Clintonites bid for White House?
"The race for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2004 has changed totally in the past few weeks," wrote Reeves. "At the beginning of the summer, Hillary could comfortably deny having national presidential ambitions, because the comfortable conventional wisdom was that it didn't really matter who the Democratic candidate would be, because President Bush had a lock on reelection. (I'm sure that the thought has never crossed her mind that it would be better for her if Bush won in 2004, leaving her a clear field in 2008.)"
"But now ... with Bush looking more vulnerable because there are not enough jobs at home and not enough peace abroad, Senator Clinton has to check some numbers," Reeves continued. "If a Democrat, say Kerry, defeats Bush next November and then runs for re-election in 2008, then her next chance to run would probably be in 2012, when she will be 65 years old. And who knows what the world will look like then?"
Hillary is not the only "Friend of Bill" contemplating a White House bid (assuming that the word "friend" applies to her relationship with the former Philanderer-in-Chief). Retired General Wesley Clark, a fellow Arkansan, Rhodes Scholar, and former NATO supreme commander, is also mulling a run. Clark's most notable accomplishment was to carry out the 1999 terror bombing of Yugoslavia, which turned over the Serbian province of Kosovo to the Kosovo Liberation Army, allies of Osama bin Laden. (In that campaign, incidentally, Clark's superior was not President Clinton, but rather Javier Solaria, the Spanish socialist then serving as NATO secretary-general.) Clark is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
According to the Draft Wesley Clark organization, a "blind bio" poll conducted by Zogby Associates "showed General Clark defeating all current Democratic candidates, and beating President Bush 49.4% to 40.2%." Liberal journalist Robert Kuttner, writing in the August 27th Boston Globe, practically drooled in print over the prospect of a Clark candidacy. "[Clark] has been a tough critic of Bush's foreign policy," Kuttner writes. "His domestic positions are not as fully fashioned, but he'd repeal Bush's tax cuts and revisit the so-called Patriot Act." He also strongly favors civilian disarmament (aka gun control).
"Clark is the soldier as citizen," rhapsodizes Kuttner. "Even better, he's the soldier as tough liberal. Just imagine Clark, with his distinguished military record, up against our draft-dodger president who likes to play 'Top Gun' dress up. Imagine the Rhodes Scholar against the leader who can't ad lib without a speechwriting staff."