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If Hillary Wins, What About Bill?

Image: If Hillary Wins, What About Bill?
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Wednesday, 27 Jul 2016 08:51 AM Current | Bio | Archive

The mood of the crowd exiting the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia on Tuesday was electrified over star Bill Clinton's speech on wife Hillary.

Virtually all delegates I talked to were anxious for Clinton, who will turn 70 on Aug. 19, to hit the campaign trail for his wife.

But many were unsure of the role the former president should take.

Dan Rather, retired CBS-TV newscaster, told me “Al Gore made a serious mistake in 2000 when he didn’t make use of both Clintons. I think Bill Clinton can be such a successful and effective campaigner I’d want him out there all the time.”

As to whether he should serve under his wife’s presidency, rather replied: “My personal opinion is yes. It would be foolish not to take advantage of his experience.  She should definitely be the commander in chief, but Bill Clinton’s advice should be sought.”

“They would have to be very careful,” Alex Sink, 2010 Democratic nominee for governor of Florida, told me. “For one thing, they would have to decide how to manage the Clinton Foundation if Bill was working in a policy role under Hillary. It would probably require a new structure for the foundation so that there would no appearances of impropriety.”

As to whether a second President Clinton should give the first President Clinton a major role in policy, Sink replied: “This is a bigger concern than it was eight years ago. Had Hillary been elected [in 2008], it was assumed Bill would be part of her administration.  But during those years, she has grown in ability and experience.

Rep. Dan Kildee, D-Mich., a candidate for governor in 2018, said that “Bill Clinton should play the role of ‘first gentleman’ and provide strength and support for his wife.”

Asked if that meant sitting in on Cabinet meetings or taking a policy role, Kildee replied: “I’m not sure about that.”

Former California Gov. Gray Davis, a friend of both Clintons since Bill was governor of Arkansas in the early 1980s, pointed out that it was difficult to speculate on what role Bill Clinton would play in Hillary’s presidency because the scenario of a former president married to a current president was “unprecedented” in U.S. history.

“It would be entirely up to Hillary,” said Davis. “I’m sure she’ll find something for Bill.”

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax.
 

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Virtually all delegates I talked to were anxious for Bill Clinton, who will turn 70 on Aug. 19, to hit the campaign trail for his wife. But many were unsure of the role the former president should take.
clinton, hillary, dnc, president
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2016-51-27
Wednesday, 27 Jul 2016 08:51 AM
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