Campaign Spot's Jim Gerhaghty on the prospect of Hillary at the State Department:
[I]t's easy to wonder if Hillary Clinton just accepted a poisoned chalice of a job. She'll be sent to Europe, to persuade our allies to contribute more troops to Afghanistan; she'll most likely hear every excuse under the sun in response. She, like Condi Rice, will be sent to Jerusalem to work out a Middle East peace deal; barring a miracle, she'll be disappointed time and again. We'll see if she gets dragged into setting up a policy of unconditional face-to-face meetings with Ahmadinejad, Assad, Chavez, Kim Jong-Il, and Castro. Biden predicted the Obama administration would be tested by a crisis right out of the gate; Hillary will probably be part of the folks who have to respond to that.MORE:
Gerard Baker in Friday's Times of London:
The problem is that should Senator Clinton, by any chance, be looking to make her own mark in the next four years and subtly distinguish herself from the new president, there could hardly be a better perch from which to do it. Differences between the two during the primary campaign were sharpest over foreign policy. Mrs Clinton denounced Mr Obama's pledge to meet foreign dictators without preconditions and generally mocked his inexperience. . .
What most troubles Obama loyalists is that a Clinton nomination threatens to destroy a feature of the new president's politics that has been essential to Senator Obama's success: its cohesion and unity of purpose. The No Drama title applied not just to the candidate but to the whole campaign, from the start. It was remarkably free of the usual tensions that permeate all political campaigns, at least in public.
And that is the risk in the Clinton nomination, should it come. You don't even have to believe that Senator Clinton will actively try to undermine the president. She's surely a loyal Democrat and a patriotic American who in any case understands that active pursuit of her own cause would do her more harm than good.
The problem is that the Clintons really can't help it. For all their protean talents, for all their political and intellectual skills, they have an unrivalled knack for making politics into very personal theatre, an unerring capacity to turn any crisis into a drama, one in which they play all the central roles. Another example of the Clinton dynastic principle at work was the appearance of Chelsea on the campaign trail with her mother. Who is to say that she won't continue the family tradition?