What would cause Hillary Clinton not to run for president?
July 17th, 2014
10:45 PM ET
5 months ago

What would cause Hillary Clinton not to run for president?

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Washington (CNN) – Hillary Clinton told Charlie Rose on Thursday that if she does run for president in 2016, she would have "a very specific agenda" about the future of America.

But with polls showing her as the favorite for the Democratic nomination and a cadre of groups already organizing for a prospective campaign, what would cause the former secretary of state to not run for office?

"It would be wholly personal," Clinton said, according to a transcript of the PBS show. "Because I know so much about the job and how hard it is, I am very struck by the historic nature of a campaign that I might, in the future, undertake."

The job, Clinton added, has also "gotten even bigger and more difficult."

"You've got to get the money from the Congress to really improve what you're doing, personnel policies, and all the rest," Clinton said. "So the job is as challenging as it's always been, but I would say almost to a degree of amplification that's hard to imagine."

At the same time, Clinton, who unsuccessfully ran for president in 2008, said that the possibility of her becoming the first woman president makes her decision a bit different than other prospective presidential hopefuls.

"Hard choices are not necessarily the same for everybody. You know, for some people, running for president seems like the next step on a career," Clinton said, contrasting her decision as a possible signal for female power and encouragement.

Clinton's interview with Rose, who admitted at the top of the interview that he considers the former senator a friend, is part of the former first lady's ongoing "Hard Choices" book tour.

During the tour, Clinton has become more open about admitting that she is considering a presidential run in 2016. While she was coy with questions for months leading up to the book tour, Clinton now occasionally answers 2016 questions without caveats.

"We have to make a campaign about what we would do," Clinton said about a possible 2016 run. "You have to run a very specific campaign that talks about the changes you want to make in order to tackle growth, which is the handmaiden of inequality."

Later in the interview, though, she said she was "not going to, you know, jump the line and start talking about 2016 right now."

Hillary, Bill and love

When Hillary Clinton's marriage was stretched to its thinnest, the former first lady said, she and President Bill Clinton had "love."

"I mean, it had really at bottom a very strong and consistent sense of love in a very deep way," she said.

Hillary Clinton's marriage was stretched thin in the late 1990s when the nation's attention was captivated by the sordid details of Bill Clinton's affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky. The relationship and grand jury investigation led the House to impeach Clinton on two charges in December 1998. In February 1999, the Senate acquitted him.

In her 2003 memoir, Clinton described herself as "dumbfounded, heartbroken and outraged" when her husband told her about his relations with Lewinsky. "Gulping for air, I started crying and yelling at him," she wrote. "'What do you mean? What are you saying? Why did you lie to me?'"

While her marriage with Bill Clinton is something Hillary Clinton rarely talks about, when she does, she regularly refers to her closeness to her husband.

"I don't know how you describe it," Clinton said about her relationship with her husband. "You certainly can't bottle it."

She later added: "You know, we just have this deep profound connection that is love and companionship and support and intellectual rapport. I mean, it just is all of that rolled up into one. ... It's a tremendously fulfilling and reinforcing experience all the time. I just can't describe it any better."


Filed under: 2008 Election • 2016 • Bill Clinton • Hillary Clinton • White House
soundoff (64 Responses)
  1. Rick McDaniel

    There is almost NOTHING that will stop her from running. On the other hand, she will have a tough time winning the primary.

    July 18, 2014 08:00 am at 8:00 am |
  2. rla

    A new fainting medical event-

    July 18, 2014 08:11 am at 8:11 am |
  3. Lynda/Minnesota

    What would cause Hillary Clinton not to run for president?

    Certainly NOT the frothing right wing hypocrites. Although they think they've got the upper hand on Hillary much in the same manner they think they're causing Barack Obama all kinds of grief.

    No doubt it would never occur to them that it is they who have brought America to its knees. Much in the same manner little children never, ever admit it is they who cause their own time-outs.

    July 18, 2014 08:39 am at 8:39 am |
  4. Lynda/Minnesota

    old age voter
    And the most important fact; Hillary Clinton is NOT qualified to be president. Just like Obama is not qualified to be president. All of America is now well aware of how bad things can get; how bad things are if you have an ill equipped; incompetent person in the White House
    -----------

    So ... in all your infinite wisdom, WHOM do you feel IS qualified?

    July 18, 2014 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  5. salty dog

    Old age, what meds are you taking? Might want to adjust them, alot! He fixed the god awful mess the Republican left, were broke, George w is now filthy rich, but our country is broke, our army depleted, our stance on the world stage, forever damaged, you think maybe this is why the rest of Europe doesn't talk to us about this. Wake up old man, you live in the deep south, or what.

    July 18, 2014 09:25 am at 9:25 am |
  6. pjoe

    Government needs a reorganization. We're not getting very good bang for the buck.

    Hillary is a progressive ... and therefore she is not well suited for this task.

    July 18, 2014 09:29 am at 9:29 am |
  7. salty dog

    She mentions inequality, and the rich guys wet themselves. Poor babies, how will you manage?

    July 18, 2014 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  8. Randy, San Francisco

    The personal feelings shared by Hillary Clinton are genuine, warm, heart felt, and authentic. She will make a great president who genuinely cares for people. Hillary in 2016!

    July 18, 2014 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  9. Hillary Inathong

    The DNC and CNN have already abandoned Hillary and are now favoring Elizabeth Warren. After the "Hard Choices" book tour debacle and massive backlash of her "I'm flat broke" statements, the Dems no longer view her as a viable candidate.

    She did lose to the Worst President Since WW2 after all.

    July 18, 2014 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  10. Marty

    The only thing that will stop her is her health. Hope she picks a good VP.

    July 18, 2014 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  11. Sniffit

    "On the other hand, she will have a tough time winning the primary."'

    LOL! Really? Against who?

    July 18, 2014 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  12. Lynda/Minnesota

    "LOL! Really? Against who?"

    LOL. I'm going to go out on a limb here if only because I've just finished reading the comments ... so here it goes:

    I'm guessing the delusion right wing of America.

    July 18, 2014 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  13. Truly Unprincipled Leadership!!

    @Lynda/Minnesota re his/her comment below: In all your own laughable claim to infinite wisdom it should be WHO do you feel is qualified? Look it up.

    old age voter
    And the most important fact; Hillary Clinton is NOT qualified to be president. Just like Obama is not qualified to be president. All of America is now well aware of how bad things can get; how bad things are if you have an ill equipped; incompetent person in the White House
    ---–

    So ... in all your infinite wisdom, WHOM do you feel IS qualified?

    July 18, 2014 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  14. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    old age voter

    And the most important fact; Hillary Clinton is NOT qualified to be president. Just like Obama is not qualified to be president. All of America is now well aware of how bad things can get; how bad things are if you have an ill equipped; incompetent person in the White House.
    -----------------------------------------------------
    You don't "sound" old at all.
    You write like a poorly educated 2nd grader.
    You're too old to be this stupid.

    July 18, 2014 10:27 am at 10:27 am |
  15. Lynda/Minnesota

    Truly Unprincipled Leadership!!
    @Lynda/Minnesota re his/her comment below: In all your own laughable claim to infinite wisdom it should be WHO do you feel is qualified? Look it up.
    ----------

    WOW. Well, hey. Um ... OK. You don't like Obama? Fine by me. Or something.

    July 18, 2014 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  16. HenryMiller

    "...if she does run for president in 2016, she would have "a very specific agenda" about the future of America."

    Yeah, a specific agenda of dragging the country into the top-down, dictatorial, governance of socialism.

    "You have to run a very specific campaign that talks about the changes you want to make..."

    Why? Why not run a very specific campaign that talks about making sure government, to the greatest extent possible, leaves people alone to make their own decisions and run their own lives?

    July 18, 2014 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  17. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    America is done with Republicans and ready for Hillary.

    July 18, 2014 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  18. Wes

    hillary is a disaster.

    July 18, 2014 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  19. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Lynda Minnesota
    I must've missed the post where you laid claim to "infinite wisdom" my friend (wink!).
    So please, no more mistakes from you. Your posts must be perfect. PERFECT.
    Mistakes will not be tolerated because they hold you to a higher standard than they hold themselves.
    Good morning and welcome to Red Meat Friday!

    July 18, 2014 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  20. Dean

    Far too many skeletons in her closet.

    July 18, 2014 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  21. barryinlasvegas

    Elizabeth Warren.

    July 18, 2014 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  22. Tommy G

    Hillary Clinton told Charlie Rose on Thursday that if she does run for president in 2016, she would have "a very specific agenda" about the future of America.
    -–

    Yes, we know. Another Democrat Disaster Agenda. It will go nowhere in the Republican controlled House and Senate because we have seen enough of this leftist garbage agenda. Hillary Clinton will NOT run because she will not have her way with a Republican Congress. Better start grooming communist kook Warren Dems.

    July 18, 2014 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  23. Kevin

    I notice that the Progressives that support Hillary all have specific reasons why they want her to be President while the conservatives who bash her just keep repeating the same lame Fox talking points. These people are so confused and misinformed that they truly believe that Bush was a great, misunderstood President and Obama is the worst president ever. Critical thinking skills are rare amongst Republicans.

    July 18, 2014 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  24. Hillary Clinton -- Butcher of Benghazi

    Dean
    Far too many skeletons in her closet.
    -–

    And blood on her hands. Not to mention all of her lies, including the one about the internet video.

    July 18, 2014 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  25. Lynda/Minnesota

    @ Dominican mama: "Mistakes will not be tolerated because they hold you to a higher standard than they hold themselves."

    Double wink back at you ... ! If ONLY they understood how they come across, eh? Their spite alone keeps me in laughter.

    July 18, 2014 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
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