A Weekend With Bill Clinton


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By Hans Nichols

Dec. 6 (Bloomberg) — President-elect Barack Obama promised to make the “single largest new investment,” in America’s roads, require public buildings to be more energy-efficient, and to modernize health care with electronic medical records.

Using his weekly radio address to unveil five components of his plan to save or create 2.5 million jobs, Obama pledged that he would not “do it the old Washington way.”

“We won’t just throw money at the problem,” he said. “We’ll measure progress by the reforms we make and the results we achieve — by the jobs we create, by the energy we save, by whether America is more competitive in the world.”

The incoming 44th president opened his address by saying that yesterday’s Labor Department report of 533,000 lost jobs in November was “another painful reminder of the serious economic challenge our country is facing.”The economic slowdown has been exacerbated by the worst credit crisis in seven decades and is compounded by potential collapse of the U.S. auto industry. Congress will return next week to decide whether to rescue the Big Three car companies.

In addition to investing in infrastructure, requiring energy standards on public buildings and updating health-care practices, Obama said that he will launch a “sweeping effort to modernize and upgrade school buildings,” and will boost broadband deployment across America.

Passing Plan ‘Immediately’

“These are a few parts of the economic recovery plan that I will be rolling out in the coming weeks,” he said. “When Congress reconvenes in January, I look forward to working with them to pass a plan immediately.”

On infrastructure, he said his investment would be the largest since the creation of the federal interstate highway system in the 1950s. To the states that will be the conduits for the funding, he had a simple message: “use it or lose it.”

“If a state doesn’t act quickly to invest in roads and bridges in their communities, they’ll lose the money,” he said.

Obama’s plan to make public buildings more energy efficient should reduce the government’s energy bill, which he called the highest in the world. He plans to replace heating systems and install energy-efficient light bulbs.

He vowed to make schools more energy efficient, while also putting new computers in classrooms.

Obama also plans to upgrade Internet infrastructure, calling it “unacceptable that the United States ranks 15th in the world in broadband adoption.”

Modernizing health care was the final component of the plan. By introducing new technology and electronic medical records, he said health-care workers could “prevent medical mistakes, and help save billions of dollars each year.”

Obama, in Chicago for the weekend, has no public events scheduled for today. Tomorrow, he will mark the anniversary of the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor with a news conference in Chicago, according to a statement from his transition team.

The press conference is scheduled begin at 1:00 p.m. Chicago time tomorrow. No further details were provided.

To contact the reporter on this story: Hans Nichols in Chicago at hnichols2@bloomberg.net

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CRAWFORD, Texas (AFP) — US President George W. Bush said Tuesday that he and First Lady Laura Bush were sad to hear of Zambian President Levy Mwanawasa’s death, praising him as “a champion of democracy” in Africa.

“On behalf of the United States, we extend our sincere condolences to President Mwanawasa’s wife, his family, and all Zambians during this difficult time,” Bush said in a statement released from his Texas ranch.

“President Mwanawasa was a champion of democracy in his own country and throughout Africa. As president of Zambia, President Mwanawasa launched a sweeping anti-corruption campaign and dedicated himself to improving the welfare of all Zambians,” said Bush.

“As Chairman of the Southern African Development Community, President Mwanawasa worked tirelessly to uphold the values of good governance, speaking out against human rights abuses and threats to democracy when many others were silent,” said the US president.

Mwanawasa, a trenchant critic of Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe who won praise for his handling of Zambia’s inflation-prone economy, died Tuesday in hospital in France aged 59.

Mwanawasa, who had been receiving treatment at the Percy Military Hospital near Paris, never recovered after suffering his second stroke in a little over two years at the end of June.

Copyright © 2008 AFP. All rights reserved.

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CHICAGO (AP) — Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama’s campaign says he’ll campaign with former rival Hillary Rodham Clinton next week.

Clinton and Obama are set to make their first post-primary season campaign trail appearance next week.

Obama’s campaign said in an e-mail that the two senators will campaign together for the first time on Friday, June 27.

Obama and Clinton are also scheduled to hold a joint fundraiser this month.

Clinton suspended her campaign for the Democratic nomination earlier this month after Obama secured enough delegates to clinch the nomination.

Copyright © 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved

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AP

Clinton easily wins Kentucky primary 

 

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Hillary Rodham Clinton coasted to easy victory in the Kentucky primary on Tuesday, a triumph of scant political value in a Democratic presidential race moving inexorably in Barack Obama‘s direction.

The two rivals also collided in Oregon‘s unique vote-by-mail contest, and Obama predicted he would finish the night with a majority of all delegates at stake in the 56 primaries and caucuses on the campaign calendar.

“This is one of the closest races for a party’s nomination in modern history,” Clinton told supporters celebrating her victory. “We’re winning the popular vote,” she said, despite figures from competitive contests that show otherwise. “I’m more determined than ever to see that every vote is cast and every ballot is counted.”

Even so, she commended Obama and said whatever their differences, “we do see eye to eye when it comes to uniting our party and electing a Democratic president this fall.”

She also said Michigan and Florida Democrats deserve to have their votes counted, a reference to the lingering controversy surrounding primaries in both states held in defiance of Democratic National Committee rules.

Party officials are scheduled to meet later this month to consider how — or whether — to seat all or part of the states’ delegates.

With votes counted from 90 percent of Kentucky’s precincts, Clinton was gaining 65 percent of the vote to 30 percent for Obama.

Almost nine in 10 ballots were cast by whites, and the former first lady was winning their support overwhelmingly. She defeated her rival among voters of all age groups and incomes, the college educated and non-college educated, self-described liberals, moderates and conservatives.

Though Clinton has had a strong run through the late primaries, Obama has steadily outpaced her where it counts, in the race for national convention delegates.

With her Kentucky victory, Clinton picked up at least 28 delegates to at least eight for Obama with an additional 15 yet to be awarded.

Overall, Obama had 1,925 delegates, little more than 100 shy of the 2,026 needed to become the first black presidential nominee of a major party. The former first lady had 1,750.

Regardless of the results of the night’s two primaries, Obama decided to mark a victory of sorts. He arranged an evening appearance in Iowa, site of his critical Jan. 3 caucus triumph that launched him on his way through the primaries that followed.

“The question then becomes how do we complete the nomination process so that we have the majority of the total number of delegates, including superdelegates, to be able to say this thing’s over,” Obama told The Associated Press in an interview.

Clinton looked for a consolation for the strongest presidential campaign of any woman in history. She hoped to finish with more votes than her rival in all the contests combined, including Florida and Michigan, two states that were stripped of their delegates by the national party for moving their primary dates too early.

Not counting the results in Kentucky and Oregon, Obama was ahead of Clinton by slightly more than 618,000 votes out of 32.2 cast in primaries and caucuses where both candidates competed.

The numbers do not include Iowa, Maine, or Nevada caucuses, nor do they count — as Clinton does in her totals — Florida and Michigan.

Campaigning with his wife in Kentucky, former President Clinton dismissed Obama’s inevitable claim on pledged delegates.

“There won’t be tonight, unless you decapitate Michigan and Florida, which violates our values and is dumb politics,” Bill Clinton said.

Kentucky, where Hillary Clinton concentrated much of her efforts in recent days, had 51 convention delegates at stake.

Oregon, where Obama invested his time and drew a crowd estimated by police at 75,000 over the weekend, had 52. The state also had the distinction of staging the only contest without a designated polling day. Instead, under a vote-by-mail system, election officials tallied all ballots received by 11 p.m. EDT on primary day.

The only primaries remaining are Puerto Rico, on June 1, followed two days later by South Dakota and Montana.

Increasingly, Obama has been concentrating his campaign on John McCain, the Republican nominee-in-waiting, rather than on Clinton.

The former first lady, too, has jettisoned the sharp attacks against Obama that characterized the race only a few weeks ago, although she bristled on Monday at his decision to focus on the fall campaign. “You can declare yourself anything, but if you don’t have the votes, it doesn’t matter,” she said in an interview with an Oregon television station.

Even so, there was no shortage of signs that the closest Democratic nominating campaign in a generation was reaching its final stages after drawing more than 33 million voters to the polls and shattering numerous turnout records along the way.

As recently as May 6, Obama trailed Clinton among superdelegates, the officeholders and party leaders who will attend the national convention by virtue of their positions.

But in the days following his convincing victory in the North Carolina primary and his narrow defeat in Indiana, Obama has gained the support of at least 50 superdelegates and taken the lead in that category. Clinton has gained nine over that period.

Obama also has picked up the endorsements of former Sen. John Edwards, who dropped out of the race in the early going, two labor unions and NARAL Pro-Choice America. The abortion rights advocacy organization had supported Clinton throughout her political career.

Fundraisers for the two campaigns have held quiet discussions on working together in the fall campaign.

Additionally, Obama’s top strategist, David Axelrod, disclosed he had contacted Clinton’s former campaign manager about joining forces for the general election. Patti Solis Doyle confirmed what she called informal conversations about how she might help the Illinois senator if, as expected, he secures the presidential nomination.

By Bellah K Theise

When Women Rule they Rule Big

I am not the Hillary supporter, but I feel I should give her a credit for her strong will to fight .As I have always said, I have admiration for women who stand up for themselves. Women who believes that they should have equal opportunity in this world. Congratulation to Hillary for her victory in Indiana.

I support Obama, because In my own opinion, I feel, Obama is capable of  uniting the world, He has good sense of judgement when it comes to making decisions that are critical to his country.

On the other hand, I give Hillary a credit for her hard work. Mind you she is 60, and fighting like a 25 year old young lady with full of energy.

Hillary is not only an attorney by profession, but a real politician I have ever come across in this world. Even though she is behind in this campaign, I can say she is smart and her energy just gets a kick out of me. For that Mrs Clinton I can give you Kudos, as most of women in my native country Zambia get old in their 40s.

Tough tough……….Bill said the Clinton’s do not quit. Even a lose is a win.

At Least  Hillary spoke with passion here , than before. Though I see too many personalities in her depending on a situation hard to  tell the real Hillary.

A word for Zambian woman!!!!!! Get tough

This is the reason, Inonge Mbikusita and Maureen Mwanawasa should not give in. Girls you can do it. Just consult Hillary, she will show you how to play this game.

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WASHINGTON – Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and former President Clinton made nearly $109 million since they left the White House, capitalizing on the world’s interest in the former first couple and lucrative business ventures.

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The Clintons reported $20.4 million in income for 2007 as they gave the public the most detailed look at their finances in eight years. Almost half the former first couple’s money came from Bill Clinton‘s speeches.

“I have absolutely nothing against rich people,” Hillary Clinton told North Dakota Democrats at their party convention Friday night in Grand Forks. “As a matter of fact, my husband — much to my surprise and his — has made a lot of money since he left the White House doing what he loves doing most, talking to people.”

The tax returns are a portrait in post-presidential success. The Clintons, who had lived in taxpayer-paid housing in the governor’s mansion in Arkansas or the White House for years, left the presidency struggling with a legal defense fund stemming from a spate of investigations. They now are wealthy enough that she could lend her presidential campaign $5 million earlier this year.

The campaign released tax returns from 2000 through 2006 and gave highlights from their 2007 return. The Clintons have asked for an extension for filing their 2007 tax returns, citing the dissolution of a blind trust last year.

The Democratic presidential candidate and her husband paid $33.8 million in taxes from 2000 through 2007. They listed $10.25 million in charitable contributions during that period.

Clinton has been under pressure to release her tax returns, especially from rival Sen. Barack Obama, who posted his 2000 to 2006 returns on his campaign Web site last week. Neither Obama nor Republican Sen. John McCain has made their 2007 tax returns public, though both say they will this month.

The Clintons last made their returns public in 2000 when they reported an adjusted gross income of $416,039 for 1999. Since then, the former president has embarked on a number of business ventures and has made millions from speaking engagements and books.

In the tax returns, the former president describes his occupation as “Speaking & Writing.”

Beside speeches and books, his biggest single business income is from his partnership with Yucaipa Global Opportunities Fund, a Los Angeles-based investment firm founded by longtime Clinton fundraiser Ron Burkle. Between 2003 and 2006, the returns show total Yucaipa partnership income of $12.5 million. The 2007 summary provided by the campaign lists $2.75 million in partnership income.

President Clinton also has been an adviser to InfoUSA, a data company whose chief executive, Vinod Gupta, has been a major donor to Democrats and gave at least $1 million to Bill Clinton‘s presidential library in Arkansas. Clinton received $400,000 in payments from the company in 2006 and 2007, according to the documents.

According to a summary of the seven years provided by the campaign, the former president’s speech income since he left the White House totals $51.85 million and his income from his two books — “My Life ” and “Giving” — totals $29.6 million, including a $15 million advance for “My Life.” Bill Clinton has traveled the world, giving paid speeches to multinational corporations, investment banks and motivational groups.

Details of the former president’s speaking fees were included in Sen. Clinton‘s financial disclosure report last year. In 2006 and 2007, he earned fees from $100,000 to $450,000 speaking to such corporations as IBM, General Motors, and Cisco Systems, finance giants such as Goldman Sachs and Lehman Brothers, and trade groups such as the National Association of Realtors and the Mortgage Bankers Association. He also has been paid to speak to nonprofit or charity groups, including the TJ Martell Foundation, which finances leukemia research, Nelson Mandela‘s Children’s Fund and, last March, to the Boys and Girls Club of Los Angeles.

The campaign has said Clinton typically donates millions of dollars worth of free speeches to charities

Hillary Clinton had $10.5 million in book income over the period from her book “Living History.” She donated earnings from her other book, “It Takes a Village,” to charity.

Clinton’s tax returns show that of the remaining presidential candidates, she is the one most able to access large amounts of personal money. She lent her campaign $5 million in late February and could contribute more if she finds herself falling far behind Obama’s proficient fundraising.

McCain’s wife, Cindy, is heiress to her father’s stake in Hensley & Co. of Phoenix, one of the largest beer distributorships in the country and her worth could exceed $100 million. But the couple has a prenuptial agreement that has kept most assets in her name. In his financial disclosures, McCain lists his major sources of income as his Senate salary of $169,300 and a Navy pension of about $56,000.

In 2006, Obama reported income of nearly $1 million, with nearly half of it coming from the publication of his second book, “The Audacity of Hope.” Last week, the campaign disclosed that Obama and his wife, Michelle, gave $240,000 to charity last year.

The tax return shows a rite of passage for the Clintons: 2002 was the last year they claimed daughter Chelsea, now 28, as a dependent.

The returns also reference interest free loans to unidentified “family members.” Based on the “imputed interest” listed in the 2006 return — that is interest that would have been paid — the loans likely total more than $300,000.

“The loans to family members are personal; the Clintons are going to respect their family members’ privacy,” Clinton spokesman Jay Carson said.

___

Associated Press writers Nancy Benac, Charles Babington, Nedra Pickler and Pete Yost in Washington and Beth Fouhy in Grand Forks, N.D., contributed to this article.

 

 

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