After ‘60 Minutes’: Will Hillary run?

After Hillary Clinton and President Obama’s “love-in” on “60 Minutes,” is there any doubt that she will run in 2016? Photo: Secretary of State Clinton on a visit to Latvia AP

WASHINGTON, January 28, 2013 — Forget about it, Joe. Move over, Martin. 2016 won’t be your year to run for president. It’s Hillary time.

After Sunday night’s interview on “60 Minutes” with Steve Kroft, the whole country is asking, “Will Hillary run?” Ok, not the whole country, but enough people to ensure she will be the next President of the United States.

So there she sat, Hillary Rodham Clinton side by side with President Obama, the man who had defeated her in Democratic 2008 presidential primary, but who had then appointed her to be his Secretary of State. The same President Obama who called “60 Minutes” and said he wanted to do a sit-down interview on the show with Madame Secretary, the first time he has ever shared an interview with anyone else besides Michelle Obama. Some say it was an Obama-Clinton national “love-in.”

If so, what message was President Obama sending? Vote for Hillary? Nothing as overt as that, but he was definitely showcasing the splendid job she has done as Secretary of State. And could do as the next president.

Is It Too Soon to Talk About 2016?

But why are we even talking about her running for president, just one week after the second inauguration of President Obama? Because that’s the nature of the political beast. This is the timetable if she is to run in 2016: Hillary has one year to rest. One year to build her campaign war chest (because running a presidential campaign is political war). Then two years to jump into the grueling process of actual campaigning.

Once her hat goes sailing into the ring, Vice President Joe Biden will step aside. He’s a smart man. He can recognize when the tide of history surges against him, even though 2016 would have been his last chance at a run. Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley is savvy and he will bow out, although he has been positioning himself for a few years for a dash to the White House, but he will be in a good place as a serious running mate. Plus he’s young. His day in the sun could still come.

The Making of A President

Hillary has exhibited exemplary statesmanship and behind the scenes maneuvering that built coalitions, not just with our allies but with Arab nations as well, resulted in the ousting of Moammar Gadhafi, the toughest sanctions ever brought against Iran, her pressure on Burma to reform and her personal and public support for Aung San Suu Kyi, and her continuing work to change the political and economic rights of women and girls in developing countries.

But to run for President takes more than diplomatic skills; it requires stamina, guts, a tough skin, and political know-how, all of which she has in spades.

Still not convinced? Here is why Hillary will run in 2016:

1. Hillary Clinton never closed her campaign chest after paying off the last of her 2008 campaign debt this past December. It now has $205,000. If she never planned to run, then why didn’t she close it out? Now it is easy for early money to start coming her way. There’s already a place to put it.

2. Hillary Clinton is more popular than President Obama or Michelle Obama, who are pretty darn popular. And Joe Biden’s numbers are not even in the ballpark.

3. Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State showed the country what she is capable of and that she knows how to run a huge agency. More than 50,000 people work for the State Department from custodians to ambassadors.

4. Hillary Clinton knows the buck stops with her, paraphrasing what President Harry Truman said about being president. She took the guff and the heat for the Benghazi Bungle and accepted full responsibility, not blaming someone else or on miscommunications.

5. Hillary Clinton is fearless. Just look at her in the lions’ den, aka Congressional hearings, where she stared down the Republicans, who bared their fangs, and she fought back with righteous anger to cower them. She has long been the target of Right Wing attacks, starting back when she was First Lady in Arkansas. It only intensified when she was First Lady of our country. Everyone expected the attacks to come full force when she was a Senator, but she defanged the opposition and even charmed them, becoming a Senate fave.

6. Hillary Clinton has Bill Clinton in her corner. No matter what you think of Bill Clinton, and, yes, he is or was a horn dog (let’s just get that out of the way), but he is Bill Clinton and what you saw him do for President Obama in the last campaign was only a warm up for Hillary. Wait till 2016. You ain’t seen nothin’ yet.

7. Hillary Clinton will energize the Democratic Party as it goes for the one-two punch: first Black president and now the first woman president. With Bill at her back and President Obama at her side, she will rally both the centrist Democrats and Progressives, the Independents, women of all political persuasions, African-Americans, minorities, and the Democratic base. Being born in Illinois and a former New York senator means she has a lock on those electoral votes. And look for North Carolina to swing into the Democratic column this time around. The next four years will tip even further in favor of the Democrats as more Northerners move into Southern states like North Carolina.

And if Hillary puts a young, dynamic man (yes, it will have to be a man; the country is not yet ready for two women running on the ticket, so we don’t want to push our luck) on the ticket, representing a Western state like Colorado, then it will be a landslide.

Assuming the Republicans can get their act together and keep the fringe candidates corralled somewhere and nominate someone, say a Congressman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), who is chomping at the bit, there is still little hope that the GOP could stop the Hillary juggernaut. Sometimes a woman is at the right place at the right moment and it looks like 2016 will be Hillary’s time.

Also read:  Hillary Clinton vs. Republicans: Hillary fights back

To contact Catherine Poe, see above. Her work appears in Ad Lib at the Communities @ WashingtonTimes.com. She can also be heard on Democrats for America’s Future. She is also a contributor to broadcast, print and online media.


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Catherine Poe

Catherine was named one of the top Progressives in Maryland along with Senator Barbara Mikulski and Congresswoman Donna Edwards. She has been a guest of President Obama in the Rose Garden.

As past president of Long Island NOW, she worked to reform women's prisons in New York, open the construction trades to women, change laws to safeguard battered women, and protect the rights of rape victims. 

Long active in Democratic politics, she served as the presidentof the Talbot Democrats in Maryland for six years and fought to getthe Health Care Reform bill passed.

Catherine has been published in a diverse range of newspapers and magazines, including Newsday, Star Democrat, Rocky Mountain News, Yellowstone News, and the Massachusetts Review.

If Catherine has learned anything over the years it is that progressive change does not come easily, but in baby steps. 

Contact Catherine Poe

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