"I just hope I can keep it together" on the big day, the former president tells Jenna Bush Hager

By Tim Nudd
April 19, 2010 11:45 AM
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You can’t keep Bill Clinton out of a marathon planning session for long.

After earlier saying he was steering clear of daughter Chelsea’s wedding planning, the former president said Tuesday that he is not totally out of the loop (and neither is his checkbook!).

“I participate,” he said on NBC’s Today show. “Chelsea has been good enough to include me in the decisions they’re making in how to do it, so I love that.”

Clinton, 63, was interviewed on the morning show by former first daughter Jenna Bush Hager, and said his feelings about Chelsea getting married are probably similar to what Jenna’s father, George W. Bush, felt at her wedding in 2008.

PHOTO: Bride-to-Be Chelsea Clinton on Crutches
“I just hope I can keep it together [until] I walk her down the aisle and do the handoff,” Clinton said. “Like your dad was telling me when he did it with you, you know it proves you’ve done what you were supposed to do, but it doesn’t make it entirely easy.”

Asked how he’ll feel when the moment finally arrives, Clinton replied: “Proud, grateful, wistful. I’ll be thinking about the day she was born, I’ll be thinking about the first day of school.”

Chelsea, 30, is set to wed her childhood friend Marc Mezvinsky, an investment banker, this summer. The pair have her dad’s blessing, and then some.

“I like and I admire my prospective son-in-law,” Clinton said. “I feel grateful that they have been such close friends for half of Chelsea’s life. I look forward to what they do together, and I’m happy about that.”