Pete Wilson invokes Clinton sex scandal at Ryan fund-raiser
September 7th, 2012
01:22 AM ET
2 years ago

Pete Wilson invokes Clinton sex scandal at Ryan fund-raiser

(CNN) – Bill Clinton's speech at the Democratic National Convention on Wednesday night reminded at least one Republican of another time the former president stepped before the microphones.

Former California Gov. Pete Wilson said Thursday at a fundraiser for GOP vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan that Clinton's finger shake was reminiscent of the time he denied engaging in sexual behavior with a White House intern, and he used the moment to jab at the former president.

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"How many of you watched that little show last night?" the California Republican asked the day after Clinton's major speech before the Democratic Party, according to a pool report. "The return of Bill Clinton? You know, all through that… all I can think of was the last time I seen him shaking his finger."

To laughter, Wilson paraphrased the famous Clinton line from a 1998 press conference: "I did not have sex with that woman."

Speaking at the Beverley Hills fundraiser, he continued to skewer the former president, questioning Clinton's credibility.

"I figured that anyone who can redefine sex as he did in that moment is fully capable of redefining economics, which he tried to do last night," Wilson said.

Among other points, Clinton argued in his remarks at the convention that Romney's proposal to handle the national debt failed "the first test of fiscal responsibility" and was based on numbers that "don't add up." But President Barack Obama's plan, he said, would deal with the national debt before "it will deal with us."

While the campaigns will wage war over the coming weeks, the true head-to-head battles will take place in the presidential debates and vice presidential debate, all of which come in October, just weeks ahead of the November election.

And that is something to which Wilson looks forward.

The number two debate, between Vice President Joe Biden and GOP running mate Paul Ryan, is a fight between "an ageing lightweight against a youthful heavyweight."

"God," continued Wilson, "sometimes I think he must be a Republican: he gave us Joe Biden, who is good for at least one gaffe a day. How would you like to be his keeper? You'd need a year's worth of valium."


Filed under: 2012 • California • Paul Ryan • President Clinton
soundoff (297 Responses)
  1. Scoop

    The GOP is a sad party. This party who is always touting christian values that speak of redemption, wants to use former sins of a person as a political wedge. I have no respect for the GOP

    September 7, 2012 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  2. Frank Galate

    Why didn't Mr Wilson address the facts President Clinton brought up in his speech at the DNC? Because they're true, how the republicans are going to screw the american people if they get back into office.

    September 7, 2012 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  3. Judith Nixon

    Where was Bush at the RNC. After all, when Clinton lied, nobody died!

    September 7, 2012 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  4. unblvble

    of ALL the people mr.clinton is vouching for president obama, is it not a laughing stock after mr.clinton lied about monica on national television???

    September 7, 2012 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  5. sbp

    Somehow, the fact that their god Ronald Reagan cheated on his first wife and dumped her for Nancy is not immoral. There's a GOP exception for these sorts of things.

    September 7, 2012 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  6. sbp

    Somehow, the fact that their god Ronald Reagan cheated on his first wife and dumped her for Nancy is not immoral. There's a GOP exception.

    September 7, 2012 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  7. Get_Real

    Bill Clinton was the reason that I voted for Obama back in 2008 (so Bill could not ever move back to White House again). This time Bill Clinton will be the reason I vote for Mitt Romney.

    September 7, 2012 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  8. GwynniesPapa

    Aging light weight. Look at youself man. This is what ya got Bill Clinton got a **? You poor jelous fool. Let's look in your closet for 15 yrs

    September 7, 2012 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  9. Margo

    Cut me a break, I mean are you kidding. The repubs don't want the Dems bringing up Cheney or how about Newt, there is nothing but scandal on both sides which has nothing to do with this election. The repubs are really sinking to a new low. Clinton is the man and he knows what works and what doesn't and setting us back 100 years with their religion and tea party crap is diaster for this country. And look who is throwing the barbs. Seriously

    September 7, 2012 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  10. Dave

    Nobody died when Bill Clinton lied. How many died because of the Republican's "WMD in Iraq" deception?

    September 7, 2012 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  11. sbp

    Well, somehow, the fact that their god Ronald Reagan cheated on his first wife and dumped her for Nancy is not immoral. There's a GOP exception.

    September 7, 2012 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  12. robert12121212

    Great defence against Obama. Feature praise for Romney from Clinton to give Romney some credibility then turn around and try to bring down Clinton in an effort to undermine Obama. a 15 year old oral sex scandel. Very relevant. Thanks Pete.

    September 7, 2012 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  13. DOS

    Wow... we can't talk about Bush and his destruction of much of the economy since it's Obama's fault problem now, but we can talk about Clinton who was president even a longer time ago. Republicans still invoke Carter but neglect to mention Bush! Paleeeeease!

    September 7, 2012 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  14. Dan

    Clinton should have been castrated after the Juanita Broaddrick scandal.

    September 7, 2012 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  15. chris

    Pete Wilson? I thought he was dead.

    September 7, 2012 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  16. Pete in Guilford

    While Clinton was sending cruise missiles into Afghanistan trying to get bin Laden, the Republicans were only concerned about a blow job. Perhaps if they hadn't hounded him about something that was none of their business, Clinton could have kept his eye on the ball and actually gotten bin Laden and 9/11 never would have happened. Instead, the Repubs ate up his time over nothing.

    September 7, 2012 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  17. Ronda in Houston,TX

    Who cares what Pete Wilson saids. If he really wants to wag his finger at someone, it should be to George W. Bush who destroyed this country.

    September 7, 2012 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  18. JJ

    Oh, bad idea. If I posted the list of all the convicted repukeblican perverts I'd probably overflow the comment page. I can't believe these idiiots are still sore Clinton got a bl0wj0b in the oval office. Is it because they couldn't get one if they paid for it? :)

    September 7, 2012 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  19. Dave

    Ryan a heavyweight? He seems like a lot of nothing with a good haircut to me – maybe one step above Sarah Palin. The difference is, the media won't treat him with kid gloves the way they did Palin in 2008. He'll have ample opportunity to open his mouth and shove his foot in.

    September 7, 2012 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  20. Terri

    this is so ridiculous – they obviously have NOTHING – NOTHING!

    September 7, 2012 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  21. GI Joe

    Hey - Clinton didn't resign retroactively in shame and he didn't lose jobs like Romney did in Mass.

    We love Bill, and we love Barack - warts, wrinkles, and all.

    The republicans are lying desperados at this point. They offer nothing. " It's My Turn ", IS NOT A PLAN.

    September 7, 2012 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  22. Alex

    For democrats, the only thing that would be better of having President Clinton at the DNC Convention is to have G. W. Bush at the RNC Convention speaking 48 minutes.

    September 7, 2012 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  23. mgw

    The Republicans are do desperate that they will stoop to any depths to malign any Democrat. In typical Republican fashion, they only have negative things to say, and provide no new ideas or programs, only muck and vitriol.

    September 7, 2012 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  24. steve

    Pete Wilson was governor of California. Take a look at the state's budget mess and you're looking at Pete Wilson's legacy. Now think about Clinton's legacy – a balanced budget.

    September 7, 2012 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  25. Saboth

    Wait...Dem's don't run on "morals and values", unlike Republicans, that have had far worse "sex scandals". When you base your entire platform on God and family values, be prepared for backlash when you are fishing for gay partners in restrooms. This is the best they have? Attacks on Presidents from 12 years ago? How about some facts and figures Republicans? Obama and the Dems have laid out their plans, put numbers to them, and they've outlined what they've gotten done in 4 years despite Republican opposition. Republicans only present a wish list that panders to every person, with no plan on how to get it done. Experts agree the Republican plans will increase taxes on the middle class by $2,000 a year, while increasing the cost of healthcare for people in Medicare $6,500 a year, while putting millions more in the pockets of the richest Americans, who have ALREADY seen their wealth increase 300% in the past few years. No. Thanks.

    September 7, 2012 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
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