Bush Says Clinton Understands Pressure of Presidency (Update1)
By Holly Rosenkrantz
Nov. 20 (Bloomberg) -- President George W. Bush said today that Democrat Hillary Clinton has a better grasp of the ``pressure'' of the presidency than any other 2008 White House candidate because of her experience as first lady.
``There is no question that Senator Clinton understands pressure better than any of the candidates, you know, in the race,'' Bush told ABC News in an interview set for broadcast tonight, according to excerpts released by the network. He repeated his view that she is a ``very formidable candidate.''
Bush said he still expects the next president will be a fellow Republican. He declined to speculate about the race for his party's nomination, calling it ``wide open.''
Bush, 61, was interviewed at Camp David, the presidential retreat in rural Maryland, along with his wife, Laura. She said experience as first lady would be ``very helpful'' for Clinton, as it was ``very helpful for us'' to have been around the White House when Bush's father, George H.W. Bush, was president.
Clinton, 60, a New York senator, has slammed Bush during this year's campaign and contrasted her experience with that of her presidential rivals, particularly Barack Obama, 46, who is in his first term in the Senate.
``I believe I have the right kind of experience to be the next president,'' and those credentials ``uniquely equip me to be prepared to hit the ground running on day one,'' Clinton said in a speech today, according to a transcript.
Bush also weighed in on Obama, saying that the Illinois Democrat's statement that he would meet with leaders of rogue nations without preconditions was an ``odd foreign policy.''
``What I think these candidates don't understand is how complex an environment it is inside the Oval Office,'' Bush said. ``It's impossible for anybody to fully comprehend.''
To contact the reporter on this story: Holly Rosenkrantz in Washington at firstname.lastname@example.org .