President Obama and former President Clinton teamed up for a fundraiser in Virginia on Sunday, taking shots at presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney.
While neither mentioned him by name during the event at the home of former Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe, the two presidents delivered harsh criticisms of Obama's likely November opponent.
The two presidents once had a frosty relationship, as Clinton was a strong advocate for his wife then Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) as she battled Obama for the 2008 Democratic nomination.
At Sunday's event, however, Clinton was full of praise for Obama, defending his record and saying that the current president needed more time to address the problems left behind by the Bush administration.
"He's beating the clock, not behind it. Don't listen to those Republicans. We are beating the clock," Clinton said.
"I think he is beating the historical standard for coming out of a financial collapse and a mortgage collapse. I think the last thing you want to do is to turn around and embrace the policies that got us into trouble in the first place," he added.
In his remarks at the fundraiser, Obama linked Romney's foreign policy to the Bush administration.
"Hillary and I, we’ve spent the last three and a half years cleaning up after other folks’ messes, and by the way, we’ve got them, we’re starting to get them pretty cleaned up. The war in Iraq is over. We’re transitioning in Afghanistan. We’ve got the strongest allies we’ve ever seen and al Qaeda is on the ropes. So we’ve done what we said we’d do," said Obama.
"But when you’ve got the leading contender, the presumptive nominee, on the other side suddenly saying our No. 1 isn’t al Qaeda, it’s Russia — I don’t make that up — I’m suddenly thinking, what? Maybe I didn’t check the calendar this morning. I didn’t know we were back in 1975."
Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul hit back at the criticism in a statement to The Hill, saying that President Obama had “failed by his own standards.”
“He promised to keep unemployment below 8 percent with the passage of the ‘stimulus’ bill and to rein in federal spending. Unemployment hasn’t been below 8 percent since, while the nation’s total public debt has reached a record $15.6 trillion,” Saul said. “President Obama may be able to convince his friends to tout the slowest economic recovery since the Great Depression, but the American people deserve better.”
As he wrapped up his remarks, Obama also joked with Clinton about the perks of the presidency.
"There's nothing more humbling, actually, than being president. It's a strange thing. Suddenly you've got all the pomp and the circumstance and you've got the helicopters and you've got Air Force One and the plane is really nice," said Obama to laughter.
"It really is. I mean, Bill may not miss being president, but he misses that plane."
This story was updated on April 30 at 8:58 a.m.