Chelsea Running for Congress?

Well, this is pretty interesting:

Talk of the Sound has learned that Chelsea Clinton may run for Congress next year.

Clinton has been approached by “the right people” in the New York Democratic Party, according to one source in Albany. While no decision has been made, Clinton is said to be “actively considering” a Congressional run from New York State in 2012.

Chelsea Clinton, 31, is the only child of former U.S. President Bill Clinton and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.

The discussions of running Chelsea Clinton for a house seat grew out of the redistricting plans currently underway in the New York State legislature in Albany.

The plan is to identify an open seat for Clinton in or around New York City where she currently resides with her husband, Marc Mezvinsky. While no specific district has been determined, New York City and Westchester are said to be the focus with New York’s 18th District considered a strong possibility. The 18th encompasses much of Westchester County, just south of where her parents have maintained a home for the past 12 years.

I have no doubt at all that if Chelsea Clinton
— a former hedge-fund manager who currently works as a for Avenue Capital Group and serves on the Board of Directors for Barry Diller’s InterActive Corp wants to be a congresswoman that she’ll run in the 18th district thanks to the ever-Clinton-accommodating Rep. Nita Lowey.

Some may recall that Nita Lowey was seriously considering making a run for Daniel Patrick Moynihan’s seat in the U.S. Senate in 2000, when Hillary decided she wanted to be a Senator. Lowey stepped aside for The Rodham, and many considered that the Clintons would be in her debt for the favor. Now, it appears Lowey, who is only in her early 70′s — as spring chicken by congressional standards — will apparently be “retiring” just in time for Chelsea Clinton’s political aspirations to bloom. Someday, her ship will come in.

If Ms. Clinton is indeed considering a political run, I wonder if she will copy her mother’s first campaign strategy of saying little and wandering about on a “listening tour.” No doubt the press will be fine with that, but one does wonder if Clinton will finally break her “I don’t talk to press” rule, which she enforced so strictly in 2008 that even a 9 year old journalist couldn’t charm her for an exclusive.

I think it’s interesting that Chelsea Clinton (who seems a lovely person, on the whole) is a hedge-fund/corporate media sort. We’re being told that these are “evil” things — money management and corporations and media mogul-dom — but it does seem that carrying a D after one’s name acts as a talisman to ward off the “evil” energies, so that all things are good. I wonder if the Occupy Wall Street will give her a pass. I expect the answer will be “yes.”

But I don’t mean to suggest that Chelsea Clinton will have it easy. I’m sure someone will make an unkind joke about her at some point, and undoubtedly, someone will suggest she has had a very padded life — one that perhaps will keep her from understanding what ordinary, middle-class people are going through, these days.

But being a Presidential Daughter, or any politician’s kid, is no easy thing;
I’m sure spending her formative years in the White House was not terribly pleasant — the constant surveillance, the nasty jokes, the hate directed toward one’s parents, the press reporting on your escapades, (but only if they really want to; Albert Gore, Jr was certainly afforded some discretion).

I don’t envy any kid growing up like that.

As presidential children go, of course, it was the Bush twins, Jenna and Barbara, (a schoolteacher/author and non-profit global health concern founder, respectively) who were considered to be vapid blights upon the landscape.

Politics is a filthy game, but Chelsea Clinton seems perfectly poised for this political run. Aside from her family cache and connections, she is deeply ensconced in both the global finance and communications industries — precisely where all the power lies.

Well, good luck to her, says I, not that she’ll need luck. If she runs in the NY-18, she will undoubtedly have a cakewalk.

When any child of politicians
, who has seen it all, seems determined to go into politics, it’s worth wondering whether they are completely sane or if they are truly self-disinterested altruists out to help their fellow humans (albeit in a very different manner than, say, the Bush twins).

But while gauging their sanity or altruism, I think their appetite for power should be gauged, as well.

UPDATE: Rep. Nita Lowey’s office says it’s not true!

Lowey spokesman Matthew Dennis told our Alison Gendar, “Congresswoman Lowey is 100% running for re-election in 2012. She is not retiring.”

One Democratic operative similarly told Gendar when asked about the Lowey/Clinton item, “News to me. They love Nita in Westchester.”

That’s true, they do. And they’ll love Chelsea, just as fully, and so quickly it will make your head spin.

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • zmama

    I remember when Chelsea started college as a pre-med major with the intent of becoming a doctor and thinking it was refreshing that she wasn’t going into law with the idea of following her parents into politics. I have the same reaction to this as to all the children of Hollywood stars who become actors themselves. Yawn-so typical. She had the resources to be ANYTHING she wanted and she is considering going into politics? Up to now I had a fondness for Chelsea.

    Your guest blogger mentioned Katherine Drexel the other day. The more I read about children of the wealthy and famous the more I am in awe of just what St. Katherine Drexel did with her life and the example she set for us all.

  • SteveM

    Nothing against Chelsea Clinton personally, but her academic and professional trajectory reeks of Political Cronyism. She took degrees in History and International Relations yet got a job with McKinsey Consulting. Without any business education or experience, Chelsea consulted to whom about what?

    Hedge Fund? Obama’s former Chief of Staff and Political Hit-Man Rahm Emanuel made 16 million bucks in 25 months on Wall Street. He too with absolutely no training or experience in Finance. Likewise, Chelsea moves from consulting to a hedge fund bringing what kind of expertise to derivatives trading?

    The issue isn’t Chelsea. (Or George Bush or any of the anointed Kennedy’s for that matter). It’s the rotten to the core Crony system that those greased trajectories represent. America rots while the Cronies take the dissolution to the bank…

  • Holly in Nebraska

    Another American dynasty continues. To the Capitol born, I guess. Although this may be one of those Caroline Kennedy-type things. Put it out there and find out whose your friend and who isn’t. Caroline apparently didn’t have the fortitude for politics. I have not idea if Chelsea can handle it. I haven’t heard anything about her ideas or her temperament.

  • bob c

    3 things
    1. in terms of dynasties, can point me to your snarky posts about George W Bush and Mitt Romney
    2. can you take even a minute to profile the countless political kids who help their fellow humans – the numbers far outweigh those who pursue politics
    3. in terms of sympathy for the Bush twins – I forget, did any Dem leaders make jokes on them like McCain did with Chelsea ?

    stay classy, conservatives ! makes the moral high ground even more attractive

    [1) You can go into my archives and find me complaining a-plenty about political dynasties, regardless of party. 2) I think I did mention political kids who help their fellow humans; I made a point of suggesting that altruism must be considered, even as a motive for a move into politics. 3) I have no idea what McCain might have said about Chelsea, but clearly people say stupid things about presidential children all the time, which is why I expressed sympathy for growing up in that environment. I generally don't pay attention to stupid pronouncements, so I couldn't tell you if some democrat specifically said something about the twins, but chances are, if one did, the press would not report it or find it as newsworthy as a republican saying something nasty about a democrat's kid. It is not difficult to find tons of disparaging remarks about the twins from other public figures, though. Google works. And I never said I was classy. -admin]

  • Doc

    Hey Bob, how do you determine if anyone has helped their fellow humans? Should I take it that you mean someone who runs or works for a non-profit enterprise?

    If someone builds a business, making a product or providing a service that people are willing to pay for, which requires that he or she hires employees after turning a profit and in order to remain profitable and grow larger to meet the demand, are they helping their fellow humans?

    If your answer is no, I recommend that you read the latest Walter Williams column, on profit. Now Walter is a classy conservative.

  • Jack B. Nimble

    This has WHAT to do with your church or your faith?? Oh wait, there aren’t enough angry GOP conservative blogs on the internet so it’s your calling to create one. If I had any doubt that Patheos was supported and run by right-wing funding “angels” and its claim to be an apolitical neutral info source is totally bogus, their linking to your blog confirms my thesis. Moreover, labeling and pushing all mainline Protestants into a “progressive Christian” ghetto is the ultimate confirmation of my point.

    [This is the silliest comment I've ever read. The fact that I am religious-minded does not exclude me from forming opinions or participating in politician debate -- unless I didn't get that memo; have religious-minded people been advised that they must hang up their citizenship at the door? Patheos was founded by those "progressive Christians" committed to including an array of voices and who created their new label b/c they wanted to make their own position as progressives and Christians more clear, so I hardly think they've been shuffled off to a "ghetto" and this portal left-of-center writers, too. Whatever you've had confirmed, it seems based on misinformation -admin]

  • Jill Kennedy

    Here is a great write-up of Chelsea Clinton’s wedding by a celebrity guest. It’s hilarious. Sha Na Na?

  • Jack B. Nimble

    Ms. Scalia, I did not question YOUR right to be one of eight gazillion Republican, Dem disliking, “Obama Is Not One of Us” bloggers. Go at it, as you obviously did starting some months ago just in time for the election year. My problem is not with you but with Patheos, since they think a blog which is so blatantly political and partisan (and occasionally personal in an insulting way to the President) is appropriate for an “apolitical” religion site. True, one of their evo-fundie bloggers is all standard issue GOP talking points, but would we expect something else from that crowd? (See Ratzinger, German trip remarks, for the RCC view of that “theology”).

    As a Christian (non-RC) I will not be insulted by being called “silly”. I’ve been called worse, and in charity I’ll take note of your new blog photo which is very flattering, and so much more attractive than the old one. Some of us think politics and political parties are of men and not of God, and like all human endeavours will pass away. They are also, by any measure deeply flawed institutions whatever their location on the ideology spectrum. Let us all be careful not to make of them golden idols to be worshipped, or to see our faith (RC or Protestant or Anglican) as an intertwined whole with some party platform. Some, perhaps you too, will put on blinkers when our faith collides with our politics, and pretend that the last Vatican social justice pronouncement (to take one example) is “prudential” (GOP speak for we’ll ignore it). In my view, Patheos should neither be a leftist activist site nor yet another angry white Republican in demographic panic mode site. Let’s be done with politics and politicians and their ungodly ways.

    [You're welcome to check out my archives and note how many times I have wondered and worried about ideologies becoming idols, too. I don't think Patheos is an "apolitical" site but one that accepts that there are many valid political perspectives, which is almost an unique position to take, these days. Faith and politics do not especially collude, but if we are whole people and concerned citizens they cannot help but bang into each other and ring our chimes, so to speak. I don't think it was especially uncharitable to call your last comment "silly" since you suggested that the very founders of the site had been banished to some sort of hellish ghetto, like political lepers, but if that stung, I do apologize. I hadn't meant to be either discourteous or uncharitable. I simply was stunned that anyone would presume it to be the case. I'm glad you like the picture. I didn't think the old one was so bad; it's what I look like, after all. Finally, I DO weary of people suggesting (as they increasingly do) that religiously-minded people either have to shut up about politics or, if they wish to express their opinions on the headlines of the day, leave their religious-inclinations home in a jar. As a whole person, I have no intention of allowing myself to be fragmented in such a way. I will take my chances on exposing myself as conflicted and wondering rather than compartmentalize myself for the sake of establishing new and self-limiting constraints. - admin]

  • Patrick Sweeney

    Be bold Chelsea, bump Gillibrand, and take your mother’s seat in the Senate.

  • Doc

    I wonder if Mr. Nimble will continue to be so apolitical when President Obama is replaced by a Republican president. I suspect Patheos and the Anchoress will be criticized by Jack for remaining silent in the face of Republican assaults against all good things when 2013 rolls around.