WASHINGTON, Sept. 8 (UPI) -- The field of female U.S. presidential contenders in 2016 would be wide open of Hillary Clinton does not throw her hat in the ring, Democratic Party leaders say.
Clinton, the U.S. secretary of state, missed her first party convention since 1968 this week due to an official trip to Easy Timor. There has been widespread speculation at the convention and in the media that she might be a leading contender for the party's 2016 presidential nomination.
"It's hard to predict right now. There are women who are outstanding members of the Senate, outstanding members of the House," said former Rep. Martin Frost, D-Texas, who was once a member of the Democratic leadership in the House.
Elizabeth Warren could be a contender if she wins her high-profile U.S. Senate race in Massachusetts in November, Frost told The Hill.
Other names being mentioned include Clinton's fellow Cabinet secretaries Janet Napolitano (Homeland Security) and Kathleen Sebelius (Health and Human Services). On Capitol Hill, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida and Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota are possibilities, The Hill said.
Clinton -- who will turn 70 a few weeks prior to the 2016 election -- has indicated she will not be back for another term as secretary of state should President Barack Obama be re-elected.
Some of her supporters insist she still has the stamina to make a serious run at becoming the first female U.S. president.