A potential tough Democratic primary will likely knock out a Hillary Clinton White House run.
At least two Clinton confidants in Arkansas say that Clinton will not go through a nasty repeat of 2008 when Barack Obama and a host of other Democrats, including Vice President Joe Biden and former North Carolina Senator John Edwards, challenged her. Hillary wants a clear path if she runs without Democrats tearing down each other, the confidants say, adding it is more important to focus all resources on Republicans who desperately want to reclaim the White House after eight years of Obama.
A recent Washington Post-ABC News poll shows a “majority of Democrats want Hillary Clinton to face a primary challenge in 2016.” As in politics, there could likely be at least one or two minor candidates that challenge Hillary to get their feet wet for a 2020 White House run.
The Post lists several including California Governor Jerry Brown, who has previously run for president; former Vermont Governor Howard Dean, who has tested the presidential waters in 2004; Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, who has his own Oval Office ambition; Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, an independent who would strive to push Hillary to the left and former Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer, who wowed Democrats with his speeches at the last two Democratic National Conventions
But these men should possibly think twice about throwing their hat in the ring.
Hillary tossed a veiled warning to one possible GOP presidential opponent, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, during her interview with ABC’s Diane Sawyer. Paul has said that the Monica Lewinsky scandal will be fair game if Hillary chooses to run for president.
“He can talk about whatever he wants to talk about,” Clinton responded. “And if he decides to run, he’ll be fair game too.”
Beware, that goes for any Democrat challenger, too, one of the Arkansas confidant says.
Suzi Parker is an Arkansas-based political and cultural journalist and author of “Sex in the South: Unbuckling the Bible Belt” and “1000 Best Bartender’s Recipes.” She writes frequently for Reuters, TakePart, and numerous other publications. Follow her on Twitter at @SuziParker.