Clinton the Campaigner Moves to State—for Good or Ill

By Gabriel Winant,  Newser User
Posted Feb 18, 2009 7:47 AM CST
President Barack Obama meets with Middle East special envoy George Mitchell, Wednesday, Feb. 4, 2009, in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington.   (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
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(Newser) – As Hillary Clinton takes over the State Department, it's worth remembering that her train-wreck presidential campaign followed an "audacious 2000 run for Senate" and an excellent record as a legislator, Michael Crowley writes for the New Republic. "The question—not only for Hillary's legacy but for US foreign policy—is which of these models she will bring to" her new job, Crowley observes.

Dispatching special envoys to the Middle East, Afghanistan and Pakistan, and Iran—an idea Clinton pushed for before she even had her new gig—frees up the secretary to concentrate on Asia as well as the department's role in the Obama administration. Writes Crowley: "The number of outsized personalities within the State Department, as well as the number of strong wills outside it with whom she will have to coordinate, will require Hillary to be a diplomat among the diplomats."