Alex Massie

Obama-Clinton 2012?

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Ah! Ticket speculation, how we've missed you! Or not, as the case may be. According to Bob Woodward Hillary Clinton could be drafted in to replace Joe Biden on the Democratic ticket in 2012. (Biden would be moved to Secretary of State, apparently). The Stenographic Sage muses that "It's on the table".

I'm going to guess that a) it's not actually on the table and b) even if it were on the table it won't be picked up.

Why?

Because putting Hillary on the ticket would be an admission of failure and, should Obama be re-elected, leave him weak and in many ways less powerful than his Vice-President. The entire second-term would be viewed in terms of positioning Hillary for her own run at the Presidency in 2016 (by which time she would be 69). That's not a good thing for Obama.

Stranger things have happened but few odder than surrendering the Presidency to your Veep.

UPDATE: Terrific piece from Marc Ambinder on this nonsense: Bob Woodward's Wars

"Who the hell am I," thought Marc Ambinder, "to criticize Bob Woodward for anything? I'm a chump. He's won Pulitzer Prizes. ZES. Plural.  He gets people to photocopy classified documents and send to him, violating Title 18 of federal law. I can't get anyone to tell me what the National Missions Force actually is."

Ambinder was sitting in his cold office, thinking about the rugged mountains of North Waziristan thousands of miles away. A never-before revealed unit of the U.S. military, codenamed STEVEJOBS, was operating a sensitive new N.S.A. technology codenamed ZUCKERBERG to track militants in the region.

Ambinder had genuine respect for Woodward and envied his access. But Ambinder knew he had to speak out. Woodward had this weird habit of speculating about American politics in a way that departed significantly from the subject matter of his book. And he just didn't seem to know what he was talking about. But because he was Woodward, everything listened to him.

"He could say Pete Rouse actually loved dogs, and frigging Reuters would print it," Ambinder told one colleague.

Over a cup of tepid water, Ambinder recalled how Woodward, as he promoted his final book on the Bush administration, predicted on television that Dick Cheney might run for president in 2008, something that Ambinder knew the former vice president had never even contemplated...

Read it all and let's hope for further installments.

Written byAlex Massie

Alex Massie is Scotland Editor of The Spectator. He also writes a column for The Times and is a regular contributor to the Scottish Daily Mail, The Scotsman and other publications.

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