Clin­ton to begin pres­i­den­tial cam­paign on Sun­day: sources

The China Post - - FRONT PAGE - BY JULIE PACE AND KEN THOMAS

Hil­lary Rod­ham Clin­ton will end months of spec­u­la­tion about her po­lit­i­cal fu­ture and launch her long-awaited 2016 pres­i­den­tial cam­paign on Sun­day, ac­cord­ing to peo­ple familiar with her plans.

The for­mer sec­re­tary of state will be mak­ing her sec­ond bid for pres­i­dent and will en­ter the race in a strong po­si­tion to suc­ceed her ri­val from the 2008 Demo­cratic pri­mary, Pres­i­dent Barack Obama. If elected, she would be the na­tion’s first fe­male pres­i­dent.

The first of­fi­cial word that Clin­ton will seek the Demo­cratic Party’s nom­i­na­tion will come via an on­line video posted on so­cial me­dia. She’ll then make stops in key early vot­ing states, in­clud­ing Iowa and New Hamp­shire, where she’ll hold small events with vot­ers.

One Demo­crat familiar with cam­paign roll­out said Clin­ton’s stops would in­clude vis­its to peo­ple’s homes in those early states.

The peo­ple familiar with Clin­ton’s plans spoke on con­di­tion of anonymity be­cause they were not au­tho­rized to dis­cuss them pub­licly.

Clin­ton ap­pears un­likely to face a stiff pri­mary op­po­nent, though a hand­ful of lower-pro­file Democrats have said they are con­sid­er­ing their own cam­paigns.

Should she win the nom­i­na­tion, the for­mer first lady would face the win­ner of a Repub­li­can pri­mary sea­son that could fea­ture as many as two dozen can­di­dates. Among them, Repub­li­can Sen. Marco Ru­bio of Florida is ex­pected to for­mally an­nounce his cam­paign in Miami on Mon­day -- a day af­ter Clin­ton’s an­nounce­ment on so­cial me­dia. For­mer Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, the son and brother of two for­mer pres­i­dents, and Wis­con­sin Gov. Scott Walker are also ex­pected to en­ter the race, with both con­sid­ered early fron­trun­ners.

Clin­ton will re­turn to pol­i­tics fol­low­ing a two-year leave from gov­ern­ment.

Repub­li­cans have been pre­par­ing for a sec­ond Clin­ton cam­paign since she left Obama’s ad­min­is­tra­tion in early 2013. They in­tend to cam­paign against her by equat­ing her po­ten­tial pres­i­dency to that of a “third” Obama term, dur­ing which they ar­gue she would con­tinue his most un­pop­u­lar poli­cies.

Clin­ton’s an­nounce­ment was pre­ceded by wither­ing crit­i­cism over her use of a per­sonal email ac­count and server while she was sec­re­tary of state, as well as the Clin­ton Foun­da­tion’s ac­cep­tance of dona­tions from for­eign gov­ern­ments.

By cam­paign­ing heav­ily in Iowa and New Hamp­shire, Clin­ton hopes to avoid mak­ing the same stum­bles against Obama as she did in the 2008 Iowa cau­cuses that kick off the state-by-state nom­i­na­tion process. Obama won the cau­cuses in an up­set, his first victory of a his­toric cam­paign that made him Amer­ica’s first black pres­i­dent.

Clin­ton also sees such cam­paign­ing as a way not take for granted her for­mi­da­ble po­si­tion in the Demo­cratic field.

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