Bush, Clinton's presidential advice: Be humble in victory

Former Presidents George W. Bush and Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - Dems ready for Supreme Court lifeline Arizona bill would allow legislature to overturn election results Manchin and Sinema must help Biden make the Supreme Court look more like America MORE offered their advice to future leaders on Thursday, saying that an important part of being president was learning to be "humble in victory."

"He was humble in victory, which is very important in dealing with other people," Bush told the crowd of his predecessor.

Clinton joined in, adding that humility is an important characteristic for good presidents.

"If you want to be president, realize it’s about the people, it's not about you," Clinton said.

"You want to be able to say, 'Things were better off when I quit, kids had a better future, things were coming together.' You don’t want to say, ‘God, look at all the people I beat.' "


The two former presidents never mentioned President Trump directly during their talk, which lasted almost an hour, but Reuters reported that the two made several veiled references to the 45th president.

They said that being prepared to deal with the unexpected is an important trait for leaders today.

"The decisions you make have a monumental effect on people,” Bush told the crowd. “Presidency is often defined by the unexpected. It makes the job interesting."

Clinton concurred.

"If you don’t deal with the incoming fire, it will undermine your ability to do anything else. If all you deal with is incoming fire, you can’t keep the promises you made when you were running," he said.

"The best thing that can happen to you when you are in politics is to be consistently underestimated," he added.

"I was pretty good at that," Bush responded, to laughs.