Politico: 'Wary of Hillary' Democrats Voice their Concerns

Monday, 26 May 2014 10:33 AM

By Drew MacKenzie

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Leading Democrats have expressed fears over the "inevitability" factor surrounding Hillary Clinton's nomination as the party's 2016 candidate for president, according to Politico.

The "Ready for Hillary" movement is gaining strength as she gets closer to announcing whether she will make a run for the White House. But recently it has been countered by what the political website calls "Wary of Hillary" Democrats.

They are concerned that there was supposed to be an inevitability about the Clinton juggernaut the last time she was presidential contender in 2008. She was bulldozed by Barack Obama, now serving his second term as president.

Now Democrats have revealed their reservations, although mostly in private, about the problems with having a candidate who has not been part of electoral politics for five years "and needs to be tested," wrote Politico's Maggie Haberman.

They say that a grueling primary battle will toughen Clinton before she faces an onslaught from the GOP over her handling of the Benghazi crisis and other issues during her tenure as secretary of state during Obama's first term.

They also says a tough primary will help to highlight Democratic domestic policy, especially on the economy. Although the concerns have mostly been raised in whispered conversation, Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick has gone on the record about his trepidation over Clinton's nomination.

"She is an enormously capable candidate and leader, but I do worry about the inevitability, because I think it's off-putting to the average voter," Patrick, a longtime Obama supporter, told CNN earlier this month, Politico reports. "And I think that was an element of her campaign the last time. As an enthusiastic Democrat, I just hope that the people around her pay attention to that this time around."

Politico said that as it stands now, there is no real candidate with Obama's political skill to rival Clinton for the party's nomination.

But California Gov. Jerry Brown, who was defeated by Bill Clinton in 1992 in the White House race, says taking the nomination for granted would be a mistake for Clinton and the party.

"She’s got the capacity," he told ABC News, Politico reports. "But like any front-runner, she has to be cautious and wise in how she proceeds forward."

Brown, who made three unsuccessful runs for the presidency, has ruled himself out this time while Patrick told Politico that "maybe" he would one day seek the country's chief executive position, although maybe not in 2016.

Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland said the burden of inevitability is not one that Hillary Clinton has placed on herself but one that has grown out of a burgeoning movement over the past couple of years.

"Secretary Clinton's inevitability, or what appears to be inevitability, is something that is happening [on its own]," Strickland, a Clinton supporter, told Politico. "So, what to do about it? You accept it for what it is — a grassroots movement.

"I don't know that there's a lesson to be learned from what happened several years ago. The circumstances were very different then."

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