December 18th, 2007
10:20 AM ET
10 years ago

Bill Clinton: George H.W. Bush will help President Hillary

Bill Clinton said former president George H.W. Bush will help fix damage done to America's reputation by his son, George W. Bush.

ORANGEBURG, South Carolina (CNN) - Former President Bill Clinton said Monday that the first thing his wife Hillary will do when she reaches the White House is dispatch him and his predecessor, President George H.W. Bush, on an around-the-world mission to repair the damage done to America's reputation by the current president - Bush's son, George W. Bush.

"Well, the first thing she intends to do, because you can do this without passing a bill, the first thing she intends to do is to send me and former President Bush and a number of other people around the world to tell them that America is open for business and cooperation again," Clinton said in response to a question from a supporter about what his wife's "number one priority" would be as president.

A spokesman for the George H. W. Bush said Tuesday afternoon the former president supports his son's foreign policy and has "never discussed an ‘around-the-world-mission’ with either former President Bill Clinton or Sen. Clinton." (Click here for the full statement)

Clinton and the elder Bush, rivals in the 1992 presidential election, have grown chummy in recent years, often traveling and appearing at public events together. In 2005, they started a charity to help victims of Hurricane Katrina.

UPDATE: The Republican National Committee issued this statement in response to Clinton's comments:

"In 2009, a Republican president will be working with our friends and allies abroad to continue to keep our nation safe," said RNC spokesman Danny Diaz. "The American people expect our leaders - both current and former - to present serious solutions to the very real challenges confronting our nation."

- CNN South Carolina Producer Peter Hamby

soundoff (836 Responses)
  1. Roger, Clarendon Hills, IL

    If I hear the word 'Islamicfascism' one more time I'm gonna puke. The world knows there is way more to Global Foreign Policy of which Global Terrorism is just a SMALL part of. Even George H.W. Bush knew that. Honestly we've shamed the legacy of Reagan and Goldwater.

    December 18, 2007 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  2. Ron, Forest Lake,MN

    Our former presidents have no class when they lambast GW the guy has more inner strength than all of them put together, he has done a class act under so much criticism.

    December 18, 2007 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  3. Roxanne Rosas, Placentia, CA

    Bill Clinton was criticized for not being active enough in stopping terror. Bush, Jr. is criticized for rushing in to stop terror without getting all the facts.

    Hillary isn't the greatest choice to be the first female president.

    Obama seems a little too inexperienced.

    No one is perfect.

    It looks like we've got no great choices once again in this election so we're all gonna have to pick the lesser of two evils... again! But how great is it that Bush, Sr. and Bill are agreeing on Bush, Jr's awful job.

    December 18, 2007 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  4. RJP3

    Lets see a Republican was President for almost a year when 9/11 happened.
    A Democrat (Jimmy Carter)negotiated the release of the of the Iranian Hostages in the 1970's. (An Republicans arranged for their release to be DELAYED to support the LIE that Reagan had anything to do with it.)
    The Republicans and their supporters are not TRUE Americans. And they are innept and destroy the country financially everytime they come to power. Just facts.

    December 18, 2007 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  5. Stig, Wichita Falls, Texas

    Can we please have someone other than a Bush or Clinton. Come on people, we've had one or the other for 20 years, it's time for new faces. Send Hillary home for good.

    December 18, 2007 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  6. Kevin, Hudson IL

    This is a major issue. No doubt that repairing our reputation around the world is important but I would place before it the absolute necessity to correct the selling out of the American people by our elected representatives in congress. Decades ago our representatives (both sides of the aisle) sold the people out to the highest bidder and the corporations now rule the roost. Let's start with term limits. That my friends should be our primary focus ...I might add in parallel wiht the urgency of our global environmental issues. The American Electorate is asleep at the wheel...or better yet abdicated this to big money interests long ago.

    December 18, 2007 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  7. Nathan, New York

    Any Democrat in the WH will open us up for terrorist attack, and weaken our sovranty!

    Posted By David, Layton, Utah : December 18, 2007 2:57 am

    Uh, would that be soveriegnty you meant there, skipper? Any Republican in the White House will open us up for four more years of bad grammar.

    December 18, 2007 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  8. Melissa - Tennessee

    I agree, there is a pattern developing. We need strong leadership that is different from the past several years. As a woman, I would be embarrassed to have Hilary as our first female president. Does anyone really think the the Islamic leaders will respect her? She is no Margret Thatcher. What about all the real estate scandals? Why didn't she fire the aid who planted questions? I will vote for whoever is NOT Hilary. I have no respect for her and do not one to tell my children one day that this was the best we could do for a famale president.

    December 18, 2007 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  9. Mike, Westport CT

    You must be kidding!!! The current president is a traitor and a liar. Now we are going to send his father who is in bed with the Saudis on a good will trip??? Are Americans crazy!?? Bush former should go back under the rock he crawled out from under.
    As for Clinton, he is politics as usual too. Both these guys need to disappear. If another Clinton gets elected, then America, you get what you deserve. I couldn't be more fed up with the people of this country. We have a $@#(load of problems to solve, and guess what? The Bushes and Clintons have been at the wheel for the last twenty years. They are the cause of the mess we are in now. Americans need a sharp kick in the ass if they want more of this!

    December 18, 2007 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  10. Ed, Austin, TX

    And enough with the "afraid of a woman in charge" feminist nonsense! If we cloned a younger, American-born Margaret Thatcher to run on the Republican ticket, she'd trounce Mrs. Clinton (or B. Hussein Obama) in a landslide of Reagan/Mondale proportions...even with all the trashing she would have to endure from the NYTimes, ABC, NBC, CBS, NPR, PBS, TIME, 60 Minutes, DailyKos,, George Clooney, Al Franken, Bruce Springsteen, Teddy Kennedy, Larry Flynt, Rosy O’Donnell, etc., etc.

    And, let's also get off the 2 dynasties bandwagon. There is no Bush running for president now or in the foreseeable future. Jeb certainly is lukewarm on the idea. Especially compared to Mrs. Clinton, who has spent her entire life running, right down to her business-arrangement marriage to Bill. She is the only dynastic issue in '08. Bottom line, she is a stunningly dishonest political opportunist with a core belief system centered on radical leftist concepts mixed with a love for fascistic big-government control over our lives. She is also a self-anointed elitist who has remarkable disdain for her constituents and sycophants. Throw in the well-documented and unparalleled Clinton corruption...well, do we really want 4 years of this? Even more to the point, can the country survive another Clinton presidency? We barely did the first. (and save your revisionist history of the Clinton years for those with 2-digit IQ’s and/or spend their evenings viewing ‘reality’ TV).

    December 18, 2007 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  11. Dan Holland, Huntsville Alabama

    I think it's too bad that Colleen Powell got fed up with this kind of polictical trash. I would vote for him as president in a heart beat and he certainly has as much experience as any one of the "wanna-be's" going on the ticket for 08'.

    December 18, 2007 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  12. Ken, Suitland MD

    Well let's see we have the new-world-order wackos chiming in, and plenty of Bush-Clinton conspiracy theorists, and then we have those that think our constitution is only meant for "easy" times.....a quick path to security by ignoring our values, a position held by the very people who wrap themselves in the never-to-be-questioned constitution when it suits their feeble arguments. Goodbye constitution indeed, you hypocrits.

    The Hillary haters are incredible (i.e. literally, not credible). Please document the so-called lies, or whatever else is eating at you. Just repeating it over and over doesn't make it so.....the repeating lies-as-truth scheme is status quo for you [R]s, but you [D]s that are following this line should be aware that you are no better than the Bushie [R]s by doing so. Shame!!!

    And I like the repeated falsehood that somehow all [D]s are soft on security. Why is this...becasue they wouldn't denigrate our constitutional rights as an easy way out of a complicated problem? Security?....please pay attention now right-wingers: the bottom line is that 9/11 happened on YOUR watch, and the subsequent decisions and policies of your King Bush has only made things worse, including our security. The next [D] president will work to make things better, even as you shrill rodents on the right scream out your hate. And if its Hillary, so much the better, because I will love hearing how things are so bad from people who's lot in the world will improve under her administration.

    We've had 7-8 years of dominate [R] power and "leadership" in DC. Just where has that gotten us? And all we hear as an explanation for the abject FAILURE from the right-wingers is that its the [D]s fault, especially Bill Clinton. BooHoo....this from the party who preaches taking personal responsibility!?? And these dingbats even have some of you [D]s convinced.....if you are so mentally lame as to fall for this demagoguery, you should look into the [R] just might be the right kind of intellectually light-weight party for you!

    December 18, 2007 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  13. South Carolina

    I sure am tired of all these Bush's and Clinton's.

    December 18, 2007 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  14. Michael O. Kreps Las Vegas, Nevada

    What is wrong with the elder Bush? He has become friends with Clinton who constantly trashes his son. Is he sick?

    December 18, 2007 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  15. Robert, Houston, TX

    This story only demonstrates another reason GHW Bush was sent packing. W has more sense than his Dad with regard to the Clintons.
    Hanging will Bill gets you dirty. As to Bill: let's see. He sent Algore to Russia with $50 billion to install a market economy and the former USSR now has two new ICBMs, one of which it claims will evade ABMs. Then Bill allowed his minion Jimmy Carter to negotiate the disastrous deal that provided Kim Jong Il with nuke technology, and ensured Red Chinese companies would control both ends of the Panama Canal and other strategic facilities in the US.
    W has my respect and has done a good job. His main failings were that he never cleaned the Quislings out of the State Department or expanded the military after Clinton cut it by 40% in the 90s. Most serious is failing to understand the importance of Genesis 12:1-3 with regard to the Middle East.

    December 18, 2007 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  16. Jack Meoffe

    clinton is:

    December 18, 2007 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  17. RealityBytes, NYC, NY

    Former President Clinton's Improv/Statemanship is Elvis, no wait, WC Fields like. Imagine Bill Clinton as a NYC Greyline bus tour guide where everything he utters is made up & bought as gospel by the tourists. It may make for a great SNL sketch. Unfortunately, CNN et al continue to perpetrate this fraud as credible.

    December 18, 2007 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  18. Andy Sacolaro Indio, California

    Here it is, people.

    If this does not conclusively show that the Clintons and Bushes are intimately connected, and are part of the exact same power cabal, I don't know what does.

    Just like when they ran their little drug dealing and terrorist arming operation known as Iran/Contra, now George Bush, Sr. and Bill get to partner up once again to ensure that America, the republic, is finally extinguished forever and replaced with a corporate-fascist police state which will lead the world on the march towards a one world empire.

    Could this be any clearer?

    There is NO DIFFERENCE between Republicrats and Democans-both parties have been completely compromised and corrupted.
    They represent no interests but their own and could care less about the people of this country.

    The consolidation of the global empire is their only goal.

    Wake up, America.
    It is time to stop the endless "us vs. them" culture war that has allowed the elite to divide us into two easily conquerable divisions.
    The terms "democrat" and "republican" mean nothing to those in Washington.
    It is all power and money-party affiliation means nothing.

    Break the endless cycle of Bush/Clinton domination!

    December 18, 2007 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  19. Kathryn - Metairie, LA

    I'm afraid Bush, Sr. will have his work cut out for him! His son is a terminal idiot, and I don't care whom I would be, in relation to him, Little Georgey would have to suffer the consequences of his stinking legacy.

    December 18, 2007 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  20. S. Wright

    Our reputation is only damaged by folks like Mr. Clinton and his ilk who never seem to be at a loss for words in crapping all over our country, and never having the guts to do it at home.

    Maybe Mr. Clinton should take a look at both France and Germany: two nations with Socialist governments who worked like crazy against us at the UN, and now whose governments have ideologies that closely mirror our own.

    To state that the people of a nation reflect their government is against everything Thomas Paine ever stated. The peoples of all nations are a lot closer than these Socialist/New World Order types like to believe.

    December 18, 2007 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  21. lisa, New York, NY

    We think we're a democracy [which we are] but you figure with democracy we would have more diversity in leadership...

    December 18, 2007 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  22. Jim Ithaca NY

    Oh Lord god, Please Enough of the Clintons and the Bush..we need change..No More under the cover covert spending of my tax $.. I sware to lord god I will move out of the usa

    December 18, 2007 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  23. Kiz, Bear, DE.

    Old Man Bush is as bad as Duyba...Waiting for the old geezer to kick it.

    December 18, 2007 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  24. Glenn, McKinney,TX

    OPEN FOR BUSINESS??? When has that NOT been the case? Even immediately after 9/11, Bush pleaded with us to get out there and shop while he conspired to invade Iraq...

    DEMOCRACY HAS BEEN "CONSUMERED" BY CAPITALISM. Sold to the highest bidder; everything must go. Skip the replay of "It's the Economy, stupid"'s about representing the people!!!

    Could it be any plainer that there is NO DIFFERENCE between Republicans and Democrats now? Republicans were smart enough to include a few Democrats with their secrets. That's why the Democrats in Congress haven't changed a thing. And why the waterboarding video was destroyed and investigations are stalled/non-productive. They are in this quagmire together having decided that WE CANNOT HANDLE THE TRUTH.

    Forget experience. What we need now is some COMMON SENSE and an HONEST EFFORT to respresent THE PEOPLE (not big business).

    December 18, 2007 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  25. JC, Topeka, Kansas

    Yes, its now time for the bigots to chime in, they can not stand partisan politics, and when a bipartisan effort is talked about they can not stand that either.

    This nation has become a nation of hate. Former Presidents, world leaders, that actually were respected around the world. Former Presidents of different political beleifs working in harmony for one cause, the United States, how shocking.

    The only disgraced President I see in the mix, florence jones, san diego, ca : December 18, 2007 2:54 am is the current President who is how do you say, not invited to the party.

    As a life long Repulblican, I shall be voting Clinton.

    December 18, 2007 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
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