Tue, Nov 25, 2014 - Page 7 News List

US voters want ‘new car smell’ in 2016: Obama

AP, HENDERSON, Nevada

US President Barack Obama says voters want a “new car smell” in the 2016 White House race and that former US secretary of state Hillary Rodham Clinton would be “a great president.”

However, would Clinton pass that particular smell test?

In a nationally televised interview broadcast on Sunday, Obama seemed to suggest that any Democrat other than he would provide the turn of the page that he says voters are interested in.

He acknowledged the “dings” to his own political standing during nearly six years of sometimes bruising battles with the US Congress and said voters would want something new.

LOW MILEAGE

“They want to drive something off the lot that doesn’t have as much mileage as me,” Obama said in the interview with ABC’s This Week, which was taped on Friday last week in Las Vegas following a public appearance there by the president.

He said that a number of possible US Democratic Party candidates would make “terrific presidents,” but Clinton is the only one he mentioned by name. He said she would be a “formidable candidate” and make “a great president” if she decides to run a second time.

However, if she does run — which she is considering, with a decision expected to be announced early next year — would she have that “new car” scent for voters?

Clinton spokesman Nick Merrill declined to comment on the ABC interview.

MAJOR FORCE

Clinton has been a powerful force in Democratic politics for many years, beginning as Arkansas’ first lady before she became the nation’s first lady after her husband, former US president Bill Clinton, was elected in 1992. When his two terms were up, she ran for and won a US Senate seat from New York.

She later sought and lost the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination to Obama, then cemented her worldwide profile by serving Obama as secretary of state in his first term.

The Democratic political establishment is now awaiting word on whether she will take on the challenge of another national political campaign.

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