Monday, September 22, 2008

Former President Clinton continues to 'Endorse' Obama with faint praise on the ‘The View’

September 22, 2008,

Katharine Q. Seelye

Today on “The View,” where the audience was probably more diverse than the hall in Denver, Mr. Clinton was more restrained. He said Mr. Obama would win but went on to say, “I genuinely like both of them, I genuinely — I think that we make a terrible mistake believing that we have to find something wrong with the people we can’t vote for.”

He added: “If it had not been for John McCain, I’m not sure I could have normalized relations with Vietnam. I was an opponent of the Vietnam War, he spent five and a half years in a prison camp.” Mr. McCain’s support made it “a lot easier” for Mr. Clinton to act, he said.

Mr. Clinton then said that during a break, Barbara Walters, the show’s host, had reminded him that he had predicted a year ago that Mr. McCain would be the Republican nominee because he was the only Republican who could win.

Today he added to that, saying of Mr. McCain: “The American people for good and sufficient reasons admire him, and he’s given something in life that the rest of us can’t match.”

But, he added, “I think he’s ready to be president and I think McCain’s ready to be president and I think you have to decide which president you want,” not exactly a ringing endorsement for his candidate.

Mr. Clinton was also asked whether it was legitimate for people who had supported his wife in the primaries to support Mr. McCain now. He said yes, because voting is a complicated process.

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