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Bill Clinton treads carefully on health care after slip in Ohio

Athens: A day after framing President Barack Obama's signature health care law as "the craziest thing in the world," former President Bill Clinton is trying to avoid muddling his message again as he tells voters in the battleground of Ohio that Hillary Clinton is their best option for a vibrant economy that benefits all Americans.

Bill Clinton only briefly mentioned health care during a winding 45-minute address today at Ohio University. The former president lamented that too many Americans "can't get affordable health insurance premiums in a lot of places" if they don't work for large companies, and he said his wife offers solutions.

It was a far cry from his remarks yesterday in Flint, Michigan, which the former president did not mention as he spoke in Ohio.

A file photo of Bill Clinton. Reuters

A file photo of Bill Clinton. Reuters

"You've got this crazy system where all the sudden 25 million more people have health care and then the people are out there busting it, sometimes 60 hours a week, wind up with their premiums doubled and their coverage cut in half," Bill Clinton said on Monday. "It's the craziest thing in the world."

Separately on Tuesday, the former president sidestepped reporters' questions about Trump bringing up his marital infidelity.

"He's been making those attacks from the beginning of this campaign, so I don't think that's anything new," Clinton said in Marietta, Ohio.

His relationship with a White House intern was the subject of his 1998 impeachment. Bill Clinton did not respond to specific questions about Trump's recent suggestion that Hillary Clinton also was not "loyal" to her husband.

Seemingly aware that he should avoid fanning the flames, Bill Clinton told reporters, "My job is very limited: I'm supposed to tell people why she's the best choice to be president."

The exchanges are the latest reminder that the 42nd president is both a tremendous asset and a wild card for his wife's candidacy.

He draws enthusiastic crowds eager to a see a former president who is anything but a normal political spouse, but he's also managed to generate unwanted stories, including this summer when he approached Attorney General Loretta Lynch for a private meeting at an airport.

The meeting was days before the FBI announced that it would not recommend any charges against Hillary Clinton related to her use of a private email server while she served as Obama's secretary of state.

Updated Date: Oct 05, 2016 08:30 AM

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