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. Dano, Seattle, WA

    Begone with all of you's. You've done enough damage already fer cryin' out loud. Just go away-so we don't have to see you or hear you anymore!

    December 18, 2007 03:05 am at 3:05 am |
  2. Lindy, Houston Texas

    What an odd suggestion. Geo HW Bush working with a HRC presidency from the inception ? What will the DLC led democrats have to give in exchange? Triangulation at work here or just an effort to look bipartisan ?

    I am reminded of the late, great, Molly Ivins' comment in 12/06 –

    "I's like to make it clear to the people who run the Democatic Party that I will not support Hillary Clinton for president."

    "Enough. Enough Triangulation, calculation and equivocation. Enough clever straddling. Enough not offending anyone."

    I agree with Molly. It's time to support a democrat who is free from such "clever straddling".
    Edwards 08

    December 18, 2007 03:09 am at 3:09 am |
  3. Matt, Phoenix AZ

    I never understood why people think Bill Clinton is some kind of political genius. He is very easy to read. He and Hillary are visibly dishonest people. People who support them must not have any street smarts.

    December 18, 2007 03:14 am at 3:14 am |
  4. bob

    So, this is Hillary's secret weapon in foreign diplomacy? I can't wait until Obama gets a chance to comment on this one.

    Hillary, I have some advice for you. Send your hubby on some kind of mission to Africa or Bangladesh or where ever they need help for the next year. Have him do colorful photo ops with smiling faces and raise money for good causes.

    And, if you can, find a way to shut him up. In case you haven't noticed, he's become your worst enemy.

    December 18, 2007 03:15 am at 3:15 am |
  5. S. Darby, Sand Springs, OK

    NO WAY! Enough of the bushes ~ all of them. The old man isn't much better than dubya. Skull & Bones and head of CIA and that's good? I had about decided I wouldn't vote for Hillary but now I pledge NOT to vote for her. I don't care if the democrats don't win if this is the best she can come up with. What crap.

    December 18, 2007 03:17 am at 3:17 am |
  6. pk

    Obama? Please, his mentor is 'bipartisan' Joe Lieberman, one of the worst politicians in Congress. If that's the kind of 'leadership' Obama intends to emulate I'll pass.

    December 18, 2007 03:21 am at 3:21 am |
  7. David Franklin

    Why would the first President Bush help the lying and corrupt Clintons?

    Hillary is toast. She can't improve her already darkened image. She can't be elected and what kind of scandals of the day can we expect from her? More FBI files found? More firing of career employees who get in her way to help her financial supporters? More furniture stolen?

    She is bad for America!

    December 18, 2007 03:26 am at 3:26 am |
  8. Mike Smith Houston, TX

    Haven't we had enough of the clintons & bushes?

    And you women that plan on voting for hillary... There are 150,000,000 women in the USA. Is she the best you can do???

    December 18, 2007 03:26 am at 3:26 am |
  9. jenna jonz, riverside, ca

    She screwed up the interview with MSNBC David Gregory. This is the fall of the first domino. NO wonder she is crying..she knows the end is near.

    December 18, 2007 03:29 am at 3:29 am |
  10. Jason, Chicago, IL

    I see Bill saying this and I wonder: would he serve if President Obama asked him? Would he be willing to travel to foreign countries with HW under an Obama Administration? I would love for someone to ask him that and watch him squirm and weasel out of answering, just as his wife would do.

    December 18, 2007 03:30 am at 3:30 am |
  11. Jaik , chicago, IL

    Well of course, since Hillary is a Republican that's no suprise.

    December 18, 2007 03:41 am at 3:41 am |
  12. Marc on Call Creek, Fleetwood,NC

    If a Latin American country were run by the same two families for (possibly)TWENTY-EIGHT years America would invade in orr to "liberate" them!
    EDWARDS '08

    December 18, 2007 03:43 am at 3:43 am |
  13. Fiery, Rocky Mountains, Colorado

    It looks like Slick Willie is drinking his own kool aid!

    December 18, 2007 03:47 am at 3:47 am |
  14. Lorraine Maust Lynnwood WA

    If the Presidents father is going to stab his son in the back like this he should be so ashamed of himself. I can't believe this is true, but if it is all it means is H.W. Bush has sold out to the Clintons and the left and we should be VERY afraid. George W has kept this country from being attacked again for almost 8 years,What is wrong with Bush senior? or is he just to old now, and Clinton is just to sick, these old guys should just shut up and play golf, (they don't even do THAT well. )
    Lorraine Maust

    December 18, 2007 03:50 am at 3:50 am |
  15. jane fallows, Ventura, CA

    I for one am sick and tired of all the Clinton bashing. It goes on, and on, and on. Give it up, people. Deal with the issues that confront the nation and who offers the best solutions. Stop personally defaming and demonizing those with whom you disagree politically.

    If two former presidents can be drafted to help this country move forward, that's fine with me. More power to them.

    And to CNN and other media – grow up. Stop fixating on haircuts and cleavage and how candidates laugh, or clap, or sigh. Examine and explain their proposals and policies, and how they would affect voters interests, if implemented.

    Are there no adult journalists out there?

    December 18, 2007 03:50 am at 3:50 am |
  16. Larry Jay, Austin TX

    Uh... CensoredByCNN,
    Where in the U.S. constitution does it say it is the President's jobs to take care of people after a bad storm ?
    What it DOES say, is anything not covered by the document is automatically a STATE'S responsibility...

    December 18, 2007 03:53 am at 3:53 am |
  17. Susanne Philadelphia, PA

    Does President Clinton also plan to include/expand his "new" Diplomatic Club to include George W. Bush? What a shock it would be to have President George W Bush endorse Mrs. Clinton!

    December 18, 2007 03:56 am at 3:56 am |
  18. Johnbo

    Looks like one of the requirements for being a spokesman for the Republicans is to be able to spout nonesense with a straight face and to live in an eternal state of denial.

    The sad fact is it's going to take years if not generations to repair the damage done by the most arrogant, incompetent, and criminal presidency in modern U.S. history. Clinton and Bush traveling together might be a small step but I wonder if ANYONE with the Bush name will be welcome in the world.

    December 18, 2007 04:06 am at 4:06 am |
  19. William, Chattanooga TN

    Wow! This has officially confirmed all my suspicions. The two political parties are one in the same. They are simply playing the people for fools. The political profession for them, is about the same as a pyramid scheme. It's almost like calling a psychic hotline. You pay them money to have them say what you want to hear through campaign contributions and support, but in all actuality they dont care one bit about what is important to Americans.
    Lets not have America represented any longer by such horrible people. I say vote for ANYONE besides Hillary,Huckabee,Obama,Romney. Avoid these BIG NAME politicans. We need someone who is more like a normal person, and not a professional liar.

    December 18, 2007 04:06 am at 4:06 am |
  20. Mr. Alligator, San Francisco, CA

    Watching the Iowa meltdown of Hilary is more fun than Howdy Doody Time was in the 50's... Do they actually think telling us that a Bush will fix things if Hilary gets in will make us want to vote for her? Sometimes when you become desparate and panicky you become irrational. Billy's statement exhibits just how delusional the Hilary campaign has become.

    December 18, 2007 04:12 am at 4:12 am |
  21. rewhowes, KC, MO

    classic woman thing to say (marvene Bowles). This conversation is not even about "hurting females". Thats why all men should be opposed to women in office because it will be another power trip to show men that women are what??? Men too? Please... stop the victim mentality. Yes, women are the crown of God's creation, but still the weaker vessel. Get over it and learn to trust and not become bitter and independant

    December 18, 2007 04:21 am at 4:21 am |
  22. Mike in NY

    GHWB has of last week stated that he would "NEVER VOTE" for Hillary. "Bill Cliton" a gift that keeps on giving. It's great for Xmas for all the poor kids.

    December 18, 2007 04:33 am at 4:33 am |
  23. Dan Gardner, Henderson NV

    This guy needs to go away.......

    The complete arroghance and nerve to make a comment like's almost as bad as Hillary's entitlement to the Whitehouse because it's her turn. I really think I'm going to vomit....

    I'm a Republican, don't know who I'm going to support, but atleast Obama isn't a robot with poll tested ideas and a sense of entitlement.

    The Clinton's aren't public servants, they only exist to serve themselves and their grandiose self images. Their marriage is a fraud, Bill is a pathological liar and manipulator and so is his wife. How people like that haven't turned on one another yet is what amazes me.....

    December 18, 2007 04:34 am at 4:34 am |
  24. Ralph Bianco Scottsdale, Arizona

    It is apparent that Bill and Hillary are running out of straws and will say or do anything to further their interests (What else is new?). But to unilaterally invoke the participation of the senior George Bush to "repair the damage" done by his son, G.W. Bush, is grandstanding and utter nonsense. Comments like this are another glaring example of why no Clinton need occupy the White House ever again.

    December 18, 2007 04:37 am at 4:37 am |
  25. michael, woodland hills ca

    What a lame comment from the RNC. Besides the obvious (that the president in 2009 is NOT going to be a Republican), why is it that these knuckleheads seem to think that "keeping our nation safe" and "cooperating with the rest of the world" are mutually exclusive?

    They're not. Quite the opposite, in fact: the only way to keep our country safe is to adopt a foreign policy which unites the world, as opposed to George Bush's policies, which have had the effect of uniting the world against us. I appears that only the Democrats understand this simple fact.

    As for the story itself, I don't think that George, Sr. is the right man to try to mitigate his son's failed legacy. It is a great bit of politics for Bill Clinton to name-drop him, though. Junior is going to be enraged when he hears about this. It's like the story of Oedipus, only in reverse.

    December 18, 2007 04:41 am at 4:41 am |
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