ABC's Roberts Chats With Hillary About 'Quality Time' With Bill, Becoming a Grandmother

After giving Hillary Clinton a chance to clean up her "dead broke" gaffe in the first part of a live interview on Tuesday's Good Morning America, ABC host Robin Roberts saved all of her softball questions for part two of the exchange later on the broadcast: "You and your husband have very intense schedules, how much quality time – let's say how many days in the month are you actually able to be together as a family?...You're going to be a grandmother in the fall. Have you offered any names to Chelsea?" [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]

Telling the possible 2016 Democratic presidential nominee, "You're known for your sense of humor," Roberts decided to hit Clinton with a "lightening round" of frivolous questions: "Who is your favorite Republican in Congress?...who is the person living that you admire the most?...Politician you'd let babysit your future grandchild?...Game three of the NBA finals. Heat or Spurs? So you gotta go with Texas or Florida. That's tough."

At the top of the segment, Roberts touted Clinton supposedly refusing to attack Sarah Palin on behalf of Barack Obama's 2008 presidential campaign: "...in your book, you stated that the Obama administration [sic] at the time asked you to be critical of her when she was selected as the VP nominee and that you refused to do so....Were you asked to be critical of her at that point?"

Clinton explained:

What I said was that in beginning the process of working with then-Senator Obama after I ended my campaign, we had, as I describe in the book, an awkward but necessary meeting to clear the air on a couple of issues, and one of them was the sexism that unfortunately was present in that '08 campaign....

That very first day, the Obama campaign said, "Well, you know, we want you to go out and criticize her." I said, "For what? For being a woman? No. Let's wait until we know where she stands. I don't know anything about her? Do you know anything about her?" And nobody of course did. I think it's fair to say that I made it clear I'm not going to go attack somebody for being a woman or a man. I'm going to try to look at the issues, where they stand, what their experience is, what they intend to do, and then that's fair game.


Here is a full transcript of part two of the June 10 GMA interview:

8:30 AM ET

ROBIN ROBERTS: We are back with Hillary Clinton, author of the new book that is out today. It's entitled Hard Choices. And hard choices in what questions to go with you first. But we talked with you in our first half-hour and want to talk to you about the reaction that you have from Sarah Palin. She read your book and she posted on Twitter an excerpt from it. Because in your book, you stated that the Obama administration [sic] at the time asked you to be critical of her when she was selected as the VP nominee and that you refused to do so. And so, the former Governor, she tweeted this, she said, "Look who fired the first shot in the real 'war on women.' Hint: it wasn't the GOP. See this excerpt from Hillary's book."

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Hillary Clinton One-On-One; "Hard Choices" And the Road Ahead]

HILLARY CLINTON: Well, that's not exactly what I said. What I said was that in beginning the process of working with then-Senator Obama after I ended my campaign, we had, as I describe in the book, an awkward but necessary meeting to clear the air on a couple of issues, and one of them was the sexism that unfortunately was present in that '08 campaign.

ROBERTS: Were you asked to be critical of her at that point?

CLINTON: Yes. That very first day, the Obama campaign said, "Well, you know, we want you to go out and criticize her." I said, "For what? For being a woman? No. Let's wait until we know where she stands. I don't know anything about her? Do you know anything about her?" And nobody of course did. I think it's fair to say that I made it clear I'm not going to go attack somebody for being a woman or a man. I'm going to try to look at the issues, where they stand, what their experience is, what they intend to do, and then that's fair game.

ROBERTS: You have been very out there, of course, speaking on women's rights. I've seen you out there, and talking about women's rights or human rights, and human rights are what is most important here. You in USA Today, front page, talking about – is it true? Do you think the climate is different now for a woman running for president than it was when you did it in '08?

CLINTON: Well, Robin, I think it's different for women across the board. Because it's not just in the political sphere that we continue to have these obstacles to women's full participation. It's true in the corporate sphere, in journalism and academia, across the board. But I think over the last six, seven years, there has been a much greater awareness in the American public about the double standard. So, I really believe that there's a great discussion going on now and whether it's somebody running for president or somebody climbing the corporate ladder or broadcasting or anything else, there's much greater awareness, and that's all to the good.

ROBERTS: Let's talk about family.

CLINTON: Yes.

ROBERTS: You and your husband have very intense schedules, how much quality time – let's say how many days in the month are you actually able to be together as a family?

CLINTON: Well, now since I'm not also traveling endlessly a lot, we are together a lot. I mean, we just have a lot of time and it's probably as much time as we've had together, you know, for a number of years, because we're always working hard, we like to work hard, but we also really relish the time together.

ROBERTS: And the family is growing. You're going to be a grandmother in the fall.

CLINTON: I'm going to be a grandmother.

ROBERTS: Have you offered any names to Chelsea?

CLINTON: No, I'm going to wait. I want this to kind of develop organically because I've talked to a lot of my friends who have proceeded me into grandmother-hood and some of them have said, "I knew exactly what I wanted to be called and I had a hard time convincing the baby to call me that because he or she wanted to call me something else." So I just want to see how this develops. But I could not be happier. This is – this is something that I've looked forward to for a long time.

ROBERTS: Well, the way you write about her in the book, that's quite obvious...

CLINTON: I'm very proud.

ROBERTS: ...and the wedding.

In the seconds that we have remaining, something we called a little bit of a lightening round. You're known for your sense of humor. So just quick responses to some of the things that people are asking. Who is your favorite Republican in Congress?

CLINTON: Oh, well, despite my problems sometimes with him, John McCain, because he and I have traveled a lot and you know, we argue a lot. And he goes off on something that I disagree with, but, you know, I admire him and I've spent a lot of time with him.

ROBERTS: And who is the person living that you admire the most?

CLINTON: Well, living is hard because it used to be Nelson Mandela for sure.

ROBERTS: I know, that's why we said living.

CLINTON: And probably Desmond Tutu.

ROBERTS: Last two quick ones. Politician you'd let babysit your future grandchild?

CLINTON: Oh, there are a lot of them. You know, I'm very close to a lot of the women in the Senate. And I'm putting out the offer right now, if any of them want to babysit, all they need to do is call. They've got my number, I'd be thrilled to have them.

ROBERTS: And the final one. Game three of the NBA finals. Heat or Spurs? So you gotta go with Texas or Florida. That's tough.  

CLINTON: Florida. When you pose it like that.

[LAUGHTER]

ROBERTS: When you pose it like that. Okay, you heard it here first. Thank you so much.

CLINTON: Oh, thanks, Robin.

ROBERTS: You know, to be here with us live this morning with all that you had going on. Appreciate it. Hard Choices out today.

CLINTON: Thanks.

ROBERTS: You take – you take care.

Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen is a News Analyst for MRC