The Hillary question, unavoidable in Little Rock


Geraldine Sealey
November 15, 2004 8:51PM (UTC)

Sometime a presidential library opening is way more than just a presidential library opening. This week in Little Rock, as Democrats gather for the ribbon-cutting festivities at President Clinton's library, the future of the party will be on the agenda, says the Washington Post. Democrats, coming off their Nov. 2 defeat, will have little choice but consider whether a return to centrist Clinton-esque principles is the way to go. But what about a return to candidates named Clinton? The Post says of the Hillary question:

"But the debate is not so simple. Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.), the politician with the most personal claim to the Clinton legacy, saw a potential path to the White House opened by Kerry's loss. Yet her luster was simultaneously dimmed by a belief among some Democrats that the party should not again nominate a northeastern senator with a polarizing past and a liberal reputation."

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"Perhaps not since Robert F. Kennedy, whose Senate seat Hillary Clinton holds, has there been a politician whose presidential future generates more speculation and controversy, ensuring that she will be drawing nearly as much notice as her husband at the media-saturated library opening."

" This confluence of personalities and circumstances will make Little Rock a perfect place for political pot-stirring. 'Virtually everyone who is anyone in the Democratic Party will be at the same place at the same time -- at a critical time,' said Jake Siewert, a former Clinton White House press secretary. Although 'it's silly to think of this as some sort of '08 strategy session,' he added, the event 'gives us a chance to reflect on a winning formula' and 'puts the Clintons and the Clintons' agenda in the spotlight.'"


Geraldine Sealey

Geraldine Sealey is senior news editor at Salon.com.

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