Clinton's options for future varied

June 6, 2008 at 7:06 AM
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WASHINGTON, June 6 (UPI) -- Sen. Hillary Clinton's future depends on what she wants and how she reacts to life after seeking the Democratic U.S. presidential nomination, strategists say.

She could be the running mate of likely Democratic nominee Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., or return to the Senate, where she can be a stronger voice for healthcare and other issues she championed -- and possibly prepare for another run at the White House, the Los Angeles Times reported Friday.

"Hillary Clinton still wants to be president of the United States. That desire may be chilled for now, but it will come into play in every decision she makes," said political strategist Hank Sheinkopf, who worked on President Bill Clinton's re-election campaign in 1996.

Whatever she does, Clinton must campaign for Obama this fall to shore up her image and repair some fences among several constituencies, African-Americans and superdelegates among them, the Times said.

"It has to be tough on her personally," said former Sen. John Breaux, D-La., who supported Clinton. "She's going to have to swallow her pride and work with all these folks again."

Clinton, D-N.Y., could help her presidential aspirations and enhance the populist image she developed by sticking with the economic issues that earned her working-class support in swing states, strategists said.

"It's a cliche, but she did find her voice in this campaign," said Democratic strategist Michael Berman, a Clinton supporter. "She can be heard anywhere on any subject. She can build an organization to back it up around the country."

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