Could Be Worse - Could Be 1994

On the morning after the disastrous 1994 mid-term elections, President Bill Clinton holds a White House Press Conference.

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Now that the 2010 mid-terms are over, and no one is wasting any time girding up for 2012, I thought I would play a press conference from 1994, sounding eerily familiar to one this morning, only the man in the hot seat then was Bill Clinton.

Pres. Clinton: “The American people sent us here to rebuild the American dream. To change the way Washington does business, to make our country work for ordinary citizens again. We made a good start by cutting the deficit, by reducing the size of the Federal Government, by reinventing much of our government to do more with less. We have increased our investment in education and expanded trade and our economy has created more than five million jobs. We’ve also made a serious start in the fight against the terrible plague of crime and violence in this country. I remain committed to completing the work we have done. Still, in the midst of this work there has been too much politics as usual in Washington, too much partisan conflict, too little reform of Congress and the political process. And though we have made progress, not enough people have felt more prosperous and more secure, or believed we were meeting their desires for fundamental change in the role of government in their lives. With the Democrats in control of both the White House and the Congress we were held accountable yesterday and I accept my share of the responsibility in the result of the elections.”

And eerily, some issues were the same.

Clinton: “On the healthcare issue I will concede that, by the time the folks who were characterizing our program had finished with it, and one of your publications said that they thought about $300 million had been spent in lobbying against the healthcare reform, it looked like a government program, designed to solve the problem by restricting the choices of the American people and injecting the government more into healthcare. That is not what I want to do, and I will concede this; I have got to find a way to reassure the American people that, if they like what they’ve got, they can keep it. But let me say I remain committed to solving the healthcare problem.”

And so it goes . . .and so it goes.

Here is the complete press conference as aired on NPR with commentary by Daniel Schorr.

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