Tales from the Trail

Clinton’s happy to be out of the running

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton seen here in a Nov. 9, 2009 file photo of an event marking the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.  REUTERS/Christian Charisius

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton seen here in a Nov. 9, 2009 file photo of an event marking the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. REUTERS/Christian Charisius

Former U.S. senator and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton says she is done seeking votes.

Clinton, who is secretary of state under President Barack Obama, said on Sunday she is not planning to run again for president or any other political office.

“I am very happy doing what I’m doing, and I am not in any way interested in or pursuing anything in elective office,” the former U.S. first lady told “Fox News Sunday.”

Her comments followed Washington speculation that Obama might tap her for vice president when he seeks re-election in 2012 and move Vice President Joe Biden to the State Department.  The White House and Biden denied such reports.

Steven Chu: Energy Secretary, Nobel Laureate, Zombie

67613_449706237290_79707582290_5525360_4352855_aYou sort of have to like a U.S. cabinet secretary and Nobel Prize winner who knows how to have a little fun while getting out a message.

That would be Steven Chu, who posted a picture of himself as a green-faced, blood-dripping zombie on his Facebook page. Just in time for Washington’s scrupulously-observed Halloween weekend, Chu used his own zombification as a platform to point out power-sucking appliances — energy vampires, he called them.

“Garlic doesn’t work against these vampires,” Chu wrote. “But by taking some simple steps – like using power strips or setting your computer to go into sleep mode – you can protect yourself, and your wallet.” Then he linked to the Energy Department’s “energy star” page .

Special Relationship? How quickly they forget….

So much for “Hilly-Milly”.

Just last year U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton gushed to Vogue magazine about  former British Foreign Secretary David Miliband,  calling the young diplomat a dashing addition to the international scene. AFGHANISTAN/

“Well, if you saw him it would be a big crush. I mean, he is so vibrant, vital, attractive, smart. He’s really a good guy. And he’s so young!” Clinton said in remarks that provoked a spate of joking British tabloid headlines about the new “special relationship” between the United States and Britain.

Well, absence doesn’t appear to have made the heart grow any fonder. Asked on Wednesday if she had any advice for Miliband following his decision to bow out of frontline politics after losing a Labour Party leadership contest to his younger brother, Clinton was brief.

Mum’s the word on Clinton family wedding

hill_chelsea“My lips are sealed… I’m under strict orders not to talk about it,” Secretary of State Hillary Clinton revealed in an NBC interview.

The “it” she’s referring to is not a state secret. “It” is the upcoming wedding of Chelsea Clinton, the daughter of the secretary of state and former President Bill Clinton.

The publicity-shy Chelsea and fiance Marc Mezvinsky are getting married at the end of the month.  Plans for the wedding are a closely guarded secret. And mother is following orders — no details divulged here.

Michelle Obama almost inaugurates Hillary

Michelle Obama paid a visit to the State Department on Wednesday for a ceremony honoring courageous women from around the world — and almost went overboard in the honorifics for her host,  Hillary Clinton.USA/

“This is indeed a pleasure and an honor to be here with all of you, you all look fabulous!” Obama told a roomful of honorees for the International Women of Courage Awards, an annual event.

Turning to Clinton — her husband’s erstwhile rival for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination — Obama kept up the good cheer.

Holbrooke jokes about Kerry’s Karzai eclipse

Power plays are always a tricky business in Washington and sometimes it’s better to make a joke out of it. Or not.

Special representative to Afghanistan and Pakistan, Richard Holbrooke, used that tactic on Friday when asked about reports that veteran Senator John Kerry is stealing his limelight.

“I’d like to make a joke and say, ‘I’m always happy to be eclipsed by John Kerry.’ But then you’ll take it seriously and then I’ll cause more problems,” Holbrooke told reporters.

The First Draft: Clinton spills the beans?

After being upstaged by her own boss as she announced a new Sudan policy on Monday, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made a special effort to let the media know she had a secret: after much pressure and delay Afghan President Hamid Karzai would announce on Tuesday how he planned to handle his country’s disputed elections.

Clinton, who already had a briefing with the media in the morning to talk about Sudan, made a brief statement alongside Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki. Then she walked him out of the room and came back and invited a question about Afghanistan.

It was then that Clinton mentioned that Karzai would be making an announcement on Tuesday, though she said she did not wish to preempt the Afghan leader’s news.

How you like me now?!

hillaryRemember during the presidential campaign, when Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton was asked about her “likability” compared to that of  rival Barack Obama?

The inference was that people didn’t like her as much as they liked him, even after he told her during a presidential debate: “You’re likable enough.”

That was then.

This is now.

Secretary of State Clinton is more popular (or can we just say likable) than President Obama, according to a Gallup poll released on Thursday.