Clinton sees historical pattern in election losses

November 5, 2010 12:00 am

, CHRISTCHURCH, Nov 5 – US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Friday attributed major mid-term election losses by the Democratic Party to a "historical pattern" that affected her husband Bill when he was president.

In television interviews in New Zealand, Clinton again ruled out making a new bid for the US presidency but said the United States "should be" ready to elect the first woman to the White House.

"We have a historical pattern of this happening," she told New Zealand Television when asked about the massive election losses on Tuesday.

Republicans failed to capture the US Senate but cut deeply into the Democratic majority by picking up at least six seats in Tuesday\’s vote, which also saw the House of Representatives swing to the Republicans.

"The party of the president loses seats in the first mid-term election. In that respect, this is not at all out of the ordinary," she said, recalling that it happened to president Bill Clinton in 1994.

"That doesn\’t make it any easier, and it is deeply saddening to see good people lose their Congressional seats, but it is part of a historical pattern," she said.

"And certainly I know that, as the president said at his press conference, he is going to work hard the next two years to build a strong relationship with the Congress, with the new leaders to get things done for our country," she said.

When New Zealand Television asked the chief US diplomat whether the United States is ready for a female president, Clinton replied: "Well, I hope so. It should be."

Clinton lost to Barack Obama in the Democratic primaries for president in 2008, but accepted Obama\’s offer to serve as his secretary of state after he won the presidential election in November the same year.

When asked whether she could be elected the first female US president, she replied: "Well, not me. But it will be someone."

In an interview with TV3, Clinton also ruled out making a new run for president in 2012 and 2016.

She also suggested that the Democrats lost seats in the mid-term elections because of unpopular but necessary economic decisions taken by the Obama administration.

"What I think the president made very clear was he made decisions which were essential for the well-being of the American people," she said.

"It may not have been popular to do what had to be done with the stimulus and some of the other actions he took on the economy, but many of us believe it prevented even worse economic consequences," she said.

"So these things take a while for people to feel them and I think the president recognises we are all going to have to redouble our efforts," she said.


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