Guardian: Hillary says yes; Update: Or does she?

posted at 7:27 pm on November 17, 2008 by Allahpundit

The golden age begins, my friends.

Hillary Clinton plans to accept the job of secretary of state offered by Barack Obama, who is reaching out to former rivals to build a broad coalition administration, the Guardian has learned…

Clinton would be well placed to become the country’s dominant voice in foreign affairs, replacing Condoleezza Rice. Since being elected senator for New York, she has specialised in foreign affairs and defence. Although she supported the war in Iraq, she and Obama basically agree on a withdrawal of American troops.

Clinton, who still harbours hopes of a future presidential run, had to weigh up whether she would be better placed by staying in the Senate, which offers a platform for life, or making the more uncertain career move to the secretary of state job.

The main stumbling block, supposedly, is the risk of governments trying to buy influence by donating to Bill’s charity, but (a) the public’s already assumed that risk, albeit to a lesser extent, per her role in the Senate and (b) like Conason says, it’s hard to believe The One would have made her an offer unless he’d already been given comfort about any major conflicts of interest lurking in the financial disclosures. Plus, it’s not like Billy Jeff’s an unmitigated liability: The only reason there are potential conflicts in the first place is because the Clintons have a preexisting line of political credit with the sorts of people she’ll be leaning on in her new job.

I never thought I’d see the day when the Standard, Commentary, and yours truly were all (relatively) pleased with Hillary Clinton being given a cabinet post, but here we are. Goes to show how much she rehabilitated herself with the right during the campaign, and how far a little Iran hawkishness can go in winning conservative hearts. And the best part? We’ll never want for drama again. Exit question: Er, why would the Guardian know this when American news outlets don’t?

Update: Hitch? Slightly less pleased.

Update: If the Guardian’s right then the news is breaking late, because both WaPo and CNN claimed this afternoon that Clinton’s finances were still being vetted. Maybe she accepted conditionally, i.e. if they pass the vetting?

Update: Ace says he’ll be surprised if she takes the job, as will I for reasons stated here. The only logic to it that I can see is if she thinks she can broker some sort of Mideast peace or deal with Iran that’ll secure her legacy.

Update: Peter Beinart doesn’t get it either, and wonders how Hillary’s going to deal with oversight not just from The One but from his NSA. I think that part of it, at least, is overblown: There’s no sense that Stephen Hadley has Condi Rice on some sort of short leash, for instance, and I’m sure Her Majesty would demand on some sort of concession from Obama up front about how free a hand she’d have.

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off topic but WOW

Mercy4Me on November 18, 2008 at 7:53 AM

No pay taxes – No vote.

marklmail on November 18, 2008 at 7:58 AM

I have to hand it to Obama’s handlers. Here’s what this play is: It’s a “divide and conquor”. He asks Hillary to be Sec of State, then publicizes his vetting on Bill’s sketchy financial deals (They hate each other). Plus, if Hill is Sec of State, she becomes his employee, which diminishes her as a potential adversary in 2012. I hope Hill takes it, then runs in 2012 because “President Obama’s judgment makes her worry about 4 more years”. Ha!

marklmail on November 18, 2008 at 8:29 AM

I bet she won’t take it. The honor in it for her is to be offered the position. And even tho she isn’t the sr. senator from NY, she can grab the microphone whenever she wants. Plus, Kennedy says he is going to introduce universal health care & she’ll want to be there for that.

kelley in virginia on November 18, 2008 at 8:34 AM

Plus, I don’t think she’ll run for Pres. again.

kelley in virginia on November 18, 2008 at 8:34 AM

I don’t even care if she takes it or not. She’s a piece of trash in an administration that’s trash representing trash that voted them in. I want to just go throw up.

johnnyU on November 18, 2008 at 9:10 AM

So, does the governor appoint a successor to Clinton or will there be an election? Can we pick up a seat?

thuja on November 18, 2008 at 9:11 AM

The Gov. appoints

lodge on November 18, 2008 at 9:14 AM

Peter really *doesn’t* get it. He claims that Hillary would be a good SecState because of Bills great foreign policy? Leave aside for a moment the accuracy of stating that Bill’s foreign policy was effective… what in the hell does that have to do with Hillary’s qualifications!!!

dalewalt on November 18, 2008 at 9:26 AM

The question is: can she do more damage to him in the senate or in the SOS position? As long as they are utter failures, and Americans are suffering for their choice, I am satisfied.

Vashta.Nerada on November 18, 2008 at 9:52 AM

The main stumbling block, supposedly, is the risk of governments trying to buy influence by donating to Bill’s charity, but (a) the public’s already assumed that risk, albeit to a lesser extent, per her role in the Senate

I hate to argue but there is a huge difference between the kind of influence she could offer as a Senator and that available to her as Sec State. As Sec State she would have some authority over allocations of budget and resources that she does not have as a Senator.

bryanmyrick on November 18, 2008 at 9:55 AM

More of the same. It’s change we can believe in. lol.

Static on November 18, 2008 at 10:22 AM

Hillary is so over Secretary of State, and after a new position: Commissioner of the Bureau of Mutant Affairs.

grizzlyfish on November 18, 2008 at 10:46 AM

I hope she does take the Secretary of State job. Rather than trust a greenhorn like Obama to sit down face-to-face with Ahmanutjob and Hugo Chavez and Kim Jong-Il and other tinpot dictators, having Hillary meet with their Foreign Ministers, with Bill Clinton feeding her talking points, would be MUCH less dangerous for the country. Hillary could actually PREVENT Obama from meeting with these dictators by keeping the negotiations at a lower level.

If Hillary takes the job, she would resign her Senate seat, and NY Gov. David Paterson would appoint her replacement for two years. Rudy for Senate 2010?

Steve Z on November 18, 2008 at 1:47 PM

Chewy the Lab on November 17, 2008 at 9:33 PM

I dunno…How come Barry can be the Prez when we know nothing about him at all?

I’m just sayin’

kingsjester on November 17, 2008 at 9:36 PM

That’s WHY he’s prez! If people really knew about him, they wouldn’t vote for him! But the MSM hid all his sleazy past, and the sheeple believed them…

Steve Z on November 18, 2008 at 1:56 PM

Suppose, for the sake of argument, Barack Obama was intending on appointing Bill Clinton as Secretary of State… He could vet Bill while saying he was vetting Hillary, and nobody would know the difference.

Hillary has very little motivation to take the State job, but Bill would love to have it. He could be King of the World.

gridlock2 on November 18, 2008 at 3:25 PM

Clinton supporters (aka idiots) will be happy to see that political superstar and godlike action hero Obama in the end will be a good house negro to the Clintons on command with a hearty Yes, massuh Clinton” whenever they snap their fingers.


revolution on November 18, 2008 at 4:47 PM

Yes, Massuh Clinton. I clean yo dutty sheets een no time.

revolution on November 18, 2008 at 6:38 PM

is there a brain even in this womans freakin head?

johnnyU on November 18, 2008 at 10:19 PM

I have never seen a person with such overly exaggerated facial expressions as this woman. I do not wish to see this woman’s teeth or gaping maw any longer! You lost, Hillary, you can drop the act now.

Chris37 on November 19, 2008 at 1:07 AM