June 29th, 2014
12:00 PM ET
9 years ago

Obama brushes off clamor over Clinton’s ‘broke’ comments

(CNN) - President Obama defended Hillary Clinton in the face of criticism recently that she is out of touch with average Americans, based on her comments about the Clintons’ financial security.

"She is in public service because she cares about the same folks that I talked to here today," Obama said from Minneapolis, where he held a town hall meeting. The interview, taped Thursday during the president’s trip, aired on ABC’s “This Week” Sunday morning.

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As Clinton has traveled the country to promote her memoir, “Hard Choices,” she has discussed life post-White House and said her family was “dead broke” after her husband left the Oval Office in 2001.

Poll: Majority think Hillary Clinton can relate to average Americans

Conservative groups, which see Clinton as one of the biggest potential threats in the 2016 presidential race, have highlighted her comments as evidence that she is out of touch with the daily concerns of Americans.

Although the Clintons did leave the White House in debt due to enormous legal fees, they also walked away with a sizable government pension and the promise of massive book advances and speaking gigs worth millions.

Obama said all the hubbub is to be expected.

“As soon as you jump back into the spotlight - in a more explicitly political way - you’re going to be flyspecked like this,” the President said. “She's accustomed to it. Over time I don't think it's going to make a big difference."

With the presidential election still a couple of years away, Obama brushed off concerns that Clinton’s stumble could hurt her chances.

“I think that Hillary has been to this rodeo a bunch of times.”

Related: Obama: Boehner's lawsuit is 'a stunt'

Filed under: 2016 • Hillary Clinton • President Obama
soundoff (115 Responses)
  1. Gunderson

    Well sure, brush it off,
    That way it doesn't destroy your Wealth Distribution smoke screen. Funny Whats-His-Name knows about Flypaper and rodeos. Guess a lot of that going around these days.

    June 29, 2014 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  2. monkeebizns

    Obama is right Hillary has been to the "rodeo a bunch of times" maybe just maybe that is part of the problem-you would think by now she would know what to say and how to say it without causing such an uproar-but it shows how out of touch she is with the everyday life of the average American-a rich persons definition of broke is a long long way from ours. Yes Hillary- we all have mortgages on 2 homes worth over a million dollars each-our children all go to the best colleges-have million dollar weddings etc, etc

    June 29, 2014 12:22 pm at 12:22 pm |
  3. Lizzie

    "She is in public service because she cares about the same folks that I talked to here today," Obama said
    - he forgot to say, that it comes with lifetime benefits no worries, and you people are paying for it.

    June 29, 2014 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  4. Chris..E.al

    These are 2 of the biggest clowns sense the dawn of mankind .

    June 29, 2014 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  5. kehz28attnet

    Bill was a stumbling, bumbling fool in that interview.Keep talking Clintons. ya look like liars and out of touch, because you ARE out of touch

    June 29, 2014 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  6. kehz28attnet

    Bill Clinton, stumbling, bumbling fool that he is.He did NOT help Hillary.Keep yappin!

    June 29, 2014 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  7. monkeebizns

    The enormous legal debts where due to– lets see oh yeah scandal, scandal and scandal.

    June 29, 2014 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  8. Jughead

    What does Barry think about Hillary's "Incompetent & Feckless" comment ?

    June 29, 2014 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  9. yoranidiot

    birds of a feather

    June 29, 2014 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  10. Todd

    Of course not! He's loaded too! Always will be.

    June 29, 2014 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  11. Jeff

    It's certainly a shame (sham) that the people who really need to read these articles the most, are the ones who blindly vote for those that use these very people as levers to gain wealth and notariety. Yeah; they WORK for the poor, the disenfranchised, and those who cannot speak for themselves. Uh, right – call it that if you wish.

    June 29, 2014 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  12. edmundburkeson

    After a major slap down by the Supreme Court the I-can-do-whatever-I-want President thinks its a good time to offer his "strength of character" and "paragon of virtue" status to come to Hillary's defense. Classic!

    June 29, 2014 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  13. Dave

    If this is the best angle of attack Republicans have (while they trot out a rich white male just to be hypocrites) we may as well just skip the election and save the county a lot of expensive hassle.

    June 29, 2014 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  14. edmundburkeson

    This is the President who thinks its "no big deal" to overstep his authority.

    June 29, 2014 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  15. Bea

    Much ado about nothing. The RW witch hunt left them in the hole for millions of dollars. Technically she was correct, she never said that they weren't able to make money after they left the WH. In 2 years, who's going to remember or care about this so called "gaffe"?

    June 29, 2014 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  16. Jessica McGwin

    Hillary's Idea of care. Stand down let them all die. Obama's Idea of care Kill the veteran's they cost to much money. Democratic parties definition of care, turn the United States into a 3rd world country, reinvent slavery,call political genocide "mercy Killings" .

    June 29, 2014 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  17. LessGov

    Did Obama have anyone who was not a liberal or democrat attend? Doubt it.

    June 29, 2014 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  18. WASP

    Obama's comments are hilarious

    June 29, 2014 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  19. sosupernova

    Obama's right. Hillary has been flyspecked by the Republicans who are always trying to make something out of nothing!

    June 29, 2014 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  20. Finn McCoo

    Is this is all the GOP mudslingers can come up with? Please discuss actual issues and quit seeing what might stick to the wall.

    June 29, 2014 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  21. Tom

    I personally like the "running on the tarmac under sniper fire" much better than "we were dead broke".

    June 29, 2014 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  22. Joeseph Eclaire

    Mr. President the people you care and the ones she cares about are the exact same people the Republicans care about.
    Both sides Mr. President get their clothes off the same rack.

    You people are so out of touch with average America it's pathetic because all of you have everything paid for from your health care to even the food you eat. 75% of the people in Congress are lawyers with better than 50% millionaires and paid for staff.

    We only vote to make fools of ourselves.

    June 29, 2014 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  23. nuclear mike

    Sure...what else can the DNC say or the President...no big deal to the 1%er's that the Middle Class has been devastated by the lack of any White HOuse policies that work for the Middle Class...ObamaCare will collapse in a couple of years then what???

    June 29, 2014 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  24. w

    Of course it would be a HUGE deal if a republican had made the comments.

    June 29, 2014 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  25. I told you so

    The phrase "public service" used to mean just that. Not any more. It is now a way to cash in either while you hold public office or after. The very least is writing a book. They all do it. What a misuse of wording.

    June 29, 2014 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
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