Obama, Hillary Clinton sit down to lunch
Hillary Clinton and President Obama meet for lunch on Monday, July 29, 2013. (Official White House photo by Chuck Kennedy)
July 29th, 2013
02:40 PM ET
1 year ago

Obama, Hillary Clinton sit down to lunch

Updated at 2:46 p.m. ET on 7/29

(CNN) – As the nation's top diplomat, Hillary Clinton used to be a regular presence at the White House, but since leaving her post as secretary of state earlier this year, Clinton has been busy delivering speeches and launching her post-government initiatives.

On Monday, however, Clinton made a return to the building for lunch with President Barack Obama.

Plenty of issues – ranging from health care to Middle East peace talks – could have been conversation starters for the pair, though on Monday, Deputy Press Secretary Josh Earnest said it was "largely friendship that's on the agenda for the lunch today."

"Much has been written about over the last four years how Secretary Clinton and the president have developed not just a strong working relationship, but also a genuine friendship," Earnest said, adding the lunch was an "opportunity for the two, who saw each other on a pretty frequent basis over the course of the last four years, to have the chance to catch up."

Clinton will also meet with Vice President Joe Biden Tuesday at his residence, the Naval Observatory, Clinton aides, as well as a White House official, told CNN. One person with knowledge said the meeting was "long scheduled."

As for her Monday meeting with Obama, Earnest said the president invited Clinton to the lunch, which had grilled chicken, pasta jambalaya and salad on the menu.

Current Secretary of State John Kerry was spotted arriving at the White House around the same time as Clinton, though Earnest said he believed Kerry did not join his predecessor and Obama for the lunchtime meeting. Clinton, however, did stop by to say hello while Kerry met with National Security Adviser Susan Rice, according to Clinton aides.

The White House is preparing for Middle East peace negotiations in Washington Monday night, and Earnest indicated it was more than possible that the talks could have come up come during the meal.

"The purpose of the lunch was chiefly social, but given that the president and Secretary Clinton worked on this pretty closely together over the course of the last four years, I'd be surprised if they didn't," he said.

According to Clinton aides, the lunch came together when Obama and Clinton saw each other at the George W. Bush Presidential Center dedication ceremony in April, where Obama and former President Bill Clinton gave brief remarks. With the president and the former secretary of state having busy schedules this summer, July 29th became the agreed upon date, the aides said.

Former rivals during their marathon battle for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination, Obama and Clinton forged what most parties say was a strong working relationship during her years at the State Department. Since her departure, the pair met for dinner at the White House along with her husband, and for the dedication of the Bush library in Texas.

Clinton, a potential candidate for the White House in 2016, has spent her months post-State appearing at events focused on women's empowerment, as well as maintaining a healthy roster of paid speaking engagements.

She launched an initiative through the Clinton Foundation dedicated to early childhood development, and signed a book deal in April for a diplomacy-centered memoir to be released in 2014.

CNN's Jessica Yellin, Kevin Liptak and Ashley Killough contributed to this report.


Filed under: Hillary Clinton • President Obama
soundoff (378 Responses)
  1. SweetMercy!

    Perhaps they are talking about sending some advanced F-16s to muslim brotherhood in various countries.....more horrid foxnews lies?? NOPE! Obozo said he would send f-16s and a incredible 1.3 billion dollars to those jackholes in egypt with or without congress approval!!! -–>DURING THE SEQUESTOR<--For those of you who still are hugging the liberal trashcan..you are personally responsible for putting this man in office....its YOUR fault :) havea great day!

    July 29, 2013 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  2. ThinkAgain

    @J G: "@Thinkagain – your comment is hilarious given that the Dems are going to put forward Clinton for president in 2016... talk about "select families" with control of everything."

    You think that way because you believe in the Repub dictatorship model where political opponents are vilified and anyone who disagrees with you is accused of being anti-American and anti-God.

    The Koch brothers and the Bush family have a HELLUVA lot more money than the Clintons – and they've shown through word and deed that profit trumps people every time.

    July 29, 2013 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  3. Fair is Fair

    Rudy NYC

    Fair is Fair wrote:

    "BTW, can that be done? Would that result in an unelected President?"

    Sure can. Gerald ford was selected as Nixon's VP when Agnew resigned. Then Nixon resigned and Ford became president. Voila – a president who was not elected.
    -----–
    The most correct is answer is no. You cannot resign and select your Sec'y of State to succeed you. The VEEP comes first.
    -------–
    READ the scenario the poster described:

    "I always thought that it would have been funny if right at the end of his term, Pres G. Bush Jr.’s would have had his VP quit and then picked C. Rice as his new VP. Then the Pres could have quit in his turn and Rice would have become the Pres. It would have been quite funny if a republican had been both the first female and the first black President…."

    Nowhere did the poster, nor I, say anything about a Sec. of State. The poster even stated that Rice was selected to be the VP and become president upon the president's resignation.

    You just love to argue for argument's sake don't you?

    July 29, 2013 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  4. freedom

    @Dallas

    What this country needs is a leader who is not corrupt! It doesn't matter what color or gender. You people who are so hung up on "it's time for a woman president" are very shallow, indeed. It was "time" for the first black president and look what's happened – he's severely divided this country on race only to further his community organizing agenda – he has done nothing to help the black community – he wants to control them. He was the wrong "first black" president. Let's not make that mistake again. Pick the right woman for the job. Hilary has no integrity – and she has been involved in criminal acts.

    July 29, 2013 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  5. cre80ve

    So pathetic to see irrelevant topic (such as Benghazi) to the article at hand being brought up. Does anyone think this will help GOP?

    July 29, 2013 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  6. Name

    Hillary 2016

    July 29, 2013 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  7. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    To those middle class millions who have seen their retirement savings take a hit and still not come back – you can give a big thank you to Obama, Reid, and Pelosi ...
    ----------------------------------------------–
    Dow 15,534.72 (-0.15 %) -24.11
    Nasdaq 3,603.36 (-0.27 %) -9.81
    S&P 1,687.30 (-0.26 %) -4.35

    You were saying.................

    July 29, 2013 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  8. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Rudy NYC

    It sure seems like a lot of folks on the right are getting overly worked up over a simple power lunch
    -------------------------------------------------
    You say "worked up" I say scared s hitless.
    The outcome of the 2016 presidential race is really is forgone conclusion if HIllary runs, which she will.
    The Rethugs have nothing and no one to combat her so they are resorting to their usual tactics: fear, hatred, lies, non-controversies.
    Oh I forgot to add: Benghazi, Benghazi, Benghazi.
    There.

    July 29, 2013 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  9. b0bc@t

    It is easy to get a doctor's note, get excused from all the hearings, the timetables, the poor security planning, and come in fired up, months later, with "what difference does it make?", when she slinked from the Sec of State post. It might have made a difference to voters, if, on the eve of elections, the well known truth that a terrorist attck ocurred at the heart of Obama's 'no boots on the ground' victory in Libya, due to the neglected numerous cries for additional security. And the fact that it happened on the anniversary of 9/11, should have made the lack of increased security all the more glaring ..... "It's only a movie" .... Kevin Bacon had the same line as the guard of the parade in "Animal House" ..."Alli is Well ...All is Well!!", but the administration needed confirmation before letting the truth trickle out AHEAD of elections.

    July 29, 2013 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  10. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    That should've been NONTROVERSIES.

    July 29, 2013 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  11. Susan

    They both make me sick....

    July 29, 2013 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  12. Robert

    First, people need some reading comprehension skills. Spaceman said GWB could have his VP resign, then pick Condi, then GWB resigns and she is president. That could in fact happen, and HAS in fact happened with Nixon/Agnew/Ford.

    Second, the State Department asked for more money from Congress specifically for security at dangerous bases and stations, like Benghazi. Republicans said no, so the State Dept did what it could with what it had. Tragic, but not scandalous. At least not on the part of the State Dept.

    July 29, 2013 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  13. Anonymous

    @Rudy NYC

    Getoverit wrote:

    Iraq was approved by Congress, including Hillary, Benghazi was not.
    ----–
    Iraq was approved by a Republican controlled Congress acting on bad information. BTW, the Bush administration had over a dozen embassy attacks, including multiple attacks on the same locations, with heavy loss of life. Believe it or not, America remembers.

    I'm sure that all of this Benghaze, IRA rah-rah is popular with the right wing base, but it's toxic to the independents and other voters that Republicans are trying to convince to join their ranks.
    ---------–
    1. Yes, the war was voted for by a GOP led Congress and STIL DEM vited for the war as well: John Kerry, John Edwards, Hilliary Clinton to name a few. In fact Obama used the pro war vote against her during the run up to the elections in 2008.

    2. Under Clinton was the attack on the USS Cole, the attacks on several US embassies in Africa, the Kosovo air war, and the first attack on the World Trade Center. Believe it or not, some of us Americans remember.

    July 29, 2013 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  14. ed

    If she really wants to run in 2016 WHY is she associating with obama? Does Clinton actually think obama would be an ASSET for her?

    July 29, 2013 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  15. Babyboomer

    You know I really can't remember nearly this much coverage about any other President in recent history. I am quite proud of President Obama and what he has accomplished in spite of the never ending obstacles he faces every day, but seriously, every lunch, chat, hand wave, eye movement, etc., etc., etc., is not breaking political news. How about putting a laser focus on our do nothing Congress for the next year and a half. Now that would be news...

    July 29, 2013 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  16. Rudy NYC

    With Romney we'd have 4 million new jobs wrote:

    To all those Obama supporters who are unemployed or under employed ..... it is your own fault.
    ---------------
    Romney made a prediction of 4 million jobs being created during his first term while on the campaign trail. That also happens to be the exact same figure predicted by the CBO if we were to continue with Pres. Obama's current economic policies and goals, first and foremost of which was eliminating the most unaffordable of the Bush Tax Cuts.

    July 29, 2013 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  17. Larry in Houston

    probably talking about how to get warren buffet, or carlos slim to send her a Billion, (with a B) in addition to the fact that IF the 2014 mid-terms goes to the republicans, like all the way, she's not going to "throw her hat into the ring" – 'ol Hillary don't want gridlock if she is the potus. – just saying . . .

    July 29, 2013 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  18. Steveo

    @Rudy NYC

    Getoverit wrote:

    Iraq was approved by Congress, including Hillary, Benghazi was not.
    ----–
    Iraq was approved by a Republican controlled Congress acting on bad information. BTW, the Bush administration had over a dozen embassy attacks, including multiple attacks on the same locations, with heavy loss of life. Believe it or not, America remembers.

    I'm sure that all of this Benghaze, IRA rah-rah is popular with the right wing base, but it's toxic to the independents and other voters that Republicans are trying to convince to join their ranks.
    ----------
    Yes, te war was voted for by a GOP led Congress that included DEM votes: John Edwards, John Kerry, and Hilliary Clinton, to name a few. In fact Obama, used her pro war vote against her during the run up to the 2008 elections.

    2. You blame Bush for the intelligence that lead to the war BUT Congress had the same intel as did Germany, France, and England, and others

    3. Under Clinton, we had the attack on the USS Cole, attacks on American embassies in Africa, the Kosovo air war and the first attack on the World Trade Center! Sadly, most Americans DON'T remember!

    4. We have also had terror attacks under Obama, what's your point?

    July 29, 2013 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  19. george

    there is a social responsibility in the masses...........if the PEOPLE elect this characters to be our leaders...them we deserve it........ fair or not is a reflection of who we are...........and I don't feel any joy or pride in saying it.......actually is SAD

    July 29, 2013 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  20. Wake up People!

    Yeah right Willard would have created 4,000,000 jobs in 6 months! I guess you believe in the magic panties too.

    President Obama is a wonderful POTUS but imagine how much better he could be if politicians worked for the good of the country and not their political aspirations.

    The fact that so many turn their heads to these traitors is astounding, then turn around and call themselves patriots. Nothing but a bunch of dumb hicks that hate to see a black man accomplish anything. Even to the detriment of society.

    July 29, 2013 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  21. Carlos Danger

    "Deputy Press Secretary Josh Earnest said it was "largely friendship that's on the agenda for the lunch today."

    Yeah about as friendly as a meeting between Solozzo and Don Corleone...."we gotta do sumtin about dis benghazi ting and dis Wiener who is making us look bad"...

    July 29, 2013 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  22. Rudy NYC

    "I always thought that it would have been funny if right at the end of his term, Pres G. Bush Jr.’s would have had his VP quit and then picked C. Rice as his new VP. Then the Pres could have quit in his turn and Rice would have become the Pres. It would have been quite funny if a republican had been both the first female and the first black President…."

    Nowhere did the poster, nor I, say anything about a Sec. of State. The poster even stated that Rice was selected to be the VP and become president upon the president's resignation.
    --------------------–
    What position did Condoleeza Rice hold in the Bush administration? Like I said, the *most* correct answer is no.

    July 29, 2013 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  23. bcrunner

    It's nice to see two old rivals who ended burried their differences and worked for a better America. Wouldn't it be nice if the Democrats and Republicans in Congress could do the same????

    July 29, 2013 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  24. Steveo

    @Robert

    First, people need some reading comprehension skills. Spaceman said GWB could have his VP resign, then pick Condi, then GWB resigns and she is president. That could in fact happen, and HAS in fact happened with Nixon/Agnew/Ford.
    ----------
    Robert, Spaceman's scenerio would work ONLY if Condi was Speaker of the House. That position is second in line to the Presidency. Ford was in fact, Speaker of the House when Agnew resigned. Then, later as the VP he assumed the Presidency after Nixon resigned.

    July 29, 2013 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  25. Politics BS

    I just don't trust her.
    Any woman with a shred of self respect would have divorced their husband as soon as they found out he was a cheating pig. But she stood by her man for political reasons shoving all her convictions aside, so she will do it again but instead of it being herself she is fooling it will be the citizens of the USA.

    July 29, 2013 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16