Sunday, December 7, 2008

Back to the Future; Welcome to the Clintobama Administration.....

Clinton builds loyalist empire

As Obama brings in rivals, the new state secretary is recreating ‘Hillaryland’

Times Online

"WHEN Hillary Clinton was offered the job of America’s top diplomat, she made one non-negotiable demand: she must be allowed to take her own team of loyalists with her to the State Department.

A new “Hillaryland”, the word coined for devotees of the first lady in the 1990s, is being assembled for Foggy Bottom, where the State Department is based, in sharp contrast to the bold example set by Barack Obama’s cabinet “team of rivals”, composed of the president-elect’s former competitors and opponents.....

The veteran diplomat (Henry Kissinger), 85, said he was impressed by the heavyweight national security triumvirate created by Obama. It includes Robert Gates, who is staying on as defence secretary, and General James Jones, the 6ft 5in former Nato commander, as national security adviser, as well as Clinton. “It took courage for the president-elect to choose this constellation and no little inner assurance,” Kissinger wrote.

For some, it is a sign not just of poise and maturity but of well-honed political survival instincts. By choosing big names with independent fiefdoms, Obama is spreading the potential blame around, should his administration falter....

In due course, Obama may yet add the “Big Dog” himself, Bill Clinton, 62, to his team. The former president said on CNN last week that he was “neither looking for nor closed to” the idea of doing “something specific” for Obama if asked. He added that he had always talked to Hillary about “everything” since he was governor of Arkansas and suggested she would consult him as secretary of state. Bill Clinton is thought to have his eye on the history books as a special envoy to the Middle East, reporting directly to the White House but with his own personal hotline to the secretary of state......"

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