Condi Rice’s Long Game

I’ll admit to being a bit surprised to discover that Condoleezza Rice, in addition to appearing on Face the Nation yesterday, has also become a CBS Contributor.  Or, as wizened host Bob Schieffer said, And joining us now, well, everybody knows Condoleezza Rice was President Bush’s Secretary of State, but I am very pleased to announce she has a new job. As of today, she is joining CBS News as a contributor.“  Call me crazy, but the first thing I thought of on hearing that was that she’s planning to run for President in 2016.

After leaving The Bush White House, Condi gave little indication that she was interested in politics again, even though the subject has come up in various interviews.  She showed zero interest in being John McCain’s running mate, a job that might have been hers for the asking.  Instead she seemed satisfied in her job as professor at Stanford.  But successful, ambitious people don’t stay content forever.  Something happened to make her interested in the public sphere again.

Last June at a Romney fundraising retreat, Rice gave a speech that was extremely well received, garnering her a standing ovation and lots of cash for the Romney campaign.  In fact it was to all accounts such a good speech that it put Rice on the Romney VP list.

So this is just my speculation, but I would think for Condi, becoming a CBS Contributor gets her back in the public eye, gives her a platform to criticize the Obama administration, and gives her a chance to gauge whether there would be an interest in Condi 2016 or not.  Given how shattered the Republican Party is right now, it’s up for grabs for someone who wants to try to pick up the pieces and try to form a winning coalition.  Right now, that field is wide open.

On the eve of President Obama’s public inauguration, It would certainly be hitting the ground early.  She may think having a woman on the GOP ticket will take some of the air out of the Hillary Clinton tire.  Given that they were both Secretaries of State, it would be an interesting race.   Or my speculation could be totally incorrect.  But I’ll be watching her and see what she does.

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3 thoughts on “Condi Rice’s Long Game

  1. I’d vote for her. My concern is that her “mildly pro-choice” position might turn off the same Republican voters who sat out the 2012 election. I’d hope this would not be the case, especially after 8 years of Barrack Obama. But that crowd is a persnickety lot, and I’m not confident they can be counted on if Condi runs. On the other hand, many of the candidates they would enthusiastically support (Rick Santorum, for example) couldn’t, in my opinion, win the general election.

    • The people who wouldn’t come out for Condi in an election are the same people who sat home last November instead of voting for Romney. If you can’t be bothered to vote to prevent a second Obama term, I can’t imagine what goodies can entice you to come out to the polls. So those people have written themselves off. Rice would not be my perfect candidate, however in the pool of possible GOP hopefuls, she is probably the one with the most direct experience in foreign affairs and in handling the job of the Presidency.

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