American Morning

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October 29th, 2010
01:11 AM ET

The Teaser for Friday, October 29, 2010

"The Teaser” is a preview of the guests we have lined up for the next day – so you know when to tune in (and when to set your alarm!). Guests and times are always subject to change.

6:10AM Rep Kendrick Meek, (D) Florida, Running for U.S. Senate in Florida, on his conversations with President Bill Clinton. Was he asked to drop out of the Florida Senate Race? What really happened?

6:40AM Donna Perdue and Tony Comegys, attending the “Rally to Restore Sanity”, on why they are attending the rally put together by Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert in Washington this weekend. Is this about politics or entertainment for them?

7:24AM Lakshman Achuthan, Economic Analyst and Managing Dir., Economic Cycle Research Institute and Christine Romans, CNN Business Correspondent, on the state of the economy and whether the U.S. is headed for a double dip recession.

7:40AM Chris Smith, Contributing Editor, New York Magazine, on Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert's "Rally to Restore Sanity". Is this a serious political event or just a stunt?

8:10AM Donna Brazile, CNN Political Contributor and Democratic Strategist and Toby Harnden, US Editor, The Daily Telegraph of London, on President Bill Clinton’s influence on the midterm elections. Plus, reaction to the conversations between Clinton and Rep. Kendrick Meek regarding the Florida Senate race.

8:40AM Corby Kummer, Food Writer, The Atlantic  and Self-proclaimed “Candyoholic”, on that sweet, sugary stuff we call candy. Is it really so bad for us or just misunderstood?

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Filed under: Bill Clinton • Politics
February 12th, 2010
09:00 AM ET

Bill Clinton's heart surgery explained

Former President Clinton left a New York hospital early Friday, less than a day after doctors performed a procedure to restore blood flow in one of his coronary arteries.

Cardiologist Dr. Holly Andersen is the director of the Perlman Heart Institute at New York Presbyterian, which is where President Clinton had his procedure done. She joined us on American Morning Friday.

Read more: Clinton leaves hospital after heart procedure

Filed under: Bill Clinton
August 6th, 2009
06:46 AM ET

Critics: Pres. Clinton is overshadowing his wife

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Journalists Laura Ling speaks in front of Euna Lee, former Vice President Al Gore and former President Bill Clinton on August 5, 2009 in Burbank, California after being released by North Korean authorities."]

Laura Ling choked up with emotion when she described the moment she realized she would be freed from captivity in North Korea. “We were taken to a location, and when we walked in through the doors, we saw standing before us President Bill Clinton.”

He was a rescuing angel, who brought the two American journalists home safely. Some are even saying Mr. Clinton's visit may also pave the way to a nuclear-free North Korea. But it wasn’t long before “The Hillary Question” came up.

“Where is Hillary?” asked Rush Limbaugh on his radio show. “Is North Korea too important to send a girl?” Although Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is in Africa on a diplomacy tour, some say President Clinton’s mission trumps hers.

“Just as Hillary muscled her way back into the spotlight...she was blown off the radar screen again by an even more powerful envoy: the one she lives with,” wrote Maureen Dowd in the New York Times. This comes after questions just last month, that President Obama was overshadowing Secretary Clinton by meeting with world leaders himself, and by sending Vice President Joe Biden to Iraq.

Clinton supporters argue Hillary is in no way being overshadowed. “I don’t think Bill Clinton would overshadow Secretary Clinton,” says Clinton Defense Secretary William Cohen. “In fact if that were to be the case, I'm sure he would not have done it." Cohen says Mr. Clinton not only worked closely with President Obama to free the journalists, but he worked with his wife, the Secretary of State, too.

And besides, many analysts say, this was the kind of mission more suited to former Presidents. “The North Koreans wanted a high-level envoy and it was clear that it couldn't be somebody currently in government,” says Larry Sabato, who teaches political science at the University of Virginia. “So you know there were only several people imaginable; Bill Clinton, Al Gore, Bill Richardson, and the North Koreans got the top banana, which is what they wanted.“

Filed under: Bill Clinton • Hillary Clinton • North Korea
August 6th, 2009
06:19 AM ET

Bill Clinton: International man of history

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="This file photo taken on August 4, 2009 and released by North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency shows North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il (R) posing with former US president Bill Clinton (L) in Pyongyang."]

By John F. Harris & Mike Allen

A controversy-prone ex-president rides to the rescue to defuse a crisis provoked by an erratic dictatorship on the Korean Peninsula. Most people breathe a sigh of relief, but there are skeptics who wonder if the breakthrough was won through appeasement.

Not only has Bill Clinton seen this movie before, he’s starred in it — though in a different role than the one he’s playing this week with his burst of globe-trotting diplomacy in North Korea.

The 42nd president’s success in forging a behind-the-scenes deal for the release of two American journalists in exchange for Clinton’s surprise appearance in Pyongyang may signal a new chapter in one of the United States’s most vexing and dangerous relationships. Or it may turn out to be another false start with an isolated and paranoid regime.

In either event, however, this week marks a curious full circle in the life of Bill Clinton, who until this week was an elder statesman
who seemed without a clear identity or useful role in Barack Obama’s presidency. A Clinton adviser said the former president is ready and eager for more Obama assignments.

History, it turns out, is full of inside jokes.

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Bill Clinton • North Korea
August 5th, 2009
01:31 PM ET

Commentary: Bill Clinton shows that diplomacy works

Editor's note: Joseph Cirincione is president of Ploughshares Fund, a nonprofit organization that makes grants to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons, and the author of "Bomb Scare: The History and Future of Nuclear Weapons." He formerly was a senior vice president at the Center for American Progress, a think tank that describes itself as "progressive," and was on the staff of the House Armed Services Committee.

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Joseph Cirincione says Clinton's trip was the culmination of diplomacy his adminstration began 15 years ago."]

By Joseph Cirincione
Special to CNN

(CNN) - President Clinton did more than free two unjustly jailed journalists. He jump-started the successful diplomacy he had begun 15 years earlier.

In October 2000, then-Secretary of State Madeleine Albright visited Pyongyang. During Bill Clinton's presidency, the administration had locked down North Korea's plutonium production program, which had created enough deadly material for two bombs during the Reagan years. They had stopped all missile tests. They were a few details away from concluding a deal to end these programs completely.

But Clinton ran out of time. Enmeshed in Middle East peace talks, Clinton could not get assurances that a presidential visit to North Korea would seal the deal. He passed off the almost completed process to the incoming George W. Bush administration.

On March 6, 2001, new Secretary of State Colin Powell said, "We do plan to engage with North Korea to pick up where President Clinton and his administration left off." But Bush had different ideas. On March 7, Bush kneecapped Powell.

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Bill Clinton • North Korea