(The Hill) -- Little Rock, Ark., Nov. 17, 2017: I am here, along with hundreds of others, to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the election of William Jefferson Clinton as the 42nd president of the United States in November 1992.
There is much that could be written about the great achievements of Clinton’s presidency. But it’s as simple as this: During his two terms, Bill Clinton gave America peace and prosperity, helped create nearly 23 million new jobs, turned an inherited budget deficit of several billion dollars into a budget surplus, and left office with the United States as the respected leader of the post-Soviet Union free world.
For me, as a lifelong Democrat, one of Bill Clinton’s most important legacies is his reshaping of the Democratic Party to make it competitive again as a national party that could win the presidency.
It’s too easy to forget the mindset of defeatism among Democrats at the beginning of the 1992 presidential campaign. The almost unanimous consensus in the party, and among political pundits as well, was that the Republicans had an “electoral” lock on the presidency. Republican presidential candidates had not only won five out of six of the previous presidential elections over the 24 years back to 1968, but of those victories, four out of six (1972, 1980, 1984 and 1988) were by monumental landslides.
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