December 18th, 2007
06:00 PM ET
9 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. Simon, IA

    Rest assured, Bush 41 will do the trip once Hillary is President. Right now, they have to issue such press releases as part of party obligations.

    Even McCain and Powell will do that trip. They are all respectable individuals who know Hillary is strong and diplomatic.

    December 18, 2007 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  2. theprofessional

    Former President Bill Clinton getting called out on lying by another former President? How is this not the biggest story of the day?

    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.
    .....
    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."

    December 18, 2007 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  3. Jim Topeka, Kansas

    I doubt that if asked HW Bush would refuse a request from the President of the United States any more than Clinton refused to help GW after Katernia.

    I feel that Clinton has a viable idea and that he just jumped the gun on this one and blind sided HW, with public attention that HW was not anticipating.

    December 18, 2007 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  4. barbara,lowell,ma

    Just the same way I will nix her this elections. I will not be fooled by this power hungery woman and get stuck the rest of my life....

    December 18, 2007 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  5. Peter Lombardo, San Francisco, CA

    The elder Bush is too much of a gentleman, and has too much class to say what he really thinks about Clinton's suggestion. Pity. I wish he would tell everyone what a narcissistic jerk Clinton is.

    December 18, 2007 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  6. Brian, Chicago, IL

    Just cannot understand this. Hillary and Bill Clinton had all the chances in the White House for 8 full years to do something about HealthCare. But both FAILED miserably in getting it done. Period. So this new slogan of Agent of change by her campign is just plain dud, LIE and fooling Americans. Are the democrats so stupid not to see through the hoax of Hillary? Both Bill and Hillary were once in the WhiteHouse, don't forget, they had their chance already, while others did not. So why give another chance to the same Failed duo? Let us put up someone more capable to get things done for the country. Not Hillary and not Bill, who desparately wants to sneak in. When was the last time a Former President of USA got so involved in primaries for his wife, and attacked other honest democrats????

    December 18, 2007 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  7. Karen, NYC

    hahahahahahahaha.....

    another lie Bill is caught in.

    Thanks Bill for a wonderful year!

    December 18, 2007 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  8. Jacob, South Carolina

    LIAR
    I see now this is what we can expect from Hillary.
    You and your wife are done.

    December 18, 2007 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  9. Big Bill, Boise, Idaho

    BRING IT ON!

    HILLARY 2008/2012!

    SO MANY TERRIBLE THINGS WILL BE MADE RIGHT!

    December 18, 2007 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  10. The Great William Wallace

    To quote Nelson Muntz, "Haa Haaaaa."

    December 18, 2007 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  11. Mike

    Former President Bush basically stated that 'he is proud of the role America continues to play around the world as the beacon of hope for freedom and democracy"

    This is his main reason not to 'support such a mission', he cannot admit his son made such a mess. Also, any favorable comment would be interpreted like supporting a Democrat in the WH, so it was nothing else to expect as response. Bill Clinton has simply challenged him, but the older Bush is what it is : a Republican.

    December 18, 2007 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  12. John Smith in America

    Well it was nice of Bill to cross party lines and go to Katrina and India as an ambassador of good will for George Dubya.

    But Bush the first, a Republican only looks out for his party. Not surprised one bit.

    December 18, 2007 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  13. Kevin, Port Orange, Florida

    Just shows you exactly how the Bush family is nothing more than bunch of dirtbags!! They would sell their own country for a dollar...oh wait...they have already done that. Dirtbags one and all!!!

    December 18, 2007 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  14. Brian, Atlanta, GA

    I voted for Bill Clinton in '92 & '96 but I can honestly say that I will never vote for Hillary Clinton. If she is the nominee, I will simply stay home. I simply want to have a democratic nominee that I can trust and be proud to call "our" president.

    Does this country want to wake up to more lies, triangulation, and further control of special interests?

    December 18, 2007 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  15. Ivan, Chicago, Illinois

    OF COURSE HE WOULDN'T GO, THAT WOULD MEAN ADMITTING THE FAILURE OF HIS SON AS PRESIDENT.

    December 18, 2007 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  16. Steve, Huntington Beach CA

    Fast forward 2 years and we'll see Dad and Bill doing the tour for sure. He may not care so much for the horrible impact dubya has had on this country, but the family name....oh no!! He needs to do everything he can to make the Bush name only a sad joke in the archives of history, rather than the retarded straw that broke America's back.

    December 18, 2007 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  17. Billie, Fredericksburg, Texas

    Is JD, Syracuse, NY suggesting that a Billary election is equivalent to the Katrina & India Disasters and the US will need a Bush to help recover?
    He may be on to something there.

    December 18, 2007 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  18. Paula, Mobile, AL

    Hey Mark from Shreveport ... since when is infidelity a serious offense in this country? And what makes you think it's acceptable outside of this country? Have you even ever left Shreveport? Obviously not. Oh and incidentally, it is however a serious offense to have taken this country down the path that Papa Bush's idiot son has. Now that is a serious offense.

    December 18, 2007 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  19. Pat,IN

    These people are really frightening. Their "media control" is only because they have plenty to hide. If God forbid Hillary gets elected one of the first things she will do is bring back the "fairness doctrine" to silence talk radio and we will be on our way to a dictatorship. There is more than enough reasons from the last time in power for Hillary to be rejected outright let alone be given the Democratic spot in 08.

    December 18, 2007 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  20. James, New Haven, CT

    So what?

    It sounds to me like hysterical Republicans, knowing that their crushing defeat is imminent, are desperate to try and blow the most trivial things up into some sort of scandal.

    Obviously (to anyone who has followed the news) Bill Clinton has many times responded to Bush 43's calls to help out with Katrina/Tsunami relief etc. I think that Bush 41, if called upon by the next Democratic President, will respond in kind.

    Clinton has floated the idea of various notables (including perhaps Bush 41) being enlisted as unofficial goodwill ambassadors if Hillary is elected. Obviously, it depends on Hillary being elected, and it isn't going to happen until 2009 anyway.

    Did anyone expect Bush 41 to commit two years in advance to something that may never happen anyway?

    This is a scandal in the same way that hysterical far-right republicans made a huge deal out of "Travel Gate"

    December 18, 2007 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  21. Silver Spring, MD

    Did his wife go around cleaning up her adulteress husband’s image?
    She sided with him against the women who were abused, (so much for women’s dignity).
    It is dim-witted of Bill to think a father going against son.

    December 18, 2007 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  22. John C Marietta, GA

    I doubt that if asked HW Bush would refuse a request from the President of the United States any more than Clinton refused to help GW after Katernia.

    I feel that Clinton has a viable idea and that he just jumped the gun on this one and blind sided HW, with public attention that HW was not anticipating.

    Exactly! Bush senior say he will not help America and the story is Bill Clinton assumed he would. Today's Republican party has sunk so low it is amazing! Priceless example: "How about we elect a President who WON'T inspire the worst in people, who WON'T encourage partisan bickering?

    That would mean wipe out all the republican party, that is the only way to stop the partisan Bickering. We hate Hillory so don;t elect her so we can all get along? These people are nuts! No president in history has been investigated more with no tangable results than Bill Clinton. The hatred from the right is unprecidented. COntrast that with the criminal incompetant we have now. No president in history has deserved investigation and gotten so little as this idiot. Yeah BIll Clinton lied about sex and Heroge Bush Lied about treason, Scooter libby lied and commited treason. Scooter got off beacuse lying about betraying your country is not as big a deal as lying to a republican with hunt about sex. Republicans should be ashamed, they have earned it!

    December 18, 2007 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  23. Paul,derry,NH

    Read the book "Rules for Radicals" by Saul Alinsky – it's the Clinton/liberal playbook – Uh-oh, here he comes!

    December 18, 2007 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  24. Kyle, Columbia SC

    SEE BILL YOU ARE JUST TALKING!!! TELLING THE A WHITE LIE!! Did you even ask the elder Bush before you put him on the spot like that? NO! Why? Because you'll tell folks anything to get them to vote for your wife. You should be ashame of yourself to put a REPUBLICAN hanging on bait for your wife. When I first read this I was like "WOW!! Impressive! How did Bush sign off on this?" But now I see it didn't even go down like that you went out a limb and Bush broke the branch.

    December 18, 2007 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  25. S.L. Shipley

    “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.” – COME ON – LET'S GET REAL. DOES HE THINK WE WERE ALL
    BORN YESTERDAY?

    December 18, 2007 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
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