After the much analyzed, replayed, testosterone laden, body language battle at the Presidential podium, what happened next? The clip typically ends as President Clinton points to the next question while President Obama exits stage left. What happened next was the real story.
Clinton was vintage; comfortable, knowledgeable, having some fun, getting to his points with style and command, going as far as self deprecation. Bill was non-threatening rational; common sense interspersed with a liberal policy context absent the barbs and hard edges. No subject escaped some manner of experience and expertise. Easy to forget how good this guy could be.
President Clinton created an undeniable contrast to President Obama; he did so beyond public reproach and yet one may surmise Obama’s staff was seething at Obama, Clinton and Mr. Gibbs for letting this little bit of theater end up as a comparative refresher course on the Clinton Presidency. Can rampant nostalgia be far away? The back story seems to indicate that this was an idea straight from the Oval Office; inexperience you say? Letting Bill Clinton loose in the White House, with the Press and a microphone?
Bill was showing Democrats where his short term positioning formula is; Bill’s version of leadership by example. Bill was also reviving an old idea; “Hey, things were pretty good when you had Hillary and I as a twofer.”……. “Call me!”
These are the guys who dropped the race card on the first Black President, savaged Hillary in the campaign and came out of nowhere with nothing as far as Billary was concerned. As President Obama has recently and accurately pointed out; “it’s a long game”. Obama said it, Clinton actually knows it!