Bill Clinton was driven 'nuts' by Obama, was wary of Hillary’s ambition: 'If she won, it would be all about her'
Democrats, at the time, had deemed Bill's outbursts about America’s would-be first Black president 'bizarre', 'ill-tempered' and 'ill-founded'
Former President Bill Clinton was reportedly driven "nuts" by Barack Obama in 2008, however, he was cautious of wife Hillary Clinton's ambition. The revelation was made by Bill's former aide, Doug Band, in a Vanity Fair article published on Wednesday, December 2, where he also claimed that Bill was, at the time, was "used to it all being about him".
Band, in the article, talked of Bill's dislike of his wife's political opponent, Obama, during the 2008 presidential elections. The former aide, while referring to Bill's behavior during the 2008 Democratic primary, said: "He dismantled everything we had done." Democrats, at the time, had deemed Bill's outbursts about America’s would-be first Black president "bizarre," "ill-tempered," and "ill-founded." Bland, however, told the outlets that comments were made because "Obama drove him nuts." The former aide also questioned whether Bill's distaste for the junior Senator from Ilinois was because he had a lead over Hillary, or because Bill himself was not sure whether he wanted his wife to win.
"He was used to it being all about him, and if she won, it would be all about her. That's not how he lived his life for the four decades leading up to that election," he claimed. "In her White House, he would be back under a microscope but without the benefit of being the one in charge."
Bland's claims, however, were slammed by a Bill Clinton spokesperson, who said: "That's ridiculous. President Clinton did more than 300 events on her behalf, and very much wanted her to win." The former Secretary of State's team also gave a statement to Vanity Fair, saying that Bland was "an enabler" of Bill's outbursts. "The view was Band was an enabler of Bill’s behavior," a Hillary adviser stated.
Band, however, rejected the claim, saying: "The idea that anyone can control a person, especially a former president of the United States, is completely ridiculous."
He also talked of Hillary's primary loss against Obama, saying when the latter offered him a Secretary of State position, "she wasn't over the primary loss." Band said that he was present for a phone call where Hillary told Obama she was turning the offer down and would issue a press release saying so. "She was bitter, angry, and believed he didn’t deserve to be president,” Band recalled, adding that he eventually implored Hillary to reconsider along with Bill's assistance. "Over the next 12 or so hours she came around," he added.
A Clinton family spokesperson also detailed their reason for parting with Bland, saying: "No staffer has ever used their role to serve their interests as much as Doug Band. For many years he was a valuable member of President Clinton’s team and supportive of Clinton Foundation programs. Until he wasn’t. He put the foundation at risk by leveraging a world-class philanthropy for his own financial gain. It’s as disappointing a story as it is a sad one and ultimately why Doug Band and the Clintons parted ways.”
The Vanity Fair article was published just days after Obama's bestselling memoir titled 'A Promise Land' was released, in which the former president described a bitter clash with Hillary after one of her top campaign officials attempted to portray him as a former drug dealer. Obama, in a 1995 book titled 'Dreams From My Father,' had admitted to trying marijuana and cocaine before entering politics. He had also added that he did not try heroin because he disliked the pusher who had attempted to sell it to him.