Bill Clinton On Haiti: 'It's Not Enough Just To Rebuild'

Bill Clinton and George W. Bush were guests on "Meet the Press" today to talk about Haiti relief, and I was struck once again by the contrast between the two. As always, Clinton has a grasp of all the logistical and political factors in play, and Bush speaks in emotional but general terms. I can't imagine the basis for this friendship:

DAVID GREGORY: Let me start by asking you both, President Bush, what's your biggest concern right now?

FORMER PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: My biggest concern is the-- the Haitian people have security, water, and food.

DAVID GREGORY: And those are big ifs right now.

FORMER PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: Well they are. But-- the President briefed us-- about-- military efforts to get-- food and water to the people. And surging a lot of material. And it's gonna take a little bit of time to get it there. But-- I came away from the briefing confident it's gonna happen.

DAVID GREGORY: President Clinton, the basics are so important right now.

FORMER PRESIDENT BILL CLINTON: This is about water, food, medical supplies and care, and-- and shelter, secure shelter. We-- I have some protection concerns. But-- we were just told in the briefing that 40 percent of the Haitian police forces signed back in, volunteered for duty. A lot of them don't have uniforms or weapons or anything anymore. But-- the American military's working closely with the U.N. troops that are there. And-- they'll get this organized. They're doing a good job. We just need more help. We literally don't have enough food to feed them now. We don't have-- and-- and there are two issues. One is buying it. And the second is getting it in and distributing it. But that's what everybody's working on now.


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