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Bill Clinton Says He Changed Hospital Policy To Watch Chelsea's Birth

Bill Clinton told doctors he would not be refused and haggled his way into the operating room just before Chelsea was born. "Father of the Year."

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The National Father's Day Committee named Bill Clinton "Father of the Year" Tuesday. During his acceptance speech, Clinton told the story of the day his daughter Chelsea was born. When he found out Hillary needed a C-section, doctors told Bill he wasn't allowed in the operating room.

Bill told them they better let him in or they'd be sorry.

As reported in Parade:

In his acceptance speech, Clinton also recounted a touching story about Chelsea's birthday in 1980. "On the night she was born, I came home from Washington, D.C., from a governors' conference. And Hillary's water broke 15 minutes later," he said. Upon arriving at the hospital, the Clintons were told that the baby was in a breech position and would have to be delivered via Cesarean section — and that fathers weren't allowed in the operating room, he said.

The former president, who was the governor of Arkansas at the time, said he protested to the hospital staff. "If you send her into that room without me, I think you're making a big mistake … I want to see my daughter born," he recounted saying. Eventually, the doctors relented, he said. "They let me go in and hold Hillary's hand. I saw Chelsea come out, and it changed the hospital's policy on letting fathers into the delivery room when surgery was required. And from that day to this, I have believed without the shadow of a doubt that it was the greatest thing that ever happened to me."

Jacob Fischler is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Washington, D.C.

Contact Jacob Fischler at

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