There’s little or no doubt that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will be the next Democratic presidential nominee, although she could face some early competition, according to former Connecticut Sen. Joe Lieberman.
“If she runs, and I guess she’ll run, then she’ll be the nominee of the party,” Lieberman told “The Steve Malzberg Show” on Newsmax TV.
“Interestingly, there could be somebody from the left who will take Hillary on because they think she’s too moderate.
“Unless something really agitating is happening, I don’t think that will be successful – something like a war that she’s supporting … So my guess is she’ll be the Democratic nominee. She’ll be formidable, but it depends on who the Republicans nominate.”
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Clinton will likely have to answer questions about her role in the lack of security at the consulate in Benghazi, where terrorists killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans, Lieberman believes.
He and Sen. Susan Collins of Maine were among those who conducted an early Senate investigation into the attack.
“Our conclusions were very close to what the Senate Intelligence Committee’s investigation reported last week,” he said.
“We called our report ‘Flashing Red’ because, looking back, you look at the intelligence reports about the terrorist extremists gathering in Benghazi, you see that there is a consulate there with very little protection and it just seems inevitable that there’s going to be an attack on that consulate.
“Also, that there was no real ability of a defense department to get help to our people out there. So our conclusion was …. the U.S. government — State Department, in this case — should have provided more security at Benghazi or should have closed up the consulate.”
Lieberman says his probe never found “any specific proof that Hillary Clinton sort of made a decision not to provide more security. So the real question … will be to what extent is she culpable for things that happened in the State Department?
“She’s answered that to some extent, but I’m sure she’ll be asked it more and more over the next couple of years, particularly if she runs for president.”
Lieberman finds it “unusual” that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will not bring a House bill calling for additional sanctions against Iran — which is in nuclear disarmament talks with the United States — reportedly at the request of President Barack Obama.
“When it comes to Iran, the threat to the United States, to our allies in the Middle East particularly Israel, is so clear that if Iran gets nuclear weapons, it changes the world for us, for our kids, for our grandkids,” he said.
“I don’t get why the administration opposes this … I just have a confidence that in the end, Sen. Reid’s going to have to bring it up and when he does it’s going to pass … and I got to tell you that I don’t think President Obama will veto it …
“Incidentally the Iranians threaten to leave the negotiations if this legislation passes… I don’t believe that either. They’ll hang right in there because so far the negotiations have worked to their benefit.”
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By Bill Hoffmann