Obama team claims 'absolute confidence' in Clinton speech
September 4th, 2012
12:58 PM ET
10 years ago

Obama team claims 'absolute confidence' in Clinton speech

(CNN) – President Barack Obama's campaign said Tuesday they had no qualms about what former President Bill Clinton might say in his speech at the Democratic National Convention, despite not having seen his remarks a day before he's scheduled to deliver them in Charlotte.

"President Clinton has been in close contact with campaign, he's working on his remarks, and when he's done I'm sure we'll see them," Obama campaign press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters aboard Air Force One. "We have absolute confidence about what he's going to say. Who better to deliver a message to the American people about the choice between Obama and Romney-Ryan?"

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Democrats are confident Clinton can help woo voters who remember a healthy economy that existed during his administration. Clinton remains the most popular ex-president, and his wife, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, gets consistently high marks for her performance in Obama's administration.

But Clinton doesn't always stay on message when advocating for Obama, including in May when he called Mitt Romney's business career "sterling" in an interview with CNN's Piers Morgan.

In the interview, Clinton said there was no question Romney was capable of performing the "essential functions" of the presidency, adding: "The man who has been governor and had a sterling business career crosses the qualification threshold."

Romney's campaign has used the clip in promoting their candidate, and recently launched a website, sterlingbusinesscareer.com, that highlights the GOP presidential nominee's economic credentials.

And Clinton's convention speeches haven't all been home runs. His speech introducing 1988 Democratic nominee Michael Dukakis was panned for being long-winded and boring, though his remarks as a presidential nominee were more warmly received.

The relationship between Obama and Clinton remained frosty long after the 2008 Democratic primary contest, which saw a bitter series of attacks between then-Sen. Obama and Hillary Clinton, who was also running for the presidential nomination.

Obama and Bill Clinton seemed to repair their relationship following the 2010 midterm elections, which gave Democrats a drubbing and allowed Republicans to take control of the House of Representatives.

Clinton currently stars in a television spot for the Obama campaign, drawing a comparison between the president's economic plan and the measures proposed by his GOP rivals.

"This is a clear choice. The Republican plan is to cut more taxes on upper income people and go back to deregulation. That's what got us in trouble in the first place," Clinton says in the ad. "President Obama has a plan to rebuild America from the ground up, investing in innovation, education, and job training. It only works if there is a strong middle class."

He later adds: "That's what happened when I was President. We need to keep going with his plan."

soundoff (12 Responses)
  1. Four and The Door

    Democrats are confident Clinton can help woo voters who remember a healthy economy that existed during his administration.
    Interesting logic here. What we had is better than what you got with Obama so vote for Obama again?!?!
    Here is what reality is for American voters in 2012. They voted for Obama 4 years ago. Here we are. It is what it is. He did what he could, but if his campaign for the next 4 years is to ask voters to remember what it was like twelve years ago when Obama wasn't even in politics, they have serious problems. Guess what? Obama/ Biden 2012's worst problem is Obama/ Biden 2008.

    September 4, 2012 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  2. Mason

    Trying to compare Clinton to Obama is like comparing Steve Jobs to a ditch digger. Throwing Clinton out there is not even relevant other than to say almost everyone views him as a success and Obama and a failure.

    September 4, 2012 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  3. jackthegeek

    This is so funny and pathetic. Why would they claim success that was more than 15 years ago. People are not stupid and looking who's running the country now, and what's currently going on with bad economy and higher unemployment rate of 8.3 percent. LOL

    September 4, 2012 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  4. fauxsoup

    Anyone else notice how GWB was absent from the RNC? Republicans are trying really hard to cover up the fact that they played a significant role in the recession. George W. Bush would have served as a reminder to the American people why they voted for Obama in 2008: Republican policies have utterly failed.

    September 4, 2012 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |

    He should run for gov in Florida and trash the whole Gop establishement down here ,go bill!!!!!

    September 4, 2012 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  6. Gurgyl

    I am pretty much Confident in Clinton. Obama12. Period.

    September 4, 2012 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  7. Mike

    Obama was dealt a bad hand when he accepted office and as far as I am concerned he has made very good decisions when it comes to resolving issues. "HE IS A DECISION MAKER". The other party is out spending and tries to put him down and it goes to show you that no matter how much money you spend on campaigning "YOU CANNOT BUY PROFESSIONALISM".
    I know that people are currently upset but it takes time when you begin to cross unexpected hurdles. When developing a structure of any kind especially with a strong foundation, it takes time. A second term term in office will display the noticeable differences. KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK...!

    September 4, 2012 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  8. Rudy NYC

    Curious as to where you got this information. Perhaps you can cite your source (without the canned "google it man" response). YOU yourself has said that those who CHOOSE to go to defined premium will look to the private market... HOW does that add government bureaucracy? The private market is already in place, isn't it?
    The CBO estimates that the tranisition to VoucherCare could cost between one and two trillion over the next decade. A transition cost that high would bankrupt Medicare.

    September 4, 2012 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  9. AnnsTheMan!

    okay, this makes sense – Clinton had a plan to prosperity. Obama had a similar plan. During the Clinton Administration, both sides of the isle were working towards solutions. During Obama's tenure, not so much. So, Clinton's argument will be "same plan, should work, if we're all working towards it"

    September 4, 2012 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  10. WhereIsPalin

    Let Bill say what he wants. He's not going to mess up anything. Re-election of Obama is the best thing for Hillary 2016. Besides who wants the RYAN / romney ticket?

    September 4, 2012 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  11. Four and The Door

    okay, this makes sense – Clinton had a plan to prosperity. Obama had a similar plan. During the Clinton Administration, both sides of the isle were working towards solutions. During Obama's tenure, not so much.
    Mitt Romney worked closely with Democrats for success with several kep programs in Massachusetts. Obama has not worked with Republicans at all. Despite his talk he has been the most partisan politician ever to reside in the White House. He does not know how to work with Republicans nor does he want to. We can do better. Romney/ Ryan 2012.

    September 4, 2012 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  12. ge

    and the republicans hide there expresident at gitmo till after the election -wonder why

    September 4, 2012 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |