Tags: hillary | clinton | obama

Clinton Would Have Tapped Obama If Elected

Thursday, 15 Oct 2009 08:02 AM

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Secretary of State Hillary Clinton would "absolutely" have selected Barack Obama to serve in her administration if she had of won last November's presidential elections, she said Wednesday.

The former first lady told ABC television how she was asked to serve in Obama's cabinet, and when asked if she would have done the same, responded: "Absolutely, absolutely. Oh, of course."

Clinton narrowly lost the Democratic presidential nomination to Obama after a long and sometimes acrimonious primary campaign that saw her begin as the firm favorite.

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Obama then handily defeated the Republican nominee John McCain and asked an apparently surprised and somewhat reluctant Clinton to join his administration.

"I got no indication until after the election. And I didn't believe the indications that people were trying to tell me about," Clinton said of Obama's wish to have her in the cabinet.

Clinton said that after the election she "was thrilled at the idea that I was going back to the Senate to represent New York."

Then five or six days after the vote, while out walking with her husband, former president Bill Clinton, they got a call.

"He had his cell phone in his pocket, I didn't have anything on me. And all of the sudden it started ringing in the middle of this big nature preserve. Instead of turning it off, he answered it, and it was president-elect Obama."

She later went to Chicago to discuss administration appointments with Obama, still not believing she was in line for a job.

"When I went there and met with him and he began to talk to me, my first reaction was, you know, really, there are other people and I am happy to be back in the Senate... but he's a very persistent and persuasive man."

"He said, 'I want you to be my Secretary of State.' And I said, 'Oh no you don't.'"

"If I had called him I would have wanted him to say yes. And, you know, I'm pretty old fashioned and it's just who I am.

"So, at the end of the day, when your president asks you to serve, you say yes, if you can."

Clinton said while traveling around the world she still gets asked how she could work with a former political adversary.

"Politics in many developing democracies is still so personal. People can't fathom how you could be an opponent one day and then a colleague the next day."

During the interview, Clinton repeatedly stated that she had no designs on the White House after finishing her time as Secretary of State.

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--AFP

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