said above: We don't need another "just like us" president. The more I hear from and about our Republican/GOP candidates, the more I'm convinced they all would be terrible for the job. Have we gotten so used to the cowboy wannabe antics of the Bush Administration that for some ungodly reason we want to go back to them? For all his flaws, at least President Obama actually tries to show that he gives a damn about the average people, shows respect for our "melting pot" characteristic and generally does his best to do something about our problems without becoming a dictator. I thought we all wanted that, not a bumbling bible-thumper or a Wall Street fat cat.

    August 16, 2011 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  11. Jay

    Here comes Perry, riding on a "jobs" platform. Everyone run to get your blue smock, we're all gonna work at Wal-Mart now! Perry's jobs are almost exclusively minimum wage. If he gets his way he'll turn us all into slaves for the only people in the nation who have real jobs. Government employees. Hell, I guess that makes sense for him. That would mean he can screw all the women he wants and only be paying slightly more than min wage for it. Yeeee Haaaaa!

    We need to nip this idiot in the bud.

    August 16, 2011 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  12. texn

    Perry is a joke. He "hates" the federal government and "big spending" then accepts federal money to balance texas' budget. He talks about creating jobs. Ha they are jobs in government. I dont understand how can you hate the federal government but want to be part of it? Not to mention he wanted young girls(who are sexually active) to be required to be vaccinated with gardisil.

    August 16, 2011 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  13. AEJ

    Wasn't this guy, Rick Perry literally begging Washington for help when his state was burning down? He even commented on how he was being ignores. The White House responded and came out saying the Federal govt. had send lots of help to Texas. Big government eh?

    August 16, 2011 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  14. "Doc" In Illinois

    It's a shame "B.S." doesn't have monetary value. All of it that Perry has thrown out so far would have solved the deficit issue and created a surplus.

    August 16, 2011 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  15. chelseallj

    Gads! Doesn't sound like many here are in favor of Perry. Maybe he should be reading these and other posts. I certainly won't be voting for him if he gets the nomination or any other Republican.

    August 16, 2011 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  16. The Day of Financial Reckoning is HERE - The Great Democrat Welfare Society Ends

    Right. Clinton created 23 million jobs after raising taxes....more job creation than Dubya, GHWB and St. Reagan COMBINED. Terrible record.
    =================================================================================================
    You mean Bill Clinton signed whatever the Republican Congress (lead by newt Gingrich) sent him to sign and then took credit for it like it was his idea, right? Yes, that's what I thought you mean't....

    August 16, 2011 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  17. Dirk Wladon

    I can't really say it because it won't be published here on 'PRAVDA. Uncle Bill, you are right! He (Rickie Boy) does look kind of sweet or limp wristed. And look at the ways he hold his mouth. Jaw Breakers! ;-)

    August 16, 2011 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  18. Shirley In California

    @ ch

    Obviously, you are new here. I support Obama 100% but I am sick and tired of people camparing him to William Clinton. I don't EVER want another Clinton in the WH and if you feel differently so be it.

    August 16, 2011 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  19. Dreamer96

    Yep Rick Perry is a Rascal alright,,,

    There is a Texas company that is very similar to Rick Perry, every year it hires hundreds of College Grads, and nobody seems to ask why, but the answers is this;

    They like to hire young smart single grads, work them like crazy, own any patents they come up with, or designs, then promoto a few and wait for the rest to quit, because they do not give much in raises...It's nick name is the training institute.

    If you look at the average number of years those young smart grads stay there, you will see why the company is always hiring new blood.

    August 16, 2011 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  20. SSampson

    GOD is a Republican.... Which explains all the mistakes....

    August 16, 2011 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  21. Peter Q Wolfe

    Bottomline is that people in general see the government without legitamecy or is ran ilresponsibly at bwest. The problem is that there is a notion in this country that people know best when they don't. For example, food stamps for nutritional food should be like wic if you ask me. Also, Pell Grants should be proportional to what is needed in the economy like 75% ratio and higher gpa standards like 2.75 gpa or higher. I also think medicaid or medicare users should be regulated for snacks, alcohol, drugs, etc as well. Then, the military complex needs to be sized down. Finally people only liike the government when they have control (e.g. no gay marriage, ggambling, etc).

    August 16, 2011 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  22. Wild Bill

    Looks like Man Love in the making! Good for Bill!

    August 16, 2011 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  23. Proud of me Texan Educcasion

    @cevans, tx

    You meen he put tha "F" in "FONEY"... Who spelz it wiss a "PH"? Wud r you – one o dem eleetists who went to skewl?

    August 16, 2011 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  24. LegendRx

    What Clinton said was, Perry is a good looking dishonest person. Read between the lies!

    August 16, 2011 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  25. Embarrased Conservative

    Not a single person, for a single second, should vote for Perry. I don't care if you are democrat, republican, white, black, or purple. This man advocated, proudly, for Texas to sucede from the union. This is the very definition of treason. Your vote for Perry in itself is un-patriotic. My fellow Republicans I don't know your feeling about the rest of the field but to the best of my knowledge not one of them ever advocated this. For this reason I urge you to ignore Perry and focus on the rest of the group.

    August 16, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
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