Has H. Clinton been asked this?

“What’s the biggest mistake Bill Clinton made as President?”

If so, what’s been her answer?

Why would that question be “fair game?” Might as well ask Bush II the same thing about Bush I - what’s the point?

“Pushing my Health Care proposal before I knew how to negotiate.”

“Not bombing Osama Bin Ladin’s hunting party because he would kill some innocent people.”

“The cigar thing”

Otto. While I’m sure(?) your OP was asked as nothing more than a GQ, the replies are gonna take this one off the rails.

So, off to Great Debates, where one can still get a factual answer to this question, …and allow the discussion to expand, as it is sure to do. MOved.

samclem GQ moderator

Shouldn’t the question be asked to Bill, not Hillary?

That being the case, I think he was asked the question and his answer was that he should have been more assertive to the slaughter in Rwanda.

I think it is a fair question, and I’d ask it of all of the Democrats, not just Clinton herself. While this wouldn’t be the first thing I’d ask her, it certainly wouldn’t be off limits IMHO.

I think an honest answer of either Clinton’s would point back to the affair with a WH staffer. It turned what would probably have been one of the stellar presidencies into…something less.

YMMV…I doubt H. Clinton was asked that question to be honest. Nor do I think it’s relevent to her own presidential bid. Ask her about her own record, or her plans for the presidency if she wins.


Why? What does it have to do with anything?

Jon Stewart once asked Bill what the key was to stopping Hillary’s campaign. The video is on dailyshow.com but for some reason I can’t play it. I suspect there’s some kind of U.S.-only IP thing going on.

If nothing else, it gives some look into her priorities, doesn’t it? Especially if she’s allowed time to explain her answer.

The candidates’ views on what the best thing the past few presidents accomplished would be just as interesting, and for the same reason.

If Sample Candidate A thinks the best thing George Bush did was the tax cut and Sample Candidate B thinks it was No Child Left Behind, doesn’t that give you some insight into how they think and what they value?

I’m sure Hillary would be glad to say what she thinks was the best thing her husband did as President.

There’s a slight difference between the two: Hillary’s been running her campaign for the Dem nomination based on her vast wealth of experience. The credentials she stakes are not merely single term as Senator, but that somehow by being married to a President, she learned the ropes by close association. If she’s going to take credit for her husband’s term in office, she’s got to be open for questions on it as well.

Bush, on the other hand, while he would likely not have gotten the nomination in 2000 without being GHWB’s son, didn’t claim the mantle of his father as part of his qualifications for office.

I think it’s a great question. It would distinguish her from Bill more clearly, and give us a better idea of what she would actually do as a president.

The question is too direct and polarizing for her to risk answering honestly, though. I would expect her to dodge the question.

Well, Bill Clinton was the last Democratic president, and he had in his administration some notable successes and failures both.

Given that these are all Democrats, it would be interesting to know how they’d go about things differently. Therefore, like I said, a fair question. If someone were to ask a Republican candidate the same question regarding Bush, nobody would raise an eyebrow.

I think it’s hard to answer. Suppose W had been asked, “What was your father’s biggest mistake as president?” I’m not sure he would have had a good answer any more than Hillary would. I think it’s more important to ask where someone would lead the nation rather than dwell on what mistakes the last president from your party might have made.

Why can’t we do both? Talking about the future often leads to platitudes. Talking about the past forces one to be concrete. Or at least it makes it harder to stray into the nebulous.

I like this question, and would like to see it asked of all the candidates. What were the 3 biggest mistakes of the previous Democratic and Republican administrations. Ask both sides to comment on both political parties. Give them 20 minutes to speak, and I’m all ears.

Now THAT would be an interesting series of questions. Sure, I’d love to see it as well. Additionally I’d ask candidates on both sides to pick 3 of the best things the previous two administrations did. Would be interesting to see how they answer THAT as well, IMHO.


Agreed. The key, though, is to give them some time to answer. Seems like in the debates they typically get 30 seconds-- 60, if they’re lucky.