Venti black coffee.

Just in case you were wondering what former President Bill Clinton ordered during an unannounced stop at a Starbucks in Ames on Wednesday afternoon.

The former president, who is currently on a bus tour across Iowa in an effort to encourage Iowans to vote early, told reporters that he is “beyond being moved or surprised” by Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump and that he “has been for a long time.”

bill clinton

Former President Bill Clinton stopped in Ames on Tuesday afternoon for a cup of coffee.

Bill Clinton said that he was “really proud” of his wife for the way that she handled Sunday's presidential debate against Trump, but that most of all he “felt bad for the citizens who were sittin’ on the stage.”

“[They] had been told if they came here they could ask questions about what they really care about that affects their lives,” he said. “And very few of them got to.”

Bill Clinton was in Indianola, Iowa earlier Wednesday at Simpson College to show support for his wife and Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and push the main issues of her campaign.

United States Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack also made a surprise stop at Starbucks with the former president, telling the Iowa State Daily that he is “really pleased with the positive aspect of his [Bill Clinton's] message, which is that there is a great deal of opportunity in the United States and that there is a great opportunity for a brighter and better future.”

Vilsack campaigned with Bill Clinton during the 2008 presidential election and Iowa caucus season. The former Iowa governor said that he thinks campaigning today is a great opportunity to reconnect with the [former] president.

“He believes Secretary Clinton — with her energy policy [and] with her infrastructure investment — will bring us a stronger economy and build on the work that was done and [build] a fairer economy,” Vilsack said, adding that Bill Clinton is spreading a “real positive message.”

“I was proud of her [Hillary] and I looked at her and I realized she was gonna — that’s the kind of person you want to be president," Bill Clinton said. “[She’s] calm and relaxed and focused on other people. That’s what the election ought to be about. I mean it’s a clear choice.”

bill clinton

Former President Bill Clinton stopped in Ames on Tuesday afternoon for a cup of coffee.

Julie Hartung, a Starbucks employee present for the surprise arrival of the former president, said that it was a really exciting experience.

“We saw that there were police in here earlier and we didn’t know what they were there for and then we heard through the grapevine… he was coming in,” Hartung said. “And then we saw the bus come up and we were all excited and we got to just serve them coffee. I think they all just got black coffees.”

Taking time to individually meet, greet and chat with students, Bill Clinton worked his way throughout the small coffee shop for over 30 minutes. Before his arrival, there were roughly 30 people at the location, but upon leaving, hundreds of people were gathered outside to see the former president. 


Former president Bill Clinton thanks employees after his visit to an Ames Starbucks.

Rena Knutson, a senior in finance, who was at the surprise appearance said that she voted for Hillary Clinton on Monday and that it was really exciting to see Bill Clinton. Emma Rink, senior in marketing, was also in attendance and had cast her vote for Hillary earlier Wednesday.

“I’m excited — I feel like I have a crush,” Rink said.

Reporting from the Daily's Emily Barske contributed to this story. 

(2) comments

James Sullivan

Politics personalities in United state going to development with the cooperate of US government but I am the fan of Mr. Bill Clinton who is a former president. He is the most hard-working person and leads their department in good rank. I appreciate siting author for share this wonderful news with us.

Amanda Baird

Regardless of political opinion, Bill Clinton’s visit to Iowa State in a Charter Bus DC serves as a prime example of the relevance of Iowa State and college students in general. In addition to President Clinton, notable political guests to Ames include Donald Trump, Tim Kaine, Marco Rubio, Carly Fiorina, Rand Paul, Bernie Sanders, and Hillary Clinton. And this makes sense as the collegiate population is arguably the most influential age demographic in cultivating our country’s future. Fortunately, though, politicians are not the only crowd that take interest in visiting Iowa State.

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