Clinton likely to accept top US diplomatic job: reports (Second Lead)

November 22nd, 2008 - 4:36 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, Nov 22 (IANS) Hillary Clinton is likely to give up her Senate post for the country’s most important diplomatic job, US media reports said, even as her aides insisted that she was “still in discussions” with President-elect Brack Obama over joining his team as Secretary of State. The New York Times reported Friday that Clinton had accepted the position of Secretary of State. It cited two confidants who said she had decided to join Obama’s team after detailed consultation with him about the nature of her role and his foreign policy plans.

Clinton was initially leaning toward rejecting Obama’s offer and had expressed her unwillingness to give up her independence in the Senate. However, his staff flooded her with calls to convince her to take up the important cabinet post, reported ABC News.

Fox News reported that a formal announcement was planned after Thanksgiving.

However, CNN cited a senior Obama aide as saying there has been no development on a possible Clinton appointment since Thursday, when they were informed that she is “on track” to be nominated for the post. The Clinton camp also shot down all media reports that claimed the former first lady had already agreed to accept the top diplomatic job.

“We’re still in discussions, which are very much on track,” said Philippe Reines, Clinton’s senior adviser. “Any reports beyond that are premature.”

Clinton and Obama had met last week to discuss the idea of her becoming Secretary of State.

According to Fox News, the two camps have worked out a plan to address financial disclosure issues involving Clinton’s husband, former president Bill Clinton, and the complicated international funding of his foundation, which operates in 27 countries.

Obama has moved with unusual speed to select officials for his administration. One Democrat said John Podesta, a leader of the transition team, told Senate aides Friday that Obama hoped for speedy confirmation so that the new administration could get to work quickly after his Jan 20 inauguration.

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