Bill Clinton: I Learned A Lesson

Bill Clinton says he's learning what he can say, and what he can't say, on behalf of his wife.

He tells an NBC affiliate in Portland, Maine (WCSH-TV), that he shouldn't have assumed that he was "a spouse like any other spouse" on the campaign trail. He says he's learned that he can promote his wife's candidacy, but that he's not free to defend her.

Clinton says the fact that he himself was president means that he has to let his wife defend herself, or "have someone else defend her." He says when he defends her, he runs the risk of being misquoted, or of becoming the story.

On the eve of the New Hampshire primary, Clinton called Barack Obama's opposition to the Iraq war a "fairy tale." Later, campaigning for his wife in South Carolina, Clinton suggested an Obama victory there would be a racial one, like Jesse Jackson's 20 years ago.

Critics accused him of injecting race into the campaign.

He says everything he said in South Carolina about Obama was "factually accurate," but that a lot that's been said about what he said is "factually inaccurate."


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