The Daily Register - Harrisburg, IL
  • 4 things we might call Bill Clinton if he becomes first spouse

  • If Hillary Clinton -- the first woman ever to win a major party nomination -- becomes president, what would become of her husband?

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If Hillary Clinton -- the first woman ever to win a major party nomination -- becomes president, what would become of her husband, the 42nd president of the United States?
“He loves getting involved in things — no one loves policy and politics more than Bill Clinton,” Mickey Kantor, secretary of commerce under Mr. Clinton, told the New York Times. “He loves, and needs, to have a purpose.”
If he does return to the White House, it remains to be seen whether he'll follow the punctilio of Nancy Reagan, who advised her husband closely and worked as a passionate conservator of his image -- or be more like his own partner, who spearheaded efforts to reform the health care system and delved into policy. But that still begs the question, what will we call Bill?

First dude

This is the label that Mrs. Clinton herself suggested her husband might take. And if she is directing things, he would also work as an active political presence “in charge of revitalizing the economy, because, you know, he knows how to do it,” she says, especially “in places like coal country and inner cities.”

First laddie

In a recent interview, Chelsea Clinton suggested he might like to harken back to his Irish roots and be named the White House's "first laddie." Who knows, right, this is Bill Clinton. Having already been the leader of the free world for two terms, he's got a lot less to lose than other first spouses with ambitions of their own. He could completely redefine the role of a spouse in the White House by acting like a retiree who, you know, just doesn't cave. Maybe he'll do the opposite of what is expected of him and roam Washington acting as he pleases.

First gentleman

The more likely scenario is that Bill acts as a more traditional first spouse, and activates new programs intended to target certain voting blocs and proceeds through Hillary's term as a behind-the-scenes advisor and protector of the Clinton "brand." Though some are arguing against this more conventional role, it would seem to benefit the family as a whole should Bill take a quieter role designed to upkeep the family image and provide an ear to the commander in chief. Or, perhaps, it will be Chelsea that takes over first lady. That could fee up Bill to become an ambassador or even supreme court justice.

First man

In a public-facing role Bill could also work as President Hillary Clinton's chief policy expert on a subject, such as the environment -- a natural focal point and extension of the work done by the Clinton Foundation -- in an effort to keep him active and out of trouble. “He'll be her advocate, he'll be her lawyer, and if he thinks the staff isn't protecting her, they'd have private conversations about it,” Mr. Kantor remarked to the New York Times.
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