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September 20th, 2011
03:31 PM ET

BLITZER’S BLOG: Clinton on economy, GOP candidates

By CNN’s Wolf Blitzer

New York (CNN) – Bill Clinton disagrees with his former political adviser James Carville. "It's never a good thing for the president to panic," the former president told me during a lengthy interview at his Clinton Global Initiative conference in New York.

I had asked him about Carville's recent recommendation in a CNN.com opinion piece that it's time for the White House to panic and for the president to fire some people and indict some Wall Street big shots for supposedly causing the country's economic meltdown. Carville, a CNN political contributor, is deeply worried about the economic and political crisis facing the president right now just as he gears up for his re-election campaign.

Clinton is clearly on the same page as the president when it comes to rejecting the Republicans' adamant refusal to consider tax increases even for wealthy Americans. He said the "theology" and "ideology" of the modern Republican Party is, "Every tax is bad, especially if an upper income person has to pay it."

The former president didn't want to rate the Republican presidential candidates other than to say that Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman are clearly more moderate than the others because they "have not come out in just flat-out denial of climate change."

He was critical of Rick Perry for wanting to "get Washington as far as away as possible."

Clinton also said the Republicans are "trying to navigate a landscape that bears almost no relationship to what's produced successful economies in the world."

The former president has clearly been energized by his annual conference. His goal is to help create jobs in the United States and around the world. What's impressive about his CGI conference is that the attendees not only speak, but they also take direct action to get projects under way and complete.

My interview with Bill Clinton airs today in The Situation Room 5-7 p.m. ET.

RELATED: Clinton: Wealthy should do their part

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Filed under: 2012 election • Bill Clinton • Economy • Interviews • Wolf Blitzer
soundoff (100 Responses)
  1. Laura Martin

    I am watching your interview with President Clinton and I meant to ask you earlier this week if he is okay? He looks frail and tired. You had even asked him if he was okay. Love your show and have always been a big fan of yours! I remember when you used to cover the financial news at the crack of dawn.

    We are in such a big mess and again congress is going on vacation. We all know how to fix it because most of us have had to cut back on our personal spending and live within our means. I wish we could fire congress because they are not doing the job we hired (voted) them for. I also think they should be paid on a comission basis. If they do their job they get paid, if not back to work until it's fixed. And unfortunately everyone you would like to run for President has said "no way"! And I don't blame them at all. It's a lose/lose job right now.

    September 24, 2011 at 6:33 pm |
  2. schnikers

    I wish everyone would remain silent except for the person who might have a solution to our economic disaster. Stop fighting – act like you care about his country and do the right thing. listen to one another and stop shouting and name calling. I cannot believe with all these genuises we do not have a viable solution without everyone saying NO. enough with the NO.

    September 21, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
  3. Blackman in America

    Mr. Clinton is STILL the man, he truly was a good President and is a very personal person, I have much lub n respect for him.

    September 21, 2011 at 11:47 am |
  4. Perk

    Hillary Clinton for President and this time you people need to listen ! She told us ! "Speeches vs Solutions." Now we gotta bank rupt country and they compare Buffett to a school teacher's salary ? Is that Capital Gains at 15% or would you say it 's an absurd financial comparision to be selling to the American people that see right through it ! Now look into BP and the claims being paid to Hooter's Resturant waitress staff. Mr. Feinberg,what's going on ? $20,000.00 and up checks paid to a waitress staff ? Is that a fairy tale ? Trying to stay positive on the American Jobs Act cause ya want to believe it'll work to stimulate the economy but very skeptical and so are the economic professors at many of the Universities apart from the politics playing. We don't have time for politics and the USA is in trouble financially.Why ? Would it have nothing to do with govt. waste and spending and listening to the wrong economic advisors that need to be dismissed ?

    September 21, 2011 at 11:16 am |
  5. Perk

    Mr.Carville is as frustrated as the rest of us and Not sure it was meant to be taken literally but he made his point just as Bill Clinton did when he said,"This Is A Fairy Tale." Yes it is and the 70's generation doesn't appreciate being handed a broke country to fix ! Fix the economic advisory team and read, "Confidence Men." Good and glad Bill Clinton's looking into all this economic nuts and no jobs going on in the USA. Fix NAFTA !

    September 21, 2011 at 10:55 am |
  6. SiriusVH

    Notwithstanding Clinton's intelligence and ability to survive, there is one major difference between his situation and that of Obama: Clinton did not inherit the mess that Bush 2 left to Obama. You cannot compare apples and oranges.

    September 21, 2011 at 12:19 am |
  7. krehator

    The GOP hates taxes so much but they LOVE TO SPEND IT!!!! 5 trillion. Doubling the debt while Bush was in office! Most of it cannot even be accounted for.

    September 20, 2011 at 11:44 pm |
  8. tim

    You talk about a man that gave up his life to try to help people , who care if he is trying to help the poor what wrong with that you people need to wake up what are you going to do when you lose your job and their is no Jobs for you to go to and you lose your house and family. I can,t wait when that day come for all your selfish people out their GOD will make it happen just wait and see!!!

    September 20, 2011 at 10:19 pm |
  9. krehator

    The govt would work find if it wasn't corrupt.

    Who corrupted it? The same people who have all the money, and are still trying to fool the people into believing they have all the answers. They blame the govt and the poor, but we all know the OBVIOUS truth.

    September 20, 2011 at 10:08 pm |
  10. Helga

    I believe Clinton have a lot of intelligent opinions to offer, and he and Obama would have been a great team together. I don't think the democrats have to panic, there are still a lot of things that would have to happen first. I come from Norway where everyone pay taxes after how high there income are, and that system works really well. We have a great welfare system, and no one ends up having to pay thousands or millions in health bills because they didn't have the best health insurace. I just wished the americans would see that their system need changes, and maybe Obama has the anwser.

    September 20, 2011 at 10:03 pm |
  11. krehator

    Republicans hate Bill Clinton so much because he did what they only talk about.......Balance the Budget.

    They were so mad, they blew it, and then turned around and helped Bush double the debt.

    September 20, 2011 at 9:24 pm |
  12. L Oliver

    I respect Bill Clinton's mind on many issues. But as regards his comment : "If Israel has no intent to continue honest negotiations toward a Palestenian state, it should say so and accept the consequences, so that the Palestenians can then go about their lives..." I would ask to WHOM? To the Palestenians? The U.S? The U.N.? The world? And if so then, by that same token, the Palestenians should admit to the Israeli's, the U.S. , the U.N. and the world that, they have NO INTENT to recognize ISRAEL'S right to ITS state and that they intend to wipe THEM off the face of the earth and, accept THOSE consequences ! How can we expect Israel to accept MORE of what happened when they surrendered the Gaza strip in 2005 ?! How can the WORLD ignore that Israel has received gratitude for THAT in the form of multiple missle attacks over their border from that VERY land ever since?! Ridiculous!

    September 20, 2011 at 9:11 pm |
  13. Pat

    after having read all the comments there seems to be a lack of understanding. yes Mr. Clinton did sign the NAFTA agreement which was a concession to the Republicans at the time. and yes that did allow for an errosion of jobs in this country. But let us remember that the Republicans did pass laws favourable to businesses that would allow them tax breaks and thus the great shift of jobs to overseas locations. so the shifting causes job loses here. the job losses cause hardships for all and a loss of social security contributions. this snowball effect has apparently embittered so many that the real underlying reasons have become obscured. we all as a nation cannot and should not become so divided as to be unable to see truths about the economic hardships which many seem to blame upon the current administation.

    September 20, 2011 at 8:17 pm |
  14. CBR

    President Clinton is wiser than his past adviser James Carville. Carville is a little too volatile on many issues. He is very much interested in in his own ideas and is not willing to compromise.

    Mr. Clinton is one of the few politicians who is remaining calm and collected. If we panic, we lose. If we continue to whine, we lose. If we continue to want everyone to look at our issues and our own plights, we lose again. We need to work together to get through this economic problem. To continually put you head in the sand while people around you need you to act is rather foolish.

    September 20, 2011 at 7:57 pm |
  15. sdjim

    By the way, the proposed $300 billion that Obama wants to remove from Medicare is presently a direct payment to the health insurance industry to offer a Medicare supplemental policy called Advantage Care. It doesn't offer any reduction in cost. It's a gift to the insurance industry. Another quick way to suck money out of Medicare Part D. This was the plan to pay for medications in W's administration. One part of the law states that there can be no negotiating for any cost reduction from the pharmaceutical industry. Not only was this conceived from the pharmaceutical industry, but guess what, it was never funded. (Kind of like two wars, also. W didn't believe in paying for much.) Part D is projected to cost more that the rest of Medicare over the next 75 years, by a wide margine.

    September 20, 2011 at 7:44 pm |
  16. Justin

    Bill Clinton was a great president. Bill Clinton can never be president again & Hillary wont run. People are always asking what if she ran ect. Instead of focusing on what if's focus on supporting our current president. Get out there and vote next year. If your always complaining about the teapublicans do your American duty & vote them out of congress next year. BIll Clinton is right, the GOP is all about theology ideology. Next year it's Obama or Perry most likely & i dont want someone who dances with snakes & claims they hear angelic voices in the white house.

    September 20, 2011 at 7:39 pm |
  17. JOYCELYN kay

    PLEASE; I would like everyone to leave my president alone. He is the best president ! Ever people just don`t like him because he`s to smart for his on good. He has my vote anytime and. I say he will have 4 more years.

    September 20, 2011 at 7:31 pm |
  18. EBnTX

    Carville was right. POTUS should panic, just don't let the press see you in a panicked state.

    September 20, 2011 at 7:28 pm |
  19. sdjim

    Come on Bill, you're too diplomatic on the "Republican philosophy". 1. practice "piss & moan & paranoia politics" (the other guy is wrong all the time, we are never a cause of any problem, and if you don't do it my way, terrible things will happen). 2. tell a lie, make it simple, repeat over and over, until enough believe that lie is the truth (self explanatory). Bill you did it right and Obama, you are making every effort trying to compromise. Its time to tell it like it is!

    September 20, 2011 at 7:22 pm |
  20. ralk

    I never panic...especially when it comes to libs.

    September 20, 2011 at 7:22 pm |
  21. EJ in Metro Houston

    President Obama really needs to listen to Bill Clinton more because NO WAY would Clinton have taken half the crap off the GOP as Obama has. I like and support the president but he is NO Bill Clinton who to me was the best POTUS of my era.

    September 20, 2011 at 7:11 pm |
  22. Dennis

    ObjectiveGuy, you say "not about bringing classes down" but that has been exactly what has been happening since "tickle down" economics. Let's be objective. Policies that have been put into place have benefited the ultra-rich at the expense of the middle class. I call that class warfare. Middle class has had to content with higher inflation (gasoline and food) because of the policy of a lower dollar and interest rates, which benefit the banks and hurt those trying to live on secure fixed income. I understand you are rich or wanna be rich some day and won't want to pay your fair share, but face it, you enjoy the same freedom and benefits as everyone else and quite frankly, contribute very little to society.

    September 20, 2011 at 7:11 pm |
  23. Warren Angel

    Surely you can trust the man that lied to us.

    September 20, 2011 at 7:07 pm |
  24. Richard-Missouri

    What successful countries is Bill speaking about SPECIFICALLY? Most of Europe is a mess, and the US economy is huge compared to that of most countries. Until the tail end of Bush's last term, the economy was thriving. The mortgage bubble bursting is what REALLY hurt us. Heap on top of that the spending of Obama and the Dems – Obama TRIPLED the deficit, and has spent more than all prior presidents COMBINED – and Obama's anti-business policies, and you get a stagnant economy. Fixing it is truly easy: re-vamp the entire tax code, and lower ALL taxes. Get rid of all the loopholes and simplify. I guarantee you, the economy will BOOM. All this heavy handed government regulation and talk of MORE taxes is stifling the economy. And if Obama gets his way, and raises taxes, the economy is certain to tail-spin. In actuality, I believe Obama knows he will not be successful in raising taxes on anyone. He knows it, but he' simply throwing out a populist message, as it plays well to many, especially his base. And republicans will likely play right into his hands, and let Obama make them out to be protecting their "rich" friends, when in fact, they are trying to avoid further damaging a fraile economy.

    September 20, 2011 at 7:02 pm |
  25. JoePub

    As a Conservative I miss you too Bill. I'd vote for you over Obama and the current GOP clowns in a NY minute... Well, I do like Ron Paul too. But his chances are slim unfortunately.

    September 20, 2011 at 6:58 pm |
  26. Francie Bay

    Wolf, why didn't you question Bill Clinton about his comment that Israel is perceived by the world as not wanting to negotiate with the PA. What about the PA refusing to agree to the Jewish State of Israel? What about Hamas in Gaza? What happens to Israel when the State of Palestine is declared and Hamas has vowed to destroy Israel? I

    September 20, 2011 at 6:39 pm |
  27. fearfighter1

    President Obama, its time to take off the gloves and put the WWF smack down on the repubs at this point you have nothing to lose and Americans always love a good fight... Its time to shaft on these clueless fools.

    September 20, 2011 at 6:37 pm |
    • Jim

      The only smack down coming is the one hitting the tax payers. You cannot spend your way out of every problem, at some point people have to be accountable. You cannot have half the country paying the bills for the other half, I am sorry but everybody should be contributing to society, not just half of them. Oh and creating class wrfare simply divides the country, sure today you want the "Rich" to pay more, next week the middle class becomes the "Rich" and the call will be the same.

      September 21, 2011 at 9:27 am |
    • Opinion

      Intimidation is not the answer here, compromise is. The president no longer has a free pass with Congress what ever he wants to do he needs to get past a republican house, and that will take compromise. The President needs focus on small victories. He needs to sit down with the leadership of the branches of congress and find some common ground and pass small bills that can get bipartisan support. if he can get some smaller bills through then he can work on larger legislation. If he insists on proposing huge pieces of sweeping legislation he will not be able to get anything passed.

      September 21, 2011 at 10:59 am |
    • Vigla

      People just want afighter who will fight for them. Once he starts campaigning in earnest, they will remember what he is all about. All they have had to hear so far is negativism from the opposition. When they see that they have no ideas, teh house of cards that is the Republican party will collapse and Obama wins re-election. TRUST ME!

      September 21, 2011 at 11:25 am |
    • Safira

      "Goracle is the one who took it to court, not Bush... and HillBilly and Obama will be the next to do the same" dubyaGore wouldn't have done it if he didn't think he had a case. Bush won. In court.The 2000 priiedentsal election was decided in court. Right or wrong? Just say it. You can do it. Bush won an election decided by the courts. PJ's vexation is contrived. Believe it. Or not.Given that, his phony disgust about the notion that "Yeah, if you can't win at the ballot box, then overturn the results in the courtroom," rings untrue.You folks are way too afraid. You're afraid of courtrooms. You're afraid of the law. You're afraid of the terrorists (they have you just where they want you). You're all, quite frankly, afraid of everything. You don't stand for shit.Get out of the friggin way.

      October 13, 2012 at 12:42 am |
  28. deuce

    Oh, Bill, how I wish I could elect you President again. I would do so in a heartbeat!

    September 20, 2011 at 6:25 pm |
    • Dana in Alaska

      I really liked the interview, intelligent conversation. If Bill can't be reelected then maybe Hillary is needed. I'm surprised Obama hasn't told both parties to flake off and just quit. A man can only take so much abuse.

      September 20, 2011 at 7:28 pm |
  29. Gabbo

    Did slick willie encourage more trade agreements like NAFTA, which he was responsible for passing ?

    September 20, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
    • The_Mick

      Bill Clinton didn't cast any votes for NAFTA. A GOP-led Congress passed it in 1994, shortly after they did their "Contract With America" and then failed to carry it out.

      September 20, 2011 at 7:17 pm |
    • studypeople

      NAFTA was Pres. Reagan's idea. Pres. Reagan wanted an "Open Border with Canada and Mexico so that People and Commerce could flow freely." Pres. Bush (the first one) had all the Leaders (Mexico and Canada) sign on to NAFTA. Pres. Clinton signed on after it was ratified by the U.S. Senate.

      So trying to follow your lack of history or rational, the only conclusion I can come up with is to stop voting Republican.

      September 20, 2011 at 7:43 pm |
  30. ObjectiveGuy

    It's a sad commentary that, for the most part, the only supporters that Obama really has are the ones that he bribes with handouts and entitlements, along with the illegal aliens that he coddles because he sees them as future Dem voters (nice of him to sell out our country for potential future votes). The only other supporters he has are the terminally liberal (I.e. detached from reality) and those who are guilty for having been successful (I.e. Warren Buffet). Once again Obama doesn’t understand the American experience because he never lived it. He doesn’t get that our country has never been about bringing classes down – it’s been about creating opportunity to raise people up – which requires jobs of the type that Obama and most of his administration have never held, let alone created. Let the left whine like spoiled children that want something the family can’t afford – reality sucks, but such is life. I just hope that they don’t screw things up too much before they’re relegated back to the playpen.

    September 20, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
    • what

      Your argument makes no sense

      September 20, 2011 at 6:44 pm |
    • eir livescar1944

      Are you saying that those who are on Social Security and Medicare support President Obama because we are recieving hand-outs? Because if you are you need to first get your facts straight as well as understand that both these socialist programs those of you on the right dispise so much, has been around a long time and this President had nothing do with adding it to his socialist agenda.
      Americans have worked hard all their working lives and are in-deed enjoying what you right wing no nothings now call an entitlement?? Other then listening to your Do Nothing Teapublicant party, the party of "NO", just keep preaching your party line that the elderly should have their social security privatized and their Medicare made into "Vouchercare".
      Watch the massive support you will get from the strongest voting block in the nation. Keep it up, I dare you..Please.....

      September 20, 2011 at 7:20 pm |
    • JamieIRL

      Speaking of reality, as far as I'm concerned you're not in it. First of all, you don't speak for Obama supporters, especially considering you obviously are not one. Second of all, your claims are completely baseless. Anyone can make baseless claims.

      Maybe if you want people to not vote for Obama in 2012 then you should be complaining about the lack of a sane person trying to win the Republican nomination right now. I think that Obama should get another term, but that doesn't mean that I wouldn't consider voting for someone else if there were someone who wasn't completely-batsht-insane with something to say.

      On conclusion, don't attempt to speak for a people who you clearly aren't one of, don't make baseless claims else you be deemed ignorant, and get someone with half a clue to run for the Republican presidential nomination. Have a nice day.

      September 20, 2011 at 7:54 pm |
    • Bill Graham

      It's really sad that you entertain such useless stereotypes. I noticed you started with "the only people," then went on to "the only other people," and ended up with a criticism of Warren Buffett, who is yet another class of people. So, how many people actually support Barack Obama? Is it only a few as you first suggested, or is it an ever expanding number as you came around to admitting? When it comes down to choosing between Barack Obama and someone like Rick Perry, whom do you think we will elect? Let me ask you something, sir. Aren't you just as terminal in your dislike for Barack Obama as you accuse his supporters of being for him? Finally, have the conservatives of this country ever stopped whining since he was elected? When they could no longer cast doubt on his citizenship, what did they have left?

      September 20, 2011 at 7:58 pm |
      • Bill Graham

        Let me rephrase the second-to-last question, because I realize that I engaged in a stereotype as well. Here is how I would ask that question if I had been on my toes while I wrote it: "Have some of the most extreme elements in this country ever stopped whining since we elected Barack Obama?

        September 20, 2011 at 8:11 pm |
    • mdwestgrl

      i am not anti rich, nor do i believe in hand outs for everyone, but the concentrated of wealth (individual and corporate) and power in this country is unprecedented. This concentration of wealth and power will only start to corrupt (already started) the governmental and judicial systems, and thus destroying the underpinnings of what makes a capitalistic economy function well. Understanding that balance is the key. I do not believe in an all equal economy, but this sort of imbalance is bad for our country. Theodore Roosevelt had to deal with similar problems at the turn of the last century, eventually breaking up rail, oil and several other industries. He realized the problems such a concentration can have.

      September 20, 2011 at 8:04 pm |
    • OO7

      The sad commentary is your ignorance as to how the republican party is ruining this country by blocking all attempts to do any meaningfull repair to this wrecked economy. To think that Obama is solely responsible for all that is wrong or that he is forcing policy on anyone without the consent of the house is nonsense. The crap about it being class warfare if the wealthy to pay more in taxes is absolute Bull S... class warfare is already here, the wealthy have been killing the middle class for years. Paying a bigger share of taxes is not going to bring down a class, its lightening the burden on your brothers shoulders. Those that can should, its time that the selfish in this country started looking beyond party and started thinking about their fellow man. you bash us for 4 years so we accomplish nothing and then we do the same to you for 4 years? there is absolutely no value in that

      September 20, 2011 at 9:51 pm |
    • Sam A.

      ObjectiveGuy. You are so funny about your comment. Why is it a class warfare? Are you serious? The country is in need of the same people she made rich and non of them want to help? Back in 1940s till late 60s, fed tax was way over 70% for people making over $250K and by the time they deduct all the loopholes, their rate would probably be in the 20% or less. Now the tax rate is at the lowest to the 2% wealthiest Americans with existing loopholes, making their rate -1.15% (in the negative) or even more in some cases. GE announced $15 Billion with a "B" in profit last quarter and about $350Million in tax return, is that fair? If you think that is fair in time the Country, that make these corporations and individuals rich, need desperate help can't get something back, I guess I have nothing else to say to you. It's just sad that the wealthiest enjoyed tax freedom for many, many years and are now asked to sacrifice, and they have issue with it? At least some do. Government revenue has been greatly reduced and yet we are still in 2 wars, wow!
      If I was Obama, I would use executive order, forget bipartisan-Republicans already refused to work with him anyway, to forcefully raised taxes for the wealthiest in a legal way for the next 10yrs with limited loopholes. Justification, they've enjoyed the tax cut and incentives for 12yrs, it's time to help our great country back on her feet for the next 10yrs. That is fair.

      September 21, 2011 at 8:42 am |
    • Gary Listug

      ObjectiveGuy: Objective in what sense of the word? You mean like fair and balanced?

      September 21, 2011 at 9:53 am |
    • Vigla

      Actually, it's a sad commentary that uneducated people like you, who listen to the likes of Rush and conservatives, actually think the way you do. You actually think a Rick Perry or a Mitt Romney will do ANYTHING to resolve the problem we are in now? Their ideology prevents them for doing anything other than cut taxes and cut government. Those things will make our problems WORSE, and you sit there and whine about people getting assistance because of outright GREED by some folks on wallstreet and in the finance industry. And asleep at the wheel BUSH for 8 years. No, I prefer an ACTUAL compassionate, intelligent person in the oval office that understands what it will really take to get us out of this mess without the obstruction by the opposing party. Don't be a fool.

      September 21, 2011 at 11:31 am |
    • apib

      raised by single mom, poor, harvard on scholarship, top of his class, first black president......he knows nothing of the opportunity america offers.....please

      September 21, 2011 at 11:31 am |
  31. fearfighter1

    Mr Bill Clinton. Thank you sir. You continue the good fight and I might not always agree with your positions but you at least continue to help people and foster good will in the world.

    September 20, 2011 at 6:16 pm |
  32. Joe

    We miss you, Bill.

    September 20, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
    • TruthSpeaks

      No we dont unless your rich oh sure the rich miss the good old days of bill, dont forget bill clintion started and sented forces into three countries.

      September 20, 2011 at 9:55 pm |
  33. Eric Jensen

    Clinton on point, again.

    "trying to navigate a landscape that bears almost no relationship to what's produced successful economies in the world."- Exactly!

    September 20, 2011 at 6:07 pm |
  34. Peter

    Clinton: One of the most successful presidents in our history. W inherited a robust economy from this guy. We're still paying the price for how W completely bungled it. He nearly destroyed our economy and now Republicans are pushing the same line of thinking that got us into this mess. Lord, I pray that the American people are not that dumb to elect a president that takes us back to more destruction of our economy.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:56 pm |
    • Jess C

      You are so right!

      September 20, 2011 at 6:57 pm |
    • albertgo

      Obviously you had no money invested in the late 90's. From Aug 99 to Oct 99, Before Bush was elected, I lost 40% of my 401k and IRA. The economy and the DOT. COM bubble that CLINTON enjoyed during his presidency, ( no thanks to Clinton), ended that fall at the end of his term. People forget, but you evidently, had NOTHING to lose, so you didn't notice, ignorance is bliss

      September 20, 2011 at 7:00 pm |
    • cwhero1863

      I believe Republicans were the majority and ran Congress from 1995 through 2001.....

      September 20, 2011 at 7:39 pm |
    • j0eschm0e

      clinton years were at the hieght of the credit card spending spree. the money ran out during bush years. and now with the obama 2.5 yrs, its bankruptcy to get rid of the credit cards that were ran up during the clinton years. I really do wonder how it would play out if 9-11 happened on clintons watch or obamas watch........ because this blame bush crap is well beyond old. bush had us like 4 trillion in debt. obama now has us in almost 15 trillion and climbing. lets do some more stimulous and get to 20 trillion.... NOT !!

      September 20, 2011 at 7:51 pm |
  35. JohnRJ08

    Clinton also said the Republicans are "trying to navigate a landscape that bears almost no relationship to what's produced successful economies in the world."

    Most important comment during the entire interview.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:55 pm |
  36. banker

    I wish Bill Clinton could be president again

    September 20, 2011 at 5:53 pm |
  37. skarphace

    A good man and a great President. If we could have had 4 more years of Clinton things would be vastly different now.

    Should Obama panic? I say no. Many moderates and Independents are still undecided. It is us who will decide the next President. Most of our votes will remain undecided up until the Presidential debates.

    I support Paul for the Republican nomination, and have even switched to the Republican Party in order to vote for him. However, I will still pay attention to the Presidential debates and make my final decision then. If any candidate other than Paul is nominated, however, the chance that I will vote for Obama will increase dramatically. Would I vote for Perry, Bachmann, Cain, Gingrinch, or Santorum? Not a chance.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:52 pm |
    • Vigla

      I guess you're voting for Obama then becuase there is no chance the loons in the Republican party nominate Romney or Paul. Sorry...

      September 21, 2011 at 11:35 am |
  38. kevin j

    by far one of the smartest presidents in our history.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:41 pm |
    • ironman1

      r u people for real about how great slick willly is he is part of the problem that started with him were we are today he gave away the jobs here when he started free trade

      September 20, 2011 at 9:07 pm |
  39. Delores

    The democrats would not even consider "having to panic" if we had elected Hilary in the first place. What an extreme disappointment Obama has been. I'd even be thrilled to have Bill back.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
    • mdwestgrl

      there is not s soul that could have fixed the mess obama inherited in four years. Not one. There is still debt being absorbed from mortgage crises and it will dampen economy for some time to come. Please try and use some form of common sense before you type and try not to look so stupid.

      September 20, 2011 at 7:55 pm |
    • Whoosh

      Not a disapointment to me. He's pushing a steel ball up a republican inclined while being whipped and ridicure at every step. Even his best friends have forsaked him. I still have faith in what he's trying to accomplish. The GOP TP is my disapointment.
      I am done.

      September 21, 2011 at 11:25 am |
  40. idea4u

    What a worthless interview. CNN struggles to get anyone to support the failing Obama administration. Even Clinton. What a waste of my time.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:39 pm |
    • Marry

      I am sorry you (and a few others) feel as expressed in your comment. But it does show that there is a segment in the population that is not capable in listening to some intelligent and differentiated thought and that, my friend is why we got into the problems with the Bush-Administration of “Deficits do not matter” and we will not get out of them with a GOP/TP of NO – not taking responsibility and no solutions!

      September 21, 2011 at 2:22 am |
  41. Jan Kenney

    If the President would tell the country the truth, it would go a long way toward respect for him. As it is, he repeatedly lies about the position that we are in. He says he won't raise taxes on the middle class, but takes billions from Medicare. It will quickly get to the point that Dr's. won't accept Medicare patients because they won't be able to afford to treat them. This is a system that most of us have paid in to since it's inception. He gives a payroll tax holiday; but that is the money that would normally pay SS. More money will have to come from the general fund to cover this loss. He spends money (2 planes for he & Michelle to go on vacation) like there is no recession. He uses bullying instead of negotiation and expects everyone to bow to his will, even though he has no idea what he is doing.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
    • Common Tater

      Are we even standing on the same planet? Based on what I've seen repeatedly on the news (ABC, CBS & NBC), the President has bent over backwards trying to negotiate & compromise with the Republicans. It is the Republicans who are unwilling to negotiate & compromise. Obama bullying? Damn, I wish he would!!! Two planes? So what? Likely been that way for years. One thing I DO know is that Obama has taken less in vacation time at this point in his Presidency that did W – a LOT less. If the Republicans DO take over again, you can kiss the middle class goodbye, 'cause with them, it's all about the wealthy (and the wealthier the better). W said it best, "Some people call you the elites; I call you my base." CT

      September 20, 2011 at 7:00 pm |
    • Marry

      @ Jan – you do have some points, but then it does bring you to the wrong conclusions! It would help if you look at what is happening with a bit more objectivity and to take a bit more care in not confusing cause and effect. The GOP/TP have caused this big decline out of the 8 years of “Bush” and instead of seeing that there is a lot on the plate and a lot to be done fast, all the GOP/TP is doing since the beginning is refusing to try to find solutions and behave as the greatest obstructionists in history! So, if you want to go right back to the Bush years with its “success” you just have to follow the GOP/TP. But, if you want to go forward into a smart future, you better help that after the election there is a congress and senate President Obama CAN work with!

      September 21, 2011 at 2:41 am |
    • Tim

      "Spending money ... like there's is no recession" is exactly the mentality that will keep us in this recession. If people who have money don't spend it, there will be no demand and no new jobs. Fun fact.

      September 21, 2011 at 10:34 am |
  42. Bill Duke

    And then he and Obama went off to play some golf.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  43. Sassycakes McGillicutty

    Bill Clinton is an American Hero. Kudo's to an amazing man that history will remember as the man that saved America from itself.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
  44. Dale

    Mr. Clinton. Do you mine telling us what other other countries are so incredible successful, that we must follow them? Exclude Switzerland (Zero in Defense Spending – Close Banking System)

    September 20, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
    • David L

      Dale, how about the following countries that high significantly higher taxes on their "rich" / "job creators" yet have much more dynamic and robust economics than ours that aren't dependent on spending to sustain: Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Canada, Brazil, South Africa, Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Malaysia, Singapore. Is that enough for you?

      September 20, 2011 at 7:56 pm |
    • GetEd

      Dale, do you really have no idea that A implies B is not the same as B implies A? In any case, one answer to your question is: the US, when it doesn't follow Republican ideas.

      September 20, 2011 at 8:06 pm |
  45. ed galbraith

    Clintons (both B and H) are way beyond the rest of the crowd.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:26 pm |
  46. Paul Williamson

    Bill still has his head on straight; ,a moderate, intelligent, balanced pro-active leader that was a very good President (the only one who balanced the budget tin the last 30 years). He is still making major contributions to the US and the world through his very successful Clinton Global Initiative. contrast this with Bush, who stays home and gets drunk every night and does nothing for anyone.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:20 pm |
  47. Dave

    Bill Clinton knows all about winning re-election with a hostile Republican Congress trying to ruin his presidency. Obama should listen to him.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
    • America First

      The Clinton plan was abandon wild leftist extremists and migrate to the center where America lives. Obama has rejected this idea and therefor will deservedly go down in flames as one of the most partisan Presidents we have had. We need a leader in these times and Obama, along with the Republican candidates so far are not the ones. There is not a Kennedy, Reagan or Clinton in the bunch. Matter of fact they can't even carry their bags.

      September 21, 2011 at 1:12 pm |
  48. flyboy7588

    Come on Wolf, if you think Billy Clinton doesn't want Obama to fall on his face then I've got a bridge to sell you. Lose the Democrat bias for a change.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
  49. Cody

    Sometimes I wish we could re-elect Bill :(

    September 20, 2011 at 5:13 pm |
  50. Tisha

    People gave this guy a hard time for the Monica Lewinsky thing, but you have to admit, he was one excellent president. If the man could leave a surplus when he left office after Bush Sr demolished it, I'd trust his economic judgement over anyone else.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:07 pm |
  51. Pnartoley

    If current circumstances are such that Hillary Clinton can step into the leadership void, then there is cause for celebration – HOPE – instead of panic. Prez Obama – you can muster up the courage it would take to step aside and clear the path for Clinton. Yes, you can.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:04 pm |
  52. ipmutt

    Obama to congress, you better not let politics get in the way of my politics.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:04 pm |
  53. Fredrick

    Presidents Clinton and Obama are absolutely correct in speaking on the Republican "theology" and "ideology". I believe most americans do believe in the deepest parts of their hearts and minds truly agree with Clinton and Obama, they just don't want to be called left wing, tree hugging, welfare loving socialists. It's a shame republicans inside and outside of the political arena can be so intimidating, maybe even bullying towards democrats and independents and some republicans that know what Clinton and Obama say about increasing taxes on the wealthy is needed.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:01 pm |
  54. John Doe

    Please show me a successful economy that surpassed what the American economy and industrial engine has demonstrated in the last century. Our current leaders think that China has a great economy - but at the price of totalitarianism, lack of individual freedoms, lack of basic human rights and let's not even talk about the little respect China shows for the environment. America was founded on individualism and any leader that believes America can be great through central government control is simply no better than the communist leaders of China that stomp down their own citizens for self-gain.

    September 20, 2011 at 5:00 pm |
  55. CDaeda

    There is too much of a burden on the President to solve all the countries problems. It is not possible for one man to take on such a task. Bill Clinton somehow survived his ordeal as President. Congress should take on the responsibility of dealing with all the countries issues. The President should just head for the golf coarse and stay there.

    September 20, 2011 at 4:55 pm |
  56. Jake

    God I wish Bill could come back. I argree with Obama on the issues but he's a terrible politican and doesn't know how to get his message across. Hillary would have been the right person for the job.

    September 20, 2011 at 4:52 pm |
  57. BinFL

    Since President Clinton was on most of the Sunday morning talk shows and gave his favorable opinion about President Obama's job plan it's about time there is an article on the internet that highlights what Clinton said. The only thing I saw yesterday was about his statement regarding Cheney's suggestion that Hillary should run against President Obama. I guess the media doesn't want us to know that the most popular president of our time agrees with our current president and backs his plan to create jobs and tax the wealthy!!

    September 20, 2011 at 4:39 pm |
  58. rob

    Mr. Clinton also said that the Republicans are "trying to navigate a landscape that bears almost no relationship to what's produced successful economies in the world."

    I heard an exerpt from this interview, Clinton said Republicans want "no regulations" at all, also they demonized the Govt and that the Republicans needed to recognize that what we need is "Public private partnerships" like "other" economies. Well this is the answer democrats have all the time....GOVERNMENT, GOVERNMENT and more GOVERNMENT involved in more and more of our lives. Republicans want rational regulations that don't put massive new burdens on industry and the public in higher costs and prices. They want less intrusive Govt because look at what happened during the first 2 years of the Obama admin with total controll of the congress. They took a very bad situation and made it worse with massive spending and new Govt health care programs and huge new choking regulations on the financial sector all of which ha scrushed any economic turn around that we might have had.

    Enough is enough, let the gorwn ups back in. Nov. 2012 can't come fast enough.

    September 20, 2011 at 4:36 pm |
    • jake

      you got that right buddy.....i hope ever republican in congress gets beat!

      September 20, 2011 at 7:42 pm |
    • buckthorn

      Oh, you mean the "grown-ups" who brought us the economic collapse in 2008? The war in Iraq and the bloody fumbling around in Afghanistan?Now *there's* a brilliant idea. Keep 'em coming.

      September 20, 2011 at 9:28 pm |
    • Marry

      Rob – I beg to differ! It is not “Government – Government” the Democrats want – it is a Government that does what a modern and civilized society absolutely needs. “Rational regulations” (of cause, one can discuss what “rational” means and there are many other areas of responsibilities a government has!) are absolute necessary because, we have seen what a lack of good regulations does to this country. That the health care situation needed desperately to be addressed is without question – and the GOP said so too but never did anything. Could it be that they did not see the personal need because they do have “their” healthcare? Without the “spending” (and the so critical GOP/TP used it to cut the deficit in their bad budgets in their states instead of hiring) a deep depression would have followed the recession with all that is connected with that (soup- kitchens). Of cause, a lot more has to be done but I am sure, the GOP/TP brings nothing to the table that will move this country FORWARD!
      I agree with you on one thing – 2012 cannot come soon enough! However with a different outcome than you have in mind! This party of “NO – H E L L NO” has to go!!! If there are enough smart, responsible, interested people, they will give the President a Congress and Senate he CAN work with and implement solutions that are sound and capable to bring the country forward!

      September 21, 2011 at 3:16 am |
  59. rf924

    Democrats are all over the board...they have no idea what to do. Everything they have always believed in was embodied by Barack Obama and now they are faced with the shocking reality that their entire belief system is a failure. They are trying to spin it as the republican's fault, first by George Bush and then by the Republican House but the people are smarter than they think and the people aren't buying what the dems are selling.

    September 20, 2011 at 4:28 pm |
  60. Joan

    James Carville continually puts his foot in his mouth and speaks without thinking. That is a naive and dangerous quality when you are doing so on national television where other naive people might believe you. Pres. Clinton is exactly correct. No president should ever appear to panic because that undermines confidence. Solid, thoughtful decisions are never made in panic mode. Since Pres. Obama is often called "No drama, Obama" he probably will never do this anway. He is too intelligent, thoughtful and competent for that. Carville needs to get a grip.

    September 20, 2011 at 4:19 pm |
  61. you go bill

    Old Bill there only messed with Monica, while the Bushes messed up the whole nation.

    September 20, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
  62. Larry L

    James Carville is trying to say sensational things to keep his name in print. He is eligible to run for office if he feels so qualified to coach the President. This is a time for unity to defeat the Republicans – a group of people only obligated to help the rich and willing to destroy the country in the process.

    September 20, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
    • fearfighter1

      True....The tea party is the puppet for the wealthy.

      September 20, 2011 at 6:50 pm |

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