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Clintons: We're 'a hundred miles from' NYC mayor race

Former President Bill Clinton speaks during the ceremony

Former President Bill Clinton speaks during the ceremony naming the new Environmental Protection Agency headquarters in Washington, after him. (July 17, 2013) Credit: AP

Bill Clinton said he and Hillary Clinton are keeping their distance from and their opinions out of the New York City mayoral race.

"We are a hundred miles from that race," the former president told CNN, "and everyone understands that we're not going to be involved as long as our personal friends and people [to] whom we feel obligations are involved."

Clinton said he knows five of the candidates, pointing out that Democrat Bill de Blasio was campaign manager for Hillary Clinton when she successfully ran for the U.S. Senate from New York, and that Republican John Catsimatidis is a friend.

CNN had asked Clinton whether it has been difficult to watch a race involving Democrat Anthony Weiner and his wife, Huma Abedin, a longtime aide to Hillary Clinton, the former secretary of state. The Clintons have reportedly been leery of the sex-scandal-plagued Weiner, but Bill Clinton did not reference him in the interview, which was conducted in Rwanda and posted Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Weiner on Tuesday called Republican rival George McDonald "grandpa" during an angry exchange just before a town-hall meeting at Hunter College, the tension boiling over into the Manhattan event itself.

McDonald, founder of the nonprofit Doe Fund, had told Weiner, who'd touched his opponent's chest in greeting, to keep his hands off him. Weiner responded that McDonald had anger issues.

"I don't have any anger issues," McDonald, 69, said.

"Yes, you do, Grandpa," Weiner, 48, said.

McDonald insulted Weiner on stage over his sexting scandal. Weiner, who enjoyed applause for many of his policy pitches from the hundreds of seniors in the audience, didn't respond publicly but was defended by supporters who loudly booed McDonald for his criticism.

"I will contrast my values with Anthony Weiner's values any day of the week," McDonald said, calling him a "glib narcissist."

Also Tuesday, de Blasio received an endorsement from billionaire businessman George Soros.

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