Clinton Praises Gore and Bush, Calls For End To Rancor

By Patrick Goodenough | July 7, 2008 | 8:08 PM EDT

London ( - President Clinton Thursday urged Americans to put the rancor of the contested presidential election behind them and "try to get the new administration [of President-elect George W. Bush] off to a good start."

Speaking to reporters as he left Prime Minister Tony Blair's country residence in England's Buckinghamshire county, the outgoing president voiced approval of the sentiments expressed Wednesday night by both Bush and Vice-President Al Gore.

Clinton said Gore "spoke for all of us last night, and he did it eloquently and well," while Bush had "responded with generosity in kind, I thought, in his remarks."

In his concession speech, Gore called for the U.S. to unite behind its next president. Bush then told the nation: "I was not elected to serve one party, but to serve one nation."

"I was proud of both men," Clinton said. "I pledge to President-elect Bush my efforts and the best efforts of every member of our administration a smooth and successful transition."

He said he hoped the victor's remarks meant that America "will be moving further and further away from rancor."

The outgoing president ends a brief visit to Ireland and Britain Thursday, assumed to be the last foreign trip of his eight-year tenure.

Patrick Goodenough
Patrick Goodenough
Spencer Journalism Fellow