Quote of the day

Bill Clinton looks back at his role in the presidential campaign so far.

Published February 8, 2008 5:37PM (EST)

"Everything I have said has been factually accurate.

"But I think the mistake that I made is to think that I was a spouse like any other spouse who could defend his candidate. I think I can promote Hillary but not defend her because I was president. I have to let her defend herself or have someone else defend her.

"But a lot of the things that were said were factually inaccurate. I did not ever criticize Senator Obama personally in South Carolina. I never criticized him personally.

"But I think whenever I defend her, I, A, risk being misquoted and, B, risk being the story. I don't want to be the story.

"This is her campaign and her presidency and her decisions. And so, even if I win an argument with another candidate, it's not the right thing to do. I need to promote her but not defend her.

"And I learned a very valuable lesson from all that dust-up."

-- Former President Bill Clinton, speaking to a reporter from a local NBC affiliate in Maine about his role in his wife Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign so far; he was responding to a question about whether he has any regrets about anything he's said or done.

By Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

MORE FROM Alex Koppelman

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