Friday, November 14, 2008

Two Women

Over on the Dem side there's the buzz aplenty regarding Sen. Hillary Clinton's meeting in Chicago with President-Elect Obama and rumors that she's been offered the Secretary of State position, which is actually only four steps down in the line of succession (thanks, schmebble), right after Vice President, Speaker of the House and President Pro Tem of the Senate, and can be as influential as Kissinger or neutered as Rice, but which is, if true, an offer unprecedented since, like Lincoln.

So while Sen. Clinton mulls over her potential choice between the Constitutionally 2nd most powerful foreign policy figure in America (after the President) of Junior Senator from New York with little seniority including in her signature health insurance area (she's not a Senate Committee chair, and both Kennedy and Baucus are making their plays on the issue), I wonder if she won't find all that travel tempting. She's well-known and well-liked around the globe, and the Camelot aura of Obama appointing his arch-rival for the nomination would speak volumes.

However, it is a lot of travel. She wouldn't be the first woman in the job (she'd be the third) and it is at the pleasure of the President. But as I've said before, Hillary may actually trust Obama more than she does her husband. He may have bested her in the nomination battle, but I doubt he's ever lied to her.

On the other side of the aisle, Sarah Palin has been sucking in camera-time like oxygen this past week, a slow curtain designed to avoid being a curtain as her chance to appoint herself Senator and finally escape Wasilla once and for all is going down with the Stevens-Begich recount.

It'll be interesting to watch the, um, plucky Governor try to elbow her way into media situations from now through the next GOP primary season for 2012, as I don't think the other aspirants will want her there. Her embarrassingly transparent "pageant-speak" is not germane to any of the real issues at hand, which the smarter Republicans are realizing means taking at least some of Obama's open hand and actually connecting with what people are really going through, not relying on distracting social issues.

Here's the BAGnewsNotes photo analysis of the tension coming from the other GOP Governors at their retreat Friday. Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who followed Bush in that role, manhandles her at the podium, and her whole speaking demeanor in the press conference is way too tweaked, telegraphing that she knows she's swimming in deeper waters than she can handle, but is determined to bluff both us and her into believing she's not spouting nonsensical nothings.

And what is it with the "team" thing. A "team" of governors? Is that like a "team" of mavericks?

Watch for her to be cut off at the knees inside her own party. She may be able to raise money, but by now none of the other governors should have any doubt who she's raising it for.


R.A. Porter said...

I just don't buy Hill at Foggy Bottom. She'd be giving up a seat-for-life for less overall power and prestige. Plus, I'm sure it was promised to Bill Richardson back when he threw his support to Obama.

HRC might be a junior senator today, but if she plays her cards right, someday she could take Teddy Kennedy's place as the lion(ess) of the Senate.

Anonymous said...

I think SecState is only slightly less a waste of HRC's time than being a senator. In the old days, as you know, SecState was considered the 2nd most important job in the govt. (By the "old days", I mean those days when we gave a shit about what our allies had to say about anything -- ie, pre-Reagan). For the last 30 years, I think you'd be hard pressed to name a SecState who actually accomplished much of anything.

That being said, I always assumed that's the job she'd demand from BHO in order to play nice, but now w/ the Dems at 57+ Senate seats she belongs on SCOTUS. There's not a more perfect candidate in the country, for a lot of reasons, including as a monstrously painful stick in the eye of Conservatives, to make sure they understand they're now totally irrelevant.

R.A. Porter said...

@anon, I have to disagree a very small bit with you. There is a more perfect candidate for SCOTUS, one who'd be an even BIGGER stick in the eye to the GOP.

And just think, BHO could send the invite to the same address as Hillary.

Not that I dislike your idea, at all.

Mark Netter said...

The Supreme Court is a great place to be if you're into jurisprudence, i.e. not that social a being but more about the books. For Hillary or, especially, Bill, I think the lifetime term would seem like a life sentence.

Anonymous said...


Heh heh heh. You know, I thought of the Big Dog for SCOTUS, but I suspect he's angling for something more in tune w/ his lifestyle, like Ambassador to Thailand.

(Meantime, US history is full of cosmic ironies & since 2000 I've always felt that Gore was destined to make SCOTUS one day.)

We'll see...

ps: Mo, I don't believe HRC's that social. I think she turned herself into a tolerably okay politician, but deep down I think she's just too smart to really enjoy pressing the flesh w/ the hoi polloi.

Know-it-alls hate dealing with the public. Believe me, I know.

schmebble said...

Actually, Sec of State is 4th in line to succession, after Speaker of the House and Pres Pro Temp of Senate.


R.A. Porter said...

@schmebble, that depends on whether you believe the Constitution - that musty old thing that GWB has done a good job of invalidating - or Al Haig. ;)

@anon, Amb. to Thailand!!! :)