Bill Clinton: 'Vast right-wing conspiracy' still going strong

Bill Clinton: 'Vast right-wing conspiracy' still going strong

Former President Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonThe magic of majority rule in elections The return of Ken Starr Assault weapons ban picks up steam in Congress MORE said Sunday that the “vast right-wing conspiracy” that worked against his presidency is alive and well, albeit in slightly reduced numbers.

“It's not as strong as it was, because America has changed demographically. But it's as virulent as it was,” Clinton said on NBC’s "Meet the Press."

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Clinton went on to say that the things being said about President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaDick Cheney to attend fundraiser supporting Trump reelection: report Forget conventional wisdom — Bernie Sanders is electable 2020 Democrats fight to claim Obama's mantle on health care MORE are “like when they accused me of murder.”

He said it’s poisonous for the nation.

“It's not really good for the Republicans and the country, what's going on now,” Clinton said. “I mean, they may be hurting President Obama – they can take his numbers down, they can run his opposition up – but, fundamentally, he and his team have a positive agenda for America. (Republicans’) agenda seems to be wanting him to fail.”

Clinton said that, despite their politically motivated tactics, Republicans won’t be able to take back their House and Senate majorities in 2010, as they did in the first midterm under him in 1994.

They would need to win 40 House seats and 10 Senate seats next year in order to do so.

“No. 1, the country is more diverse and more interested in positive action,” Clinton said. “No. 2, they've seen this movie before, because they had eight years under President Bush, when the Republicans finally had the whole government, and they know the results were bad. And No. 3, the Democrats haven't taken on the gun lobby like I did, and they took 15 of our members out. So whatever happens, it'll be manageable for the president.”

Clinton also said he would not return to public life or public office, saying that it was his wife’s turn to play that role. When asked if she would run for president again, Clinton noted he and his wife’s advancing ages but didn’t rule it out.

He said he didn’t fault Obama for anything he’s done in trying to pass healthcare reform, which was a top policy failure of the Clinton administration in the 1990s and remains a tough slog for the current president today.

The former president said he was counting on Obama’s success on healthcare and other issues like energy.

“The change is hard, but I think we're going to get a health care bill,” Clinton said. “And I think he can then swing into the energy, and I think he'll get an energy bill. I think he's going to succeed.”