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Hillary Rodham Romney? Keep an Eye on O’Malley

IAFF Conference

By Stuart RothenbergPosted at 11:59 a.m. April 27

For all her recent efforts to prove her progressive credentials to Democratic primary voters and caucus participants, former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has not made those on her party’s left entirely comfortable with her. And she never will.Because of that, a credible alternative would have the capacity to rally progressive Democrats behind a challenge to the former first lady, possibly even creating an entertaining skirmish or two.

The only question right now is if a serious contender will emerge. Not everyone, after all, would be equally capable of galvanizing anti-Hillary sentiment within the Democratic Party.

At first glance, the idea of a backbencher mounting even a moderately interesting challenge to Clinton is preposterous. After all, she will have the deepest war chest in history, begins with a lengthy résumé of accomplishments, has a flood of endorsements and institutional support, and holds the “first woman president” card in her hand.

But Clinton has as much chance of convincing Democratic progressives she is truly one of them as Mitt Romney had of convincing tea party conservatives and evangelicals he shared their values and views. That is: zero chance.

There is simply too much suspicion of Clinton on the left — and too much history to allow progressives to embrace her completely before they must.

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