President Barack Obama said Sunday that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s recent troubles discussing her wealth shouldn’t “make a big difference” should she decide to run for president in 2016.
Clinton has come under fire in recent weeks for comments about the fortune she and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, have amassed from speaking fees and books since leaving the White House, with Republicans and even some Democrats branding her as out of touch.
Speaking to George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s This Week, Obama said the controversy, which has opened a divide between Clinton and her party’s growing populist wing, would pass.
“I think that Hillary has been to this rodeo a bunch of times,” he said. “She is in public service because she cares about the same folks that I talked to here today. As soon as you jump back into the spotlight in a more explicitly political way, you’re going to be flyspecked like this, and she’s accustomed to it.”
“Over time, I don’t think it’s going to make a big difference,” Obama concluded.
Just last week Vice President Joe Biden drew an implicit contrast with Clinton’s wealth at a White House summit on working families.