Some months ago I wrote a column regarding Senator Hillary Clinton's run for the White House, supporting her when others were saying that her husband Bill was sure to be a liability in one way or another.

I pointed out that the former president was popular and well-liked by most Democrats, to some degree, and that he would most likely be an asset. But over the past month or so I have come to the conclusion that that assertion has been proven wrong by the words and actions of Bill Clinton himself.

After one of the early debates he publicly criticized the other candidates, accusatorily saying, "Those boys have been getting tough on her." And that she was being "swiftboated" by them, according to CNN's Political Ticker. He felt he needed to come to the rescue of his wife. Hillary Clinton doesn't need to be rescued by anyone. She is as tough as or tougher than her opponents and it appears an insult to insinuate that she can't handle herself and needs the help of a man.

It looks bad for the first viable woman running for president to put her husband out there seemingly to do the job of defending her. As chivalrous as that may have been at one time, today it is looked at it with disdain.

But that was just the beginning of Bill Clinton's missteps on behalf of his wife. As the weeks went on and Senator Barack Obama became an increasing threat to his wife's inevitability to win the nomination, Bill resorted to using distortions, misrepresentations and pure fabrications against the senator from Illinois.

In December the former president called Obama's run for the White House a "roll of the dice," on the PBS program Charlie Rose, and later on called his early opposition to the war in Iraq a "fairy tale" and then "accused the Obama team of using strong-arm tactics" in the Nevada caucus, as was reported in the Guardian.

During last week's CNN debate, Senator Obama made the statement that "I can't tell who I'm running against sometimes." He used the phrase "Senator Clinton and President Clinton to re-enforce his view that he is facing a decades-old Clinton machine," according to the New York Times.

It simply looks bad for the former president to lie about a fellow party member and mud-sling in public. He should be out on the campaign trail to support his wife without needing to make up things about her opponents in an effort to make her look more appealing to voters. That simply raises more questions about the Clintons returning to the White House.

It has gotten so bad recently that some top Democratic leaders have felt the need to voice their criticism. According to Newsweek's Jonathan Alter, Bill Clinton has gotten phone calls in recent weeks from Senator Ted Kennedy, Rep. Rahm Emanuel, and the top-ranking African-American in Congress James Clyburn about comments he has made about Senator Obama, finding his tone insulting, and saying he needed to change his tone and stop attacking Obama.
Bill Clinton is actually creating problems within the ranks of his own party once again. Senator Obama went on "Good Morning America" last week and in a brief statement, which can be found on ABC News.com, put it better than anyone else could:

"You know the former president, who I think all of us have a lot of regard for, has taken his advocacy on behalf of his wife to a level that I think is pretty troubling. He continues to make statements that are not supported by the facts - whether it's about my record of opposition to the war in Iraq or our approach to organizing in Las Vegas. This has become a habit, and one of the things that we're gonna have to do is to directly confront Bill Clinton when he's making statements that are not factually accurate."

It is clear that Senator Obama can defend himself with the facts. It is a shame that Senator Clinton relies so heavily on her husband Bill to go out on her behalf and personally attack her leading opponent by distorting his record in a clear attempt to mislead potential voters.

This also makes the voters wonder about Bill Clinton's behavior problems if his wife is elected president. It's a question that the former president has himself caused to be raised in voter's minds. And the person he has done the most harm to is his own wife Senator Hillary Clinton.

ABOUT THE WRITER Carol Jensen is a long-time Barstow resident, graduating from Kennedy High School and Barstow College, where she was an English instructor for many years. Much of her time now is spent writing political and social commentary. She may be contacted at cajensen49@msn.com.