Secretary of State Hillary Clinton scoffed Monday at suggestions that she has been “largely invisible” on major foreign policy issues in the Obama White House, and said that she has no interest in another run at the White House.
In an interview with TODAY’s Ann Curry, Clinton responded to a Washington Post story that said, “She is largely invisible on the big issues that dominate the foreign policy agenda. Including Afghanistan and Iran.”
After reading that quote aloud, Curry asked, “What do you say to people who are concerned that you have been marginalized?”
“I find it absurd,” Clinton said. “I find it beyond any realistic assessment of what I’m doing every day ... Maybe there is some misunderstanding which needs to be clarified.”
Clinton labeled the statement a misperception of how she operates.
“I believe in delegating power,” Clinton said. “I’m not one of these people who feels like I have to have my face in the front of the newspaper or on the TV every moment of the day. I would be irresponsible and negligent were I to say, ‘Oh, no. Everything must come to me.’ Now, maybe that is a woman’s thing. Maybe I'm totally secure and feel absolutely no need to go running around in order for people to see what I’m doing. It's just the way I am. My goal is to be a very positive force to implement the kind of changes that the president and I believe are in the best interest of our country.”
No more presidential aspirations
Clinton made the comments in the prerecorded interview before departing on a five-day overseas tour that has seen her speak out on Iran’s nuclear ambitions in Switzerland. On Sunday she was in Britain, where she warned Iran that the world “will not wait indefinitely” for proof that it is not trying to develop atomic weapons.
On Monday Clinton urged the rival leaders of Northern Ireland’s power-sharing government to keep making their awkward coalition work for the sake of lasting peace. In an address to the Northern Ireland Assembly, with Irish Catholics to her left and British Protestants to her right, Clinton said they should take the next critical step in cooperation — running the police and justice system together — as the best way to defeat Irish Republican Army dissidents still plotting bloodshed. Protestant leaders are blocking the move.
Curry also asked Clinton whether she ever wishes her presidential bid had been successful so that she could be making the decisions instead of carrying out President Obama’s policies.
“I have to tell you, it never crosses my mind,” Clinton said
“Will you ever run for president again?” Curry asked.
“No,” Clinton said with a laugh. “This is a great job. It is a 24/7 job. And I’m looking forward to retirement at some point.”
Clinton said she thinks President Barack Obama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize because of “his attitude toward America’s role in the world.”
“His willingness to really kind of challenge everyone ... restores a kind of image and appreciation of our country,” Clinton said.
Clinton added that she didn’t think winning the award would have any effect on Obama’s deliberations over what to do next in Afghanistan, including the question of whether to send large numbers of additional troops into a country where violence has recently surged.
“I think that the president makes each decision on the merits,” she said in the interview taped during her visit to Switzerland. She said the Nobel award is “not going to influence” the tough decisions Obama faces on Afghanistan.
“Every one of those deaths and all of the injuries of any of our men and women in uniform weigh heavily on all us,” Clinton said. “I want to guarantee all your listeners that this process will result in a very well-thought-out approach.”
She said that she recognizes that some are demanding a quick withdrawal, while others believe there should be a substantial infusion of forces. “Neither extreme is really focused on the situation, as we are,” Clinton said.
Clinton’s five-day overseas tour next takes her to Moscow.
The Associated Press contributed reporting to this story.