Hillary won’t be channeling Bill

By Ric Bohy

August 11, 2009 at 1:12pm

It’s clear that there’s been about enough of the Bubba Factor for U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

As her boss, President Barack Obama, struggles at home to undo damage by Republican operatives during town hall forums on his healthcare package, the country’s top diplomat responded undiplomatically to a university student’s question during a similar gathering in Kinshasa, capital of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

When it sounded, because of a bum translation, that the student was asking for former President Bill Clinton’s opinion of China’s financial involvement in Congo, Hillary Rodham Clinton first look puzzled, and then her face hardened along with her voice.

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Hillary Rodham Clinton

“Wait,” she said, “you want me to tell you what my husband thinks? My husband is not the secretary of state, I am. So you ask my opinion, I will tell you my opinion. I’m not going to be channeling my husband.”

Back in Washington, Assistant Secretary of State P.J. Crowley tried to spread balm on the sore spots. It was a bad translation, he said, and what the student really wanted to know was Obama’s opinion of the issue.

“If Africa, if Congo is going to advance,” he said, “women have to play a more significant role. She was in the setting of a town hall, and the questioner was interested in what two men thought, not the secretary of state.”

So, always in the shadow of the man who dashed her own presidential dreams, and upstaged last week by her husband’s rescue of two American reporters jailed in North Korea, Hillary let the world know what she thinks of Bill’s still-high profile and involvement in international affairs.

While a video of the secretary’s response spread around the world online – quickly earning a 5-star rating on YouTube, her own opinion of the China-Congo dealings wasn’t asked or offered.

Hillary Clinton was in Congo to spotlight rape as a weapon and war. The visit was part of an 11-day Africa tour to highlight Obama’s commitment to addressing the troubled continent’s critical needs.

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  • #1.   marie 08.11.2009

    Give her a freaking break!! Man, first no coverage of her ,and now jump on this! I do wonder why the obama administration chose that particular timing of President Clinton to go to north korea at the same time as her important trip to the
    congo. It seems like the time SOS Clinton was having a press conferencenot too long ago and Obama convieniently had one at the same time. Don’t you think that the Obama people who claimed to be the most organised people accidently did these things? Maybe she is pissed and said something whe

  • #2.   marie 08.11.2009

    when this person was mistranslated

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