President Bill Clinton had some choice feedback for the presidential speechwriters who drafted his December 1994 address to the nation on the middle class.
“Bulls---,” Clinton scrawled in the margin of a draft speech, appearing to indicate that he wasn’t pleased with the wording of a story about a struggling mother of two in Hammond, Ind.
The document was part of a tranche of newly-released records from the Clinton Library detailing the former president’s tenure in the White House.
The salty remark appeared to be in reference to the phrase “nothing brought this home to me better,” the proposed lead-in to a tale about a letter he received from a woman who “has been doing her best for years to hold down a decent job, make ends meet and raise her two sons the right way.” That phrase was surrounded by thick black brackets, with the dismissive swear wordhand-written above.
Clinton biographer David Maraniss confirmed to journalists on Twitter that the handwriting was Clinton’s.
The description of the Hammond woman’s day-to-day struggles in the draft speech would have been part of a larger rhetorical push by Clinton for opportunities and the improvement of America’s communities for the next generation.
But the feedback from the commander-in-chief must have been taken to heart. The actual address to the nation, delivered on Dec. 15, 1994, contained no reference to the Hammond letter.
You can see the original document here (warning: contains profanity).
First published March 14 2014, 1:19 PM
Carrie Dann is a national political writer for NBCNews.com. She has worked for NBC and NBCNews.com since 2006. Dann writes about politics and Congress. Dann rejoined the web team after 18 months as a campaign reporter for NBC News, covering presidential and vice presidential candidates during the 2012 election. She also covered the 2007-2008 presidential campaign for NBC, including extensive reporting on the Iowa caucuses.
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Prior to her work at NBCNews.com, Dann was a staff reporter at CongressDaily, where she covered lobbying and government reform.
A Virginia native, she now lives in Washington, D.C.