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

What would cause Hillary Clinton not to run for president?


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. pjoe

    Clinton / Palin 2016! Show them that polar opposites can find common ground.

    July 18, 2014 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  2. Alice Houghtona

    Your life of service will never be forgotten but don't pass up the opportunity to experience the true apex. You've got a new human being to adore coming soon. What is more important to a person than knowing that they were the center of their grandparent's universe. It is the best memories they will ever have. It's a decision that is guaranteed you will not forget. Let the time you have left be full of joy. You have earned it. Help Elizabeth get elected and we'll be just fine.

    July 18, 2014 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  3. Bob T

    The truth.

    July 18, 2014 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  4. aaron

    Clinton has got too much class and intelligence to ever be paired with Palin. Palin incited her supporters by screaming "What's the terrorist?!!!" in 2008, so they'd yell back Obama. What a sad piece of work she is. Even sadder are the few who support her.

    July 18, 2014 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  5. Tony D

    What would cause Hillary Clinton not to run for president?

    Her age.
    Her medical condition.
    Her desire to see and enjoy her grand kids
    Her desire to not endure the political grind and embarrassment of another failed candidacy
    Elizabeth Warren runs.
    Obama endorses Warren, his mini-me.

    July 18, 2014 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  6. Swedge70

    Tyrone Thigpen
    If we want a smart, accomplished woman with a track record of success in actual governance rather than a failed has-been with no record of accomplishment the choice is clear: Governor Sarah Palin, not Mrs. Clinton. And before you start shouting or laughing, go and do some research on Sarah Palin's accomplishments, not what you've heard from the Uniparty or the talking heads of the media.
    I'm curious, when's your next stand-up gig? Because that really can't be more than just a joke.

    July 18, 2014 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  7. Geauterre

    What would make Hillary Clinton run for the hills in 2016? How about an Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders ticket that would roll over her like a Sherman tank?

    July 18, 2014 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  8. avlisk

    Answering the question posed in the headline, it would be the American citizen waking up. You are known by the company you keep. The company the Hilldabeast keeps is the current crop of Lib/Dem/Progressive, so-called leaders who are fundamentally changing our Nation into a Socialistic welfare State, with our masters in charge of us, the peasants. Wake up, Americans, and see this danger for what it is. Hillary is part of the problem. Preserve, protect, and defend? Not in their agenda.

    July 18, 2014 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  9. Not right for the USA

    Hilory Clinton is the work of Saul Alinsky a radical and change will be talked about in her campaign. Just as Obama did. Barrack also was an advocate of Alinsky. Funny how coincidental there strategy of using CHANGE in there campaign manipulates the voters. Everybody loves change right? However America is founded on ideals not Saul Alinsky ways of manipulation. Hilory figured out how to manipulate from within the government and finished Saul Alinsky's ideas. She was the mastermind and Obama rewards it. 2016 Hilory is coming back in full swing but beware America I challenge you to do some back ground work on Mrs. Clinton.

    July 18, 2014 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  10. Anonymous

    Her and her husband (and now her child ... and grandchild) have lived off the back of the taxpayers ever since "Bill and Hill" got out of law school. Maybe, it's now time to get off our backs and get yourself a REAL JOB.

    July 18, 2014 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  11. Samantha Jameson

    She and her husband (and now her child ... and grandchild) have lived off the back of the taxpayers ever since "Bill and Hill" got out of law school. Maybe, it's now time to get off our backs and get yourself a REAL JOB where you have to demonstrate some skill and some competence

    July 18, 2014 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  12. Jay

    Shes cold hearted and calculating, just like Obama

    July 18, 2014 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  13. Dave

    The fact she won't win the DNC nomination.

    July 18, 2014 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  14. Robert Camacho

    Go Hillary, we are ready for you!

    July 18, 2014 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
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