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Bill Clinton's Remarks In Pleasantville Bookstore Draw Sharp Trump Response

Former President Bill Clinton Former President Bill Clinton
Former President Bill Clinton Photo Credit: Tom Auchterlonie
President-elect Donald Trump President-elect Donald Trump
President-elect Donald Trump Photo Credit: Tom Auchterlonie

PLEASANTVILLE, N.Y. -- In a Tuesday tweet, President-elect Donald Trump slammed former President Bill Clinton over remarks that he reportedly made at a local bookstore in a sharp back-and-forth exchange between once-and-future commanders in chief.

Trump tweeted the following, "Bill Clinton stated that I called him after the election. Wrong, he called me (with a very nice congratulations). He "doesn't know much" ..."

The president-elect continued by tweeting, "especially how to get people, even with an unlimited budget, out to vote in the vital swing states ( and more). They focused on wrong states"

The former president, who lives in nearby Chappaqua, reportedly made comments critical of Trump in an impromptu gathering that was covered by The Record-Review, a weekly newspaper that covers the towns of Bedford and Pound Ridge.

Ed Baum, editor of The Record-Review, told Daily Voice on Tuesday evening that he wrote about the encounter for his paper, and that it took place at a bookstore in Pleasantville.

The Record-Review's piece was featured as an editorial and did not include a byline, which is in keeping with the paper's practice.

Baum, in the editorial, also noted Bill Clinton's history of shopping in nearby Katonah, which is a hamlet that is part of Bedford. 

In a reply tweet, Bill Clinton wrote the following, "Here’s one thing @realDonaldTrump and I can agree on — I called him after the election."

The paper reported that Clinton weighed in on Republican candidate Trump's defeat of his wife, former Secretary of State and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

“Is Trump smart?” The Record-Review reported a man in the bookstore as asking.

Clinton then reportedly replied with comments that have since been picked up by an array of national news outlets.

“He doesn’t know much," Clinton was quoted as saying of Trump. "One thing he does know is how to get angry, white men to vote for him."

Clinton also blamed his wife's loss, according to the paper, on FBI Director James Comey announcing a new review pertaining to the probe of her usage of a private email server during her tenure as secretary of state, which came roughly two weeks before election day. 

Even though Comey announced shortly before the election that the new review was closed, the paper states the following, "The damage was already done, both to Hillary and to the reputation of law enforcement as an independent institution “that the American people know that they can trust.”"

Bill Clinton, according to the paper, took issue with Trump describing his win as a landslide, noting that his electoral-college margin in 1992 was larger.

"“Landslide? I got something like 370 electoral votes (which he did exactly in the ‘92 election). That was a landslide.”

The Record-Review has a long history of covering Trump, who has owned a large estate in southern Bedford since 1995.

During the 2000s and into the 2010s, the paper covered Trump's attempts to redevelop the estate, called Seven Springs, first as a golf course and then as a series of houses.

R.J. Marx, The Record-Review's former editor, recounted his coverage of Trump in a 2015 write-up for The Daily Astorian in Oregon, which he now works for.

First, Marx wrote about his experience in covering the proposals for Seven Springs, including his unsuccessful attempt to report on a site-walk visit from local officials before being asked by Trump's detail to leave the ground.

Marx also recalled how, in 2009, Trump allowed Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi to stay at the property as part of his visit to the United Nations. The attempt, he added, was thwarted by then-Bedford Supervisor Lee Roberts, who used the local zoning code to block the erection of a bedouin tent.

Marx even wrote about how Trump would speak with The Record-Review, which would happen when he had good news locally.

"There was always a frisson of excitement when our office manager put her hand over the mouthpiece and whispered: “Donald Trump’s on the phone for you!”"

The former editor continued, "And when he spoke it was as if you were the only person in the world. “R.J.!” he exclaimed. “Just wanted to make sure you heard the news!”"

Update: The original version of this story stated that the bookstore was located in Katonah. The reporting was based on a reading of The Record-Review's editorial, which mentioned Bill Clinton's shopping in the hamlet and explored whether he will return to the area to shop. The story has been corrected to note that the bookstore is in Pleasantville, which was confirmed by the newspaper's editor.

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