Washington is all about power, money, and politics. And one has to wonder if the attacks on Hillary at this point are designed to derail her or promote her?
BUSH, ROVE SAY HILLARY WILL WIN DEM PRIMARY -- BUT LOSE GENERAL ELECTION
President Bush and his top strategist, Karl Rove, say Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton will be tough to beat in the Democratic presidential primaries of 2008 -- but not in the general election!
Reporter Bill Sammon, who joins the WASHINGTON EXAMINER as Senior White House Correspondent, is set to launch his new book, STRATEGERY.
In the Book, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned, Rove is quoted on the-record and is unleashed on Hillary:
There is a 澱rittleness about her・that could prove a weakness in November 2008.
But Rove added that the 塗ard-driving・Clinton will easily vanquish Democratic primary rivals like New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson and former Virginia Gov. Mark Warner, who are merely 菟reening for the vice presidential slot.・BR>
President Bush cautioned that Hillary Clinton should not be underestimated.
鉄he is a smart person, and obviously has got a lot of experience,・the president said in an exclusive interview for the book STRATEGERY, which is being published Monday. 的t is helpful, to a certain extent, to have seen the presidency and presidential campaigns firsthand.・BR>
Clinton was a key adviser to her husband Bill in his two successful presidential campaigns. During her eight years as First Lady and five years as a U.S. senator, she has become a political force unto herself.
的 think Hillary Clinton will be a formidable candidate,・Bush said. 鄭nd I don稚 know the inner workings of the Democrat primary that much, but she will be a formidable candidate in the Democrat primary, is what I meant.・br>
Rove agreed in a question-and-answer session in his West Wing office for STRATEGERY, which is based on exclusive, lengthy interviews with Bush, Cheney and their top advisers. The third in a series of NEW YORK TIMES bestsellers chronicling this unlikely yet historic presidency, STRATEGERY is the most comprehensive, behind-the-scenes account of Bush痴 narrow reelection and the tumultuous 14 months that followed.
鉄he is the dominant player on their side of the slate,・Rove said of Clinton. 鄭nybody who thinks that she痴 not going to be the candidate is kidding themselves.・br>
But he added that New York Democrat is sometimes too cautious and 菟hilosophically very liberal,・despite recent efforts to appear moderate.
Bush vowed to refrain from anointing a GOP successor, saying: 的 won稚 be involved in picking.・Still, he had praise for his brother, Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, who insists he is not running for president.
滴e痴 a wonderful person who has got a great record as governor,・Bush said in the Oval Office interview. 鄭nd most of the presidents have come from the governor痴 ranks because they have shown the capacity to set agendas and get results and administer.
鉄hould he say that 選知 interested,・I think he would be a formidable candidate,・he added. 釘ut he has said he痴 not interested, and I think he means that.・BR>
The president also lauded another Republican who professes no interest in succeeding him - Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
鉄he痴 a remarkable woman,・he said. 釘ut, again, I think you致e got to take her for her word.・BR>
Although the president痴 name will never appear on another ballot, he said he wants Republicans to keep winning elections.
展e should be the party in power because we致e got ideas,・he said. 鄭s opposed to a party that痴 against everything, we池e for things.・BR>
Bush pointed out that Vice President Dick Cheney痴 plan to retire after finishing his term would leave the 2008 presidential election 努ide open・to candidates from both parties. The president noted that for the first time in 52 years, the field of hopefuls would not include an incumbent president or vice president.
的sn稚 that interesting?・he marveled. 的t may mean all bets are off.・br>
According to Bush, the nominees from both parties would be wise to avoid making their campaigns about the past. He believes that was his father痴 mistake in 1992, when the elder President Bush tried to coast to reelection after vanquishing Saddam Hussein in the first Gulf War.
鄭ny campaign,・the son reflected, 鍍hat says, 銑ook at what I did,・is going to fail.・BR>
Calling the 2004 campaign 鍍he last fling of my life,・he added: 典he only reason to look back is to be able to justify what I am going to do. You致e got to be thinking forward.・BR>
Still, Bush痴 2004 campaign manager, Ken Mehlman, drew useful lessons from the previous presidential contest.
鏑et me tell you the best thing that ever happened to us -- the recount in 2000,・he said in a STRATEGERY interview. 的t steeled everybody. It put the fear of God in us.
徹ne of the things that I firmly believe in life is that success is more dangerous than near failure,・he added. 釘ecause when you fear failure, you池e hungrier, you池e tougher, you池e smarter, you make more strategic decisions, and you never take a moment for granted.・BR>
Rove said he expects the Democrats to be hungry in 2008, since they will have been out of the White House for eight years. He predicted that Clinton will draw on her extensive campaign experience in her bid for the presidency.
鉄he has seen what the job requires,・he said. 鄭nd she has been through six gubernatorial campaigns, two presidential campaigns, and then two senatorial campaigns in a big, industrial state. So she will be a formidable campaigner. She値l be sure-footed.・BR>
Rove hinted that Clinton, who has been somewhat cautious since election to the Senate in 2000, may find that Americans sometimes want boldness from their president.
擢or somebody who is philosophically very liberal, she値l be a very cautious candidate at times,・he said. 典hat cautiousness will serve her well a lot of times ・not always, but a lot of times.
擢or example, her cautiousness had her vote for the Iraq war,・he said. 滴er cautiousness has led her to do things to sort of try to position herself as a centrist.・BR>
Asked to describe Clinton痴 weaknesses, Rove said, 塗er personal philosophy and her brittleness about her.・br>
He added: 典he question people will ask is, do we want to have her as president? And the answer to that will be determined in part by how she conducts herself. But it will also be settled in part by who the Republican nominee is and how he or she conducts themselves.・BR>
As for the 2006 congressional elections, Rove was upbeat.
迭epublicans will keep the House, Republicans will keep the Senate,・he predicted. 典he question is, what will be the margin? Will we gain a couple of seats? Will we lose a couple of seats? Will we lose more than a couple seats? I知 frankly very optimistic.・BR>