It’s always been whispered that there’s no love lost between President Barack Obama and former President Bill Clinton. Perhaps it all started during the blistering primary battle between Obama and Bill’s wife, Hillary. It could also have been that Bill really took it personally when Obama played the "race card" on him. Either way, Bill Clinton has been saying some things that could seriously cause one to wonder where his loyalties lie.
During an interview on CNN last week, Clinton said that Romney should not be attacked for his time at Bain Capital, saying that Romney had a "sterling" business career, and that between his business experience and his term as governor he easily had the experience to be president. Considering that the Obama campaign had made Romney’s business career the focus of its attacks, this was viewed by many as a derailment.
One of the main Republican talking points against Obama has been how disastrous his economic policies have been. His budgets have received close to zero votes for the past two years, and the debt has grown by $5 trillion dollars under his watch.
During a joint fundraiser in New York City, Clinton took a moment to remind people that he was the only president to submit four surplus budgets. Ouch.
Shortly afterwards, Clinton said that he believed not extending the Bush tax cuts could lead to an even deeper second recession. Now, Bill has to know how badly President Obama wants to let them expire, like everyone else does. He said it anyways.
Despite being out of office for nearly 12 years, Clinton knows that his words still carry weight. He still draws massive crowds, his fundraising efforts are near unparalleled, and he’s still loved by the media. Anything he says is going to get lots of attention. Just like President Reagan before him, Clinton has the gift of being able to make anyone he disagreed with look like an utter fool with a smile and a few words. Now he appears to have his verbal guns trained on Obama.
The Obama campaign must be sweating profusely. One of the world’s most famous former world leaders has said several things that appear primed to appear in the next anti-Obama ad from the RNC.
Clinton did at least (wink-wink) try to backtrack on several of his comments. It’s foolish to speculate that Clinton was "taken to the woodshed," and intimidated by the Obama camp into cooperating. Bill is going to say what he wants, when he wants, and he doesn’t care what anyone thinks about it.
Clinton’s not stupid. He doesn’t say things accidently. A former three-term governor and two term president has far too much experience under his belt to just go out and make a fool of himself in front of the cameras. All one has to do is take a brief look at his record, and they’ll see a man who never did anything that wasn’t tactically thought out.
Being a master politician is a big part of why he earned so much adulation from his party. During the 1980, 1984, and 1988 presidential elections, the democrats had gotten absolutely crushed. In Clinton, they found a winner who could keep his popularity high, reach across the aisle and get real results.
It’s possible that Clinton looks over at Obama and sees a man destroying the house that Bill built. During Obama’s term, the democrats lost control of the House of Representatives. They also lost a majority of governorships and state legislatures, and are now at risk to lose both the Senate and the White House.
Political parties are kind of like mob families. Above all else, respect your elders. Using the Clintons as a punching bag for the entire 2008 campaign is one thing, but then taking the Democrat Party to the brink of losing all its gains is another. If you’re going to take out the head of the family, you’d better be able to run a tight ship.
Former Clinton advisor Dick Morris has said recently that behind closed doors, Clinton wants Obama out of office. He may want his wife to have a fresh shot in 2016, or he just want to show Obama who’s really the boss. Clinton right now is being as helpful to Obama as an anvil would be to a drowning man. Both the Romney campaign and the RNC will be playing his sound bites from now till November.
Perhaps Obama should listen to The Who’s “The Punk Meets The Godfather.” Maybe then he’d learn that there are some people you just don’t cross.