Friday, May 29, 2009

And More On Clinton

More from that New York Times piece on Bill Clinton now:
In the past 140 years, only two other Democratic presidents, Harry Truman and Jimmy Carter, lived long enough to see another Democrat in the White House — and Carter’s relations with Clinton were difficult, to say the least. Clinton chooses to look at Obama as the next stage in a political movement he led. But it’s not at all clear that Obama sees it that way. During the campaign, Obama dismissed Clinton as a historical placeholder. “Ronald Reagan changed the trajectory of America in a way that, you know, Richard Nixon did not, and in a way that Bill Clinton did not,” Obama said then. . . .
Rahm Emanuel, who was a senior adviser to Clinton and now is chief of staff for Obama, recently described the current White House as a far more cohesive operation than his last one. “We don’t, rather, have the kind of New Democrats versus traditionalist split that existed in that White House,” he said on CNBC. “We don’t have in this White House the president-versus-vice-president staff divisions that have been in other White Houses.” Emanuel credited “the tone and tenor that the president of the United States has set in expectations.” The next day on ABC, he suggested Obama would rank among the best American leaders, comparing him with “successful presidents and transformative presidents” like Franklin D. Roosevelt, Kennedy and Reagan. Emanuel made no mention of Clinton.

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