Bill Clinton yesterday called John McCain a great man - but apparently couldn't bring himself to use the same term to describe Barack Obama.
"Meet the Press" host Tom Brokaw reminded the former president that he told CNBC last week: "I have never concealed my admiration and affection for Senator McCain; I think he's a great man. But I think, on the issues that matter to our future, the Obama-Biden team is more right."
Clinton told Brokaw, "I do believe that."
But when Brokaw began his next question with "Would you use the same words for [Obama] that you used for Senator McCain, that you admire him and that you think he's a good . . . ," Clinton interrupted and said, "I certainly . . ." - only to be interrupted by Brokaw, who asked Clinton whether he would call Obama "a great man."
"Well, I don't . . . ," Clinton started before saying, "Look, I had my first conversation with [Obama] - in my entire life - in Harlem."
His biggest praise for the Democratic nominee was: "I think Senator Obama has shown a remarkable ability to learn and grow in this campaign. He always was highly intelligent and always a very good politician."
The latest Gallup polls, meanwhile, show Obama increasing his lead to 8 points, at 50-42 percent, on the heels of Friday's presidential debate.