I'm out of gas tonight but I have a brief question based on seeing a bit of the Wednesday night convention speeches: On average, how many hours per day does Bill Clinton spend reading and re-reading the Constitution trying to find a way that he can be president again?

The over/under is 4.

28 thoughts on “A CLOSE READING”

  • I look forward to the 2016 election: holographic Ronald Reagan vs. Bill Clinton's head transplanted onto a robot body.

  • Jamon Y. Huevos says:

    1) He's already memorized the Constitution
    2) With all due respect to former President Clinton, I'm pretty sure that "pussy" is still at or near the top of his daily agenda

  • Remember when Al Gore drank the GOP Kool-Aid and, despite polling, decided he had to shun Clinton?

    And then he lost/won the election, but he would have won/won it with some stumping from Bubba?

    Yeah, American politics is fucking insane.

  • He could be president again. The Constitution says that no one can be *elected* president twice, but the limit on the number of years that can be served is ten.

    So if Obama dumps Biden and runs with Bill as veep, then resigns after two years, Clinton could legally pick up the last two. Or in the event of the elected president's untimely death, he could serve for two years (during which he could hand pick a VP successor) and then resign.

  • c u n d gulag says:

    If the Constitution had not been amended, and even if, in seperate incidents, he was found in bed with a dead girl, then a live boy, and subsequent impeachment efforts by the Republicans, Clinton would now be running for his 6th term.

    Ok – maybe not the live boy part.
    But even then, who knows? A lot of American's loves them some "Big Dawg!"

  • From the plugs he gave it and pride he takes in it, I think the Clinton Foundation serves as a surrogate third or fourth term. But William Jefferson Clinton is now content–and I have only unerring intuition on which to base this—for folks to think wistfully that we really lost his leadership Too Soon, and that but for the cruel term-limit law we would have enjoyed–nay, been privileged to have– his leadership longer.

  • My guess is 0.

    Anyone who has been president knows what a hard ass job it is. He (and Mrs. Clinton) will both near limitless power in their post-elected jobs and will certainly do a ton of good for whatever causes they promote. It also doesn't hurt that he's getting paid a $hit-ton more than when he was POTUS and no one asks to see his birth certificate tax returns.

    Also – please don't forget Mr. Clinton truly was a man to reach across the aisle — capital gains were lowered in his presidency and the top 1% (as we now call them) did just fine during his years. The military wasn't exactly lacking for funding either nor targets though admittedly he sipped the blood of his victims like a fine port instead of pouring it all over himself. He may have been the first black president, but he also was surely was a democrat further to the right than any president since ….. hell, someone pre WWI at least.

    I sure wouldn't vote for him if he ran again.

  • This is the thing that drives me crazy: I love what he had to say, he's a very gifted politician, and he did some good things. He also presided over NAFTA, the Telecommunications Act 1996 (which ensured the full corporatization of our media), and, as Chicagojon says, was arguably well to the right of any "liberals", much less mainstream Democrats of the era.

  • Clinton was also the one who signed the legislation opening the door to foreign-born people like Ruppert Murdoch having a multi-media empire in the US.

  • There was that moment last night when Bill was like "I'm here to nominate a President, and I've got someone in mind…" and my stomach suddenly got very queasy and I was convinced he was going to nominate himself.

    You also got the sense that when people in the hall were chanting "four more years" they were referring to Clinton.

  • for all the silly praise of clinton, remember he did nothing to stop the repeal of glass-steagall, which along with the enactment of the commodities futures modernization act is the reason banks & financial institutions were able to speculate on mortgages & create the huge fucking financial mess we are in today. nafta & other trade agreements also promoted by clinton are the reason we have lost 5 million jobs to outsourcing. ending welfare as we know it also under clinton has created poverty for 20% of american children & their mothers. only people who haven't got much sense are admirers of bubba clinton.

  • @ Kong

    That's true, I always thought Clinton was about as liberal as Nixon.

    Clinton left the White House kicking and screaming, I doubt there is anyone who liked their job as much as Bill Clinton liked being President.

    Reading the constitution, looking for a loophole? I doubt it, but I am sure that it is an ongoing fantasy in his head.

    Last night—Wow, did he ever take apart the Republican argument. It was pretty amazing to watch.

  • Don't forget Clinton was behind DOMA too – that sucked.

    But for all his policy mistakes, you gotta admire the big dawg. He's the Michael Jordan of 20th century politicians – he makes a case like no one else, understands messaging better than just about anyone and he just took a big crap all over Mitt Romney's argument that he should be elected.

  • Speaking of FDR, my mother-in-law was born when he first became president, so he was in office until she was an adult. She thought he was President for life and did not realize you could elect someone new when she was a child. I always thought that story was amusing.

  • mel in oregon beat me to it–the repeal of Glass-Steagal was the hand-grenade Bill left behind him, having pulled the pin and waltzed away. DOMA, Welfare "Reform"–there's a lot of stuff not to miss about Bill.

    I confess, however, that I do miss him, if only on a personal level, and if only because he was so goddamned *comfortable* being president. I think Chicagojon is wrong in asserting that the presidency is ipso fact a hard ass job. I agree that it is for most men–and that's why most men are so bad at it, and/or so fucking *lazy* about it–Reagan and Dubya come to mind as men who clearly *lived* for two aspects of the job: feel-good speeches, and long vacations. (When people praise Reagan's administration, I always want to say "Yeah, those 18 months he was on the job were *awesome.*")

    But not Clinton. Clinton *loved* it–he ate it up–he thrived in that environment. He's a high-wire man. He'd go back *right now* if he could.

    The comparison with FDR is interesting, in that they both gave off the exact same vibe–that easy-going enjoyment of, combined with a weirdly endearing sense of entitlement to the position: "Yeah, of *course* I'm president. How could I *not* be? Look at me–the only way I could be more awesome is if exposure to cosmic rays gave me super-strength and the ability to fly."

    Mind you, FDR is the one who's on the money, and for staggering number of good reasons. Clinton was/is a smooth, smart, charismatic man who held the reins of office with the poise of an aristocrat. FDR was God's way of saying, "Eh, I need someone to sit on Washington's right and left hands in the pantheon–let's see–I got Lincoln, that's a no-brainer–hmm–hey, what if I give that guy polio and see if it builds character?"

  • Today's Scholar says:

    Hope you're kidding, Jimcat; that might have worked if he'd finished someone else's term BEFORE he was elected twice, but the Constitution also says that no one ineligible to be elected P is eligible to be VP… not even by appointment. Check the last clause of the 12th Amendment.

  • Actually it's a matter of debate as to whether the qualifications for VP restrict the office to someone who is eligible to be elected president, or simply to someone who is eligible to serve as president. There are people who argue both sides, but the issue has never come up to be tested.

    Regarding Juniper's comment about four-term Franklin: my grandfather was born in 1911, so the first year that he could vote for a president was 1932. He was a staunch Democrat, so he was 37 years old before he cast a vote for a presidential candidate who wasn't Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

  • I don't think Bubba Bill would actually ever want to be Prez again.

    It turned his hair gray and is now doing he same thing to B. Hoover Obama.

    But what is obvious is that Bubba LOVES, LOVES, LOVES politics – every moment, every detail, every nuance.

    Even more than BJ's.

    Believe it.


  • Pennelope Pennebaker says:

    I continue to be confused by "progressives" disdain for 'welfare reform'. Just what the hell is so wrong with wanting everybody to have a job and making sure that they try to get one?

  • Today's Scholar says:

    It's not so much a matter of serious "debate" as it is a matter of moot-point jacking-off; there isn't a single judge in this country that would rule that Clinton is eligible to serve so much as one day as VP, much less one more as P. Regardless of semantic arguments, it would be a clear violation of the intent of Article 2, of Amendment 12 and of Amendment 22.

  • Penn-Penn, Why should I want everybody to have a job and want to make them try to get one? Ann Romney's never had a job, and that's her business, not mine.

  • Regardless of his liberal bona fides, Clinton would have waltzed to re-election in 2000. We probably would be looking at a 6th Clinton term (he's only 66), but for the 22nd amendment. He's just that good a politician. He may have called it quits after the heart condition, though.

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