If the former secretary of state intends to sit 2016 out, this is the time to announce it
The official word from Hillary Clinton’s camp is that she hasn’t yet made up her mind about pursuing the presidency in 2016.
All signs, however, point to a second White House bid. The former secretary of state has been meeting with potential campaign managers, making forays into early-voting states, and collecting chits on the campaign trail. At this point, the days when Clinton firmly insisted that she’d never seek the Oval Office again are a faint memory. An announcement that Clinton will sit 2016 out would come as a shock to the political world.
Still, a number of factors could prompt Clinton to rethink whether she wants to spend the next two years frying steaks at the Iowa State Fair, staying in Holiday Inns, and braving the brutal winters of Iowa and New Hampshire. After leaving her apolitical role as secretary of state and reinserting herself into the rough-and-tumble of American politics, her favorability ratings have come back down to earth; no longer does she appear to be an unstoppable force. And last month’s midterm elections, in which Republicans routed Democrats, could hardly have been encouraging. Core Democratic voters turned out in lower numbers — and supported Democrats at lower levels — than in 2008 and 2012. Turnout will undoubtedly increase in a presidential year, but it remains to be seen whether Clinton can keep the Obama coalition together. At any rate, the Republican victories underscored that a President Clinton would likely face a hostile Congress; while a Democratic takeover of the Senate in 2016 looks quite possible, Obama fatigue and deft early maneuvering by Republicans may yet keep the chamber in GOP hands...