the campaign trail with Bill, it's all about Hillary
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[January 05, 2016]
By Alana Wise
EXETER, New Hampshire (Reuters) - Former
U. S. President Bill Clinton hit the campaign trail on Monday in support
of his wife, Hillary Clinton, who seeks the nomination in the Democratic
contest, touting her record in public office and dodging discussion of
Speaking to a crowd of supporters in the early-voting state of New
Hampshire, a soft-spoken Bill Clinton made his first stump for his
wife in the 2016 election cycle, declining to respond to criticism
over infidelities during his time in the Oval Office, and praising
his wife's career both in and out of politics.
"I think she's proved she knows how to get things done,” he told a
group of supporters at a town hall in Exeter.
"Everywhere she went, she made something good happen.”
Monday's stops were the first of what are expected to be many
Clinton will make for his wife, with just four weeks until the first
votes are cast in the nominating process for the November 2016
His late-comer introduction to the campaign trail could be a
strategically significant move for the former secretary of state
who, despite leading in many national surveys, still trails Vermont
Senator Bernie Sanders in New Hampshire opinion polls.
But, while Bill Clinton’s lasting popularity among Democrats makes
his support a sterling endorsement for any candidate, scrutiny of
his past infidelities raised by Republican pack leader Donald Trump
have reintroduced a sore point in his legacy to a new generation of
voters too young to remember the scandal.
In the 1990's, Clinton, while still in office, admitted to a sexual
relationship with a White House intern, which Trump has said
demonstrates a penchant for sexism by the husband of the woman
hoping to be the nation’s first female president.
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Clinton shied away from addressing the controversy directly during
his stump, instead admonishing "communities of collective
resentment" across party aisles, and in a thinly veiled criticism of
Trump, bashed Republicans for attempting to make a caricature of
"She’s got the proven ability to get the best out of a difficult
situation,” he said to a group of volunteers in Dover.
"But the main thing is, at a time when we have been driven apart by
the communities of collective resentment, she has never stepped into
a room where she didn’t make something good.”
New Hampshire voters will cast their ballots for the primary
nominating contest on Feb. 9.
(The story has been refiled to amend headline to "with")
(Reporting by Alana Wise; Editing by Robeert Birsel)
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