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Hillary Clinton ‘not inclined’ to run for president in 2016

1:57 am - 01/30/2013
Hillary Clinton ‘not inclined’ to run for president in 2016

By Anne Gearan, Updated: Tuesday, January 29, 1:26 PM

Hillary Rodham Clinton said Tuesday that she is “not inclined” to run for president in 2016 but left the door open for what is widely considered her likely return to politics after she steps down as secretary of state.

“I’m not thinking about anything like that right now,” Clinton smilingly told a questioner. “I am looking forward to finishing up my tenure as secretary of state and then catching up on about 20 years of sleep deprivation.”

Clinton, who steps down Friday as one of the best-known secretaries of state, is also among the world’s most admired women and the object of intense speculation about her future.

At the Newseum in Washington, in a wide-ranging online question-and-answer session with students from around the world, Clinton said she will write a memoir [Who can't wait to read this? *raises hand*] and work on causes dear to her.

That includes the cause of women in politics, she said, even as she sidestepped a question posed by a young woman in London about whether she will reprise her 2008 run for the Democratic nomination for president.

“I do want to see more women compete for the highest positions in their countries,” Clinton said, “and I will do what I can, whether or not it is up to me to make a decision on my own future. I right now am not inclined to do that, but I will do everything I can to make sure that women compete at the highest levels not only in the United States but around the world.”

Plenty of people are eager to see her run. A super PAC supporting Clinton for president in 2016, Ready for Hillary, was registered with the Federal Election Commission on Friday.

Clinton has no connection to the PAC, which is chaired by Allida Black, founder of the Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project at George Washington University and a member of the board of governors of the Roosevelt Institute. Black was also behind a pro-Clinton PAC in the 2008 presidential primary, WomenCount, and she pushed for Clinton’s name to be put into nomination at the Democratic convention that year.

According to the group’s Facebook page, a former aide and a former adviser to Clinton are involved. A Twitter account has more than 50,000 followers.

A Clinton ally, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), is urging her on. “I would love it if she would run,” Feinstein told CNN on Sunday.

Clinton has repeatedly denied that she is interested in a 2016 campaign. In an interview broadcast Sunday, she joked that as a sitting Cabinet member, she is “forbidden” from entertaining political questions.

Clinton was interviewed via satellite Tuesday by young people and journalists in Lebanon, Japan, India, Nigeria, Colombia and the United Kingdom. The one-hour event also included questions submitted via social media.

When asked what she considers her “lasting regret” from her time as President Obama’s top diplomat, Clinton pointed immediately to last year’s militant attacks on U.S. installations in Benghazi, Libya, that killed four Americans.

“Certainly the loss of American lives in Benghazi was something I deeply regret,” Clinton said. Clinton has accepted responsibility for the deaths, which represent the largest blot on her record, but she has rejected Republican criticism that she is personally to blame.

“When you do these jobs, you have to understand at the very beginning” that there are limits to what diplomats or nations can do, Clinton said.

“There are terrible situations right now being played out in the Congo, in Syria, where we all wish that there were clear paths that we could follow together in the international community to try to resolve,” she added.

In his harshest comments to date, Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) said Monday on Fox News that he thinks Clinton “got away with murder” for failing to protect diplomats in danger.

“I haven’t forgotten about Benghazi,” Graham said.

Rachel Weiner contributed to this report.

What do you think? Is she going to run? Oh, I SO hope she does! [*See added comments below.]

P.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham needs to go fuck himself. And step on a whole bunch of legos. Preferably at the same time!

[*Edited to add: after reading the comments and reflecting further, I want to add that I now have mixed feelings. As much as I'd LOVE to vote for her, I would completely understand if she decides not to put herself through all that crap again.]
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evildevil 30th-Jan-2013 01:10 pm (UTC)
I dont think she should. After the Benghazi incident the GOP is going to use it as ammunition. They are going to spin it, take things out of context, etc. Until the White House can solve this issue and have it rested for good (and have the perpetrators captured) they are never going to let it go.
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pennylane101 30th-Jan-2013 01:31 pm (UTC)
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lozbabie 30th-Jan-2013 01:48 pm (UTC)
Another memoir?
lone_concertina 30th-Jan-2013 02:25 pm (UTC)
You have to have a recently released book if you want a chance at the White House nowadays.
world_dancer 30th-Jan-2013 02:18 pm (UTC)
I wish that she would. And a lot of things can change in 4 years.

That said, I would hate to see the same thing happen to her that happened to Chris Christie in this last election. If she says no, she says no.
mahasin 30th-Jan-2013 02:58 pm (UTC)
I'm honestly grossed out that people have been asking her if she feels that she has an obligation to run for President in 2016 because she's a woman and likely to be elected.
girly123 30th-Jan-2013 04:13 pm (UTC)
Same, to be honest. This attention could be paid to other female presidential hopefuls.
ladyofshalott06 30th-Jan-2013 03:04 pm (UTC)
I don't expect her to run. I adore her, but she's been working really hard for a very long time and deserves a break if she wants one. I couldn't blame her.
starsinshapes 30th-Jan-2013 03:06 pm (UTC)
If she doesn't run, who will? I know we won't start hearing names for a couple more years, but I can't even suggest anyone.
one_hoopy_frood 30th-Jan-2013 04:12 pm (UTC)
Cuomo and Warren are the two I can think of off of the top of my head.
intrikate88 30th-Jan-2013 03:10 pm (UTC)
I'd love to be able to vote for her, I'd love to see what she'd do.

That said, she's been wrangling an entire zoo of rabid cats for an incredibly long time and personally, if I was her I'd say "Ask me again after I've worked my way through this entire bottle of Ambien because I fully intend to sleep for the next month and avoid all goddamn human contact, thank you very much." She deserves nothing less, and a great deal more, and she's got really big wonderful ideas that she might just be tired of fighting the lumbering political establishment on and wants to work on the outside of it. She's my girl, no matter what she chooses. ♥
moonshaz 30th-Jan-2013 06:12 pm (UTC)

P.S. LMAO @wrangling an entire zoo of rabid cats! OMG, yes.
dearmisterecho 30th-Jan-2013 03:36 pm (UTC)
Echoing the sentiment of "I'd like to see her run, but don't blame her if she doesn't."
snarkbite 30th-Jan-2013 04:22 pm (UTC)
I think that a lot of potential presidential contenders consider 'Can/will I win the election?' to be the only question that makes their decision about whether to run.

I think Hillary is smart enough to know that the answer to that one is likely a big 'Yes', so she's looking ahead to 'Can I effectively and with full passion/energy, at age 69 when I take office, run the country for four years after that' as the deciding question, and she's not nearly as certain of that answer.
paksenarrion2 31st-Jan-2013 09:27 am (UTC)
I agree.

I think that will be her biggest decision on whether or not to run. Does she have the energy and passion to devote 5 1/2 years (because you have to count in the run up to the election in that). There is also the consideration of how obstructionist Congress will be in four years. The Repugnicants are doing their best to gerrymander their districts and be as obstructionist as possible. I don't know if she wants to deal with the element that is currently in place-and depends on what is in plan in four years.

I just wish her the best, no matter what she does.
wrestlingdog 30th-Jan-2013 04:58 pm (UTC)
I've been saying for ages I don't think she'll run in 2016. I'd vote for her in a hot second if she did, but I'm not surprised she's not planning to run (or at least saying she isn't).
girl_fusion 30th-Jan-2013 05:51 pm (UTC)
I'm FINALLY reading her bio (Living History) and the woman is just freaking remarkable! I wish she showed the side she shows in her book during her campaign in 2008. She is so ambituous, smart, opinionated, family-oriented and...down to earth! I already told my boyfriend and all my friends in all social circles that if Hillary runs in 2016, I'm dropping everything and working in her presidential campaign. She is an inspiration to girls and women everywhere.

With that said, I think she will run. Saying she won't is probably a political move. If she doesn't, I will probably curl up in a corner and cry but I would LOVE to see Hillary in the WH.
teenageriot16 30th-Jan-2013 08:17 pm (UTC)
I really enjoyed her book, I read it in less than a week.

Bill's on the other hand, damn, that was a struggle.
tabaqui 30th-Jan-2013 08:15 pm (UTC)
I would love for her to run. I am just not 100 percent certain she would win if she did. People get so crazy over Ms. Clinton, i dunno. I'd like 2016 to be another victory for Democrats in the US, and while no candidate is a guarantee, I just...don't know.

If she says no, i will not blame her one bit. Woman deserves some sittin' in a lounger, sippin' a cocktail time.
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