Bill Clinton on Obama during the Economic CrisisOctober 30, 2008
From our friends at FoxNews and HotAir:
“I haven’t cleared this with him and he may even be mad at me for saying this so close to the election, but I know what else he said to his economic advisers (during the crisis),” Clinton told the crowd at a Wednesday night rally with Obama in Florida. “He said, ‘Tell me what the right thing to do is. What’s the right thing for America? Don’t tell me what’s popular. You tell me what’s right — I’ll figure out how to sell it.'”
Clinton said when the crisis broke, Obama called his own advisers as well as those of the former two-term president, Hillary Clinton, Warren Buffet and others.
“He called those people. You know why? Because he knew it was complicated and before he said anything he wanted to understand,” Clinton said. “That’s what a president does in a crisis.”
The seeming praise may come off as a backhanded compliment, especially since Obama repeatedly accuses McCain of admitting he doesn’t know much about the economy. McCain’s campaign said Clinton’s remark shows Obama was uncertain when Wall Street seemed to be on the verge of crumbling.
“Barack Obama had no idea what the right thing to do is or at least that’s Bill Clinton’s impression,” McCain spokesman Michael Goldfarb said.
“It’s disturbing that … Barack Obama’s response to this is ‘Tell me what to do and I will sell it,'” Goldfarb added. “That’s been Barack Obama’s entire campaign — is one big sales job.”
During the height of negotiations in late September, McCain briefly suspended his campaign to work on the economic bailout package and even threatened to sit out the first presidential debate.
Obama teased him for it, and after a mid-week summit with President Bush, congressional leaders and the presidential candidates ended in disarray, his Democratic supporters criticized McCain for “injecting” presidential politics into the debate.
Before the inter-campaign sniping began, the two presidential nominees released a joint statement urging the nation to “rise above politics for the good of the country.”
Goldfarb said he can’t speculate on the content of the advice Obama solicited in late September but that, “The result was to sit back and do nothing.”