Presidents George W. Bush, Bill Clinton Speak at Graduation of Inaugural Class of Presidential Leadership Scholars Program

Former presidents answered questions at the Bush Presidential Center in Dallas

Former presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush traded jokes and shared advice Thursday in Dallas as they addressed graduates of the inaugural class of the Presidential Leadership Scholars program.

"Clinton and I are getting a little long in the tooth these days," Bush joked.

"This is the one month of the year when he's older than me, so speak for yourself," Clinton responded.

The Presidential Leadership Scholars program is a partnership between the presidential centers of George W. Bush, William J. Clinton, George H.W. Bush and Lyndon B. Johnson.

With both a Bush and a Clinton running for the White House in 2016, the conversation turned to politics and the next election.

"I know Jeb, and I'm confident Secretary Hillary will elevate the discourse," Bush said.

"We ought to show respect for the debate by trying to be as specific and clear as we can about the policy choices before us," Clinton said.

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban also spoke to the crowd, offering business advice to budding entrepreneurs.

"Texas is the most amazing state when it comes to not just developing talent, but to creating new companies," said Cuban, who delved into fictional politics to play the U.S. president in the upcoming movie Sharknado 3.

The inaugural class of 60 scholars included individuals from diverse backgrounds and geographies from a variety of sectors, including private, public, non-profit, military, and academia, who were selected because of their desire and capacity to strengthen their leadership skills.

Since February 2015, the scholars have traveled once a month to a participating presidential center to learn from former presidents, key administration officials and leading academics. They studied and put into practice varying approaches to leadership, developed a network of peers and exchanged ideas with mentors and others. They also developed a personal leadership project, intended to make a significant difference in their communities, across the country or around the globe.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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