November 17th, 2008
12:23 PM ET
13 years ago

Bill Clinton says wife would be 'great' secretary of state

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption=" Bill Clinton says his wife would make a great secretary of state."](CNN) - Former President Bill Clinton is weighing in on the possibility of his wife becoming secretary of state, saying the New York senator would "be really great" in the post.

"She loves doing what she is doing. But if she decided - if he decided to ask her to do it and they did it together I think she'd be really great at being secretary of state," Clinton said Sunday during an economic conference in Kuwait hosted by the National Bank of Kuwait.

But the former president made clear his wife did not seek out a job offer.

"She worked very hard for his election after the primary fight they had and so did I and we were very glad that he won and we have a lot of confidence that he can do a good job. But she did not do what she did with the hope or expectation of getting any kind of job offer, much less getting this discussed," he said.

The New York senator is reportedly on Obama's shortlist for the position. Sources tell CNN New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson is also in the running.

soundoff (275 Responses)
  1. Kelly

    NO WAY!!! Obama should get new people. Everyone knows the Clinton's are part of that good ole boy network. Where is Wesley Clark in all of this? No way should Hilary be a part of this administration.

    November 17, 2008 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  2. Alesia

    Hillary Clinton will make an excellent Secretary of State. I truly hope she accepts the position!

    November 17, 2008 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  3. Alexander

    Hillary would be a good choice, but I agree with others comments. Barack has to pick qualified people who are not part of the Washington Elite, or ex-Clinton Cabinet members. Otherwise it is change, but change of party and not REAL change.

    This is very frustrating seeing the same faces as the Clinton era. I would dispute that Clinton's era was great as some people posted. Sure Bill had a rough start and a good 1st term, but his second was mediocre.

    The question is, do we pick experience and risk Washington Insiders to do business as usual, or do we gamble and get some new blood with new ideas? Which is the real driver of change....and which will suit the country better. Tough decisions...

    November 17, 2008 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  4. Borat

    You know why I agree with Obama because the Right WING IS GOING NUTS ABOUT IT . SO THAT TELLS ME SHE IS THE RIGHT PERSON FOR THE JOB !

    November 17, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  5. Lesley, Lighthouse Point

    The way that the Barack Obama is putting together this power team of leadership is impressive. Hilary Clinton would make an extremely good Sec. of State. This is just one indicator that we made the correct choice.

    November 17, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  6. Jon

    how soon we forget the lies and hatred that hillary spread during the primary campaign.....sniper fire, reverend wright, crying in NH, personal attacks on Obama......she cant even work with her own party let alone bipartisan attempts.

    November 17, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  7. Tony

    I also agree with some earlier post here. Bill, you did some great things for this country. Honestly the past 8 years have made me miss you a great deal in the Oval Office. With that said we love you dearly but for the sake of your wife's career.... would you please shut up? If you go around touting her, then people are going to think she is trying to force her way into a job which any rational person knows isn't true. However we have our lesser minds walking around and all it will take is negative publicity surrounding this VERY important appointment to FORCE Obama to look elsewhere. The position of Secretary of State is in a fragile condition thanks to the foreign policies of GWB. So this position needs to be filled by someone who has the confidence of not just the President but the American people and the world. Bill don't screw this up for her with your mouth.

    November 17, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  8. tedious898

    Any idiot that would say "some change" if Obama picks Clintonites, simply needs to see about graduating pre-school before logging on. How can a new president change the outlook for the country with people who have no idea the inner workings of Washington? know who you are! Shut up and watch grown folks with brains do this.

    November 17, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  9. ANGIE

    I say no way she doesnt have Foreign policy Experience,And she voted yes to the war in Iraq and Obama was against the war, I think he should consider Wesley clark or Chuck Hagel not Hillary!

    November 17, 2008 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  10. mary, colorado springs, co

    Hillary is an excellent choice for Secretary of State. President Obama is making highly intelligent choices - whether Democrat or Republican - in an attempt to heal the devisiveness currently existing between the two parties. By the time he is through picking his staff, the government will be running with a first-rate group of people, one that should bring the United States back to its pre-Bush status as the leader of the world.

    November 17, 2008 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  11. Tired

    I think it is very interesting that Obama can win the election. Not just win, He gave him an old fashion beat down, and most of America is behind him. Hillary should be honored that he is evening considering her, because he can do better. I like her I think she has the spunk for the job. We all need to pull together and support our country, and leave the mess along.

    November 17, 2008 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  12. FactCheck

    Wow you Republican are such fools. Why wouldn't Obama give the job to the best qualified candidate available (i.e. HRC) even if it means that she is part of Washington establishment? Whom would you he rather offer the position to... Sarah "I can still see Russia from my house" Palin? What you Pugs never seem to realize is that this is not a game and the future of our nation is at stake. After the last 8 years of such nonsense, one would think that you'd have a little more common sense about this.

    November 17, 2008 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  13. Debby58

    Hillary Clinton would be a bad choice because she already alienated many people around the world with her objection to having dialogs with some foreign countries which are adversarial to US and with her treats to "obliterate" Iran. In addition her vote supporting Iraq War is very well known all around the world. These facts would ruin the new foreign policy image Obama is trying to construct. I think Richardson would be a great choice since he has extensive experience in international relations without the drawbacks of Clinton's stance.

    November 17, 2008 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  14. mike from New York

    She seems to be doing everything she can to bail on her "commitment" to the state to which she "moved" to be our Senator.

    November 17, 2008 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  15. rachel

    Yes she would be good at the job now billy hush up

    November 17, 2008 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  16. jim

    I find this an odd situation. Bill Richardson endorse Barack Obama over Hillary Clinton, now turn around and suggest Hillary instead of Richardson is wrong.

    November 17, 2008 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  17. ME IN FL

    Choosing Hillary for SOS will not be a great choice, it will be an excellent choice!!!!!! She has the experience and the guts to tackle the job.

    Obama needs to surround himself with people that have knowledge and experience and so far all cabinet members that he is choosing are from the Clinton's days, meaning they have been there and done that!!!!!

    Keep it going Obama!! You are in the right path for the CHANGE that the American people need!!!

    November 17, 2008 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  18. Billy J , TX-

    Hillary would be fantastic. Strong, tough, smart and what a poke in the eye to the misogynistic taliban sympathizers.

    Say what you want, but the Clintons don't play and the whole world knows that. When she stops smiling and looks right into the eyes of a leader or negotiator from another country (especially a potential threat to America) and tells them what is what, they will KNOW it is not a threat, it is a promise. But she is also a good enough soldier to ONLY deliver the messages she has been told to.

    On the other hand, if that leader were to raise his hand too fast to brush their hair back or something, Bill Richardson would flinch and then apologize. I can't believe he is that good of a negotiator. It certainly doesn't show in speeches, debates, or interviews. He always looks constipated, confused and apologetic when he hasn't done anything to apologize for.

    November 17, 2008 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  19. C, Ca

    Bill, shut up and stay out of Hillary's career. You played a big part in her losing the nomination – don't blow this for her too.

    November 17, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  20. Charlie

    Obama promised change; change to "old Washington" with the Clinton administration?
    I didn't vote Obama to get the Clinton's back; I voted Obama for real change, with new people.
    Obama fooled everybody with his so called "change".

    November 17, 2008 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  21. Bob, MS

    I don't think Hillary would be loyal. But who knows, she could surprise us all. If she doesn't put herself first for once in her life, she would do a good job. If she takes the position to boost her foreign creds in order to run against him in 2012, she'll be the snake that everyone says she is.

    November 17, 2008 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  22. Robert

    Hillary should have been the nominee.

    November 17, 2008 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  23. Scott

    Senator Clinton just needs to take the job, and get to work on improving US relations around the globe, while Obama is tacking the economic mess here at home!

    November 17, 2008 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  24. Debbie

    I voted for Obama but I think Clinton would be a perfect Secretary of State. "Go for it Obama".

    November 17, 2008 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  25. ALG

    If Obama picks Richardson over her then my inital thoughts of him will be confirmed. When Richardson stabbed >Hillary in the back, I said then that something must have been promised to him. Hillary is by far superior to Richardson.

    November 17, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
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