I am trying to imagine the conversation between the former President and our next Secretary of State over this headline in the New York Times: “Bill Clinton Speech in Malaysia Irks Investors”. Or better, what is the next President of the U.S. saying to his Secretary of State-in-waiting?
Here’s the truth: Bill Clinton needs to shut up and stop taking speaking fees for the next four years. He needs to do so in order for his wife to be our representative abroad and for our newly-elected President to govern without distractions. This is exactly why Mrs. Clinton would have been a bad choice for Vice President. There would have been a government in exile and a government in waiting run from her office and Observatory Circle.
But I have to think that Mrs. Clinton recognizes that these types of speeches by her husband will make her job harder and will prove a distraction for all involved.
And on a side note, should anyone think for a moment that the New York Times is unwilling to criticize Democrats, consider the decision to cover this story and the resources they deployed to do so. Furthermore, do you think for a moment that they would have sent reporters to Malaysia to cover a paid speech by former President George H.W. Bush given in December 2000 before his son took office?
As a taxpayer, I can’t stand that we pay for former presidents to keep offices running and operate “libraries” which are truly mausoleums which tend to whitewash history. I’d much prefer we have one museums which catalogs the lives and work of former presidents. Oh wait, we do. It’s called the Smithsonian American History Museum.
I’d much prefer Bill Clinton spend his time promoting the Clinton Global initiative and partnering with the former President Bush to raise money for worthy humanitarian causes like they did for Tsunami relief.
The cold reality is these types of pay-to-play practices, which have been typical of former presidents of both parties, disgrace the office of the presidency and those who once held our trust.