Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Check Mate

Tom Paine (http://tominpaine.blogspot.com/) explains the Clinton's nomination as SoS:

Back in June after the last primary when Obama went for a secret meeting with Clinton at her Washington townhouse, I wrote a piece called "Whatever Lola Wants Lola Gets".

Now we know what actually went on in that closed door meeting at Clinton's Washington home back in June when Obama went to see Clinton hat in hand after Pelosi horsewhipped super delegates to come out and declare for him. Now we know what Lola wanted. And now we know what Lola got.

Four months before a stock market crash and a collapsing economy that all but sealed the victory for any Democratic candidate no matter who it was, Obama surely felt that he couldn't and wouldn't win as the nominee without Clinton's support or her voters. So he requested that meeting at her house which took place behind closed doors. The inside information at the time was that he offered her the Vice-Presidency in return for her support and she turned it down, understandably since, while Cheney had been the ventriloquist and Bush the dummy, usually the VP job is purely symbolic with no official Constitutional duties.

But it doesnt take much logic and insight to see now what was probably negotiated at the time. In all probability, after turning down the offer of VP, Obama offered her any job she wanted in an Obama administration if he should win, in return for her support. And she agreed. Which now explains a lot of Clinton's seemingly over the top support of someone she had campaigned against saying he wasn't qualified ( which happened to be the truth).

Clinton could have tried to fight it out and in my opinion if she had she would have won the nomination. But it was a risk. This deal was probably the next best thing and contained little risk for her other than giving up her campaign for the Presidency.

It's probable that since Obama's victory, Clinton has been pondering whether she wanted Attorney General or Secretary of State. It's no coincidence that a few days after Holder was named Attorney General, the news was leaked that Clinton will be offered Secretary of State. It is obviously the job she decided she wanted.

It is unlikely Clinton would have agreed to take the job if she had any substantial differences with Obama over foreign policy. So it is very likely that Obama's foreign policy will have more of a Clinton stamp than an Obama one since there is no way she would have agreed to carry out a foreign policy she didn't agree with.

The odd man out is Bill Richardson who, to believe James Carville, double crossed Clinton at the last minute by supporting Obama, probably in hopes of getting this job which he wanted really really really badly. This was to be Bill Richardson's twenty pieces of silver. Politics being what it is, it wouldn't surprise me if Clinton chose State partly to screw Richardson out of the job he coveted. It's also the second most important and visible job in any administration.

Of course some Obama sycophants in the press, David Bromwich over at Huffington Post to name one, have become apoplectic over Clinton's impending nomination as Secretary of State probably because it's making him look like a fool after bad mouthing Clinton for 9 months in support of Obama, and now those in the press who spent 9 months tearing her down are going to have to eat their words. And who better to make them look like idiots than Obama himself?

Clinton as Secretary of State says a lot of things. First it says what was apparent back in June when Obama asked for that meeting -- that she was the one in the drivers seat calling the shots and told him what it would take to get her support. Obviously he made the deal. And now the IOU is being paid. Second, it shows that Obama knows he is in over his head and will have to surround himself with the best people he can find, and since he is going to have his hands full with a collapsing economy he obviously needed someone at State that had the visibility and impact to carry out foreign policy with almost the same authority as the President himself. So it's unlikely we are going to hear any more from the press about Clinton's trip to Bosnia as First Lady.

And one other thing. With Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State, and Obama realizing this isn't going to be a book signing tour, it now seems fairly certain that an unofficial economic advisor who goes by the name of Bill is probably waiting in the wings.

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