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Bush and Bill Clinton to Converse in Canada

Tuesday, 21 Apr 2009 01:29 PM

By Dan Weil

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Bill Clinton and George W. Bush will get together in Toronto next month, their first public meeting since Bush left office in January.

The duo will have an open-ended moderated conversation that is expected to extend over two hours at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre May 29, the Toronto Globe and Mail reports.

You might think that the two ex-presidents make an odd couple, given that Clinton’s politics skew to the left and Bush’s to the right. But throughout their careers, both men have compromised with politicians from the other side to get legislation passed.

In addition, they are both famous for being amiable to colleagues of all political stripes. Clinton has gotten along swimmingly with Bush’s father, joining together to deliver tsunami relief aid in 2005, for example.

The younger Bush shared a stage with Clinton at the 2004 dedication of Clinton’s presidential library in Little Rock, Ark.

Clinton and Bush are both 62, making them the first ex-presidents who are part of the post-World War II baby boom generation.

The ideological furor that each man sparks in his critics may explain why the two decided to make this appearance in Canada rather than in the U.S.

The event’s planners Andy McCreath and Christian Darbyshire already booked Bush for his first post-presidential appearance in Calgary last month and also have organized several engagements for Clinton, the Globe and Mail reports.

McCreath is president of McCreath Communications, and Darbyshire, is president of tinePublic Inc.

It isn’t yet clear whether the event will be open to the media. Bush’s speech in March wasn’t.

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