Entries in Bill Clinton (66)


Ashley Judd Considering Senate Run in Kentucky

Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images(CINCINNATI) -- Ashley Judd made a rare reference to her possible political aspirations on Friday.

According to the Cincinnati Enquirer, Judd spoke about her future while giving the keynote address at the American Counseling Association’s 2013 conference at the Duke Energy Center in Cincinnati, which borders Kentucky.

Judd also tweeted about her speech, saying, “Heartfelt thanks to American Counseling Assoc for having me as your Keynote Speaker today. Thank you for your dedication to hope & healing.”

Judd has only rarely spoken publicly of her political aspirations, but is reportedly considering entering the Democratic primary to take on Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (KY-R), according to Kentucky political sources.

The ACA posted photos of Judd addressing the crowd, wearing a patterned dress and posing with a T-shirt that read, “Keep Calm and Call a Counselor,” a take-off on the famous British phrase from World War II, “Keep Calm and Carry On.”

The group also posted a Facebook message calling Judd’s speech “truly inspirational,” adding that she expressed “gratitude for the unique role that counselors play in shaping important life decisions for recovery.”

ABC News learned on Friday that former President Bill Clinton has reached out to Judd, encouraging her to enter the race and promising support.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Bill Clinton Says 'It's Time to Overturn' Gay Marriage Law He Signed

Joe Scarnici/Getty Images for TRANS4M(WASHINGTON) -- Former President Bill Clinton is adding his name to the list of those who say the Supreme Court should overturn the federal law restricting marriage to one man and one woman. Seventeen years after he signed the law that did just that, Bill Clinton says the Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, should be thrown out.

Clinton writes Thursday in a Washington Post op-ed that 1996 was "a very different time."   

He explains:

"In no state in the union was same-sex marriage recognized, much less available as a legal right, but some were moving in that direction. Washington, as a result, was swirling with all manner of possible responses, some quite draconian. As a bipartisan group of former senators stated in their March 1 amicus brief to the Supreme Court, many supporters of the bill known as DOMA believed that its passage 'would defuse a movement to enact a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, which would have ended the debate for a generation or more.' It was under these circumstances that DOMA came to my desk, opposed by only 81 of the 535 members of Congress."

Today, gays and lesbians can marry in nine states and Washington, D.C.  To deprive them of rights under federal law, Clinton says, is discriminatory and "incompatible with our Constitution."

The Supreme Court will hear arguments on DOMA, and California's Proposition 8, later this month.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Martin Scorsese to Produce Bill Clinton Documentary

Frank Polich/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- HBO and director Martin Scorsese are planning to produce a documentary centered on former president Bill Clinton.

The 42nd president of the United States is fully cooperating with the doc that will examine how Clinton spent his days in office, along with what he has done since leaving the his post as commander-in-chief.

"I am pleased that legendary director Martin Scorsese and HBO have agreed to do this film," Clinton said in a statement.  “I look forward to sharing my perspective on my years as president, and my work in the years since, with HBO's audience.”

Scorsese echoed Clinton's excitement, saying, “A towering figure who remains a major voice in world issues, President Clinton continues to shape the political dialogue both here and around the world.  Through intimate conversations, I hope to provide greater insight into this transcendent figure.”

There's no word on when the documentary will air on HBO.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Bill Clinton Ready to Finish Paying Wife's Debt

Mario Tama/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- You could meet Bill Clinton and help his wife pay off some old bills at the same time.

The former president has emailed supporters to let them know he wants to get rid of the remaining debt from Hillary Clinton's failed run for the 2008 Democratic nomination for president.

In the overall scheme of things, the outstanding bill -- $73,000 -- seems like a mere drop in the bucket since it once totaled $25 million.  But Bill Clinton is intent on wiping the slate clean in the event the outgoing secretary of state has designs on another White House run in 2016.

Because his wife can't do any active campaigning in her current position, it's been left up to Bill Clinton to act as her surrogate.

The latest email offers a meeting with him, which would come at a price.

He writes, "There is nothing I enjoy more than good conversation with good people, which is why I’ve enjoyed it so much whenever we’ve brought one of Hillary’s strongest supporters to New York to spend the day with me -- and I’m happy to tell you that I’ve asked to do it again."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Obama on Final Campaign Swing, Jokes He’s Just a ‘Prop’ for Voters

BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images(CONCORD, N.H.) -- President Obama kicked off his final 48-hour push to the finish line Sunday morning in New Hampshire, telling a crowd of 14,000 that at this stage in the campaign he’s just “sort of a prop in the campaign.”

“It’s now up to you,” he said at his last rally in the Granite State, where he was once again joined by former President Bill Clinton.  “That’s how a democracy works, right?  That ultimately, it’s up to you.  You have the power.  You are shaping the decisions for this country for decades to come.  Right now.  In the next two days.”

The president departed the White House for the last time before Election Day Sunday morning and spent close to 11 hours in the air Sunday as he flew from New Hampshire to rallies in Florida, Ohio and Colorado.

“We’ve made real progress,” Clinton told the masses outside the State House in Concord.  “Compared to what could have happened, Barack Obama has done a good job… With a tough hand, he has done a good job.”

Stealing a line from another former president, Clinton praised Obama’s record as a “decider-in-chief,” citing his decision to bail out the auto industry and push for health care reform.

Clinton continued to suggest GOP nominee Mitt Romney isn’t trustworthy.  Summing up his proposals, Clinton said Romney is telling voters, “Don’t pay much attention to what our solutions are… Look at me, I look like a president and I talk like one and I’m telling you it’s all gonna be all right.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


President Obama, Bill Clinton Unite On 2012 Trail For First Time

Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The Barack Obama-Bill Clinton “bromance” was on full display Saturday night in battleground Virginia as both men united in public for the first time on the 2012 campaign trail.

Clinton, who has been barnstorming the country for Obama and audibly hoarse, appeared to captivate the Democratic crowd with his vigorous endorsement of President 44 while making a hard final pitch to undecided or wavering voters.

“As you can see, I’ve given my voice in the service of my president,” Clinton told the crowd of 24,000 at Jiffy Lube Live, a large outdoor concert venue just outside suburban Washington, D.C. “I want to tell you, four years ago when he ran, both Hillary and I worked very hard, we did together over a hundred appearances. But I am much more enthusiastic about Barack Obama’s election tonight that I was even four years ago.”

“He knows that a budget based on arithmetic is a lot better than one based on illusion,” he said taking a swipe at Republican nominee Mitt Romney.

Touting Obama’s response to Hurricane Sandy, Clinton said, “He knows that practical cooperation is better than all this constant ideological conflict. And we saw it didn’t we:  We saw it how the president got off the campaign trail and responded to Sandy. And all over America people were thrilled to see him work with the Republican governor of New Jersey and mayor of New York who is an independent.”

“Barack Obama is a proven cooperator,” he declared.

President Clinton attacked Romney as a dishonest political opportunist who has shifted positions on key issues and now resorted to what he described as desperate tactics to win the White House.

“He’s tied himself in so many knots,” Clinton said of Romney’s position on the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, as one example, “he could be hired as the chief contortionist for Cirque de Soleil.”

On the controversial Romney ad running in Ohio that suggests Jeep production may be moving to China, he offered this admonishment:  “Chrysler said Mitt Romney was wrong. Then GM rebuked him…You know, when I was a kid and I got my hand stuck in the cookie jar, my face sort of turned red and I took my hand out of the cookie jar. Not governor Romney. He kept digging for more cookies.”

They engaged in a bear hug embrace on stage, reminiscent of the moment at the Democratic National Convention after Clinton’s speech Sept. 5.

Obama reciprocated with the accolades, heaping praise on the man who was famously once a fierce rival and whose economic record he now regularly invokes on the stump. “The only Clinton working harder than him is our Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. I’m so grateful to both of them,” Obama said.

“I was in the back enjoying listening to Clinton so much that I had to run out; I was late to my cue,” he joked. “I was just sitting there soaking it all up. He was a great president and is a great friend.”

With just three days to go before Virginians head to the polls, Obama urged his supporters to mobilize to turn out the vote.

“Now it’s all up to you,” he said. “It’s up to the volunteers. It’s up to somebody knocking on a door. It’s up to somebody making a phone call. It’s up to somebody talking to their mom… It’s up to you. You’ve got the power. And that’s why I need you Virginia. Don’t get tired! Don’t get weary! If you’re willing to knock on some doors for me, make some calls for me, grab some friends for me… we’ll win Virginia and we’ll win this election.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Bill Clinton Barnstorms Battlegrounds for President Obama

Alex Wong/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Bill Clinton has been barnstorming the 2012 battlegrounds for President Obama, holding 13 events in seven states over four days this week alone -- ratcheting up what has already been, by most accounts, an unprecedented amount of time on the presidential campaign trail by a former president.

The 42nd president will headline rallies Thursday in Waukesha, Wis., and Perrysburg, Akron and Chillicothe, Ohio.  He's also made stops this week in Florida, Ohio, Colorado, Minnesota and Iowa, drawing crowds of several thousand in each place.

"You just have to decide," Clinton told supporters in Council Bluffs, Iowa, on Wednesday.  "Obama's economic plan is better, his budget plan is better, his education plan is better, his healthcare plan is better, his plan to bring America together is better.  That is worth standing up for."

The Obama campaign believes Clinton's endorsement and credibility with voters on the economy can help counter widespread dissatisfaction with the country's current state of affairs and buy the president some more time.

Fifty-four percent of Americans in the latest New York Times/CBS News poll, conducted Oct. 25-28, said they think the country is on the wrong track, compared to 39 percent who said they felt things were on the right track.

"We created 22 million new jobs and turned deficits into surpluses," Clinton says of his record in the latest TV ad he taped for the Obama campaign.  "President Obama's got it right.  We should invest in the middle class, education and innovation, and pay down our debt with spending restraint and asking the wealthy to pay a little more.  Sound familiar?"

Clinton's return to the trial has helped to solidify his image as one of the Democratic Party's most popular elder statesmen and one with an ability to appeal to independent voters.

It's also been an opportunity for him to bolster his legacy and the future of the party while doing one of the things he's known to love: campaign in the spotlight.

Obama and Clinton were to appear Monday together on the campaign trail for the first time, at events in Florida, Ohio and Virginia.  But those plans were dashed by Hurricane Sandy.

With five days to go before voters head to the polls, there's a good chance Obama and Clinton may still try again to unite on the road.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Biden, Clinton Campaign in Ohio as Obama Monitors Hurricane Sandy

John Moore/Getty Images(YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio) – While Hurricane Sandy punished the East Coast, Vice President Joe Biden and former President Bill Clinton stayed on the campaign trail Monday, speaking at the Covelli Center in Youngstown, Ohio Monday afternoon. President Obama canceled his campaign appearances for Monday and Tuesday to monitor the hurricane from Washington.

“Folks, I know you were expecting the real president, the present president. Reverend, I just want you to know he asked me to express his regrets for not being able to be here, but you know, he’s doing the job a president should be doing,” Biden told the crowd of 4,800 at the Covelli Center.

“I want to thank all the first responders throughout this country,” he said. "They’re coming from all over. There’s folks from Ohio heading east. There’s a whole lot of folks all over the country. And it’s further evidence, further evidence that when America stands together we’re all better off.”

The campaign later announced that Biden’s two events in Ohio Tuesday and a rally in his hometown of Scranton, Pa. were canceled, bringing the number of events canceled for Hurricane Sandy to 30.

Clinton, in Ohio, apologized on Obama’s behalf.

“We went to Florida last night, and he got up this morning and called me and said, ‘I got to go back right now. This storm’s getting out of hand. I got to handle it.’ And I said, 'Mr. President, that is the right call,’” Clinton said. “I spoke in Orlando and then I got on a plane and flew through the edges of that storm to come here and be with Vice President Biden, who came to join us.”

Biden and Clinton, campaigning together for the first time this election cycle, did not let up on their attacks on the GOP ticket, furthering the criticism of Mitt Romney for a misleading campaign ad suggesting President Obama allowed Jeep operations to move to China. President Clinton called Romney’s ad, “the biggest load of bull.”

“I saw the reports of Governor Romney’s latest ad saying that the president had allowed Jeep to move to China. And so this morning, before he left Florida and went back to Washington, he said, ‘You know, of all the things Governor Romney has said, that probably hurts my feelings the most,” Clinton said. “He said, you know, 'I never had any money when I was a kid and the first new car I ever owned, I was 30 years old, and it was a Jeep. I would never move Jeep to China.'"

“Now it turns out, Jeep is reopening in China because they’ve made so much money here, they can afford to do it and they are going on with their plans here. They put out a statement today saying it was the biggest load of bull in the world that they would ever consider shutting down their American operations. They are roaring in America, thanks to people like the people of Ohio.”

“This guy is -- pirouettes more than a ballerina,” Biden said. “It’s an absolutely, patently false assertion.”

However, a story published Monday floated the idea Jeep production may very well be moving to Italy. After the auto bailout, the Treasury Department sold its share of Chrysler to Fiat at a loss, and now as an attempt to boost Fiat's bottom line, the company reportedly discussed interest in a possible plan to build Jeeps in Italy for export to the U.S.

Biden undeterred, denied Jeep was going anywhere. “Ladies and gentlemen, have they no shame? I mean, what? Romney will say anything, absolutely anything to win, it seems. But he can’t run from the truth. He said in that article entitled, that he wrote, ‘Let Detroit Go Bankrupt" -- repeating an already-debunked but oft-repeated claim. The New York Times chose that headline. Still, Biden soldiered on, "Only the head of Bain Capital could think that liquidating an industry is the same thing as saving it. Because that’s what he did at Bain Capital,” Biden said. “Well look, we didn’t take Gov. Romney’s advice.”

Ryan Williams, spokesman for the Romney campaign, said in a statement, “It appears the Obama campaign is less concerned with engaging in a meaningful conversation about President Obama’s failed policies and more concerned with arguing against facts about their record they dislike. The American people will see their desperate arguments for what they are.”

Clinton has served as one of the Obama campaign’s top surrogates in the campaign, but the former president joked with the crowd about his frequent appearances on the trail, saying it’s only because his wife, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, is barred from campaigning.

“You’re only stuck with me because Hillary has one of the two jobs in the government that doesn’t permit you to campaign,” Clinton said. “But when you reach a certain point in your life you realize elections come and go but the only thing that really matters when all is said and done is whether people are better off from when you started, whether our children have a brighter future, and whether things are coming together instead of being torn apart.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Paul Ryan Uses Bill Clinton’s Words Against His Democratic Opponents

SAUL LOEB/AFP/GettyImages(FORT MYERS, Fla.) -- Paul Ryan responded to comments President Bill Clinton made Thursday while stumping for President Barack Obama, using them as ammunition aimed right back at his Democratic opponents.

“The president and his allies have said a few revealing things lately,” Ryan said at an outdoor rally at a sports complex in Fort Myers, Fla.  “Bill Clinton said it is true that our economy is not fixed. He is right. … If the economy is not fixed, it is time we change presidents and elect Mitt Romney the next president of the United States.”

Earlier Thursday in Cleveland, Clinton said at a rally also featuring Bruce Springsteen, “Gov. Romney’s argument is, ‘We’re not fixed, so fire him and put me in.’ It is true, we’re not fixed. … When President Obama looked into the eyes of that man who said in the debate, ‘I had so much hope four years ago and I don’t now,’ I thought he was going to cry because he knows that it’s not fixed.”

Republicans jumped on the comment, but left out the full context.

“What the American people have got to decide is whether they believe, people like who are a little bit on the outside of this, that this is the biggest economic crash since the Great Depression,” Clinton added. “It continued for a full year after the president took the oath of office. We were going downhill, he had to stop that, put a floor under it and begin the long road back.”

The Obama campaign immediately stood by the former president’s comments.

“President Clinton powerfully articulated the progress we’re making under President Obama,” Obama campaign spokesperson Danny Kanner said in a statement. “As President Clinton noted, we simply can’t afford to go back to the same failed policies that brought our economy to the brink of collapse in the first place -- and that’s exactly what Mitt Romney’s offering.”

Ryan also hit earlier comments by Obama and Vice President Joe Biden that Republicans also have taken out of context.

“On Univision a couple weeks ago, President Obama said he ‘can’t change Washington from the inside.’ Isn’t that why we elect presidents?” Ryan asked in front of a crowd of more than 3,500. “Vice President Biden the other day said the middle class is ‘buried.’ That is one shovel-ready project that this administration can take credit for.”

Ryan was referring to a campaign event in Charlotte, N.C., earlier this month. Biden stepped on his campaign message somewhat when he said the middle class was “buried” over the last four years, the time in which President Obama has been in office.

“This is deadly earnest: how they can justify … raising taxes on the middle class that has been buried the last four years,” Biden said, claiming Republicans would raise such taxes. “How in the Lord’s name can they justify raising their taxes? We’ve seen this movie before.”

Ryan referred to a Univision forum last month, where Obama said the “most important” lesson he had learned during his first term as president was, “You can’t change Washington from the inside.”

Polls are locked between Romney and Obama in Florida, a crucial swing state, and Ryan is spending two days campaigning throughout the state.

He told the supportive crowd that on Election Day, Nov. 6, it’s up to their state to make his running mate “the next president of the United States.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Romney Jokes He's Waiting for His Clinton 'Bounce'

Alex Wong/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Speaking just hours before President Obama takes the same stage, Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney outlined his vision for foreign aid Tuesday at the annual Clinton Global Initiative in New York City.

The governor and former President Bill Clinton took the stage together, after which Clinton delivered complimentary remarks praising Romney’s support for the City Year service group when he was governor.

“He urged the Republican Congress to continue to support City Year, and he urged the White House to do it, and they did,” Clinton said of Romney when he was governor of Massachusetts.  “All of you should know that.”

Romney joked about the weight a Clinton compliment carries.

“If there’s one thing we’ve learned in this election season, by the way, it is that a few words from Bill Clinton can do a man a lot of good,” Romney said in response to Clinton’s praise.  “All I gotta do now is wait a couple of days for that bounce to happen.”

Romney outlined what he calls the “Prosperity Pact” program to rework the U.S. foreign aid system, focusing on promoting work and fostering free enterprise in front of a respectful but silent crowd.

Working with the private sector, the program would aim to identify the barriers to investment, trade, and entrepreneurialism in developing nations.  In exchange for removing those barriers and opening their markets to U.S. investment and trade, developing nations will receive U.S. assistance packages focused on “developing the institutions of liberty, the rule of law, and property rights,” Romney said.

The aid will be coupled with trade and private investment to empower individuals, encourage innovators and reward entrepreneurs.

“An assistance program that helps unleash free enterprise creates enduring prosperity,” Romney said.  “It’s more reliable.  It’s more durable.  And ultimately, as history shows, it’s more successful.”

With international tensions the topic of much of the news Tuesday -- with the U.N. General Assembly and Obama’s speech Tuesday happening in the same city -- Romney said that this plan for aid is just one part in what he sees for America’s strategy during an “uncertain” time, alluding to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

“We should not forget -- and cannot forget -- that not far from here, a voice of unspeakable evil and hatred has spoken out, threatening Israel and the civilized world,” Romney said.  “But we come together knowing that the bitterness of hate is no match for the strength of love.”

Notably, Romney did not mention Obama once during his speech -- a marked departure of recent days.

When mentioning the challenges in the Middle East and what he called the “terrorist attack,” which killed Ambassador Stevens, he skipped berating Obama’s “bump in the road” comment, which Romney has been highlighting on the trail.

Romney said he hopes a year from now he will return to the annual meeting as president “having made substantial progress” in the reforms he’s outlined in front of the group on Tuesday.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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