Hillary Clinton is now the most popular politician in America who has held elected office

by: Chris Bowers

Fri May 28, 2010 at 14:00


Here is a weekend factoid for you: among all living politicians in the United States who have ever held elected office, Hillary Clinton the most popular.

That's right.  Ever since she became Secretary of State, her favorables have soared into the mid-60's, putting her well clear of any other statewide officeholder in the country.  The only national figures who are viewed as favorably as Clinton are Michelle Obama, Colin Powell, and David Patraeus. However, they have never run for office, which invariably lowers your favorables.

Hillary Clinton will turn 69 in in the final week of the 2016 campaign, which makes her slightly younger than Ronald Reagan when he first was elected in 1980.  Also, as Secretary of State, a major presidential candidate, a U.S. Senator, and First Lady, she is also probably more credentialed than any other potential Presidential candidate, too.  There is even talk she may become the next Secretary of Defense, further adding to her credentials.

Some have said that, in choosing Joe Biden as Vice-President, Barack Obama did not pick a successor to lead the Democratic Party.  However, that needs rethinking.  Because Barack obama made her Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton remains remarkably well-positioned to run for President in 2016, even more so than she was in 2008.

Anyway, have a good holiday weekend.

Chris Bowers :: Hillary Clinton is now the most popular politician in America who has held elected office

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I still think that it is very possible that due to (4.00 / 2)
1.  Biden getting tired of being VP; or
2.  Health issues in Biden's family, god forbid; or
3.  Just plain crass political thinking,

that Hillary runs as the VP in 2012 on her way to running for Pres in 2016.

I could easily see Hillary and Biden switching job titles in 2012.


Thought I read that Hillary wanted to leave the WH in '12 (0.00 / 0)
I can't find it at the moment, but I'm pretty sure I read that Hillary said she would serve as SOS for Obama's first term and the leave regardless of whether he won a second term or not. I don't recall if she said explicitly she didn't want to return to government or not... 2012 is still a ways away, let alone 2016, so who knows what'll happen.  

"I think the economic logic behind dumping a load of toxic waste in the lowest wage country is impeccable and we should face up to that."
-Lawrence Summers


[ Parent ]
If Clinton wasn't VP in 2008, I don't see why she would be in 2012 (0.00 / 0)


[ Parent ]
Happily, she'll only be 65 in 2012. (4.00 / 1)
Just think how much smarter our country would be viewed if they had only elected her in 2008.

Sad day for the Republic.


Oh yes. So much better. lol (4.00 / 1)


--

The government has a defect: it's potentially democratic. Corporations have no defect: they're pure tyrannies. -Chomsky


[ Parent ]
She still is a War hawk! (4.00 / 1)
Her stance on the Korean situation is not helpfull.

[ Parent ]
You really think Hillary Clinton would be a step up from Barack Obama? (4.00 / 5)
Instead of having a timid mainstream DLCesque President, we would have a timid mainstream DLCesque President, who was almost literally the DLC's, Big Business's and Wall Street's candidate in the 2008 Democratic primary.

I'm almost 100% sure that Rahm Emanuel would be Clinton's chief of staff, and Larry Summers her head economic adviser.  In some ways Clinton would be even worse than Obama, as she is surrounded exclusively by corporate elitists and is always gripped by political fears, and as such would avoid anything that appeared remotely bold and populist.

I vastly preferred Obama to Clinton in the 2008 primary (I voted for John Edwards) and I still maintain that view.  Just because we're all disgusted with Obama doesn't mean that just anyone else can waltz in and swipe our seal of approval.


[ Parent ]
Come on. Let's be real. (4.00 / 3)
Instead of having a timid mainstream DLCesque President, we would have a timid mainstream DLCesque President,

So you're admitting Obama really wasn't more progressive than Clinton?

who was almost literally the DLC's, Big Business's and Wall Street's candidate in the 2008 Democratic primary

And they supported Obama. BIG TIME!

Yes, I did ultimately support Hillary in the primaries... And I did so with no illusions on how any of the candidates would actually govern. Both Obama and Clinton were firmly in the center, and Edwards proved to be untrustworthy (just as I had suspected). My first choice, Al Gore, chose not to run... And as much as Dennis Kucinich tried to inject some real progressive values into the primary discussion, he was pretty much shut out.

Yes, Virginia, there are progressives in Nevada.


[ Parent ]
Candidate Obama was slightly but noticeably more progressive than Candidate Clinton, at least rhetorically and in terms of their advisors (4.00 / 1)
President Obama has been more or less where I thought President Hillary Clinton would be, unfortunately, right down to the same gang of annoying Clintonistas.

Big business was comfortable with Clinton from the get-go and only came to Obama after the primaries.  Most of Obama's big bucks came from the delusional, ignorant and easily seduced masses (sucks to be them).


[ Parent ]
Read that Harpers article from (4.00 / 1)
2006 or so. Obama was in with big business very early on.

Montani semper liberi

[ Parent ]
"Slightly"? The loudmouth acted as if he was a progressive rebel! (4.00 / 2)
But with the increased vision of hindsight, we can see now that this was nothing but brouhaha. All talk, no action. So, Obama PRETENDED to be more progressive than Hillary, but imho it's obvious by now he's actually to the right of her.  

[ Parent ]
A small step, maybe. (0.00 / 0)
Because I believe Hillary has learned the right lessons from the first healthcare desaster, and has gained valuable experiences in Senate. And so I don't think she would have wasted so much time with the useless search for bipartisanship, and sahe wouldn't have delievered just another version of Romneycare, either. Only a small step above Obama, and I'm not sure if that's good enough for becoming nominated in 2012 or 2016. And after the disappointment with the Obama government, Dems will need a candidate who can really rally the base again.

Hillary wasn't able to do so in 2008, so will she show such necessary improvement the next time? Imho we can't rule that out. She's a tough lady, and she has shown a talent for adjustments.


[ Parent ]
You really think Hillary Clinton would be a step up from Barack Obama? (4.00 / 1)
Instead of having a timid mainstream DLCesque President, we would have a timid mainstream DLCesque President, who was almost literally the DLC's, Big Business's and Wall Street's candidate in the 2008 Democratic primary.

I'm almost 100% sure that Rahm Emanuel would be Clinton's chief of staff, and Larry Summers her head economic adviser.  In some ways Clinton would be even worse than Obama, as she is surrounded exclusively by corporate elitists and is always gripped by political fears, and as such would avoid anything that appeared remotely bold and populist.

I vastly preferred Obama to Clinton in the 2008 primary (I voted for John Edwards) and I still maintain that view.  Just because we're all disgusted with Obama doesn't mean that just anyone else can waltz in and swipe our seal of approval.


[ Parent ]
My thoughts -- (4.00 / 2)
Some have said that, in choosing Joe Biden as Vice-President, Barack Obama did not pick a successor to lead the Democratic Party.

I would argue that is a good thing. That leaves an opening for the progressive movement to pick the successor.

I am excited at the prospect of Hillary running in 2016, but I think by then we will have found someone a bit more preferable.  


God Help Us (4.00 / 7)
     Couldn't we have somebody good instead? Howard Dean, Sherrod Brown, Russ Feingold, Sheldon Whitehouse, Joe Sestak, or Alan Grayson, for example?

And four more. (0.00 / 0)


--

The government has a defect: it's potentially democratic. Corporations have no defect: they're pure tyrannies. -Chomsky


[ Parent ]
I guarantee... (4.00 / 2)
That her negatives will skyrocket if she ever runs again.  She's just kind of "out of sight" right now!

Well, she'll only be 65 in 2012. (4.00 / 2)
Not too old, really. The questions are, can she survive in the general election after infuriating many Afro-Americans by winning the nomination against Obama? And secondly, and even more important, is Hillary really a decisive step ahead after a lame centrist president?

a factoid (4.00 / 3)
by definition, is not a fact.

I'm sick of having conservative Democrats in that position.  Why not a progressive?


lobbyists are people too (0.00 / 0)
and if this holds water I'm really never voting for another Democrat not named Ben Cardin or Elijah Cummings

I'm glad we're having this discussion because we need to start thinking about 2016 right now (4.00 / 1)
Presidential candidates, unlike House or even Senate candidates, usually require many years to be groomed.  So it's likely that the next President of the United States is currently serving in the House, Senate or a Governorship.

We really have to focus on nominating a real liberal/progressive in the Democratic primary in 2016.  At minimum this candidate should support single-payer and have opposed the Iraq war. (So Hillary Clinton doesn't count.)

Is there anyone currently serving in high office who would fit this description and have a chance at winning?


See List Above (0.00 / 0)
     I definitely agree: we need to start planning and organizing NOW for the Obama succession. The DLC types certainly are. And it will be settled in less than 6 years,
    Democratic nominees are not always visible this far out. Wilson was never elected to anything before 1910. In 1926 Franklin Roosevelt wasn't on anybody's radar 5 years after he was crippled. At this point in the 1976 and 2008 cycles Carter and Obama were state senators.
    But I think the list I provided above is a place to start. Maybe others can add women, Blacks, or Hispanics to it. Deval Patrick, perhaps.
     

[ Parent ]
I don't think we even know who it is yet (0.00 / 0)
but whoever it is could very well come out of this coming election.

my watch list other than Sherrod Brown is Kirsten Gillibrand, Virg Bennero, Jack Conway, Bill White, and Tom Barrett


[ Parent ]
Tom Barrett (0.00 / 0)
     Well, I'm here in Madison, Wisconsin, and while I like Tom Barrett and will vote for him in 2010 as I did in the 2002 primary, I'm here to tell you that anyone who is capable of losing a primary to Jim Doyle is probably not going to make it to the White House.
    As for the others, Gillibrand is/was a Blue Dog, but the others all sound good.

[ Parent ]
The only Senate candidate I considered "worthy" for this cycle was Jennifer Brunner (0.00 / 0)
and she's out now.  Everyone else is typical mainstream like Obama and Clinton.  That includes Gillibrand and Conway.  Keep in mind that besides Gillibrand and a few others, all the Senators elected this year will be up again in 2016, and may either be ineligible to run for reelection or have to be in the awkward position of running for both offices.

I don't know much about gubernatorial candidates running this year; the one good progressive I did know of was Joe Hoeffel who's also out.  Like I said elsewhere, I don't like most Governors because they typically implement harsh deficit reduction policies.

I don't think White is very liberal.  I don't know enough about Bernero and Barrett.


[ Parent ]
Your list (0.00 / 0)
Howard Dean, Sherrod Brown, Russ Feingold, Sheldon Whitehouse, Joe Sestak, or Alan Grayson

Most of these names are cool if they're willing to run.  I've heard good things about Whitehouse but I don't know for sure how good he is.  I don't think Sestak is good enough - he's probably about where Obama and Clinton are.

I don't know how good Patrick is either.  I generally have a low opinion of Governors, as their response to budget crises seems to always be spending cuts and sales tax hikes that hit the poor and middle class the most.


[ Parent ]
Well, I'd be happy with another President Clinton in 2017... (4.00 / 3)
Especially since I really warmed up to Hillary in 2007 and 2008 when I paid more attention to her policies and how smart they were. I don't know if she'll really want to do another campaign in 2016, but I'll most likely do whatever I can to help her again. She's not perfect, but then again hardly any Presidential Candidate is.

Yes, Virginia, there are progressives in Nevada.

i'll just repeat my favorite stat that i think is true (0.00 / 0)
there has only been one sitting vice president that has won a presidential election after two terms by their president since van buren, and that's george bush i.

if you want to count nixon/gore as another, that's fine.  just saying, expecting a third term of DLC is probably not the way to go - the world will have changed by 2016, and Hillary Clinton seems smart enough to knwo that.  She might be too ambitious to acknowledge it, but she probably knows it.


True, But (0.00 / 0)
     The Vice Presidency in the 19th and early 20th Century was not the Vice Presidency of today. I believe I'm right than Nixon was the first sitting Vice President after Van Buren who was even nominated for the Presidency. Nixon and Humphrey just barely lost running for their party's third term, Gore won the popular vote, and Poppy Bush won. One out of four isn't a bad batting average going for a third consecutive term for the party.

[ Parent ]
Breckinridge (0.00 / 0)
John C. Breckinridge was Buchanan's VP and the nominee of the southern Democrats in 1860.  He finished second to Lincoln in electoral votes and went on to become a mediocre Confederate general.

Mondale was one term removed from being the sitting VP.  Nixon was two terms removed in 1968 when he was elected.  FDR was the only losing VP candidate (1920) to be elected.  Dole was a losing VP (1976) and Presidential (1996) candidate.  

Governors have been frequent candidates: Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter, Mike Dukakis, FDR, Adlai Stevenson, Woodrow Wilson, Ronald Reagan (ex-Governor), George W. Bush, Thomas E. Dewey and Alf Landon.

The Republican nominee in 2012?  Current or ex-Governors would include Palin, Romney, Jeb Bush, Rick Perry, Sonny Perdue, Chris Christie, McDonnell, and (if elected in 2010) Tom Corbett.  Chris Christie is obviously running hard by ruining ny state with hard right wing positions and extreme anti-union attacks.  He says he's not running (hint, hint) and acts like he thinks he is God Almighty.  Horrible (and very stupid) man but the media has been pimping for him for 10 years.  Major bully.  Petraeus is more of a politician than a general.  I'd bet on Corbett, Petraeus, and Christie with Christie running as the tea party candidate.


[ Parent ]
Which is why (0.00 / 0)
letting the Democratic establishment hand over these governors' positions to these candidates by bad nominations and campaigns is troubling for the party and the country as a whole.

Politics is the art of the possible, but that means you have to think about changing what is possible, not that you have to accept it in perpetuity.

[ Parent ]
one out of four isn't usually the clintons' style :) (0.00 / 0)
it's usually five out of four :)

Anyway, like I said, I'll give you a 2/4 count because  Nixon barely lost (possibly due to fraud?) in 1960 and Gore barely lost (if you want to say he did - not clear) b/c of the electoral college, the court, and intimidation.


[ Parent ]
Al Gore (0.00 / 0)
Gore won in 2000.

[ Parent ]
by vote and moral legitimacy and possibly legally (0.00 / 0)
he didn't win by how the political process worked.  But like I said, it's reasonable, I think, in taking him and Nixon together and say that between the two of them, you should count an additional winner.  

[ Parent ]
I'd like her to take Secretary of Defense (0.00 / 0)
She's a Democrat, so that's a plus right away, and she's certainly qualified.  

As for running for President in 2016, let's see who the candidates are and what the country is like.

New Jersey politics at Blue Jersey.


"She's a Democrat, so that's a plus right away" (4.00 / 4)
it's really depressing that you had to say that.  What's more depressing is that I agree that you did.  wtf?  what kind of political party consistently puts people from another political party in positions of power?  and what kind of political system encourages them to do so?

seriously, wtf?  it's not even just the practical / partisan aspects of it - it's the self-respect / dignity part of it.


[ Parent ]
also (4.00 / 3)
how are we supposed to have a good weekend if you tell us that the favorite for nomination in 6 years is someone who's politics will be outdated by 15-20 years at that point, will have conservative economics (by the standards of then), and is immensely polarizing.

The one, major, decent thing it could do is on symbolic, emotional, political, and most importantly social movement grounds, it could help bring back feminism / gender politics.

But I'd rather not wait for 6 years, and given the approach Obama has taken to "political" and "social movement" on racial politics, I'm not wholly optimistic that Clinton would do MUCH better though I think she would do better in the context of top down, technocratic, classist politics.  

And the other thing that Obama shows is that you don't wait for such things - you build them whether or not your preferred candidate wins or even your preferred party (albeit in different ways).  In fact, that's the only way they ever win!


agree but with one nit to pick (0.00 / 0)
I think she would do better in the context of top down, technocratic, classist politics.

At least rhetorically, but I doubt that would be true in actual policy.


[ Parent ]
maybe (0.00 / 0)
there are all kinds of arguments, including what she would be forced to say and do in 6 years because of changed political circumstances.  

I think we're arguing over the difference between 0 and 0.1 though, when what we want is 100 :)  


[ Parent ]
Better (0.00 / 0)
2016 is a long way away but if Sec. Clinton does run, I think she is better positioned as Secretary of State than she would have been as Vice President.  She has more independence but still has a very high profile and will be, by far, the most experienced candidate in either party in 2016, even if she leaves the cabinet before then.  It's a wierd thought, but I think she would positively squish Sarah Palen.

Clinton: Rich not paying their fair share (0.00 / 0)
Hillary Clinton went off the reservation a little bit last Thursday, saying:
But soon she took herself to what she called "one of the biggest international problems we have,'' and, pausing, added this perhaps important caveat: "This is my opinion, I'm not speaking for the administration.''

"The rich are not paying their fair share in any nation that is facing the kind of employment issues'' that confront the United States and other nations, "whether it is individual, corporate, whatever the taxation forms are."

Hillary Clinton is a centrist Democrat, but as she said during the campaign we have gone too far in relying on the market instead of regulation. She knew that the health insurance, financial and energy industries are incapable of self-regulating. She would never have made the mistake Obama recently acknowledged:

Where I was wrong was in my belief that the oil companies had their act together when it came to worst-case scenarios.


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