December 5th, 2012
06:19 PM ET
10 years ago

Don't talk to Hillary Clinton about 2016, at least not right now

Washington (CNN) - Hillary Clinton clearly has a lot of thinking to do once her time ends at the State Department. And it appears there is no shortage of sounding boards in Washington should she decide to seek the presidency in 2016.

Democratic strategist and CNN Contributor Hilary Rosen bantered briefly with Clinton before the November election about the prospect of a second run for the White House. It was a "sign me up for that" type of chat which, Rosen cautions, did not last long.

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"Well, I have talked to her about it and I've been shut down," Rosen said. "She feels strongly about ending her term as secretary of state. You know, with as much grace and effectiveness as possible," she added.

A new Washington Post/ABC News poll has renewed speculation about a Clinton candidacy. According to the poll, 57% of Americans would support the former first lady and U.S. senator while 37% said they would oppose another Clinton run.

Clinton has said repeatedly that she won't be a candidate in 2016.

"Look, I'm flattered. I am honored. That is not in the future for me," she told CNN's Wolf Blitzer last April.

The denials have done little to tamp down the chatter in the capital.

At a conference on U.S. Israeli issues last weekend, Clinton's supporters played a tribute video honoring her time at the State Department. The video, which had the feel of a campaign ad, included gushing cameos from President Barack Obama to former British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Clinton appeared to be enjoying the moment.

"I've prepared some remarks for tonight. But maybe we could just watch that video a few more times," she joked.

But Kiki McLean, a former senior adviser to Clinton's last presidential campaign, said it's unlikely Clinton is anywhere near a decision.

"I really don't know and I don't think she knows because she can't even look at those kind of issues in the job she has now. And anyone who says they know is fibbing to you," McLean said.

Until Clinton decides her future, it's widely believed in Washington she freezes a potential Democratic field that may include Vice President Joe Biden.

After a long career as both a political spouse turned politician turned diplomat, she has told reporters she needs a break.

With 2016 fundraising totals likely to surpass the hundreds of millions of dollars hauled in during the last election, the demands to woo donors could force Clinton to make up her mind sooner than she might prefer.

"I think she's going to run for president," Rosen told CNN. "I think she thinks she probably has two years to decide. I think she probably has a good bit less than that to decide. But this is a woman who is a very strong sense of self and she's going to make her own timetable for this," Rosen said.

Despite Clinton's strong poll numbers, Republican strategist Ana Navarro said the secretary is far from sure thing in a general election.

"What we're seeing now are some very positive numbers for Hilary Clinton. Now, let's remember she's been out of the political fray for four years," Navarro said. "If she goes into the political fray, into that ring, the gloves are off and the bell is ringing," she added.

The path to the nomination is another story.

Unlike her last grueling run, which journeyed to the very end of the Democratic primary and caucus process, Democratic strategists believe Clinton would likely see her party rally around her in 2016, giving her the easy ride to the nomination many in Washington thought she would have four years ago.

- CNN's Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report

Filed under: 2016 • Hillary Clinton
soundoff (45 Responses)
  1. J.V.Hodgson

    Manufactured news. She has said for now she is not thinking about that possibility. Everyone may agree its poossible and for sure is... but she would have to open up a committe to look into her prospects and also have some support for her candidacy from the DNC need to wait a couple of years a lot could happen to her in that time in many ways which could prevent her doing so. life is full of unwanted and unexpected events.

    December 5, 2012 11:49 pm at 11:49 pm |
  2. Patriot

    Please God, save us from another Socialist in the White House.
    To think that 57% of the American people would support her is scary.
    As Lenin would say about his supporters, "They are useful idiots".
    Maybe by 2016, Americans will vote with a brain and not follow another Pied Piper who will lead us over a cliff. .
    What happened to the American electorate?, There was a time when Americans voted for someone who was a Patriot, and loved their Country, and not for someone who wanted to impose their Socialist agenda.
    Wake up America, by voting for any democrat, you are sticking a knife in the back of this Country.
    It is an insult to every veteran who fought and sacrificed to keep America free and for someone to vote for any Democrat.

    December 5, 2012 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  3. Michael

    HILLARY 2016!!! She deserves it!

    December 5, 2012 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm |
  4. zlop

    Hilary will have to loose a lot of weight and roll back her age.

    December 6, 2012 12:04 am at 12:04 am |
  5. Fed Up

    Navarro's latest 2012 presidential predictions were right on the mark, not!

    December 6, 2012 12:24 am at 12:24 am |
  6. Lance D.

    VISUALIZE AND REALIZE: Clinton may have to sell Obama to the GOP wolves UNDER OATH for 2016 viability -- and the GOP, Clinton and Obama know it. Go down and suck it, Donna Brazile.

    December 6, 2012 01:01 am at 1:01 am |
  7. Blondie

    She'd have my support if she did.

    December 6, 2012 01:02 am at 1:02 am |
  8. Robert Camacho

    Dear Secretary Clinton,

    First and most, thank you for all you done on behalf of our country and the world. If you decide to run, I will be the first in line to work hard for you as I did in 2008. What ever you decide, you will always have my support. Enjoy retirement and you are an amazing person and glad to have met you several times.

    Robert Camacho
    2008 Hillary Clinton Delegate, California

    December 6, 2012 01:07 am at 1:07 am |
  9. Patrick

    Why would anyone want to be President these days? No respect, questioned, put down, ridiculed and bad mouth no matter what you do? Is it worth it to anyone anymore? Back in the day even if you disagreed with the President, you respected the office. Now, the office comes with verbal target that says "Kick Me". What for? A book deal? Money? Is it worth it? Look at these guys from the last 20 years. They age 25 years in 8. Their families are made fun of on Leno every night! You hate the republicans, it is all their fault, you hate the Democrats, it is all their fault, you hate the President it is all his fault. The Truth is that America is ignorant and we don't know how our own system works and who has the power to do what? Career Congress and Senators. You want to make this Country again. Limit terms on the Senate and Congress. Watch that Fat Cat Political Dem & Rep. grind to a halt. Then we can get back to America. Oh and stop being so F'n greedy people. No one OWES anyone, anything. You EARN it with WORK, RESPECT and HELPING OTHERS. The American Dream comes in a winning Law Suit or a scam. The Mafia of old had more Respect for each other's families than we do for the friend down the street.

    December 6, 2012 01:58 am at 1:58 am |
  10. Marry

    CNN, will please do me a favor? Stop talking about a 2016 Presidential election!!!!!!!!!!!!! President Obama is not even sworn in again – so pleeeeease, give us a break.
    There are so many important issues – concentrate on them, yes?

    December 6, 2012 02:14 am at 2:14 am |
  11. deminthon

    Clinton says unequivocally that she isn't going to run and then this article goes on and on about how long she has to decide ... how absurd.

    December 6, 2012 02:55 am at 2:55 am |
  12. amf140

    What I would like to hear Hilary talk about now is BENGAHZI. She's been pretty quiet and conveniently out of the country. She needs to come clean but she won't. POLITICS.

    December 6, 2012 03:02 am at 3:02 am |
  13. rob medley

    im a Veteran....A combat Engineer.....I fought in Afganistan...I miss being active duty....I think Hillary is awesome !!!!

    December 6, 2012 03:30 am at 3:30 am |
  14. ReaganRepublican

    Biden is not a serious candidate. He is not strong enough to win. Republicans would destroy him because he is such an easy target. I can hear the late night jokes already! He can be Secretary of State under Clinton if he won't retire. I hope Hilary runs and wins so Bill will be First Gentleman! Ha! Oh yeah, and Hilary the first female President. That would be very cool for the country and about time! It is a disgrace how long this has taken compared to other countries around the globe.

    December 6, 2012 03:56 am at 3:56 am |
  15. Jay

    Hillary should be the one that's been the President for the past four years! If Obama hadn't been half black, Hillary would have won the nomination and the Presidency. All my friends admitted they ONLY voted for Obama due to his color, let's make history they said let's put a man that looks all black in office! That is the ONLY reason he won, his color. The reason he won this past time was due to the stupidity of the American people. FOUR more years of the same, people are very disappointing to have stupidly voted him in again. He's a decent guy, BUT should have never been elected in the first place, it should have been Hillary then.

    December 6, 2012 04:59 am at 4:59 am |
  16. Eric in Atlanta

    I would vote for her, for sure.

    December 6, 2012 06:49 am at 6:49 am |
  17. rick1948

    If Bill becomes the First Lady, does that mean he has to fool around with male interns??

    December 6, 2012 06:52 am at 6:52 am |
  18. Mahhn

    cool how you only post responces when you like them – NOT

    December 6, 2012 06:54 am at 6:54 am |
  19. Cleigh

    I absolutely hate all this 2016 talk. If CNN did a poll and asked voters, I'm sure they'd hear we are sick of campaigns and want a break on it for at least a year, if not 2. Just stop – it's way too early.

    December 6, 2012 07:11 am at 7:11 am |
  20. Disgusted

    She has to talk to Bill about giving her the money first.

    December 6, 2012 07:15 am at 7:15 am |
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