November 17th, 2008
03:01 PM ET
5 years ago

Bill Clinton could pose Cabinet problem

 Bill Clinton's extensive global ties could cause conflict if Hillary Clinton is appointed as secretary of state.
Bill Clinton's extensive global ties could cause conflict if Hillary Clinton is appointed as secretary of state.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former President Bill Clinton's international business dealings, global foundation and penchant for going off script could present a significant obstacle to Hillary Clinton becoming secretary of state, observers say.

On the one hand, his established relationships with world leaders could instantly make the New York senator a welcome face in embassies around the world.

On the other, his complicated global business interests could present future conflicts of interest that result in unneeded headaches for the incoming commander-in-chief.

"These are issues that I'm sure are being discussed, and they will have to be worked out, and it's legitimate to ask these questions," said James Carville, a former aide to the Clintons and CNN contributor.

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Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (67 Responses)
  1. PATTY IN KENTUCKY

    I'M WITH "SKY"'S COMMENT. HOWEVER, SHE HAS ALREADY SAID SHE MORE EFFECTIVE TO REMAIN IN THE SENATE TO PUSH THROUGH MAJOR ISSUES. STILL THINK HE SHOULD PLACE HER A TEAM FOR HEALTH CARE REFORM.

    November 17, 2008 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  2. Anna, ATL

    Both Hillary and Bill are internationally respected and appreciated.
    It's the hateful extremes of left and right American media that have promoted false impressions of the Clintons.

    I don't see Richardson standing up to Iran. He couldn't even stand up for himself when challenged about his betrayal of the Clintons last April.
    "Well, I didnt mean to..." --yuck.

    Iran's President predicts our imminent doom. He is not someone we can trust....kind of like Richardson, actually.

    A lot of hot air and allegations about the Clintons. No proof.

    that's the big difference.

    Bring on Hawk Hillary!

    November 17, 2008 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  3. 60 year old, white female for Obama

    How many times on an issue can CNN change?? First she was a shoe in with the decision left up to her; then it was more a political move on Obama's part; then came news that Richardson also met with the Pres elect; now everything depends on the vetting of Bill.

    As much as I would like to see Sen. Clinton as SOS, there can be no way if there is any hint of a conflict of interest with Bill's dealings. Credibility is utlost in a post that has so many huge problems to solve. Clinton supporters need to realize this!!

    November 17, 2008 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  4. Joyce

    I think it is a good choice even with a potential Bill problem. Hilary is known world wide. The SOS job demands respect and recognition. She is certainly qualified and up to it. Those that say she is not well how about Condi Rice? What experience did she had before being named one? Heck, Hilary could have been the President herself.

    Hilary certainly is far better qualified and experienced. It'll be great. If only Bill would do his very best not to cause any more harm to his wife.

    I really am not enthusiastic about Kerry nor Richardson. They don't bring as much to the table as Hilary. The only negative thing I can think off is New York will lose an incredible Senator.

    November 17, 2008 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  5. Laszlo in L.A.

    Agreed, If Hillary Clinton HAS to offered a cabinet post, offer her Secretary of Labor. Her strengths are as a lawmaker, not a shuttle diplomat. Naming her Secretary of State just to appease her supporters you run the risk of having three different versions of American foriegn policy in the press, Obama's, Hillary's and Bill's.

    November 17, 2008 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  6. Anonymous

    No I do not think Senator Clinton would be a good choice for Secretary of State. She is not experienced enough but, more important, her husband would be a BIG PROBLEM!!!! He likes the spotlight and would try to upstage Hillary as often as possible. Everyone knows that but few will admit it.
    Give it to Bill Richardson; he deserves it!!.

    November 17, 2008 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  7. Carter from ATL

    Bill Clinton...still a blessing and a curse for his wife! Sad shame!

    November 17, 2008 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  8. John, Air Force Vet

    This is why the GOP wants her to be SOS, so they have ammo. Better stick with Richardson-his veiws are closer to Obama's, anyway.

    November 17, 2008 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  9. thomas

    Maybe if Bill Clinton would stop "helping" her so much, things might work out better for Hilary.

    November 17, 2008 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  10. S. K. John

    No, Senator Clinton would not be a good choice for the cabinet position. Where is the change> Already, most of his positions are from the Clinton administration = Bill would be a problem; he loves the limelight too much and would upstage Hillary every chance he got. They both bring too much baggage with them – No Way!!!!!!!

    November 17, 2008 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  11. kendall

    Hillary should have dumped Bill along time ago. Yeah were on first name basis now.lol
    He has really hampered her chances of moving up the political ladder

    November 17, 2008 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  12. joseph

    Hillary would be great as Secretary of State, but don't they need her leadership in the Senate during this time of crisis.

    Has anyone given any though to offering Lieberman a cabinet post or subcabinet level post (e.g., Secretary of the Navy or Secretary of Commerce)? It would (a) serve the interest of bi-partisanship and (b) it would allow the governor of Connecticut to appoint Lieberman's replacment.

    November 17, 2008 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  13. Stacey

    Sorry, Will but I'm not going to feel any "safer" under Hillary than I would under anyone else. Other than being First Lady and meeting and greeting a lot of heads of state, just what is Hillary's foreign policy experience? Traveling around the world doesn't necessarily make one qualified to be Secretary of State. During the primaries, Obama put the question out there as well: What exactly consitutes Hillary Clinton's experience in foreign policy? Wouldn't Senator Kerry or Gov. Richards be better qualified to hold the position of SOS? Just curious.

    November 17, 2008 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  14. tess

    gee, clinton causing problems – who would have guessed! if hillary really wants to get anywhere without the drama and scandals she needs to unload him – but she must be too insecure to go it alone! do we really want anybody like that – i don't!!!!

    November 17, 2008 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  15. SIMP

    Thia is my problem as well, Bill. Personally I think Hagan should get the positon.

    November 17, 2008 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  16. Come on...

    Take Richardson, not Clinton. Way too much baggage. Richardson has way more int'l experience.

    November 17, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  17. Susan

    Still pick Hillary for SOS. She is higly intelligent & could do the job!!

    November 17, 2008 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  18. Thomas Paine

    The Media is hoping that's the case.

    November 17, 2008 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  19. Stu Padaso

    They should pick Richardson, he looks like a foreigner and I am pretty sure he speaks some goofy foreign language.

    November 17, 2008 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  20. petena

    Nothing that can't be worked out – geez. Hillary is an EXCELLENT choice. Gor for it Madame Secretary

    November 17, 2008 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  21. Franky

    Ohhh great, where do I start? First of all, I'm pretty ill over here because I have no idea why I'm going outside and second, last time I check, Hillary is what Rush Limbaugh said about and that's a woman! Bill is just gonna be there but if ANYONE wants to attack Hillary(if shes SOS), you better watch out...

    In somes way, we know BIll had his time, right? Come on, you know! LOL!! Maybe is fate letting Hillary have her time...the question is, does she deserve it? And in my opinion, let fate decide...

    She can probably be as powerful as Cleopatra...considering how I made fun of Hillary about that. If she accepts it, for example, she just may be more powerful than ever before and guess what, if my boy messes up in the later future or something unfortunate happens(let's pray not), Gov Palin has no chance...that I guarantee you.

    We've actually been doing the work, so you know.

    November 17, 2008 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  22. jim

    Hillary still have a court date that she is trying so hard to avoid with Peter Paul. What happen to that?

    Clinton
    have a lot of baggage to bring to the White House and it will not go away soon. Obama has enough to work on come January.

    The young people voted for Obama because they were tired of Bush and Clinton that was all they knew. Now he is thinking about putting Hillary back in there.

    It probably would not have been considered if it had not been conveniently leaked . Sound like it was done intentionally to put pressure on Obama.

    November 17, 2008 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  23. Lisa

    People keep asking "Where is the Change?" The change was getting George Bush and the Republicans out of the white. That's that change we have all been waiting for, and the change we can all believe in.

    November 17, 2008 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  24. Barbara, FL

    Bill, the "albatross"

    November 17, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  25. Sorensen

    Of course he is a problem. For tousands of bad reasons.
    All she has to do is divorce him.

    November 17, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
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