It is only a matter of months, in my humble opinion, before we see Secretary of State Clinton resign from her position in the Obama Administration. I suspect a difference of opinion on foreign policy could be cited as a reason or maybe it will be something else. The reason won’t be the story although it will have the appearance of not be divisive.
What Hillary is very likely watching now are the poll numbers that are showing support for the policies of President Obama are falling. She is in a unique position to see how our friends and enemies are dealing with the administration and may see a weakness in foreign policy before it is obvious to the rest of the country. With the mainstream media reporting only what the White House tells them to report, that is a very likely scenario.
If we learned anything from the Clinton years, it is the near brilliant use of sensing how the wind is blowing in the country and how to find and exploit an opponent’s apparent weakness. Sure, the Clinton machine was upset in 2008, but one could argue that they were overconfident going into the primary season to the point of smugness and by the time they realized what they were up against, it was too late. They didn’t even have a plan for anything after Super Tuesday, for crying out loud!
The Clintons learn from their mistakes and Hillary wants to be President of the United States and Bill wants Hillary to be President of the United States. Do not doubt it. The Clintons won’t take anything for granted the next time they make the attempt to elect Hillary.
Why, you might ask, would she resign her position this early into the Obama presidency. I would argue that she doesn’t want to be tarnished with any of Obama’s failures and has already organized the State Department to the point where she could claim at least some credit for any successes. I would further argue that, she (and Bill) would then have time to travel the country making speeches.
I would suspect she (and Bill) would campaign for selected candidates for Congress and Senate in 2010 as well as any candidate for Governor who is running. Unless the Obama administration can paint the Clintons as toxic, there would be a huge demand for their time on various campaign trails around the nation. By so doing, they would be collecting IOUs from Democrats that could be useful in the following two years. That is why I believe she would be selective in where she campaigns and for whom.
I know there are many who think I am crazy for suggesting this possible scenario. I know that President Obama is still very popular with Democrats and the media is still in his pocket. Still, I have a feeling that this, or a similar scenario has been discussed in the Clinton’s home.
Do you think it is not conceivable that someone from his own party would seriously challenge a sitting Democrat president? Can you say Edward Kennedy in 1980? Can you say Gene McCarthy and Robert Kennedy in 1968? What if the war in Afghanistan continues to go wrong? What if substantial forces are still in Iraq? What if they don’t pass a health care plan? What if prisoners are still in GITMO a year from now? What if unemployment continues to rise and the value of the dollar continue to decline? What if an energy bill (whether Cap and Trade or the same bill with a different name) is not passed by the Senate? What if Iran gets a nuclear weapon? If you take just two of these possible things happening, President Obama will be lucky if Hillary is the only one running against him for the nomination in 2012.
As I said earlier, Hillary wants to be President of the United States. She doesn’t want to wait until 2016 because of the age factor. Sure she will only be 69 in 2016, but she has an eight-year term in mind. Earlier is better if you are Hillary.
If Hillary resigns, it will be a de facto announcement that she is running. She, of course, will deny that she is running right up until she makes an official announcement and that won’t likely come until after the midterm elections in 2010. But make no mistake, she will be running.
So, what will President Obama do if she resigns? He and his advisors will know that she is a threat and will need to get her out of the picture. If he had something that would have destroyed a Clinton candidacy, we would have seen it in 2008. This time, he would have a record that he will need to defend. What could the President do that would eliminate her as a threat? If she doesn’t resign as Secretary of State, he might offer the Vice President spot on the 2012 ticket anyway. If she does resign, can you say Supreme Court nomination?