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The Trail: 2012 Presidential News from the Field / Campaign 2012

Bill Clinton Defends Romney's Business Career

Former President Bill Clinton.

photo of Alexandra  Jaffe
May 31, 2012

Yet another Obama surrogate has joined the chorus of voices warning against attacks on Mitt Romney's experience at Bain Capital.

Speaking on a special episode of CNN's Piers Morgan Tonight hosted by film producer Harvey Weinstein, Clinton said on Thursday that Romney had "a good business career," something that would help him with "some people who relate well to businessmen."

"I don't think that we ought to get in the position where we say this is bad work," he said. "This is good work."

One prominent line of attack launched by the Obama campaign has been on Romney's record at Bain, which they have sought to portray as a private equity firm that laid off thousands of workers while making handsome profits. The attacks came under scrutiny, however, when some Democrats -- most notably Newark Mayor Cory Booker -- disagreed with the campaign publicly.

Clinton had only faint praise for Romney's qualifications for the office he once held. "There's no question that, in terms of getting up and going to the office and, you know, basically performing the essential functions of the office, a man who's been governor and had a successful business career crosses the qualification threshold," he said.

However, Clinton said that Obama's views on how to fix the economy would, in his mind, be more successful than Romney's policies. He also handicapped the presidential race in Obama's favor.

"I still think the president will win by five or six points, I've always thought so," he said.

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