by.the.way.1


THRONGS gathered last Tuesday at Barnes & Noble’s Union Square store in New York for the book signing by Hillary Rodham Clinton of her newest book, “Hard Choices.”

Clinton for president?

No, not yet.

She will announce, she told ABC’s Diane Sawyer at a TV one-on-one interview last Monday night, “When it feels great for me to decide.”

And that will be, she said, “probably next year.”

When she does make known her bid for the Democratic nomination for president in the 2016 national elections, she will have a headstart among other probables, if any.

Her probable nomination foe is Vice President Joe Biden, but party moguls led by President Barack Obama may prevail upon the elderly Veep to back out.

The early bird catches the worm, or so the Hillary camp thinks.

Mailers are already out asking the recipients to pledge their support and make donations to the organization called Ready for Hillary ’16.

The second time around, she hopes to be the first woman president in U.S. history, after losing the Democratic nod in 2008 to Obama, who became the first African American president.

“I didn’t have a good strategy then,” she told Diane.

But her loss didn’t depress her. “I’m incredibly blessed.”

Will her health and age be a problem when she runs?

Not at all, she replied.

She’d be 69 in 2016, younger than when Ronald Reagan ran for president in 1980 and reelected in 1984.

As for her health, she admitted she had a serious concussion after she collapsed during a conference abroad when she was secretary of state.

But she is fine now.

“I’m willing to release my medical record.”

Roundly criticized for her handling of the Benghazi episode which led to the death of four Americans, including the U.S. ambassador to Libya, she bewailed that the incident was highly politicized.

“We did everything we could,” she said.

The most-awaited question finally came: Monica Lewinsky.

“I have not spent a lot of time thinking about it,” she said, apparently prepared for the question.

“I’ve moved on. I wish the same for her.”

Should she run as expected in 2016, Benghazi and Lewinsky will certainly figure prominently in the campaign.

Like Obama, will Hillary make history?

If Barbara Bush has her way, the blunt and straight-talking former first lady wishes, “No more Clintons; no more Bushes,” alluding to Hillary’s husband Bill, her husband George H. and son George W., all former presidents.

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