Election 2008

John Raoux/AP

Hillary Clinton Will Be the Next Secretary of State

November 21, 2008 05:00 PM
by Josh Katz
After losing a bitter campaign for the Democratic nomination to Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton has allegedly accepted her former rival’s offer to be secretary of state.

Clinton Accepts, Sources Say

Sources say that Hillary Clinton has accepted the offer to be President-elect Barack Obama’s secretary of state, according to The New York Times Caucus Blog. Although senior officials in the Obama camp say that Clinton has not officially accepted yet and that information would not be publicized until after Thanksgiving, a Clinton associate “believes they have a done deal.”

Clinton allegedly had to discuss the issue further with Obama, because last week’s meeting in Chicago “was so general.” But now, a confidant says, “She’s ready.”

The Obama campaign supposedly has carefully vetted Clinton, and dealt with issues that could arise from former President Bill Clinton’s foundation and library donors and contacts. “Financial disclosure issues have been worked out,” a source said, according to U.S. News & World Report. “Things are on track.”

The source says that Obama is waiting until after Thanksgiving to make any announcement because “the full national security team is still being worked out” and the president-elect wants those details to be finalized first.
Clinton and her supporters have recently been lobbying for Obama to hand her the job, more feverishly in the last few days when it seemed less likely that she would get it, according to U.S. News.

The Times claims that Clinton will step down from her New York Senate seat, which she has controlled for eight years.

Background: Recent Cabinet picks reveal Washington experience

Although none have been formally announced, sources say that many of Obama’s Cabinet posts are already decided. This week, news surfaced that Tom Daschle will be secretary of Health and Human Services, Janet Napolitano will be secretary of Homeland Security, Eric Holder will serve as attorney general, and Peter Orszag will be the next director of Office of Management and Budget. Rahm Emanuel will be Obama’s chief of staff, according to the accounts.

Obama has tapped a number of former Clinton staffers for his Cabinet, and choosing Hillary Clinton would further that trend. Some have criticized such a selection of veteran Washington insiders, saying it clashes with Obama’s message of “change,” but others praise Obama for choosing an experienced and knowledgeable cast of advisors.

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