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Clinton: Endless Speculation About Wife’s Political Future Waste of Time Right Now

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Former President Bill Clinton, founder of the William J. Clinton Foundation, participates in an event sponsored by the Peter G. Peterson Foundation at the Mellon Auditorium on May 7, 2013 in Washington, DC. (credit: Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Former President Bill Clinton, founder of the William J. Clinton Foundation, participates in an event sponsored by the Peter G. Peterson Foundation at the Mellon Auditorium on May 7, 2013 in Washington, DC. (credit: Win McNamee/Getty Images)

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WASHINGTON — Former President Bill Clinton says endless speculation about his wife’s political future is a waste of time right now and the nation should be more focused on the “grimy details” of fixing its problems.

“That is the worst expenditure of our time,” Clinton said Tuesday at the 2013 Fiscal Summit, where he appeared with Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, the head of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Gates joked that he didn’t think his wife, the highly-regarded philanthropist, would run for president. The former president then chimed in, to laughter, “Hillary hasn’t mentioned it to me, either.”

Clinton said the former Secretary of State and New York senator was taking a role at the Clinton Foundation, writing a book and “having a little fun being a private citizen for the first time in 20 years.”

“That’s fine but we need to be worried about the work at hand — all of us do,” Clinton said. “So whoever the next president is has an easier set of choices before him or her to build America’s future.”

Clinton said the focus on presidential politics, only a few months after President Barack Obama’s re-election last year, “obscures our capacity” to tackle the nation’s big problems and “plays to our national tendency to attention deficit disorder when it comes to politics.”

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(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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