- The Washington Times - Monday, July 28, 2014

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton raised eyebrows on CNN by claiming that former President George W. Bush actually brought out her patriotism and made her proud of her American roots.

She also seemed to take a pot shot at President Obama’s foreign affairs policies during an interview on the “Fareed Zakaria GPS” show on CNN.

“We have to go back out and sell ourselves. It is not to be taken for granted. What do we stand for and how do we intend to lead and manage? How do we try to enlist the rest of the world in this struggle between cooperation and order and conflict and disorder which is really at the root of so much that’s going on today — and I don’t think we’ve done a very good job of that.”

Mrs. Clinton went on, discussing the differences between headline news and actual trends — appearing to suggest that it was Mr. Bush, and not Mr. Obama, who had a long-term view of the international stage.

“Of course, there are specifics,” she said, Breitbart reported. “They’re all the headlines we can talk about.

“But the trend lines, let’s not forget the trend lines. George W. Bush is very popular in Sub-Saharan Africa. Why? Because of the president’s emergency program for AIDS relief. Whether you agree or disagree with a lot of what else he did — and I disagree with a lot of it — I am proud to be an American when I go to Sub-Saharan Africa and people say, ‘I want to thank President Bush and the United States for helping us fight HIV/AIDS.’”

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She then seemed to take another jab at Mr. Obama’s White House, saying that America spends a “lot of money and a lot of time and effort” to exert influence around the world.

But “I think we would be able to succeed more effectively if we were clearer about who we are and what we stand for and the values that we hold,” she  added during the CNN interview.

Fox News analysts suggested Mrs. Clinton was likely being genuine in her pro-Bush views, but that she was also as likely to be trying to distance herself from Mr. Obama and his foreign affairs policies in case she decides to run for the presidency for 2016.

• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com.

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