Royalty and statesmen




Hillary, who was re-elected as senator for New York in November 2006, is hoping to make a bid to become the first woman president of the United States
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22 JANUARY 2007

The United States could be heading towards having its first women president after Hillary Clinton announced she is taking the preliminary steps towards running for the leadership role.

In a video and statement released on her website on Sunday, the former First Lady revealed she has set up a presidential exploratory committee to test the waters ahead of a full bid to return to the White House in January 2009.

Senator Clinton, 59, wife of former President Bill Clinton, announced on her website: "I'm in to win."

She says it is time "to overcome six years of Bush administration failures. The stakes will be high when America chooses a new president in 2008," she said.

"Only a new president can regain America's position as a respected leader in the world. This is a big election with some very big questions." She went on to ask: How do we bring the war in Iraq to the right end?" before mentioning several domestic issues, including health care, the environment and "energy independence".

The senator has also invited Americans to join her on a three-night series of live webchats. "Let's talk. Let's chat, let's start a dialogue about your ideas and mine, because the conversation in Washington has been just a little one-sided lately, don't you think?" she said.

Sources within the Democrat party see Mrs Clinton as the front-runner in the field, with elections due in November 2008. She faces stiff competition, however, from media-friendly Barack Obama who announced on Monday that he is bidding to become the first African-American to be named president.

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