CLICK HERE -
Friday, February 12, 2010
Thursday, February 11, 2010
WASHINGTON: US secretary of state Hillary Clinton will visit Qatar and Saudi Arabia next week for talks that a U.S. official said on Tuesday would likely focus on Iran, Iraq and the Arab-Israeli conflict.
On Sunday, Clinton will meet the Qatari ruler, Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, and will speak at the US-Islamic World Forum, a meeting hosted by the Qatari government and the Brookings Institution''s Saban Center for Middle East Policy.
The gathering promotes dialogue between officials and private citizens from the United States and the Muslim world.
She will visit Saudi Arabia on Monday and Tuesday for talks with Saudi King Abdullah and foreign minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal, the State Department said in a statement.
Iran's nuclear program and the Obama administration''s unsuccessful efforts to foster peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians are likely to be major topics in both places, as is Iraq as it approaches parliamentary elections next month.
The United States accuses Iran of using its civil nuclear program as a cover to develop an atomic bomb, a possibility that uneases Gulf Arab states. Iran says its nuclear program is to generate electricity so it can export more oil and gas.
"Not only does she value the opportunity to speak at the forum and the bilaterals, where she will talk about Iran, the peace process and Iraq, but she plans to do the same kind of outreach in Qatar and Saudi Arabia ...that she has done in other parts of the world," said a U.S. official who spoke on condition that he not be identified.
Clinton, who often holds public question-and-answer sessions with students and others when she travels, plans some specific outreach to women, he said, without giving details.
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
A brief filed with the U.S. Supreme Court by Judicial Watch, which investigates and prosecutes government corruption, questions whether members of the "political branches of the government" can "evade the clear and precise language of a provision of the Constitution through the use of a legislative 'fix.'"
The dispute is over former Sen. Hillary Clinton's eligibility to be secretary of state.
The U.S. Constitution, Article I, section 6, clause 2, provides: "No senator or representative shall, during the time for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil office under the authority of the United States, which shall have been created, or the emoluments whereof shall have been [increased] during such time."
The case brought on behalf of a career government employee outlines how during Clinton's tenure in the U.S. Senate, the salary for the secretary of state was raised to $186,600, then to $191,300, and then again to $196,700.
The complaint challenges whether a resolution adopted by Congress as Clinton was preparing for the position that rolled back the compensation to the level of Jan. 1, 2007, could remove the obstacle to Clinton's appointment.
Monday, February 1, 2010
A bottom line reaction to Hillary Clinton's speech at the 2008 DNC CONVENTION IN DENVER:
Good, but not very good, especially for Barack Obama. Even better, if things should turn out like they might and have for Hillary Clinton in 2012.
Hillary Clinton's speech at the DNC Convention in 2008 was carefully tailored, like the very attractive orange pantsuit she wore. It was tailored to her need to speak directly to those who supported her, especially those unreconciled to Obama's nomination also known as Clintonites as well as The Democratic base. 18 Million voted for Hillary Clinton in 2008 which is a reputable History making event. This was more votes than any presidential primary candidate of any party has ever received. The speech was laden with references to feminist advances. The Seneca Falls conference of 1848 got hearty applause, the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment was duly noted, Harriet Tubman was cited as advice to all (keep going). She saluted thereby her own persistence through the primaries and noted that America does not like a quitter. Putting those Obamacans who kept urging her to get out of the race into their place. The main attribute of this speech was that it kept her voters seperate from Obamas. It definately asked for their support for candidate Obama, but never relinguished Hillary or Bill Clinton's legacy to Obama. Hillary while asking her voters to support Obama, didn't mince words or dare to suggest that she had lost fairly because she didn't and wasn't going to give in and say she had. Hillary kept her base at bay and on the Clinton roll call. As well many of the women at the convention and out in America who were heartsick over Clinton's defeat are women like Hillary who made choices over and over again to do things they were told growing up they shouldn't do (live with a man before marriage, work outside the home after having children). These women won't forgive easily and not until Hillary - not just any woman is justified as a commander and chief. Hillary was experienced, qualified, and got the most votes, but was denied the chance to be president and the women of America were outraged... but not enough to say ANY woman deserved to be in office... (this was proven in the loss of the McCain Campaign's attempt to slide an unexperienced polarizing opposite of Hillary woman in as a Vice Presidential candidate to aquire the women's vote - the women didn't give in - they didn't support just any woman - they support THAT WOMAN). In fact most of Hillary's 18 Million voters are those that have been treated badly by society in one way or another and sympathize with Hillary for the way she herself has been treated over her years in public office. At her Denver speech Hillary Clinton addressed their grievances and gave them visibility and legitimacy, but what was missing was much in the way of description of Barack Obama. What kind of man is he? One who supports the same positions she does or just claims to - only time would tell. Has she looked deep into his heart and found something worthy - No evidence that she had. Would he be a good commander-in-chief - Nope not a word on that either, as the McCain campaign quickly and gleefully noted. However Hillary Clinton can tell Obamacans that she made the case for Obama and brought the convention cheering to its feet. She can say that she told her supporters in the most explicit language possible to work hard for his election. She can make this claim rather she meant it or not and expect support from the Democratic party for her next presidential run, but probably the most important thing that came out of the 2008 primary election is: Hillary doesn't necessarily need the Democratic Party's approval or support. 18 Million Americans have already given Hillary Clinton their approval and support. 18 Million invisible people who remain invisible to this day despite Barack Obama's promise to repect, help, and make their lives better. Those 18 Million are a dedicated batch of dependable voters, unlike the Obama voters which were mainly first time, young, and inexperienced voters. Hillary's 18 Million are still tuned in, still paying attention, and ready to start the next campaign on Hillary's first breath of "LET THE CONVERSATION CONTINUE". The Obama voters who did stay tuned in and paying attention have watched The "Greatest Man on Earth" fall to reality, fail in his promises, neglect their wishes, and most importantly prove that Hillary Clinton's numerous critiques of him were 100% accurate, leaving the Obamacans with a bitter taste in their mouth and aligning them with the one who was right on day one - the one who can say "I told you so". The now Victim of the evil and unfair Democratic Party -
Hillary Clinton does not need the Democratic party for her next presidential run - Hillary Clinton is The Democratic party. She and of coarse her husband (the only 2 term Democratic President living.)
The big question "Will Hillary Clinton ever run again?" - Well it was Hillary herself who said "Keep Going" and never stop in her Denver speech. But probably the most notable indication that she has no intentions of giving up her presidential dream can be found in the wording used in her exit speech given at the end of her history making run for the Whitehouse-
"Although we weren't able to shatter that highest hardest glass ceiling THIS TIME - thanks to you it's got about 18 million cracks in it and THE LIGHT IS SHINING THRU LIKE NEVER BEFORE - filling us all with the hope and SURE KNOWLEDGE that THE PATH WILL BE A LITTLE EASIER NEXT TIME..."
Now anyone who understands Hillary Clinton and understands Clintonian can easily read between those lines - there is little to NO DOUBT that Hillary Clinton was not and is not done with her Presidential ambitions.
Hillary Clinton for President in 2012?
Monday, January 25, 2010
Chess is a war game..
You win by playing your opponent, not the game.
The patient, wily, and deft player often triumphs more frequently than the flashy, lightening quick one. A grand master will pick off the pawns as they cross into enemy territory and then concentrate on checking the King. The Queen has the greatest maneuverability of all the chess pieces. She can be the most lethal. The King, by contrast, is often barricaded behind a wall of defenders, with little room to escape.
The King is dying. Long live the Queen.
Quietly, and under almost everyone’s radar, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has been vanquishing her foes, while President Barack Obama has been multiplying his. Furthermore, she has been paying off her debts, while Obama has been multiplying his (and the country’s) I.O.U.s. Obama is down in the polls. Clinton is up. He is losing his liberal base and taking heat on health care, the wars, broken promises, gate crashers, the bailouts, and a grand design that leaves his base behind.
As New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd wrote Sunday, “The Obama White House is morphing into the Bush White House with frightening speed. Its transparency is already fogged up.
In a surprise announcement, President Obama endorsed Coakley and encouraged Massachusetts voters to get out and vote for Coakley. Ironically, it was Kennedy’s endorsement of Obama in the Iowa caucus that ended the Clintons’ dreams of reclaiming the White House, and started the vendettas. For the Kennedy family’s efforts, Caroline Kennedy came to believe that she earned appointment to the U.S. Senate seat, eventually vacated by Clinton. Instead, the Governor of New York appointed Kirstin Gillibrand — a Clinton, not an Obama ally — and it is no secret that the Clintons made it happen.Less well known was that Obama did not “lift a finger to help Caroline Kennedy.”Perhaps Caroline, too, hoped for revenge in Massachusetts, but she didn’t get it, instead a Republican was elected and county by county he was voted in by Clinton Democrats thus costing the democrats Ted Kennedy's senate seat as well as the 60th vote needed to pass President Obama's healthcare agenda. Barack Obama at this very point had failed the very same thing that he attacked Hillary Clinton for in the primaries as he reminded voters how "polarizing" her personality was during the Clinton Healthcare Reform of the 1990's.
Clinton’s political obituary
Remember not long ago, Clinton, once seen as becoming the first woman ever elected President of the U.S., was just another spectator at the swearing in of America’s first black President. Clamors of “get out” were blogged from the Obama team after her early, and unexpected, primary defeat in the Iowa caucus.. Indeed, many pundits openly cheered and penned her political obituary, but she trudged onto the snows in New Hampshire. Watching Bill Clinton sit two blocks away from the main polling spot in Exeter (at the chocolate shop) where every local news outlet sat down and interviewed the former President, and almost every poll showed Obama with a nine-point lead, it became obvious that the Clintons were their own best “ground game.” They sensed a change in that frigid New England air. They were right. Clinton turned the tables and won by 3 percent, a 12 percent swing that rocked the polling industry’s credibility.
Next, came the caucus/primary in Nevada, and again I witnessed the Clinton ground game when two Edwards delegates came out of the closed doors almost in tears saying, “They couldn’t even speak English. It was awful.” Clinton’s union supporters bagged Nevada. And in Boston on Tuesday night’s election, we watched another Grand Master chess move. No historian could resist.
King Obama’s weakness
Obama’s lifelong habit of being cautious, voting “present” and splitting everything down the middle, may not get him re-elected. If as the Clintons might already sense, that Obama is in trouble, his biggest threat remains Clinton. Understanding this, and intent on keeping his enemies close, Obama appointed Clinton as Secretary of State, hoping, undoubtedly to woo her ardent supporters and to smother her with irrelevance. Just to be certain that Clinton couldn’t upstage him, Obama appointed several “special envoys” to take over negotiations on the high-profile hot spots of the international stage. The King’s chess move, thought to be “brilliant,” underestimated the patience of the Queen. Ironically, Obama sacrificed another pawn to check the Queen. Just last week, Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) –also an Obama supporter in a state that Hillary won large — admitted that he coveted her current post of Secretary of State.That makes Clinton 2; Obama 0. [Caroline Kennedy and John Kerry].
The remaining six pawns
Here are the former foes from the Democratic primary who took on Clinton — as Obama surrogates-hoping to be elevated to Knights, Rooks, or Bishops, but lost it all.
3. John Edwards: 2004 vice presidential candidate, 2008 presidential candidate of the “two Americas” theme, former North Carolina senator, and wannabe Attorney General in the Obama Administration.
Currently, the disgraced philanderer, less than dutiful husband of Elizabeth Edwards, and (after repeated denials of his infidelity) the only prominent national Democrat lower in public approval ratings than House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
4. Bill Richardson: the New Mexico governor, friend and political appointee of the Clintons (watched Super Bowl with Bill before publically turning on the Clintons and endorsing Obama) and wannabe Secretary of State, Commerce-or anything else-under Obama.
Currently, Richardson remains in political purgatory, caused by the taint of “scandals” due to a grand jury investigation into several questionable campaign contributions in multiple alleged “pay-to-play” schemes; (involving local contactors, bond houses and a pension scheme with a Chicago investment firm that dealt with Richardson’s Chief of Staff).
Richardson’s political career cratered into jibes on the late night comedy shows of David Letterman and Jay Leno.
5. Chris Dodd: senator of Connecticut, has announced he will not be seeking re-election.
6. Joe Biden: vice president of the U.S.
Currently, on the losing side of the debate over sending additional troops to Afghanistan. He publicly opposed the escalation in soldiers, preferring instead the option of drones and remote, recessed firepower.
Unflattering pieces about his gaffes and his “standing in the Administration” have begun to circulate in the liberal press — like in a recent column by Sam Stein of The Huffington Post.Add to this his less than competent role on overseeing the stimulus package and detailing its success (with exaggerated numbers and made up Congressional Districts) and you see where his “standing” is headed. The latest poll showed Biden’s approval rating lower than Dick Cheney’s in the same period!
7. However, the most stealth-like, damaging, and perhaps satisfactory capture, came from the inelegant dismissal of former Clinton White House counsel, turned Obama-supporter and Clinton basher, Greg Craig.
Craig, who turned on Clinton during the primaries, did so in a rather nasty, but effective email arguing that she failed the test as commander-in-chief, that her claims of involvement in foreign affairs were bogus, and that she “never answered the phone either to make a decision on any pressing national security issue-not at 3 a.m. or at any other time of day.” Currently, Craig is out of the White House-dismissed in a manner that brought howls, from the liberal activists, and have accelerated the disbelief, doubt, and defections among the Obama “believers”.
As Elizabeth Drew wrote in Politico, the firing was “the shabbiest episode of his presidency.”
8. And finally, Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mon.): head of the Senate Finance Committee overseeing the health care bills.
Baucus has admitted — after repeatedly denying — that he was intimately involved with his state director, when he nominated her for the position of U.S. Attorney from Montana on “her merits.”
Currently under possible ethics violation for the nomination — not the lying, or the tryst, as both parties were separated at the time — Baucus’ political capital has eroded. He, too, competes with Tiger Woods for late night comedy jibes. Baucus’ year is ending badly.
Good year for the queen
Besides vanquishing the eight pawns on the chess board, here are few more victories for the Clintons.
• The last minute save of the Turkish-Armenian accords opening the borders between these two longtime enemies.
• Bill Clinton’s dramatic feel-good rescue of the two female reporters held hostage in North Korea
• Clinton being named No. 4 of the 25 “smartest people” of the decade by the political blog The Daily Beast: “If anyone has a more intellectually rigorous resume for the decade, we have yet to see it.” High praise.
• A flattering article about Clinton in the December issue of Vogue magazine, complete with photos by the legendary Annie Liebowitz.
• The near “irrelevance” of those special envoys Mitchell and Holbrooke. They have been sidelined or mired in diplomatic quicksand.
• The success in adoption of her preferred Afghan strategy — and in securing NATO troop support over the expected 5,000 offered. (Something Clinton lectured Obama about in a primary debate: never get on the plane unless the deal has already been done.)
• Hillary's very quick and elegant handling of the Haiti disaster played out while President Obama remained in the background calling for help from former President Bill Clinton.
• Perhaps the worst damage done to the Obama presidency lies in his slow resonse and poor handling of the Christmas day Yemen terror attack, Something the GOP will take pleasure in reminding Americans that it took the inexperienced President over 72 hours to respond from his multi-million dollar vacation home in Hawaii, taking into concideration that The State Department wasn't on the list for those that failed to stop the attack.
None of this goes without taking into account The Queen’s high 70% approval rating compared to King’s falling into the low 40% margins.
In the meantime, looking towards a possible transfer of power, some are rephrasing the medieval shout, “The King is dying. Long live the Queen.”
I only take credit for updating this blog -
It's original author was Colleen O’Connor, an SDNN political columnist.