Cooper: The Clintons on the road again

Cooper: The Clintons on the road again

October 12th, 2018 by Clint Cooper in Opinion Free Press
Former President Bill Clinton, left, and his wife, Hillary Clinton, are preparing to launch a 13-city tour.

Former President Bill Clinton, left, and his wife,...

Photo by Contributed Photo /Times Free Press.

Alas, no one is calling it "The Farewell Tour."

Former President Bill Clinton and his wife, failed 2008 and 2016 presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, are hitting the road this fall to earn a little dough.

Never mind that the power couple already has made themselves multi-millionaires since leaving office — some $240 million from 2001 to 2015 — and that critics have charged Hillary Clinton used pay-for-play schemes as secretary of state to enrich their Clinton Foundation. Too much is never enough.

The tour will begin a week after next month's mid-term elections and wind up next spring. The 13-city tour largely will take them to reliably Democratic havens, places where ticket-buyers will fawn over and lap up each lugubrious line. They'll kick it off in Las Vegas, an appropriately glitzy town with little depth. They'll hit the Eastern Seaboard high spots of Boston, New York, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., safe West Coast locations in California (the 17,505-seat Forum in Inglewood) and Washington, and three cities in Canada.

The only spot in flyover country the Clintons will visit other than longtime liberally led Detroit is Sugar Land, Texas, a suburb of Houston, now the nation's fourth largest city and sure to have enough left-leaning supporters to bring out a crowd. Otherwise, don't look for them in the South, the Midwest or elsewhere. The reception would not likely be favorable.

Now, undeniably, the exploits of a former presidential couple, especially one whose craven desire for money, power and influence is legendary, are interesting. Perhaps an unbiased interviewer asking them questions could prompt a non-political, non-spun, open and honest answer.

But that apparently is not to be.

The promoter, Live Nation, instead said the events will "feature joint on-stage conversations with the two leaders sharing stories and inspiring anecdotes that shaped their historic careers in public service, while also discussing issues of the day and looking [toward] the future."

Although Democrats repeatedly have said they've heard enough from Hillary Clinton about how she lost the 2016 election, the promoters say the discussion also will cover the couple's thoughts on "one of the United States' most controversial and unpredictable presidential elections."

"Isn't there someone," New York Times editorial writer Michelle Cottle wrote in The Atlantic earlier this year, "who can convince this accomplished, inspiring, barrier-breaking superwoman to stop whining about 2016? Someone? Anyone?"

So don't look for questions about Bill Clinton paramours, about his affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky, about any of the many scandals that rankled the Clinton administration, about the former secretary of state's explanation about the 2012 Benghazi attack, about Hillary Clinton's illegal email server and about their involvement in promoting a Russia-related investigation of then-candidate Donald Trump.

Or, if they do deign to discuss such matters, it will be on their terms. After all, neither Bill nor Hillary acquitted themselves well earlier this year when they were asked questions — Bill on "The Today Show" and Hillary on Facebook — about previous incidents as seen through the lens of the #MeToo movement.

Information has not been released on how much the Clintons will take in from the tour, but the most expensive tickets at the Toyota Oakdale Theatre in Wallingford, Conn., are $750. At the 5,200-seat Park Theater in Las Vegas, they're only $228.44. Tickets in the cheap seats at the two venues are $75 and $72.48, respectively.

Even the kindest supporters of the former first couple say it's an opportunity to polish a brand that has seen a good bit of shine rubbed off it over the last few years. After all, a September 2018 Gallup Poll put her approval rating at 38 percent. His most recent favorability rating, in December 2017, was 45 percent.

Some Democrats who may have hoped the pair would quietly leave the stage demurred.

"I actually have no thoughts about Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton," Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, who was once on Hillary Clinton's vice presidential short list, told the Boston Globe. "I don't think of them."

Republicans had mixed emotions, according to the newspaper.

"Let's face it," said Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah. "The Clintons don't know when to shut up."

But White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders, in an email to the Globe, was all in.

"The only person with a lower approval rating than [House Minority Leader] Nancy Pelosi is Hillary Clinton," she wrote. "We encourage their road show far and wide."

Tickets go on sale today at 10 a.m. No mention was made as to whether fact checkers would be allowed entry or whether Al Gore would read several chapters of "An Inconvenient Truth" as an opening act.

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