Bill Clinton - Hillary Clinton and the Changing Political Landscape

September 15, 2016 - Bill Clinton 09/15/2016 Views: 7,136

Former President Bill Clinton weighs in on the divisive rhetoric used by the Donald Trump campaign and talks about stumping for his wife, Hillary Clinton. (9:24)

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We're here joinedby President Bill Clinton.

When you are in a space where...a campaign is being run...

And this is turning intoone of the uglier campaigns

that we've seen. You know,a lot of hateful rhetoric

is coming up, you know, uh,whether it be racial,

whether it be,uh, nationalistic,

you know, you see the rise ofultra right movements and so on,

uh, a lot of misogynisticcomments about your wife.

When running that kind of race,when you're out on the trail,

you are out there asone of Hillary's surrogates.

Do you feel some of that tension

or are you only seeingthe positive side of the race?

Well, if you goand have rallies,

you tend to have...the people who tend to show up

are for you, you know?And your whole goal

is to register more of them,make sure they understand

they have to voteand talk about arguments

that they can maketo other people.

But for most of my life,

each political partyhad a 40% base

and then there were 20% thatwere genuinely up for grabs.

By the time the 2000 racecame along

between Al Goreand President George W. Bush,

it was probably down to ten.

It may be down to less now,

because we're getting siloed.

We're-we're siloedin the TV shows we watch

and the Web sites we scan,everything,

that America has come so far.

We're less racist,sexist, homophobic,

and-and anti-religious...

specific religions,than we used to be.

We have one remaining bigotry--

we don't want to be aroundanybody who disagrees with us.

-(chuckling)-And, you know...

The crowd's laughing,but they didn't laugh loud

'cause they knowI'm telling the truth.

One of the biggest themes that'scome up over and over again

in this campaign has been,

do you want more of the same,or do you want an outsider--

a man who doesn't believein logic and ideas?

(laughter)

Someone who thinks differently?

-It appears...-That's factually accurate.

-It appears...-(laughter)

-It appears...-(applause)

It appears there are a lot ofpeople who seem to want that.

It appearsthere are a lot of people

who say, "This is what I need."

Now, you arein the unique position.

President Barack Obama, manytimes on the trail has said,

"You don't know what it's likeuntil you sit behind that desk.

"You don't know what it's like

until you haveto make those decisions."

Experience is touted as oneof the most important things.

You yourself, though, came inas somewhat of an outsider.

So, the question then is--what is the most experience?

What isthe most important thing?

Is it the experience, or is itthe willingness to do something?

What should an American voterbe looking for

for the best outcome?

Well, first, I had an advantage.

I was... I had never had beenin office in Washington,

but I was... and I was young.

But I was the longest-servinggovernor in America,

so I'd had a lotof executive experience.

Uh, I think

that both these candidateshave had a lot of experiences.

They've made a lot of decisions.

Those decisionshave had consequences.

There is a record of them.

So this is being... it's...

Saying she's an insider,I'm an outsider--

there's one big difference.

Most of her strongest supportersare people

who have worked for her,or have done business with him.

-They're for her, too.-(laughter)

Most of hisstrongest supporters are...

"I don't... I'm againstthis administration.

"I just want something new.

"And I don't likeall these changes.

I mean, I want to come insideand close the door."

This is... And it looks...I get that.

There are a lot of peoplewho feel economically

-or culturally dispossessed.-Yes.

They want to come in,close the door.

That's the Brexit votein England.

-Yes.-The UK, I mean.

So, what I think is important

is a proven recordof making good decisions

that make good things happenfor other people.

People that work for you,

the peoplethat you were supposed to serve.

That's what I thinkis important.

Do you get...do you get afraid sometimes

when you seethe hateful rhetoric?

Sure.

Look, I am a product

of what is supposed to beHillary's opponent's base.

A non-college-educated,

small town and ruralwhite working class.

I was the first person inmy family ever to go to college.

-(woman whoops) -I'llprobably be the last president

that ever lived on a small farmwithout indoor plumbing.

-(laughter)-That's a good camp...

it's good politics,it's a terrible experience.

(laughter)

In the winter,the outhouse is overrated.

(laughter)

In the summer,when the snakes come out, it is.

But...

I know how fragile it is,

and I watchedunscrupulous politicians

play my people from the timeI was a little boy.

All the racism that was inspired

over the integration ofLittle Rock Central High School

in Arkansas.

Everybody lookingfor somebody else to blame.

Surely to God,there's some way we could be

just a little bit madderat each other than we are now,

just a little bit more divided.

And yet...the people I come from,

for all their anger...

they provided about--

that's the Scotch-IrishProtestants--

about 25% of the peoplewho ever wore the uniform

of this country,going back to the Revolution.

If your house was on fire,

you'd want themin the neighborhood.

'Cause they'd run intoyour house and save your kid

and put the house fire out.

But... they arebeing played now.

because their incomes are down,they're...

There are two countiesin West Virginia

where the number one sourceof income is a disability check.

This is the first drug epidemicin my lifetime

where the... the, uh...

addiction rates are highestin small town and rural America.

I just try to thinkof what to do about this,

'cause I'm not in politicsanymore.

And I think the only wayto soothe people's pain

is to give thema positive response

that constitutes answers,not anger,

and empowerment, not resentment.

I think that's the answer.

But I get whatwe're going through,

and so far nothing that'shappened would surprise me.

But...

we have...

If I were 25 again--

that's like "Make AmericaGreat Again," I'd like to be.

(laughter)

But I wouldn't vote for anybody

who promisedto make me 25 again.

-(laughter)-But anyway, if I were,

and somebody said, "You can bewherever you want to be

30 years from now, but youhave to decide right now,"

I'd pick America,because we're better positioned.

But if we give in to thislowest common denominator,

everybody's our enemy...

tell me something bad about itor I don't want to know,

let's divide and demeanand demonize,

we could blow it all,

and we could lead the worldin a very different direction.

That's whythe election's so important.

And... when I... you know,I've tried to make the changes

-Yeah. -in the foundationthat you talked about,

so that people understandthat being president's

a whole different kettle of fishthan being secretary of state.

If I had made a mistake--for example,

on these foreign donations--

there was always appealto the White House,

the president could always say,

"No, I don't thinkyou should do that."

But if she becomes president,

I should justnot take foreign money,

not take corporate money,

farm out all of ourinternational operations

to others-- and I'min the process of doing that--

make those thatshould stay together

independent of me,

and remove all questionsof conflict--

I think we can do that.

But the main thing is,the model...

that we pioneer is the waywe ought to run the country.

You ought to geteverybody together,

agree on what you're gonna do,and make something good happen.

That's way better thanall this caustic fighting.

And it may mean thatyou'll have to look elsewhere

-for jokes on The... Daily Show. -(laughter)

That's a... that'sa good problem to have.

You know, I'll try to give youthat high-class problem,

-just do what I can.-That is a good problem.

I got to thank you so muchfor being here.

We could talk to you forever,'cause it really is amazing.

And you are right-- you are...

you're one ofthe happier people on the trail.

Uh, I did think about...I did think about...

-Go figure.-what-what gift...

what gift I could give youfor coming to the show.

I really do appreciate it,and I thought you are the man

who has everything,from people to influence,

and I... I did noticethat there is one thing

that makes you smile,so, uh, I wanted to give you

the gift of balloons.

-(laughter)-So, uh...

-(applause, cheering)-thank you so much...

for coming... to The Daily Show.

(cheering continues)

(Noah laughing)

Yay...!

(exclaims)

When I... when I saw the filmof the end of the convention,

I realized that,more than everybody else,

I was there playing with theballoons, and they were gonna...

hook me off the stage,and I thought, you know...

I really amin my second childhood.

-Thank you so much for beinghere. -Thank you. Thank you.

-President Bill Clinton,everybody. -(cheering, applause)