December 18th, 2007
06:00 PM ET
11 years ago

Elder Bush nixes Clinton trip idea

Bill Clinton said Monday he and former President Bush would go on a diplomatic mission if Hillary Clinton became president.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former President George H.W. Bush has shot down his successor Bill Clinton’s idea of a diplomatic mission under a Hillary Clinton presidency that would send him and other notables abroad to assure other nations that “America is open for business and cooperation again.”

The move came one day after Bill Clinton made the suggestion on the campaign trail in South Carolina, in response to a question from a supporter about his wife’s “number-one priority” upon reaching the White House.

In a statement sent to CNN Tuesday afternoon, former President Bush’s chief of staff Jean Becker said that he “wholeheartedly supports the President of the United States, including his foreign policy. He has never discussed an ‘around-the-world-mission’ with either former President Bill Clinton or Sen. Clinton, nor does he think such a mission is warranted since he is proud of the role America continues to play around the world as the beacon of hope for freedom and democracy.

“President Bush is excited about several of the excellent Republican candidates running for president, and looks forward to discussing their candidacy once the Republican nominee is determined.”

–CNN's Rebecca Sinderbrand

Filed under: Bill Clinton • Hillary Clinton • President Bush
soundoff (433 Responses)
  1. Mike, Atlanta, GA

    Lots of Bush-hating losers on this board. What are you guys gonna dow with all of your mindeless hate when Bush is gone?

    December 18, 2007 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  2. c'est moi Helena, Montana

    Start parsing, Bubba...

    December 18, 2007 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  3. Rich, Fair Lawn, NJ

    "“wholeheartedly supports the President of the United States, including his foreign policy..."

    See, Bush II is just having fun with us.

    December 18, 2007 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  4. Erin in Rowayton, CT

    Mr. Clinton's plan, announced on his own, relating to Mrs. Clinton's foreign policy if president is truly amazing. What does it say about Mrs. Clinton's leadership? Is she going to be a Bill Clinton robot? And, of course, do we really have a foreign policy crisis, or is it a manufactured "crisis" – typical of pronouncements by presidental asperants? Mr. Clinton must think that the American public is really stupid. Erin

    December 18, 2007 08:08 pm at 8:08 pm |
  5. James Peterson Phoenix AZ

    The "two for the price of one routine is getting stale."Billary" is so obsessed with circumventing the 22nd admendment and returning to office, he will say and do anything. Unfortunately he is weakening Hillary's image as someone capable of handling the job on their own.

    December 18, 2007 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  6. Robert Bell, Brunswick, Georgia

    Hillary has staged another campaign event for her "Hilly Copter Trail of Tears" tour, this time carefully staging a "reunion" with her long-lost Sunday School Teacher in a firehouse in Iowa.

    The event was staged to make it appear that Clinton was "surprised" to see her old Sunday School Teacher in the firehouse. The two hugged. The Teacher, Roaslie Bentzinger, even brought a photo of Hillary's confirmation class. Not a dry eye in the house! After all these years!

    The event also provided an excellent opportunity for Hillary to expound on her religous beliefs (presumably contrasting them with Obama's). The entire staged event was started with a planted question about her faith. After Hillary exponded on her praying habits, the long-lost Sunday School Teacher came forward from the small crowd gathered.

    The problem with the event is that Hillary and Ms. Bentzinger are hardly strangers, having met at a similar campaign event in April of this year.

    Ms. Bentzinger is hardly an unknown retired Sunday School teacher living in obscurity, either. Ms. Bentzinger is a well-known regliious scholar and leader and even has a religious scholarship named after her.

    Hard to believe Clinton did not recognize her in the crowd, considering they shared BBQ together a few months earlier:

    Event Name: Senator Hillary Clinton at a BBQ Fundraiser in Fort Madison, Iowa
    Event Date: April 3, 2007
    Caption: Presidential hopeful U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., right, greets Keith Fraise, left, and Rosalie Bentzinger during a campaign stop at the rural Fort Madison, Iowa home of Eugene Fraisse on Monday, April 2, 2007. Bentzinger was Senator Clinton's Sunday School teacher when she lived in Park Ridge Il.
    Headline: Senator Hillary Clinton at a BBQ Fundraiser in Fort Madison, Iowa
    Venue: Fort Madison
    Location: Fort Madison
    Credit: Mark Hirsch/
    Item Title: Presidential hopeful U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., right, greets Keith Fraise, left, and Rosalie Bentzinger during a campaign stop at the rural Fort Madison, Iowa home of Eugene Fraisse on Monday, April 2, 2007. Bentzinger was Senator Clinton's Sunday School teacher when she lived in Park Ridge Il.

    December 18, 2007 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  7. Let's get out of the Bushes

    In a few months be sure to ask yourself if you are better off, than before Dubya's reign of terror.

    December 18, 2007 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  8. Joe teno

    Hillbilly is getting to be as fruity and out of touch with reality as Carter and Al Gore.

    December 18, 2007 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  9. joe shmoe ca

    you guys crack me up...maybe he said what he said because it was an idea they were toying around with, and bush is like yeah ummmm, no...darnit bill I told you we would talk about this later to the public...sheesh. Anywho, who gives a hoot, he said what he said, she said what she said, and bush is like I am tired of cleaning up my son's mistakes.

    December 18, 2007 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  10. Cindy, Scarsdale, NY

    I think this is a deliberate strategy. Hillary's campaign is starting to sink like a stone now that Obama's numbers are rising. The contrast between his high road tactics and her devious old-style politics couldn't be starker, and folks just don't like the ugliness in this particular campaign.

    Don't think for a moment that Bill Clinton is so stupid as to promise a major international relations initiative without having cleared it with George Bush Sr. It was just a fake claim. The Clintons wanted George Bush Sr. to disavow any such thing very publically and embarrass the Clinton camp. This is a very disingenuous ploy to have a non-Hillary reason why her Presidential bid failed "this time." It's all "Bill's fault", not Hillary's. This fable preserves her option to try again in four years.

    December 18, 2007 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  11. Sarah, Charleston, SC

    Clinton's answer was more than I could have ever hoped for!

    And since when is someone who asks a question a supporter?!?!?! I'm not!

    December 18, 2007 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  12. Dr. Robert A. Schultz, St. Augustine, FL

    Perhaps it's time for His Slickness to seek the professional psychiatric attention he has needed for so many years. His poor wife obviously should be institutionalized as well. She is truly a pathetic character.

    December 18, 2007 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  13. tanarg, Beantown, MA

    Thanks, Bill Clinton, for letting us all in on exactly how crazy you really are.

    America has always been "open for business." You and your equally sociopathic leswif have a warped perception.

    By the way, when did you stop Arkaniciding people?

    December 18, 2007 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  14. Anonymous

    Hillary '08

    December 18, 2007 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  15. AlanD Philadelphia

    RE: Posted By Ca Native : December 18, 2007 2:58 pm

    "He has never discussed an ‘around-the-world-mission’ with either former President Bill Clinton or Sen. Clinton"

    Someone is lying. Either Bill Clinton or GHW-Bush about this.

    WHY does it always end-up into a he-said, she-said when the Clintons are involved?"

    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,"
    Check it out for yourself...

    December 18, 2007 08:34 pm at 8:34 pm |
  16. Janette

    I can't help but chime in again.

    Former President Clinton tried unsuccessfully to help his wife's campaign. Sadly, he made "undecided" voters wonder about the legitimacy of her candidacy. Certainly his remarks about former President Bush joining him as ambassadors for the U.S., were premature, at best, and embarrassing for the Clinton campaign.

    His remarks simply underline my decision to not vote for his wife. I'd prefer Obama first, but would vote for anyone other than Hillary in the general election.

    Think, people, think!!

    December 18, 2007 08:36 pm at 8:36 pm |
  17. Don, Orange, CA

    I love how people say how stupid W is. How retarded he is, how bad he did in school. Thing is...if he is so stupid and retarded, then why does he keep winning? two elections won, and yes, it was proved that he did in fact win, Iraq funding secured, Economy doing well, no attacks on the US soil, outrageous liberal legislation vetoed, etc...yet people still scream how he is so stupid. I mean really, how can such a stupid person cause so much grief within the Dem party? How can such a stupid person keep the democrats at bay for 8 years? And if he is so stupid, then what does that say about the Dems that voted for Iraq that said they were duped into voting? Even Hillary admitted she was tricked (paraphrase) into voting for Iraq before she was against it, but not really against it, until Bill siad he was against it from the start, wait, no thats not accurate either. I cant keep track of those two. How can such a stupid person fool such supposedly smart liberals? Maybe he isnt so stupid afterall and actually has the Dems by the balls?? How else do you explain their support for the wiretapping, the war, etc...and now they even capitulated with the Omnibus bill that meets the Presidents funding levels?
    wow, amazing how stupid he is.

    December 18, 2007 08:36 pm at 8:36 pm |
  18. Bruce Forgan, Plano Texas

    Maybe president Bush and Mr. Bill can stop off on the way to Europe for a quick visit to see Mr. Bill's daughter and try to explain/repair the damage Mr. Bill did to his family, and the nation, by lying about getting a BJ in the oval office with a 20 something intern.

    Senator Clinton can moderate. She certainly must have a lot of experience in THESE matters of state.

    What a \di-'skràs\
    1. to humiliate by showing a superior showing
    2. to be a source of shame to
    3. to cause to lose favor or standing

    December 18, 2007 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  19. Michele Punta Gorda FL

    Why is anyone surprised by this notion?
    Bill will do anything (???) to get Hillary elected...therefore he will have access to more White House Interns. On a crazier note, she could ask Bill to be her VP...then she could see her demise and Bill will once again be our US President! Sure, another vast Right Wing Conspiracy.

    December 18, 2007 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  20. Alfred Stegelman, Conroe, TX

    Bill Clinton isn't fit to clean the doggy dirt off of the elder Bush's shoes. What a toad. What a piece of garbage. What a CONVICTED LIAR!

    December 18, 2007 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  21. Jack A Ports.NH

    A Clinton lying, or stretching the truth? Anyone NOT surprised????

    December 18, 2007 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |
  22. 5 cent

    Is it Hill or Bill running for pres?
    It seems its Bill from what he sez.
    He keeps opening his lips
    And won't take the tip
    That his wife wants him to give it a rest!

    December 18, 2007 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  23. Tom, Cville, VA

    This was a foolish remark by Clinton. He doesn't slip up very often in terms of political strategy, but he blew this one.

    December 18, 2007 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  24. Fezziwig

    Hillary Clinton is still a candidate? What an ego. She's not only deplorable. She's also unelectable!

    December 18, 2007 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  25. chuck jones

    Excuse me but shouldn't have the liar, the former impeached, disgraced president have waited until after the election and then asked GHWBush if he wanted to go on a toot across the globe with him? It's too bad the clinton's have to go through a messy campaign...gee whiz, what's the matter with you people. Let's stick them in the White House today, why wait for a measly election. I'm glad GHWBush shot this stupid idea's ain't happening!!!! Sheeeeeesh, I am so fed up with the clintons...

    December 18, 2007 09:05 pm at 9:05 pm |
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